Managing Coulrophobia


by Bazuka Joe

BurlyCon is just a few short months away! As a reminder, this year’s theme is “Under the Big Top”, and though the circus theme is meant to create a fun addition to the planned events with games and costumes, it does bring up genuine concerns over Coulrophobia (aka The Fear of Clowns).

Clowning and miming have been a deeply rooted art form in our worlds of circus, burlesque, vaudeville, and cabaret. The art and its aesthetic go back hundreds of years through theater’s history. However, their impact might not always fall in line with their intent. There’s a lot of psychology behind Coulrophobia. Though we may not fully understand the fear, it’s important to acknowledge that it’s a very real experience that holds different causes and effects for each individual. 

We’ve asked some of your peers WITH Coulrophobia, and performers who actively identify as clowns/mimes to help us navigate this subject in a REASONABLE, RESPECTFUL manner. See the image for tips on how to manage coulrophobia.

Special thanks to Maggie McMuffin, Mary S. Berry, and Rex T. Impossible for their extra input and expertise!

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