Gilyan Francesco

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(1919-2001) Circus clown and actor. Born Gilyan Francesco in Wellington, in the Cape, (ostensibly 1919, but there is some doubt about his age). He made his stage debut aged six. Over the years worked on stage, variety, circus and pantomime. Performed in Lock Up Your Daughters in 19**. Best known to decades of children however as Francesco the Clown - the stage name he used when he performed for various circuses (Pagel's Circus, Boswell's Circus and finally the Boswell-Wilkie Circus) as well as in his own presentations for childrens's events, parties etc.

Along with H. Dut he was one of the directors of Gilyan Francesco’s Playmakers, a theatrical company, specialising in clowning and children's theatre.

Started his career as Francesco the Clown with Pagel’s Circus in the 1930s and later worked for the Boswell-Wilkie Circus. Also performed as actor with André Huguenet??**. Later toured his own show Half in Jest throughout the country, giving hundreds of professional and charity performances. (19**-19**).

See also Francesco the Clown


SACD 1973

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