“The Art of Possibility” – Chaeli Campaign Dance Residency

On August 6th, 2012, posted in: Culture, Dance, Dance Studies, Featured, Galleries, News by

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When Wynberg Girls’ High was approached by Jared Kruger, Arts and Cultural Co-ordinator of The Chaeli Campaign, to partner another school in one of their advocacy programmes, we embraced the opportunity. Through our association with the campaign, largely through the initiatives of Wynberg girls, Justine and Tarryn Terry, we are very conscious that all benefit through being inclusive in a diverse society, and we have learnt through the lessons that a number our students have taught us that “disability is created by the way in which society responds to the impairment.”

Jared invited Wynberg to be part of a two-week dance residency programme, where able-bodied girls and a number of disabled students would work with each other towards a performance in dance. The theme of the dance this year was “The Art of Possibility” and the purpose – in the words of the organisation – apart from promoting the work being done by the Chaeli Campaign is to educate the community about disability and the concept of inclusive education and inclusive living within the community. The focus of the performance is to celebrate diversity and inclusion, promote the concept of universal accessibility and open the minds and hearts of non-disabled people to the contribution people with disabilities have to make to their communities.

What was presented to the school by those participating in the programme left very few dry-eyed. Martha Graham said in instructing her students was “All that is important is this one moment in movement. Make the moment important, vital, and worth living. Do not let it slip away unnoticed and unused.” Certainly none of those who performed let the moments slip away. Wheel chairs were not only used as apparatus to get performers from one place to another, but became extensions of dancers’ bodies so that there was indeed a celebration of the world around them. The dreams, the hopes and the reaching out to make things possible was held for all to see. Paulo Coelho said that in the ritual of dance “It’s as if the threads connecting us to the rest of the world are washed clean of preconceptions and fears. When you dance, you can enjoy the luxury of being you.” Certainly that seemed to be something of the magic that happened on the stage, but there was also magic in the minds of the audience as perceptions shifted and barriers dissolved and disability became the Art of  possibility.

Certainly all of our lives have been enriched through this programme. We would like to thank The Chaeli Campaign for choosing to work with us.

The Art of Possibility

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