Sunday, December 6, 2009

Dancing Wheels

I had a whole post filled with things I plan to do this holiday season. Then I turned on my Sunday staple- CBS Sunday Morning. I saw the most interesting story about Greg Mozzgala, an actor who was born with Cerebal Palsy. He was discovered by Tamar Rogoff, a professional choreographer and recruited for her ballet company. The story shows how he used an intense regimen of stretches, massage, and exercises to retrain his body and recover some movements he lost due to his CP. In particular, he was able to get the heel of his foot to touch the ground when he walked. Anyone who has CP knows this is a very common problem, and the change in his gait is remarkable. A really cool story that I wanted to pass on.

photo by Harvey Wang

Watch the video here.

Read more about Mozzgala here.

Many little girls I know (myself included) wanted to be a beautiful ballerina. Growing up there were no inclusive programs for me to join and so I never got the dance recital experience I wanted. Now there are a few great program around the country who work with 'sit down' and 'stand up' dancers. Some are actually professional, meaning that people with disabilities can get paid to be professional dancers. Very cool.

I wanted to tell you about the Miracle Dancers, a Louisville group, while not professional, does amazing work. I have known several young ladies (and one young man) who have gone through there program. They all love it.

Check them out:

For more information, contact the Diane Moore Dance Academy

Lastly, Dance Wheels is a leader in the field of integrated dance. They actually employ dancers with disabilities. They also do clinics and classes that teach people all over the country.

Look at this video

And check out their website.

Makes me hopeful, that one day, a little girl who uses a wheelchair could just join their local school production of The Nutcracker or a Christmas Carol. Just another little kid honing their skills and conquering their stage fright along with their neighbors.

Wouldn't that be cool?
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