The NFB is committed to respecting your privacy

We use cookies to ensure that our site works efficiently, as well as for advertising purposes.

If you do not wish to have your information used in this way, you can modify your browser settings before continuing your visit.

Learn more
High Grass Circus

High Grass Circus

| 56 min

This feature-length documentary offers an inside look into the workings of a travelling circus. In 1976, directors Tony Ianzelo and Torben Schioler followed the various people involved with the Royal Brothers' Circus as they set up their tents and put on their show. Fascinating to watch, the film captures the 24-hour-a-day brand of magic that the circus evokes while revealing the nature of the people who run it.

For more background information on this film, please visit the blog.

  • director
    Torben Schioler
    Tony Ianzelo
  • producer
    William Brind
  • executive producer
    Colin Low
  • photography
    Tony Ianzelo
  • sound
    Hans Oomes
  • editing
    Torben Schioler
  • sound editing
    Donald Douglas
  • music
    Donald Douglas
  • re-recording
    Michel Descombes


Enjoy the NFB experience on your favourite device. 


Ages 14 to 17

Media Education - Popular Culture
Social Studies - Contemporary Issues

Discuss the entertainment value of the circus of bygone days. What elements of circus life attracted workers and performers? Discuss the negative aspects of this livelihood. Discuss recent allegations of animal cruelty by animal rights activists regarding circus animals. Account for the many reasons for the demise of the circus in recent times.

High Grass Circus
Also available

Embed this code on your site

Video player width

by Reset