Farewell to top Blackpool acrobat

Janos Lukacs pictured with his brothers in their acrobatic troupe

Janos Lukacs pictured with his brothers in their acrobatic troupe

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A well known Blackpool acrobat and restaurant owner has died at the age of 71.

Janos Lukacs appeared all over the world as a circus performer and later ran Al Capone’s in Highfield Road as a family business for many years.

Janos Lukacs

Janos Lukacs

He was born in Serbia to a Hungarian family but the family of five brothers grew up in Budapest under communist rule.

His daughter Tina Lukacs said he died on January 31 after a long illness. His funeral is at Lytham Crematorium on Friday at 2pm.

Janos’ family were all musical his father being a professional harp player and older brother Kosta a renowned Jazz Guitarist, and Janos too was musical.

One of the pieces of music at the funeral service will be a guitar recording made by his late brother Kosta – The Shadow of your Smile.

Janos joined the family’s acrobatic troupe – the Seven Lukacs – as a springboard artist and they toured the world in various circuses and was well known as an expert flyer.

In 1966 they got a season at Blackpool Tower where he met his wife Joan who he leaves with daughter Tina and son Lee and four grandchildren.

The pair travelled Europe performing and he later formed a cabaret act with his brother Frank.

Tina said: “He has performed to kings and worked with artists such as Sir Tom Jones, Sir Cliff Richard and the Shadows, Sir Bruce Forsyth, Sammy Davis Junior working in a circus tent to a palace, from Blackpool Tower to London Palladium.

“He was an irrepressible character and a real family man. His family were the most important thing in the world to him.”

After retiring from showbusiness he turned his hand to sales and then took over the pizza restaurant.

But he kept in touch with circus and show business pals and turned out regularly for the Show Business 11 charity football team taking part in fundraising matches with the likes of Jimmy Armfield.

Tina said: “He ran the family business Al Capones on Highfield Road where the whole family worked, managed and produced hand crafted pizzas and pastas.

“Customers would often be surprised and amused of Janos’s resemblance to Al Capone himself!

“He often said, ‘If you have your family, you are the richest man in the world’.

“More recently, he was most happy when he spent time with his grandchildren, Ryan, Katie, Jenson and Layla who he couldn’t spend enough time with.”

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