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Welcome to our May 2015 newsletter.

Accessible Arts would like to thank Emma Bennison, Co-CEO, from Arts Access Australia, for her direct response to the government's most recent budget announcement. As the national arts and disability organisation, Emma raises her concern about the redirection of federal funding for the Australia Council for the Arts, and what this means in terms of commitment to the sector. Please visit the Arts Access Australia website to read Emma's media release.

In other sector news, we would like to extend our appreciation to Alison Richardson and acknowledge her achievements in the role of Creative Director for Beyond the Square during her time with Riverside Theatre. Accessible Arts wishes her the best with her new endeavours.

A new national campaign designed to change social attitudes towards people living with disabilities was announced this week at TEDxSydney. Stella’s Challenge is inspired by writer, comedian and disability advocate Stella Young, who died in December. To read more about this initiative click through to the article published on The Guardian Australia website.

Do you enjoy musicals, dance and laughter? Studio ARTES presents High Heels and Musical Thrills - a hilarious twist on your favourite Musicals. Studio ARTES are giving away one double pass for the evening performance on the 5th of June at Hornsby RSL. Simply email marketing.sa@studioartes.com.au by 29th May with 'aarts tickets' as the subject and answer the question, "What is your favourite musical and why?" Tickets are on sale now - don't miss out!

Lastly, a reminder about the new Accessible Arts' Grants Program that consists of Quick Response Grants up to $5,000 and Small Grants from $5,000 – $20,000, over two grant rounds in 2015 and 2016. Visit the Accessible Arts website to find out how to apply.

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Accessible Arts Heads West

Accessible Arts Regional Arts Development Manager Julie Barratt is very excited to have started work on a new regional project, 'Heading West'. Arts North West successfully secured a Regional Partnership Grant for a two-year partnership with Arts Northern Rivers and Accessible Arts. 'Heading West' focuses on developing the arts and disability sector in North Western NSW.

The funding will employ an Arts North West 'Arts and Disability Project Officer'. Stephanie Brummell is appointed to the role and will be mentored by Julie Barratt, a recognised leader in the regional arts and disability sector. In her previous role for Accessible Arts, Julie led the highly successful 'Connecting Communities Program' on the North Coast.

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Sydney Philharmonia Choirs Call Out - Handel's Messiah

Accessible Arts is working in partnership with Sydney Philharmonia Choirs to present three performances of the ‘Messiah’ at the Sydney Opera House in December 2015. A signing choir of 10-12 volunteers from the Deaf, hard of hearing, and hearing community will join the choral choir to perform the ‘Messiah’.  

We need you!

We are looking for voluntary Deaf or hard of hearing skilled sign singers to join us to perform ‘Messiah’ with the Sydney Philharmonia Choirs. Our aim is to form a choir of 20 people who will commit to the project and all the performances. To find out how to apply please visit the Deaf Arts Network webpage for full details.

Vivid Festival More Accessible Than Ever Before 

Accessible Arts is delighted to announce a partnership with Imogen Yang and her audio description company 'Insightful' for this years' Vivid Sydney. Along with other new access and inclusion initiatives being delivered in 2015, Vivid Sydney is extending its experience to audio description of selected light walk installations and precinct vantage points. 

The audio description work of Imogen Yang is a poetic and visceral experience that we encourage all audiences to experience and enjoy. To access the audio description service please visit the Vivid Sydney website

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arts + disaility expo

As a feature of the arts + disability expo, Accessible Arts is hosting a photographic exhibition which will display up to 20 photographic artworks, submitted by individuals with disability. The photographic artworks must capture the object “stick” in a literal, conceptual or figurative form.

This is a great opportunity for individuals with a disability, including emerging and professional artists, students and members of the public, to showcase their artworks in a high profile and unique setting. 

Visit the photographic exhibition page of the expo website to view the guidelines and criteria, and submit your application

ACO Move Artist Callout 

ACO MOVE has been designed to encourage young adults (16 to 22 years) with disability to develop movement through live music in a safe and inclusive environment.

Over five sessions [10am to 12pm] participants will have the exciting opportunity to be involved with the ACO.

All classes will be led by movement facilitator Dean Watson working in collaboration with ACO musicians, percussion, invited guests and support staff.

Saturday 20th and 27th of June; Saturday 4th and 11th of July. Presentation Wednesday 15th of July.

Visit the ACO website to apply today.

Featured Artist

Born in Australia but now living in England, Kiruna Stamell began as a dancer, training in Australia with the Beryl Ellis Dance Studios (now Ultimate Dance) and then later the University of New South Wales.

In 1999 she made her début in Baz Luhrmann’s ‘Moulin Rouge' and then traveled to England to study Shakespearean and Jacobean Theatre at LAMDA.

She has worked with some of the world’s leading dance innovators, Caroline Bowditch, Marc Brew, Sue Healey, John ‘cha cha’ O’Connell, Shaun Parker and Christina Tingskog.

Whilst Karina's work is heavily influenced by her own experiences of dwarfism,
disability, gender, sexuality, there is no singular discourse that defines her identity or her work.

Image of sydney opera house sails projected onto during vivid festival

Lighting of Sails’ Audio-Described Tour

Sydney Opera House is excited to invite visitors who are blind or have low vision to join them for a personalised audio-described tour of the Opera House’s ‘Lighting of Sails’, Vivid LIVE’s most public event. For full event details, dates and times please visit our website. Registration is essential. To book call +61 2 9250 7175 or email accessibility@sydneyoperahouse.com

Featured | Arts + Disability Videos

Screenshot of Joanna Agius auslan video

Newsletter features in Auslan by Joanna Agius.

Image of actors kissing in a rehearsal

Channel 10 News report on the latest 'Can You See Me' Theatre Company's recent play performed at the Sydney Opera House. 

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