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WHEELY DIFFERENT THEATRE COMPANY AND EMOTIONS WHEELCHAIR DANCE

WDTC FORMED IN 2012/13 AS A SOCIAL INNOVATION PROJECT TO PROVIDE THEATRICAL TRAINING FOR ADULTS WITH LEARNING AND ALL PHYSICAL DISABILITIES. DEVELOPED TO RUN FOR 40 WEEKS, WRITING AND PRODUCING A SHOW FROM SCRATCH, SHOW CALLED DICK WHITTINGTON IN THE HOOD AND WAS FORMED FROM IDEAS OF THE GROUP. ELAINE GAINED A SOCIAL INNOVATION GRANT THROUGH WORCESTERSHIRE COUNTY COUNCIL AND NHS TO COVER INITIAL COSTS OF GROUP START UP, WEBSITE, RENT, INSURANCES AND ADMINISTRATION FOR THE PERIOD OF 40 WEEKS.

AT THE END OF THE PROJECT, THE GROUP WANTED TO CARRY ON SO WDTC WAS FORMED AS A NOT FOR PROFIT ORGANISATION RUN BY VOLUNTEERS, GROUP TO BE SELF FUNDING VIA TICKET SALES AND FUNDRAISING.

WHEELCHAIR DANCE INTRODUCED AFTER PROJECT LEADER ELAINE BALL QUALIFIED AS A WDSA UK DANCE INSTRUCTOR

GROUP WROTE AND PRODUCED A MODERN VERSION OF WIZARD OF OZ WHICH WAS SET IN WYRE FOREST AND FEATURED WHEEL DANCE FOR THE FIRST TIME

PROJECT LEADERS ELAINE BALL AND ELEANOR MOUZER WANTED TO PRODUCE A MAIN STREAM MUSICAL AND SOUGHT PERMISSION TO PERFORM JOSEPH AND THE AMAZING TECHNICOLOUR DREAMCOAT. THE SHOW IS NOT AVAILABLE TO AMATEUR GROUPS BUT ELAINE DEVELOPED A THEATRE IN EDUCATION PROJECT FOR DISABILITIES AND WORKED WITH REALLY USEFUL THEATRE GROUP TO GAIN EVENTUAL RECOGNITION AND PERMISSION TO PERFORM THE SHOW WHICH WAS WELL RECEIVED BY THE COMMNITY. SINCE THEN, FOR THE WORK DONE WITH THE GROUP, WDTC HAVE A WORKING RELATIONSHIP WITH REALLY USEFUL THEATRE AND FURTHER WORK IS PLANNED.

2016 ALSO THE WHEELCHAIR DANCE TEAM ARE ASKED TO REPRESENT DISABILITY DANCE FOR THE UK AT A NATIONAL DANCE FESITIVAL HELD AT BIRMINGHAM SYMPHONY HALL PERFORMNG WITH 300 ABLE BODIED PERFORMERS, TAKING CENTRE STAGE BEFORE 1500 AUDIENCE.

GROUP CONTINUES TO GROW IN MEMBERSHIP AND AUDIENCE AND ARE RECEIVING MANY REQUESTS TO PERFORM AROUND THE AREA TO DEMONSTRATE ABILITY NOT DISABILITY. THIS TO INCLUDE BEING ASKED TO FORM PART OF THE OPENING CEREMONY AT THE NATIONAL SCHOOL GAMES IN LEICESTER AUGUST 2017. THERE IS TO BE AN AUDIENCE OF 3000 AND THE EVENT IS SCREENED GLOBALLY. WDTC AND EMOTIONS ARE ALSO APPEARING IN THE BROMSGROVE FESITVAL 2017.

THE TEAM ARE PROUD TO REPRESENT WYRE FOREST IN A POSITIVE MANNER. THROUGHOUT 2017 AND INTO 2018, THE TEAM WILL ALSO SUPPORT CLLR NICKY GALE IN HER ROLE AS MAYOR OF KIDDERMINSTER, WDTC HAVING BEEN CHOSEN AS ONE THE MAYOR’S CHARITABLE CAUSES, WDTC AND EMOTIONS WILL PERFORM AROUND THE DISTRICT AND BEYOND FLYING THE FLAG FOR WYRE FOREST AND DISABILITY PERFORMANCE.

WORK CONTINUES ON SHOWS, PERFORMANCES, WHEELCHAIR DANCE CLASSES, EXTRA WORKSHOPS, CRAFT SESSIONS FOR PROP MAKING THROUGHOUT THE YEAR.

THE GROUP AND THE PROJECT LEADERS HAVE RECEIVED NO BARRIERS AWARDS OVER THE PAST THREE YEARS, HAVE BEEN NOMINATED FOR THE QUEENS AWARD FOR VOLUNTARY SERVICE, ELAINE HAS BEEN RECOGNISED BY THE WHEELCHAIR DANCE ASSOCIATION FOR HER CONTRIBUTION TO DEVELOPING THE SPORT AND AS AN OUTSTANDING VOLUNTEER.

ALL INVOLVED ARE VOLUNTEERS AND WITH ELAINE, ELLIE AND THE RECENT ADDITION OF PAUL MARKS, THE GROUP HAS 3 PROFESSIONAL ACTORS HELPING THE GROUP TO GROW IN CONFIDENCE AND ABILITY.

TOM FARLEY, WDTC CHAIRMAN, OBTAINED A 2:1 DEGREE IN PERFORMING ARTS AND USED PART OF HIS PROGRESS WITH WDTC AND WHEEL DANCE TOWARDS HIS DEGREE.

MEMBERS HAVE A STRONG SOCIAL BOND AND OFTEN MEET OUTSIDE OF REHEARSALS. MEETING FOR MEALS, GO ON TRIPS AND GENERALLY HELPING EACH OTHER FACE ALL THAT LIFES THROWS IN THEIR PATH.

WE HAVE A PRIVATE FACEBOOK MESSAGE THREAD RUNNING THAT THE TEAM USE TO TALK TO EACH OTHER AND ASK FOR HELP IF THEY NEED IT, IT IS LIKE A LIFELINE AND IN TIMES OF TROUBLE OR ILLNES, IT OFFERS ‘ SOMEONE BEING THERE FOR YOU ‘ .

WDTC ARE LIKE A FAMILY, EACH HELPS THE OTHER AND TOGETHER, SOLVE PROBLEMS, FIND A WAY THROUGH BARRIERS AND DELIVER WHAT IS REQUIRED. 2017 WDTC MOVED INTO FULL INCLUSIVITY TO EXTEND WHAT WE DO TO ANYONE THAT FEELS THEY NEED TO BE PART OF A SUPPORTIVE, CREATIVE TEAM. OUR MEMBERS HAVE MANY DIFFERENT FORMS OF DISABILITY WHICH INCLUDE LEARNING DIFFICULTIES, MENTAL HEALTH ISSUES, HEARING OR SIGHT IMPAIRMENT AND PHYSICAL DISABILITY. WDTC HAVE A BUDDY SYSTEM WHICH MEANS MEMBERS HAVE ADEQUATE SUPPORT THROUGHOUT REHEARSAL AND PERFORMANCE.

WDTC REHEARSE AT KIDDERMINSTER DISTRICT YOUTH HOUSE AND GILT EDGE SOCIAL CLUB, WHEELCHAIR DANCE CLASSES ARE HELD AT SILVERWOODS LEISURE CENTRE IN PARTNERSHIP WITH WFDC SPORT DEVELOPMENT. PERFORMING AT KIDDERMINSTER TOWN HALL AND STAGING A PANTOMINE FOR 2017 ENTITLED THE SNOW QUEEN AT STOURPORT CIVIC, TO MAKE USE OF RAKED SEATING AND DRESSING ROOMS FOR THE EVER GROWING NUMBER OF CAST.

EMAIL: wyreforest.slsw@yahoo.co.uk

WEBSITE: www.wheelydifferent.com

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