This project is delivered in partnership with Attenborough Arts Centre, The Point, University of Bedfordshire and Zinc Arts through a three-year funding from Arts Council England's Strategic Touring Grant. Our project runs from Autumn 2014 to Spring 2017.
The funding is used for Stopgap to establish our emerging artists company Sg2 and for it to create a series of original works for new audiences (particularly in disabled communities). Whilst reaching out to these new audiences, the project gives opportunities for the next generation of inclusive dancers to experience touring and showcase their talent. The works are developed for small-scale touring circuits to offer them cost-efficient way of attracting these audiences.
By the end of the project, we aim to have presented new inclusive dancers to the sector and for small-scale venues to have better understanding of engaging with their new audiences.
Some of these works are created collaboratively with external artists who are new to inclusive devising process. Stopgap will also identify and mentor other emerging artists who want to work inclusively. Through sharing our creative processes with these artists, we will demonstrate the creative potential that diversity offers and turn them into advocates of inclusive practice.
By the end of the project, we aim to have increased the number of artists who want to make inclusive works.
Stopgap will also develop and disseminate our inclusive dance syllabus IRIS to our partner venues, which will improve the quality and the level of opportunity for disabled young people to access dance education at grassroots level.
The Strategic Touring Grant also supports our partnership to manage and curate a new showcase called iF Platform at Edinburgh Festival Fringe in 2015. iF Platform is a ground breaking showcase featuring the UK’s top disabled artists and inclusive arts companies, and it highlights inclusive works at this major arts festival by working with the national media, Unlimited and The British Council.
iF Platform demonstrates the quality of the UK's inclusive works to the international market, and the wraparound conversation day iF Not Now, When? addresses the question of programming these works to the theatre programmers.