Who Else Wants More Inclusive Dance Stories?

“I don’t think the world is going to stop wanting the beautiful expressions that each one of us were brought here to create…I think the world wants our freaky power, and will continue to want it! And we can continue to respond to that in a way that works for us… We are too valuable.” — Katy Pyle, Artistic Director of Ballez (paraphrased)

We are all trying to navigate in this new territory, with COVID-19. The impacts are being dealt with in unique, individual and communal ways. Emotions are like a roller coaster. Today I’m feeling hopeful, yesterday I was sad, and the day before that I was incredibly productive.

This time in isolation reaffirms that now, more than ever, our world needs inclusion and to invite each other in. My heart is lighter when I see how many people are going online and sharing their art, their joy, and their concerns.

Artists are storytellers. 

And we need stories right now. 

That means all kinds of stories. From all backgrounds, all socio-economic levels, all locations – and all abilities. Not to get all woo woo but, honestly, none of our time here on earth means anything if we don’t bear witness to what it means to be alive right now — if we don’t bear witness for each other. We have a chance to create an alternate path from here, one that chooses not to leave anyone behind.

Visibility matters right now. So let’s share and show up for one another!

This is a topic incredibly close to my heart, as I truly believe that everyone has a right to have dance in their life – no matter their age, level, ethnicity, economic status, or ability. I’ve partnered with the 12th Annual ReelAbilities Film Festival to promote disability + dance. Their festival promotes awareness and inclusion through the stories and artistic expressions of people with disabilities.

“Before I started dancing, I often felt my wheelchair was cumbersome in my daily life. But when it comes to dancing, I feel my use of a wheelchair makes it unique.” —dancer Kenta Kambara

The ReelAbilities Film Festival will be live streaming two dance films. I hope you check them out:

SUNDAY APR 5 | 7:30 PM
$15 (Use code rahRFF20 to get 25% off)
Professional dancer Amy Jordan is run over by a NYC bus. Her first thought is “Am I ever going to dance again?” Her second is “If I survive the night, there will be a victory dance.”

Experience of the joy of flight with Alice Sheppard and Laurel Lawson.

Stay safe and keep movin’,