Zeb Schultz, Lara Cruikshank, David Batton, Padi Bolliger and Tim Thompson play with shadow puppets in the VeryAbility Festival maze.
Zeb Schultz, Lara Cruikshank, David Batton, Padi Bolliger and Tim Thompson play with shadow puppets in the VeryAbility Festival maze.

VeryAbility Festival 'a maze ing'

VeryAbility Festival director Zeb Schultz has been preparing something very different in Lismore City Hall. The hall has been transformed into a Multimedia Maze which will be operating all day on Thursday, December 3.

“This day is the International Day of People With Disabilities and everyone is invited to come along and be ‘amazed’,” Zeb said. “The maze allows people move through an unusual creative space and opens up their minds to the possibilities of performance.”

Constructed by artists from Wagga and Sydney, the maze allows people to participate in a multi-sensory experience which includes analogue and digital interactive elements, shadow puppetry by Krinkl Theatre and live music.

Some of the highlights inside the maze include the Body Appreciation Zone where people trace the shape of their body onto paper and then fill the shape with positive words.

“An interview booth has also been set up where people are filmed answering questions like ’what does love mean to you?’ and ’what does normal mean to you?’” Zeb said. “They then get to be creator and spectator and watch themselves on the big screen.”

Participants walking around in the daytime can also see some of the rehearsals for the live Normal TV (NTV) show which will begin it’s broadcast at 7pm that evening.

“We have an artist with autism who has for the first time performed a live improvised spoken word performance,” Zeb said. “He didn’t know what to say at first and when we said to him ‘just speak from your heart’, he said ‘It’s hard to know what’s in your heart’. That became the first line of his performance. I had tears in my eyes – it’s emotionally powerful stuff.”

The veryAbility Festival events will come to a close this week, with Page MP Janelle Saffin announcing the winners of the Macushla Doyle Art Prize at 6pm in the Fountain Room atCity Hall. Champagne and nibbles will be provided by Newtrain and the RED Inc choir will perform and get everyone ready for the Normal NTV show performances at 7pm.

The veryAbility Art exhibition will be on show until Friday, December 4, in Kyogle’s Roxy Art Gallery, Lismore’s Serpentine Gallery and Lismore City Hall.

There will be also be a post-festival breakfast this Friday, December 4, at the Red Dove Hall. For further details visit www.realartworks.org.

The veryAbility Festival project has been organised by Realising Every Dream (RED Inc) and RealArtWorks, with funding from Regional Arts NSW and the Regional Arts Fund.


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