Back to Back Theatre is a professional theatre company employing a full time ensemble of five actors perceived to have intellectual disabilities. In addition to performing on some of the most prestigious theatre stages around the world, Back to Back runs community programs including THEATRE OF SPEED, an intensive work and training environment for young people with intellectual disabilities with a passion for the performing arts. Participants work with extraordinary contemporary artists, musicians, directors, writers and performance makers to increase their skills in self expression, collaboration and performance.
Give Where You Live has provided $30,000 to support Back to Back Theatre’s community activity. By providing workshops to young people with intellectual disabilities, Back to Back Theatre in partnership with Give Where You Live combat some of the social, geographic and economic barriers young people with intellectual disabilities face when living in regional areas.
Give Where You Live’s support also provides advocacy for artists with disabilities in the Barwon region. Back to Back Theatre’s Executive Producer Alice Nash is optimistic that the National Disability Insurance Scheme will bolster the many opportunities for social inclusion that Back to Back provides through the medium of theatre. “We’ve had a lot of conversations with various levels of government about the incredible opportunities that the arts offer for achieving outcomes of the NDIS,” Nash says.
Phoebe, a THEATRE OF SPEED participant explains it like this: “What inspires me to make theatre – I think you’ve just got to put yourself out there, it’s ok if you are afraid of something, you’ve just got to try. It’s not about what shape or size you are, you’re just you.”