The Disability Summer School was set up as part of the company’s ongoing commitment to working with young people with special needs and disabilities. The summer school aimed to stimulate and support young people with disabilities through the mediums of drama, music and movement. The programme offered participants an outlet for self-expression and aimed to improve the quality of their lives by enabling them to be a part of a creative team and to be challenged and supported in a creative environment.
Somebody (1999) and Human Garden (2000) were two memorable Disability Summer Schools that were run by Liselle Terret who approached the workshops using a variety of arts forms and mediums.
From 2000-2012, Half Moon worked in partnership with Tower Hamlets Summer University (Futureversity) on the Disability Summer Schools using the play-in-a-week model. This works alongside Half Moon’s termly Solar Youth Theatre, a specialist group for teenagers with disabilities.
You can find more information about the programme, which we are currently delivering, on the Half Moon website.
Liselle Terret had been a drama teacher in a special needs school before she joined Half Moon Theatre in 1998. Here she talks about her excitement to develop this new role, describing how she worked with other artists and disabled young people on a production called Yeh Hsien. Interviewed by Elsa Loker.
Elizabeth Lynch has had a long association with Half Moon Theatre since the 1980s. Her first involvement was with the youth theatres and then, most significantly, as Director of Tower Hamlets Summer University in the late 1990s and early 2000s, through a series of partnership projects. She talks about working with the company on theatre summer school projects for young people with disabilties. Interviewed by Rio Puffett.
Academic, Martin Heaney worked on a number of participatory projects at Half Moon Theatre in White Horse Road in the late 1990s and early 2000s. He talks about a number of participatory projects in the late 199s and the importance of the company’s disability work. Interviewed by Alexia-Pyrrha Ashford.