Link October 2018 Volume 27 Issue 5 - Page 34

arts
By Carole Lander

Darebin leads the way

There ’ s always a festival happening somewhere in Melbourne . The city prides itself on this and Melbournians are often spoiled for choice with national and international festivals in the CBD . Link writer Carole Lander discovers some suburban councils are also getting in on the act .

One of those councils is

Darebin City Council , where the Arts ’ Speakeasy is a year-round independent theatre program of contemporary performances by emerging and established artists .
But how many of these events are accessible to people with disability ? Theatre companies may advertise the fact that they have wheelchair access and Auslan-interpreted performances , but Darebin stands out from the crowd .
Samantha Butterworth ( pictured above ) is a producer in the Creative Culture and Events team at Darebin City Council , where they are dedicated to including people of all abilities in their events .
Samantha joined in November 2017 , straight after a secondment to the United Kingdom where she witnessed first-hand what was being achieved at places such as the Battersea Arts Centre in London and Quarantine in Manchester . These companies provide people with disability equal opportunities to attend and participate in a range of programs .
Like Battersea in London , audience members in Darebin who are prone to sensory overload can enjoy what are known as ‘ relaxed ’ performances where the rules of theatre are modified . The house lights remain on and people can move around . Chill-out areas away from the performance space are also provided . Relaxed performance packs prepare audience members by explaining what the theatre looks like and warning them about what might happen – for example , lighting effects or loud noises .
After completing a degree in acting and film production at Deakin University , Samantha went straight into the creative side of producing theatre . She looks forward to a time in the future when artists with disability can find themselves on a level playing field with those without disability .
“ But we ’ re not there yet , so I ’ m proud of a new initiative at Darebin this year called ‘ Your Platform ’,” she said . For ‘ Your Platform ’, a panel of highly respected artists was engaged to review applications from theatre groups and artists with disability who wanted to be part of the 2018 Melbourne Fringe Season at Darebin . The panel comprised Fiona Cook ( Arts Development Manager at Arts Access Victoria ), Kate Hood ( writerperformer ) and Emma Jane Hawkins ( performing artist featured in June 2018 edition of Link ).
Out of seven high-calibre applications , the panel selected two
34 arts linkonline . com . au
arts By Carole Lander opportunities to attend and participate in a range of programs. Like Battersea in London, audience members in Darebin who are prone to sensory overload can enjoy what are known as ‘relaxed’ performances where the rules of theatre are modified. The house lights remain on and people can move around. Chill-out areas away from the performance space are also provided. Relaxed performance packs prepare audience members by explaining what the theatre looks Darebin leads the way like and warning them about what might happen – for example, lighting effects or loud noises. After completing a degree in acting and film production at Deakin University, Samantha went straight into the creative side of producing There’s always a festival happening somewhere in Melbourne. The city prides itself on this and Melbournians are often spoiled for choice with national and international festivals in the CBD. Link writer Carole Lander discovers some suburban councils are also getting in on the act. O the future when artists with disability can find themselves on a level playing field with those without disability. “But we’re not there yet, so I’m proud of a new initiative at Darebin this year called ‘Your Platform’,” she said. ne of those councils is Samantha Butterworth (pictured For ‘Yo ȁAљɷd)ɕ չٔ́ɽՍȁѡ ɕѥٔɕѕѥ́݅́)ݡɔѡϊdM ձɔٕ́ѕЁɕѼɕ٥܁ѥ́ɽѡɔ)́啅ȵɽչЁ չݡɔѡ䁅ɔɽ́ѥ́ݥѠͅ)ѡɔɽɅѕɅ䁑ѕѼՑݡ݅ѕѼЁѡ)əɵ́䁕ɝѥ́ѡȁ̸ٕ5ɹɥMͽЁɕ)х͡ѥ̸) Ё܁䁽ѡ͔ٕ́ɔ()ѡɔḾ݅ɐѼѥ)Mѡ9ٕȀܰ)Qɥ͕ )ɅЁѕȁ͕ЁѼѡٕ́Ё5ȁЁ)ͥѼݥѠͅUѕ-ݡɔ͡ݥѹ͕́Yѽɥ-є!ɥѕȴ)Qɔ́䁅ٕѥ͔еݡЁٕ݅́əɵȤ)!ݭ)ѡЁѡЁѡ䁡ٔݡȁЁ́Ս́ѡ ѕ͕̀əɵѥЁɕ)չ)́ͱѕɕѕ ɔ1EՅɅѥѥ1)əɵ̰Ёɕх́5ѕȸQ͔́Ёɽѡɽݐɽ٥ݥѠͅ䁕Յ)$$)=Ё͕ٕɔ)ѥ̰ѡ͕ѕݼ)