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“Because the masks are three-dimensional, the kids can take it and feel them,” Mr. Bloom, 37, said. “It’s not like makeup.”

One young girl particularly interested in Ms. Gelsone’s mask, which was attached to a large, gray-hair beehive wig, was 9-year-old Kayla Harris.

The fourth-grader from Lanham is legally blind and while she tucked her walking stick beneath her arm, she ran her hands over the bumps and creases of the mask, feeling its bulbous nose and dimples.

“I liked the clowns, and the girl performing on the loop,” Kayla said with a smile. “This is my second time here. … I just wanted to come.”

Watching her daughter explore the circus’ center ring, Sharonda Baker, Kayla’s mother, said the benefit of a show designed for impaired children also extends to parents.

The headphones with running commentary allow the children “to get a sense of what’s going on,” she said, without adults having to constantly explain the scenes unfolding before them.

Mr. Bloom said this was the first season he and his wife had performed one of their acts with the Circus of the Senses, and it’s taken their experience performing for audiences in 15 countries to deliver for this unique crowd.

“As clowns we’re performing for various audiences, and it’s very visual. We always work off the reactions of the audience,” he said. “In every country there are big laughs, but it’s the small laughter we try to find in every place.”