Whilst I hadn’t been able to attend Part One of Dalijia Acin Thelander’s and Ellie Griffiths’ symposium, “Sensorial Practices in Performing Arts for Babies and Neuro-diverse Audiences – A Critical Perspective”, I was glad to be able to attend Part Two at least. This session involved an open table discussion on delegates’ experience of working with Neurodiverse Audiences and continued the conversation from Part One that surrounded the Performing Arts for Babies.
A lot of the conversation focused on how audiences and participants feel taken care of in a Theatre space, and the responsibility Theatremakers should take when it comes to the safety of the audience. We discussed how to foster a safe space, and considered this concept of safety in great detail – connected to each of the five senses. This involved thinking about the respect endeared between Performers and the audience, as well as how we may work collaboratively with the helpers and parents of neurodiverse audiences. “We need to be aware of who holds the power of where we are,” Griffith said in response to discussing the setup of the performance space. Delegates also spoke about how they might challenge the audience by bringing them out of the comfort of their homes into a Theatre space, all the time whilst maintaining some sort of safety net.
This symposium provided insight into subjects that are a new frontier for many Theatremakers in the Theatre for Young Audiences field. This was a great event to discuss and collaborate on ideas for this emerging field and the ASSITEJ Artistic Gathering 2019 was certainly richer for it.
“Sensory work offers a great opportunity. If we start from a sensory APPROACH, anything is possible.”ELLIE GRIFFITH, OILY CART
This is Part Two of a two-part series of posts about Dalijia Acin Thelander’s and Ellie Griffiths’ Symposium at the ASSITEJ Artistic Gathering entitled, “Sensorial Practices in Performing Arts for Babies and Neuro-diverse Audiences – A Critical Perspective”. Click here for Part One where you can read about the session that preceded this one.