New Victory Arts Break: I’mPossible

You’re heading to the circus! And not just any circus—a circus that challenges the idea of what is and isn’t possible. Omnium Circus is the world’s first fully inclusive circus company, providing equal access for people who might otherwise be excluded or treated as if they don’t belong—those with physical or intellectual disabilities, for example. Before you experience their show I’mPossible, let’s warm up with some circus tricks!

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Colorful arrows surround a photo of two aerialists, one without legs, and an illustrated title that reads New Victory Arts Break: I'mPossible, the latter portion illustrated in letters of different colors surrounded by juggling pins, spoked wheels and a thumbs up.

Some of the videos in these Arts Break activities were filmed at the New Victory Theater. We acknowledge that New Victory resides on the seized homeland of the Lenape people and the intertribal territory of many First Nations. We celebrate and pay deep respect to all Indigenous peoples, past, present and future, and we encourage you to learn more about these vibrant communities.

Before the Show: Build a Bag of Circus Tricks

The circus artists in I’mPossible have all cultivated an enormous set of skills and learned to perform in all kinds of acts. Follow along with New Victory Teaching Artist Hassiem Muhammad as he shares three tricks from his bag that you can add to yours!

Object Balancing

Step One: Locate an object in your home that is long and narrow in size, like a broom!

Step Two: Place the object in the center of your hand and immediately start moving your hand to steady the object.

Step Three: Lock your eyes on the top of the object and follow wherever the object leans. If it leans back, move your hand back, or take a step back! Remember to keep your eyes locked on the object.


Can you balance your object on your other hand? Your foot? Your elbow?


Step One: Find an area in your home that is safe and clear of furniture.

Step Two: Let’s try out the cartwheel from Hassiem’s video! Start with one foot in front of the other with your arms up overhead.

Step Three: If you have your right foot in front, swing your right arm onto the ground first. Then hop onto your left foot while bringing your left arm onto the ground.

Step Four: With both your arms planted, swing yourself up onto the other side. With each swing, try to send your legs higher and higher overhead.


Can you do your cartwheel in a new way? To music? While dancing? In slow motion?


Step One: Locate a sheet and a doorway, or a hallway with a doorway to one side!

Step Two: Hold up your sheet so it completely covers you.

Step Three: Give your sheet a toss into the air and quickly slip to the side (behind or through the doorway) so that, by the time the sheet falls, you’ll have disappeared from behind it.


Invite your family or friends to stand on the other side of the doorway and watch your magical illusion! Can they figure out how it’s done? Can they give it a try themselves?

You’ve done an awesome job building a bag of three circus tricks! What other tricks can you add to your bag?

On the Way: Access the Circus

I’mPossible is a production from Omnium Circus. In Latin, omnium means “of all and belonging to all,” and that sums up their mission! In addition to featuring circus artists who are disabled and non-disabled, each performance of I’mPossible includes American Sign Language (ASL) for audience members who are deaf or hard of hearing, as well as audio description for audience members who are blind or have low vision. Let’s learn a bit about each one of these offerings, starting with ASL.

American Sign Language

In the video above, performers from Omnium Circus are signing “Welcome to the circus!” in ASL. Can you sign along with them? The sign they use for “circus” looks like the outline of a circus tent, but there are other signs for “circus,” too. The Gallaudet Children’s Dictionary is a great online resource for learning signs in American Sign Language—check it out!

Audio Description

For audience members who are blind or have low vision, an audio describer watches the show from a booth in the back of the theater and narrates what’s happening on stage. People listen to the narration through special wireless headsets. Let’s work on our own audio description skills! Take a look at this photo:

Two jugglers toss juggling pins across the stage, over the heads of a man in a vest and cap and a woman in a wheelchair.
Photo: Maike Schulz

Without showing the image to your family and friends, describe to them what is happening on stage using some of these prompts:

  • What colors do you see?
  • Who is in the image?
  • What is happening in the image?

Audio description takes a lot of skill! Were your family and friends able to imagine what was happening in the photo based on your description? Was there anything you had trouble describing?

Check It Out!

If you get to the theater early, visit the lobby for a touch tour—a sensory experience introducing props and other materials from I’mPossible up close.

After the Show: Sensory Circus!

The sights and sounds of the circus are only part of the story—there are so many ways to experience the world! Let’s create a circus that excites all the senses and think about how other people use their senses when going to a show like I’mPossible.

Step One: Think about the five senses—touch, sight, hearing, smell, taste. How many do you think you used during the show?

Step Two: Using our New Victory stage template, sketch the circus you remember experiencing with all your senses. Use these questions to help guide you:

  • What do you remember seeing?
  • What do you remember hearing?
  • What do you remember smelling?
  • What do you remember tasting? (Did you eat anything before or after the show?)
  • What do you remember touching or feeling?

Step Three: Show your sketch to someone. What do they notice?


Imagine a circus of your own that could excite all five senses. Think about what sorts of acts, performers and props would appear on stage, and then draw it!

An illustrated circus on a printed worksheet—the worksheet features a stage with curtains, and the illustration includes two performers in wheelchairs, one juggler, one gymnast in a split, and two acrobats centerstage. The flying acrobat is upside down, and the base acrobat is dizzy.

And Beyond: It’s Possible!

You’ve been on a multi-sensory circus journey today, but it doesn’t have to end here! Connect with Omnium Circus through their virtual and in-person education programs, learn some basic signs or explore a whole playlist of ASL instructional videos from Miacademy Learning Channel, and expand your understanding of disabilities with an animated explainer video from Oasis!

And if you’re eager to bring the circus home, our New Victory Teaching Artists have got you covered with more Arts Break activities. Have fun!

New Victory Teaching Artist Gyana Mella
Hup! Grab a partner and go on an acro adventure with Gyana Mella!
New Victory Teaching Artist Billy Schultz
Ta-dah! Gather some household objects and devise your own circus act with Billy Schultz!

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