Over the course of six dramatic and captivating hours, Circus whisks us away not only to the midway and the big-top, but into what circus folk call “the backyard”—the place where the trailers are parked and the real heart of the circus beats. Following the acclaimed Big Apple Circus from town to town and stand to stand over the course of an entire season, the series tracks triumphs and failures, romances and rivalries, and immerses viewers in a rich collection of stories that both compel our fascination and appeal to our shared humanity.

Praising circus as “beautifully filmed,” “truly affecting,” and “quietly addictive,” the New York Times invited readers to “think of it as investing six hours in an elegant eavesdrop-on-our-family reality show that puts all the noisy, obnoxious examples of that genre to shame.” “Running away and joining the circus,” raved Entertainment Weekly, “has never seemed less glamorous—or more vividly thrilling and real. What’s fascinating here is the deeply empathetic storytelling.” The series aired on PBS in November 2010.

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Stream the series for free here.