Celebration of the International Day of Disabled People to be marked by an invitation for all to dance!

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It is with pleasure that DANZ announces the launch of the New Zealand Disability and Dance Strategy – Would you like this dance?

The Strategy, funded by SPARC and facilitated by DANZ, provides a blueprint for the development of dance participation, creation and performance for disabled people as well as identifying the areas for strengthening and development across the broad national and regional infrastructure.

DANZ will act as a caretaker for the strategy as with the Dance Industry Strategy. However it will take the buy-in from beyond the Dance Industry to effect change. Disability service providers, recreation and dance, information services, venues, the education and health sectors all have a role to play.

Would you like this dance? will be launched on Saturday 4 December at the Museum of NZ, Te Papa Tongarewa, Wellington, as part of the International Day of Disabled People 2010. This year the International Day has the theme – Celebrating empowerment through independence, inclusivity and choice.

In keeping with the day and the strategy, the launch will feature performances from established and emerging artists, including jazz and blues from TimeLiners, dance theatre and drama from Acting Up and Wellingtons very first integrated hip hop dance group JDK.

Tania Kopytko, Executive Director of DANZ says this is an important and cutting edge step forward for dance and disabled people. It represents the beginning of an exciting and challenging process.

The strategy complements the Dance Industry Strategy of 2008. It has five areas of focus

  • VISIBLE integrated dance is a recognised part of the wider dance industry
  • SKILLED educated, ongoing training is supported
  • Dance spaces, information and experiences are all ACCESSIBLE
  • VIABLE dance for disabled people is connected, accessible, skilled and visible
  • CONNECTED networks, organisations and partnerships are developed and utilised

It took two years of work by writer/researcher/dancer Bronwyn Hayward, who is also a disabled person. This enabled extensive consultation with groups and individuals, ranging from providers and care giver organisations to current participants and non- participants in dance.

Key recommendations are to

  • Raise the visibility of integrated dance through promotion and public awareness.
  • Promote champions of integrated dance to disabled people, disability service providers and the wider recreation, dance and community sectors.
  • Develop resources to promote projects, best practice and career options in the sector.
  • Work to ensure venue and other access issues are being provided for
  • Development of partners and buy-in to allow development.
  • Establish a Dance Reference Group to move this Strategy forward.

Tania Kopytko, Executive Directo, DANZ

Direct Dial 04 802 0534
Mobile 027 6310105
E mail execdirector@danz.org.nz

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