Festival Offerings

Circus has existed for centuries in various cultures. Traditionally circus represented a place where the “freaks” of society werevaluedfor their uniqueness, and that uniqueness was viewed as a personalstrength. Circus could not exist without the collaboration of different skill sets and various roles. This itself makes circus a perfect model of successful community building. Circus provides a platform, which enables people of diverse class, race, culture, and ability to collaborate within a community working towards a common goal.

Providing opportunities for public engagement in a variety of circus activities within the festival setting promotes personal wellbeing and creates positive relationships between peers and the community as well as bridges the gap between the creators and the recipients of the festival experience.


To create more diversity within the festival experience and reach a broader audience through providing workshops and talks on circus, activism, and community health.

To empower participants to be cocreators of the festival experience and mission through providing tools and experiences they can put into action  when they return home.

To create an opportunity for people of all ages to embrace the healing power of play.


The Mindfulness of Juggling

Juggling is an excellent form of meditation that enables connections to occur between the more logical (left) andemotional (right) hemispheres of the brain. Coordination and bimanual hand use is strengthened through repetition and practice of specific motor skills. Participants will increase their physical and cognitive wellness while learning tricks to entertain their family and friends. The various juggling activities we will explore include ball juggling, ring juggling, scarf juggling, clubs, partner and group passing patterns. Juggling instruction is made all accessible, pitched at the right level for each individual to enable a fun and successful experience for all. Perseverance and creativity is encouraged while participants develop their own style of incorporating these skills with their own body movement.

The use of HCT’s task grading teaching techniques will enable all participants to experience a “Flow” state throwing things in the air.

The Enlighenment of Silliness- Clowning and Physical Theater

Lighten up yogis :) This workshop will take participants through a comedic mind body journey of games and activities that are achievable for everyone and encourage various forms of verbal and nonverbal communication, reciprocation, problem solving, and planning behaviors. The activities involve running, jumping, crawling and balancing, and possibly the most challenging of all… stillness. Gross motor abilities and postural control are the foundation upon which fine motor skills develop.

The physical aspects infused as part of this session compliment proper body alignment principles addressed through asana. Inspired by the renowned workof Augusto Boal and clown doctor Clare Bartholemew, this experience aims to promote an exploration and awareness of different states of being, empathy, teamwork, and humor within an emotionally and  physically safe environment.


Emotional Health

Interacting in appropriately pitched circus activities promotes turn-taking, leadership, communication, empathy, expression, trust, and dependability. Grading the tasks individually to have a combination of challenging and achievable components promotes feelings of motivation and satisfaction in engagement, as well as increased self-confidence and self-efficacy.

Physical Health

Circus skills are graded to match a person’s capacities. Whether you are working on 1 ball juggling or 3 club partner passing in a 3-high, this workshop will increase your body awareness, coordination, circulation, strength, tone, and flexibility.

Cognitive Function

Circus works the brain. The varied activities, equipment, and structured repetition, provide individuals with multiple activities that increase gross and fine motor control, executive functions, visual perceptual abilities, sequencing, sense of rhythm and timing, reactions, coordination, bi-manual hand use, and concentration.

Social Health

Circus assists in the formation of healthy peer interaction as well as provides opportunities for teamwork. There is a role for everyone. By utilizing an occupational therapy approach, an important part of this program is focused on highlighting each individual’s strengths. All participants are recognized and valued by the group. The ‘life skills’ learned emotionally, cognitively, and physically, all contribute to how individuals function socially as well as their ability to contribute positively to their communities

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