How did The Right Foot come about?
Created in 2012 in consultation with leading disability arts organisations and practitioners, the Right Foot program was created in response to a demand for professional disability arts programming.
What does a typical day at a Right Foot workshop look like?
Each week our warm up is lead by a different artist. In Session One we play with improvisation techniques, partnering, travelling sequences through the space, we play with props and different tools. Session Two begins with a conceptual talk creating the overall theme for our workshop series. We have a lot of fun exploring this theme through all kinds of processes and activities. Each week is different, we build new relationships, learn new skills and always leave with huge smiles on our faces.
Can you tell us a bit more about the DirtyFeet ethos?
At DirtyFeet we believe strongly in the positive impact dance has on people’s lives. It is a creative way to improve health and fitness, encourage self-expression, build confidence and form new connections. Our program is an important professional pathway for aspiring young artists to gain experience and support to further their creative career.
DirtyFeet is committed to extending its program in order to meet the demand and growing interest for inclusive dance programming. In this way, we hope to build the engagement with local audiences. By creating opportunities for audiences to experience dance through local presentations, Q&A sessions and participation in workshops, our program continues to broaden the audience base for contemporary dance.
“We have disabilities, but it doesn’t matter: we can all move and be together and no one cares about the differences.” – Brianna Lowe, 2015 participant
How has prioritising access enriched the work of DirtyFeet?
DirtyFeet plays a vital role in supporting and promoting the creation and practice of accessible dance for artists and audiences. It provides access points for artists who identify with disability, leading the way in accessible arts programming. Our commitment to this enriches our work through the artists we work with, the audiences we connect with, the relationships we form, the conversations we have and the dance we contribute to creating.
What advice would you give to other organisations wanting to improve the accessibility of their programs and performances?
Start the conversation. Reach out to organisations and individuals to guide you through and provide the resources to improve accessibility. Be open to feedback and keep asking questions. There are many simple steps and fundamental ways to improve in this area. Support and encourage your artists to think about how to integrate their practice. Make it a priority.
Participants Franny Aristides and Amy Mauvan
The Right Foot 2015
Participants Annabel Saies and Matthew Massaria
Photos from Jason Lam and Kaboom Studios.