SHE pulls a face, he swings an arm, she ducks and they both fall over in a cloud of sawdust and laughs.

It's a typical clowning moment, but Emilion and Andreea Delbosq are far from typical clowns.

There are no scary white faces or big, curly wigs; no giant shoes or sinister smiles. Instead, this duo dress in dapper suits and keep the slap to a minimum.

The couple, known professionally as Duo Delbosq, are in Glasgow as part of Zippo's Circus.

Their routines this year include a take-off of the Go Compare advert and a warm-up routine based, appropriately, on Emile Sande's hit, Clown.

"We tap into what people are watching on TV, what music they are listening to," explains Emilion.

"Britain's Got Talent has been great for us. It has introduced acrobats and jugglers to the audience again.

"We want to be modern, although of course there are traditional elements to our act.

"Circuses have changed over the years – ours, for example, is more European than some. It has a class to it, an elegance."

Andreea nods.

"Sometimes children are afraid of traditional clowns, and we want to get away from that. But I still like the red nose," she says.

Emilion disagrees.

"I would get rid of the red nose too, but Andreea does not want to," he says.

She shakes her head, vehemently.

"Never – the red nose is my character, my protection in a way," she explains.

"Without it, I can't do the act. It is strange, but if it falls off even by accident, I can't be a clown."

London-born Emilion, who is 'half-French, half-English' is 28, the 10th generation of a circus family, and has been performing in the ring since he was five years old.

"I love clowning – it is less stressful than some of the other circus acts," he grins.

"It is hard work, of course, and you have to train a lot, but there are relaxing moments too, when you can chat to the audience and make them laugh."

Andreea, 30, was a semi-professional gymnast in her native Romania when she spent some time with her uncle, who worked for the Romanian State Circus.

"I loved it," she says.

"I didn't do clowning until I met Emil. Before that, I did trapeze and hoops, but as soon as I tried clowning I didn't want to do anything else."

It is unusual for women to become clowns, as Emilion explains.

"Some women do it, but they hide behind the make-up and wear men's clothes," he says.

"It's strange . Why not have female clowns? We are lucky, we are married so we know each other well and understand our timing and can bounce off each other – sometimes literally."

Andreea and Emilion were teenage sweethearts, and have been together for 13 years. It was only last year, however, that he plucked up the courage to propose.

"He did it in the middle of a performance, which is a circus tradition," says Andreea. "It was a full house, and everyone cheered when I said yes."

She jokes: "He was very nervous. I should have said no, just to make it worse for him...."

The couple married last year in London, and more than 100 people were invited, including their son, Lewis, who is four.

"Lewis loves the circus," smiles Andreea.

"And we are never short of a babysitter.

"Circus people are like a big family. Some people think we are travellers, gypsies, but we are not.

"We stay at home at the start of the year when we are not working, at our home in France.

"When we are working, Lewis is playing with his friends and family here at the circus, and he has a great time."

Andreea was back in the ring performing two weeks after giving birth to Lewis and both she and Emilion admit working, touring and being parents is hard work.

"It can be tiring, but we wouldn't do anything else," says Andreea.

"There is no pressure on Lewis to join the circus, but if he wants to, why not?" says Emilion.

"I studied carpentry when I was younger. I was always given the choice to become part of the circus or not, and Lewis has the same choice."

The buzz of arriving in a new place, watching the big top go up around them, is one of Emilion's favourite moments.

"This is not just a job, it is our pride and passion," he says. "When we go into the ring, we give it our all."

Andreea agrees. "If you don't get the butterflies in your stomach as you wait to go on, then you are not really an artiste," she says.

"When that feeling disappears, it is time to stop and do something else."

n Zippo's Circus is at Queen's Park until Sunday (June 16) and Victoria Park from June 18-23 before touring around Scotland.

For more information and ticket prices, visit or call 0871 210 2100.