Edit

Biography

Jump to: Overview (3) | Mini Bio (1) | Spouse (2) | Trade Mark (1) | Trivia (6) | Personal Quotes (4)

Overview (3)

Born in Schweidnitz, Lower Silesia, Germany [now Swidnica, Dolnoslaskie, Poland]
Died in Venice, Florida, USA  (cancer)
Birth NameGunther Gebel

Mini Bio (1)

Gunther Gebel-Williams was born on September 12, 1934 in Schweidnitz, Lower Silesia, Germany as Gunther Gebel. He is known for his work on Rings Around the World (1966), Circus World (1974) and Ringling Bros. And Barnum & Bailey Circus - 109th Edition (1979). He was married to Sigrid Neubauer and Jeanette Williams. He died on July 19, 2001 in Venice, Florida, USA.

Spouse (2)

Sigrid Neubauer (1968 - 19 July 2001) (his death) (1 child)
Jeanette Williams (1960 - ?) (divorced) (1 child)

Trade Mark (1)

Wore long bleached-blond hair, sequined and rhinestoned costumes, and a boyish grin.

Trivia (6)

Appeared in an American Express commercial with his favorite leopard, Kenny, around his shoulders.
Gebel-Williams, world renowned as The Greatest Animal Trainer of All Time, was the most celebrated and honored circus artist in history and the recipient of innumerable accolades, including the "Outstanding Circus Performer of the Year" award by the American Guild of Variety Artists in 1973.
Inducted into the Madison Square Garden Walk of Fame in 1995 for holding the record for the most performances by any entertainer in the famous arena.
Performed with Asian and African elephants, tigers, leopards, lions, panthers, mountain lions, horses, goats, camels, zebras and a giraffe.
Featured in several network television specials, including CBS-TV's "Lord of the Rings" in 1977, NBC-TV's "My Father, the Circus King" in 1981, and "The Return of Gunther Gebel-Williams," which aired on CBS-TV in 1994.
He performed in the Giant Steel Cage for the last time in Grand Rapids, Michigan, on September 27, 1998.

Personal Quotes (4)

Working closely with animals - training them, understanding them, and getting across their beauty and intellegence to the people - for me, that's the best life I can have.
You must become a tiger to be able to train tigers.
It's not important what you say to them. It's the tone and the way it's said. I call them by name, speak in a certain voice, and they know what I mean. They each have a different personality. [on training animals with food and voice rather than whip and chair]
You cannot tell a wild animal that he has to learn a trick today. You have to believe that he'll do it tomorrow if you spend enough time with him.

See also

Other Works | Publicity Listings | Official Sites | Contact Info

Contribute to This Page