Adult Intensives

Wise Fool's Circus Intensives (BUST! and ELEVATE) provide a safe space for adults of all shapes, sizes, ages, gender presentations, and backgrounds to come together and explore their physical and inner strength while building trust and community. Adult intensives are open to people 15 years and older.

“BUST! has been a life-changing experience for me. The support and challenge we experience allows us to do what feels impossible physically and emotionally.” - Participant

“Of all the workshops, seminars, camps, intensives, and teachings I have attended (and I have attended a lot!), this offers the BEST possibility for strength, growth, self-love, and social justice.” – Participant

"I grew up with a lot of fear, anxiety, and timidity and [BUST]] was a place where I was able to release my fear and show up fully, loudly, and authentically as I am." - Participant

“To whole-heartedly plunge into the wild, exotic, magical unknown of circus; to discover to strength, beauty, power, and joy; to deeply with an amazing community of creative revolutionary women; and to emerge with new wings to fly, victorious, bad-ass, connected, and full of my life… that has been my experience of BUST.” - Participant

“This is a great program for women, queer identified people, and those from a diverse cross-section of backgrounds. It is a useful experience of beauty, creativity and strength for people of all ages and places in life.” - Participant


bust acro

May 20 - July 2nd 2017. An annual program since 2002.

BUST IS NOW FULL! Please email to be placed on the waiting list.

BUST! is a 6-week intensive that uses:

  • circus disciplines, (aerials, partner acrobatics, stilt walking, object manipulation)
  • physical theater and clowning
  • storytelling, puppetry and art making
  • embodied discussion

as a way to:

  • explore notions of strength and dignity
  • build community
  • examine femininity
  • deconstruct the gender binary, and
  • uncover the richness of our full voices

The intensive is open to all those who self-identify as women, trans* or gender- non conforming. All shapes, sizes, ages (16+), and backgrounds are welcome! Absolutely no circus, athletic or performance experience necessary. Classes take place in the evenings and on Saturdays, May 2oth - July 2nd. Tuition assistance is available.

As a culmination of this journey, students create a show to be performed on June 30th and July 1st at the Wise Fool studio. No previous circus experience of any kind is required!!

Class Schedule:
Saturdays 12:30 - 4:30pm
Mondays 5:30 - 9pm
Wednesdays 5:30 - 9pm
Fridays  (optional)  5:30 - 6:30 Zumba/Nia, 6:30 - 8:30pm Open Studio

The last week of the program will include extra evening time for tech and show rehearsals. Shows are at 7:30pm on Friday and Saturday, and 2pm on Saturday.



January 9th - 21st. An annual program since 2011.

ELEVATE is a co-ed “circus boot-camp” for adults of all ages (16-90+), genders, and skill levels. This two-week camp takes place at Wise Fool Studio in Santa Fe. Perfect for those with a 9-5 job, the focus of ELEVATE is personal fitness through circus skills in a supportive, challenging, and gender equal environment. By the end of the two weeks you'll become familiar with: Aerial Fabric, Trapeze, Partner Acrobatics, Stilts, Object manipulation, Clowning, Unicycling, Handstands and Flexibility. Raise your perceptions of what’s possible and get your workout off the ground at ELEVATE!  Students receive 30 hours of circus skills instruction. No previous experience required! All levels welcome!


2017 Dates: January 9 - 21

FEES: Workshop Fee for the two week intensive is $350, or $300 early-bird special if paid in full before December 21st. Work Trade and Partial Scholarships are available. Click here to apply.

Tips for Circus Intensive Participants!

What to wear, bring, and expect, and how to care for yourself!

What to Wear:

Work out clothes - sweats, yoga pants, etc-  that you will feel good about going upside down in. No loose t-shirts that will cover your face when inverted, and nothing too flowy that can get caught on trapeze or other people.

* for fabric class you will want something with at least a little sleeve to protect armpit area.
* for acro class having a pair of shorts is good. 
* for stilts & unicycling you will need sturdy closed toe shoes like sneakers or trail shoes with a flat sole (no heel).

The studio is kept fairly warm but always good to have some layers so as you heat up and cool down you will be comfortable.

What to Bring:

Snacks and a full water bottle!!! We'll really be working out so stay hydrated and bring lots of snack-age. Three hours is a long time and you'll need to refuel!

What to Expect:

We all come to this program at different levels of fitness, familiarity, experience, and flexibility of mind and body so please come ready to push yourself to your own personal full potential while taking care of your needs (and body) and not judging yourself against others. We'll all be trying new things and the more we support each other through the process the more we'll all reach new heights (literally!). At Wise Fool the word "can't" is not in our vocabulary - although "I'll try" or "that is scary" or "can you give me a step before that?" are heard loud and clear! 

How to Care for Yourself:

  • Hot epsom salt baths are a great way to relax your muscles after a hard day of working your mind and body!! 
  • Always inform instructors of any and all pertinent injuries or physical situations you are dealing with so we can adapt the material to best suit you.
  • If something feels wrong in your body STOP and talk to us right away so we can help - that's what we're here for and believe me, we have a lot of experience with physical issues that might come up.
  • Circus can really push people's limits in emotional ways as well so please feel free to talk to instructors about whatever is coming up for you - our fears and hopes are often intricately intertwined with our physicality and we want everyone to feel safe and secure here at Wise Fool in all ways possible.