The juggling community has lost one of its brightest stars. Picaso Jr. was born Francisco Tébar Honrubia on October 23, 1969 in Madrid, Spain. His father was the famed juggler El Gran Picaso (Francisco Tébar Picazo), best known for his juggling of table tennis balls with his mouth and for his work with boomerang plates. Picaso Jr. learned to juggle at a young age but didn’t pursue a performing career because he felt that he was too shy to be a performer. He studied economics at the University of Valencia and met his wife there. After graduating, he spent time in the military, where he decided to take up juggling again. When a small circus that was owned by friends of his family (Magic Circus) came to perform near the military base where he was stationed, Francisco showed them the juggling routine that he had been practicing. Much to his surprise, they offered him a job on the spot. This was in 1993. For the next two years he pursued only one goal; to train six to seven hours a day to make up for lost time and put together a world class juggling act. On May 5, 1996, he made his debut at the Benidorm Palace Dinner Show in Spain, performing alongside his father. This launched his career as Picaso Jr.
His act was similar to his father’s, featuring juggling table tennis balls with his mouth and juggling boomerang plates thrown over the audience. However, he also added the original skill of juggling up to four table tennis balls off of a paddle. He was incredibly talented with all three of these skills, as you can see in the video below.
Picaso Jr. not only impressed audiences with his world class skills, but was also considered one of the best performers in the circus world, winning over audiences with his stage presence. From the time of his debut until his death, Picaso Jr. was one the top and most in demand jugglers in Europe and around the world. He worked the most prestigious circuses and variety theaters and received numerous awards during his career. In 2002, he won a Silver Clown at the prestigious International Circus Festival in Monte Carlo. In 2007, he was given the National Circus Award by the National Institute of the Performing Arts and Music (INAEM) of the Spanish Ministry of Culture. In 2016, he was given the Award of Excellence by the International Jugglers’ Association. In 2008, Picaso Jr. was awarded a Guinness World Record for his mouth juggling with table tennis balls. You can see video of this accomplishment below.
Francisco was not only famous for his incredible act, but also for being an incredible person, husband, father, and son. Our condolences go out to his family and friends. This is truly a great loss to the world of one of the world’s greatest jugglers, still performing at the top of his ability. Below you will find additional photos and videos of this wonderful artist.
Here is a video of Picaso Jr. performing with his father.