Now in its fifth year, the LEAD Ensemble, presented by The Youssef Warren Foundation, is a creative generator for artists innovating their practice and creating new works. During the six-week cycle, LEAD employs a roster of 26 neurodiverse and neurotypical artists who meet for weekly sessions. Building on principals from disability arts and social justice movements, the LEAD Ensemble opens a creative space where working across perceptions of cognitive ability and difference can generate exciting and provocative performance art. The artists are matched to a cohort that shares their artistic desires – to explore (for open-ended practice-building and skills development) or create (to generate a cumulative performance piece).
LEAD participants have appeared in mainstage international festivals (The Democratic Set) and created short works for the stage (I like it close, I like it where it’s all grainy), and have a consistent focus on ensemble work, integration of movement and sound into creation, and adaptation as a powerful access point for the artist’s re-visioning of their worlds. Sharing the value of access as a priority and embracing the ethos that everyone is great at some things and not-so-great at others, LEAD is a hub for theatre creators interested in exploding traditional forms to discover what lies beyond.
Facilitated by Evelyn Chew and Nathan Kay