Tuesday, August 28, 2007

From Robert Perry #1

con colleano, originally uploaded by bucklesw1.

A photo of Con Colleano, Con was a good friend of my dad Alby Perry, my dad was also a good wire walker doing the Foward. Con & dad used to hang out in the outback of Australia before Con went overseas


johnny said...

I am quite proud to say that I worked with the great Con Colleano and recall that he entered the ring in kind of a Flamenco Dancer with Spainish hat costume and twirling a bull fighting cape. Then on the wire he would throw the hat to his wife and then the bolero jacket and then he would drop to his critch and execute a back somersault landing on his feet and at the same time, while in mid-air he would tear off the bolero type pants and land standing in hisw matador costume.

When my Dad was Eqes. Director there was some program adjustment during one show,[weather,etc.] under canvas causing a delay and he quietly came up to my Dad in the back door and said, "Milt, put me on as soon as you can as this aluminum cup in my crotch hurts like hell." Obvi0usly it was the secret to those crotch falls.

Normally he had a private dressing room, but in Yankee Stadium we all dressed together in the Yankee Locker room. Ladies in the visitors room. He had a white strip of material that rooled out right under his wire as his sight was getting poor and I dressed close by him and he would ask me to read the various notices on the bulletin board. He was very quiet and kind of a loner, except at night he liked to get boozed up in his stateroom with friends.

His sister Cora and clown husband Danny O'Donnel had the "Pie Car". He was a sensational act, certainly one of the all time greats and like Clyde Beatty was an avid fisherman.

johnny said...

Incidentally that crotch to feet back somersault was part of his opening routine. No annoucement and I don't recall him ever missing it, however I remember him having to rehash the forward even three times until he caught it.

He never had a pedestal board. His wire went directly from jack to jack and was extremely guyed out very tight. Took lots of wooden stakes on a soft lot.

Buckles said...

My mother could be the absolute master of the "pregnant pause".
Once when visiting the Cristiani Show we were walking thru the back yard when she noticed the Colleanos standing by the back door ready to enter for his act.
Remembering him from the Cole Show she went over and said, "Hi Colleano, aren't you pretty old to be getting up on that wire?".
When I introduced her to Jean Ringling in Baraboo she said, "You sure are small, were you ever top mounter in a teeter-board act?"

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