DaDaFest Ensemble: Leadership, Voice, and Collaboration in the Arts

Penketh, Claire and James, Anne and Wade, Sam and Nutter, Richard (2019) DaDaFest Ensemble: Leadership, Voice, and Collaboration in the Arts. In: Contemporary Art and Disability Studies. Routledge, Abington. ISBN 9780367203276

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The Disability Arts movement in the UK has a long history of community-based collaborative arts practice (Cameron 2009). It is activist in nature, aiming to challenge and change social attitudes towards disability with and through arts practice. Disability arts are political in contesting individual and tragedy-based models of disability, promoting a greater understanding through and with arts and culture, informing our understanding of what disability, arts, and culture can be. Group identity and activism are central to a range of arts practice that offer direct forms of action in promoting disability as a positive identity (Cameron 2007; Taylor 2006). The disability arts movement in England is well established and confident in continuing to question its own role and purpose in advancing arts and culture. A significant part of recent developments in the international field of disability arts, concerns initiatives to advance the participation and practice of disabled young people as the next generation of artists. This chapter explores the aims of DaDaFest, an internationally recognised disability and D/deaf arts organisation based in Liverpool, England to champion the development of disabled young artists through a music initiative, Ensemble, which promotes collaborative learning between young people and professional adult musicians. The chapter starts from the premise that such collaborations offer positive conditions for the development of arts practice. However, it is acknowledged here that moral questions can emerge when diverse groups, which include disabled young people and disabled and non-disabled adult musicians, come together. The chapter draws specifically on the moral philosophy of Judith Butler (2005, 2012) as a framework for exploring the ethics and politics of collaboration for Ensemble. Although centered on a music initiative, the chapter offers insights into collaboration that extend to the wider domain of disability arts.

Item Type: Book Section
Faculty / Department: Faculty of Education > Disability and Education
Depositing User: Claire Penketh
Date Deposited: 05 Jun 2019 10:59
Last Modified: 30 Jun 2020 11:01

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