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


May 25th - July 7th, 2019. An annual program since 2002.

BUST! is a 6-week intensive that takes participants on a journey of embodiment,  self-discovery, creative exploration, and community building. Skilled teachers guide this process through facilitated experiences around:

  • aerials
  • stilt-walking
  • equity
  • partner acro
  • gender
  • juggling
  • body inclusivity, and
  • clowning.

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 25th - July 7th.


As a culmination of this journey, students create a show to be performed on July 5th and 6th at the Wise Fool studio. No previous circus experience of any kind is required!!


BUST! 2019 fees are based vary based on an equity model. In order to make the program accessible to everyone interested, fees will range from $350 to $1000 dependent on your ability to pay. When you register, you will be asked to fill out a questionnaire to determine where you best fit on the fee scale. In some instances we may be able to provide work trade or full tuition assistance. Please email if the $350 minimum is a barrier to your enrollment.


Class Schedule:
Saturdays 1:30 - 4:30pm
Mondays 5:30 - 9pm
Wednesdays 5:30 - 9pm
Fridays  5:30 - 8:30pm (some parts are optional)

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.


Questions? Call Ilana at 505-310-9723 or email


January 6 - 18, 2020. An annual program since 2011.

ELEVATE is a “circus boot-camp” for adults of all ages (15-80+), 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!

Class schedule:

Monday, Wednesday, Friday 6-9

Thursday 5:45 - 7

Saturdays 1/11 2-6pm,  1/18  3:30-7pm

Work trade and tuition assistance available. Click here to apply.

Previous Adult Intensives: Ignite


Wise Fool New Mexico is excited to offer our first ever IGNITE! street theater arts intensive workshop for adults and teens from August 27 to September 9th, 2017 on weeknights and Saturday afternoons.

In this two-week workshop, participants will learn how to build giant puppets, stilt-walk, design and paint banners and other large scale visuals. We'll also explore storyboarding, choreographic pageantry and characters for outdoor spectacles, demonstrations and community events. IGNITE! will also include two public community puppet builds and will culminate in a procession and performance at the AHA Festival of Progressive Arts on the weekend of September 16 and 17.

The program is open to adults and teens (14+). Absolutely no experience necessary! Click here to register. You will need to login or create an account to register. Space is limited,  so sign up early to reserve your spot!

Cost of the program is $350, tuition and payment plans are available. Click here to apply for tuition assistance or apply a payment plan.  

Tips for Circus Intensive Participants!