Sprung - Dance workshop a hit

A local inclusive Dance company Sprung!! Integrated Dance Theatre contacted Ability Links for assistance after the director had seen an article in Frankie Magazine about a Deaf professional dancer Anna Seymour based in Melbourne.

The dance company wanted to try and get her up to the Northern Rivers to share her expertise and facilitate a workshop over 5 days with choreographer Michael Hennessy, along with both dancers from the company, and interested community members.

The company had secured a grant enabling them to engage a professional, however, the grant did not cover the costs of providing interpreters for the duration of the workshop. Ability Links met with representatives from the dance company, as well as the Deaf professional.

After discussing the needs of the program, the Linker (who was Deaf herself) remembered a local QUOTA club had previously expressed an interest in supporting initiatives/inclusion for Deaf community members as they were wanting to expand their existing school based support out into the community.

The Linker set up contact between the two organizations: QUOTA and the dance company. They were able to negotiate a donation to cover the costs of interpreting. When the workshop finally came around, the community was invited to attend a showing of the dance pieces the group had worked on over the week. The pieces blew everyone away!

Comments after the show from people involved: “Absolutely wonderful..it gave me goose-bumps and I cried, you could see how much of themselves was in every move” “

Sprung and QUOTA are now discussing continued financial support to enable a second similar workshop to occur in 2018, as well as exploring fundraising opportunities. The Linker has also been able to assist with subtitling a promotional video of the project and after this project, Sprung!! are now including access considerations in subsequent grant applications.