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Dance: Dance for WellBeing workshops for people with visual impairment

9 May - 13 Jun 2018 (Past)

Dance Theatre of Ireland studios, Bloomfield Shopping Centre, George's Street Lower, Dún Laoghaire

Dance artist and choreographer Laura Sarah Dowdall will be facilitating a 6-week programme of dance workshops for people who are blind or have a visual impairment, in Dun Laoghaire called Dance For WellBeing.

This programme has been developed through collaboration with blind participants and each workshop is customised to the participants’ needs and abilities. The programme consists of dance exercises inspired by Contact Improvisation and Contemporary dance practices. The use of touch is essential to this work, participants develop skills in sensing and communicating through touch, enabling them to feel confident dancing and in their use of space.

Dancers will be introduced to Social Haptic Touch, a non-verbal language that was developed as a shorthand form of communication for people who are deaf or blind which offers additional value for those who are blind, in relation to giving and receiving directional and environmental information. Laura has had training and mentoring from the developers of this communication model.

Participants to date have reported increased self-confidence, heightened spatial awareness, and a strengthened ability to ‘listen’ through their senses (especially through their feet) which has dramatically improved and supported their daily lives.

The programme offers the opportunity to-
• discover expression through dance,
• increase self-confidence and body-awareness,
• improve strength, co-ordination and stability,
• learn practical skills to improve spatial and environmental awareness,
• experience a supportive outlet for self-expression and creativity,
• enjoy new friendships and social interactions,
• have great fun and a new sense of freedom.

For more information about Laura see: www.runningblind.ie

The workshops will take place each Wednesday from May 9th through to June 13th, from 1.45-3.15pm at the Dance Theatre of Ireland studios next to Bloomfield Shopping centre. The entrance door is to the left of the main cinema entrance and there is a lift from the ground floor up to the studio space.

Please contact Laura via email laura@runningblind.ie in order to book a place in the class or forward any queries.

This video is a compilation of footage from Laura Sarah Dowdall’s integrated dance workshops at Rua Red, South Dublin Arts Centre as part of her dance residency. It shows a montage of close-up footage of participants doing various exercises exploring touch and movement with their hands and other parts of the body.

Domestic Bliss: Movement exploring simultaneous and contrasting roles women maintain in western society

Participants to date have reported increased self-confidence, heightened spatial awareness, and a strengthened ability to ‘listen’ through their senses

The Living Room Project is Contact Improvisation with Finnish dancer, Ella Koikkalainen exploring movement in the setting of a front room where the window provides an insight into the relationship of its inhabitants.


Dance Classes
Laura Sarah Dowdall
Running Blind
visual impairment