Introduction to the Diverse Abilities Panel Project
This project is called The Diverse Abilities Panel Project. It was created to premiere live at the Performance Studies
International Conference, in Hamburg Germany, in June 2017.
The purpose of this panel project is to Represent and Celebrate Artists of Diverse Abilities, (which is my created term
to replace DISabled) in Canada, and all around the World.
Our purpose is also to raise awareness about the Lack of Opportunities, for Artists of Diverse Abilities to have a Voice
through paid work, due to Ongoing, Oppressive Attitudinal Barriers.
In addition, we are creating this project to offer specific solutions and ideas, as to how to eradicate these barriers,
for governments, businesses, organizations, communities, and everyone in between, and also for other Artists, who still
do not include our Diversities in their festivals, events, and independent arts projects.
Ironically, and in yet another Highly Painful, and Highly Powerful example, of the Relentlessness of these Attitudinal
Barriers, (and in this the year 2017, and in Canada’s 150th anniversary, no less), despite months and months of approaching:
the Canadian government; hundreds of wealthy, large Canadian and other businesses; the media, including about 40 newspapers
across Canada, and in other countries, (which I sent an article to, and asked them to contact me first, if they wanted to
publish it); as well as the oldest broadcaster in Canadian history; and probably the biggest Canadian TV talk show; and
countless other potential large organizations, sponsors and donors; None of them came forward to sponsor or fund this project.
None of them came forward to ask me to publish my article, the latter of which could also have helped us to raise awareness
and money for this project. A very large percentage of them did not even answer my e-mails, which contained my article about
this project, and my website.
Not only were we NOT given enough money, to both create this project, and to travel to Germany, to take our place at this
conference to Represent Canada, we were NOT even given enough money to create this project, or to pay people properly.
My Project was selected from 500 submissions from 40 countries.
Therefore, I had to use my own debt (yet again) to cover most of the costs of this project, in order to ensure that my Artists
and myself were not Silenced, (once again) and that this project would really happen, and that they would in fact be given
a Public Voice. I then created this alternative method of doing this panel, by filming and hosting it on my website.
I did this in order to continue our URGENTLY needed work, of Obtaining 100% Inclusion and Major Change-Making, for Artists
of Diverse Abilities, both in Canada and all around the World. My Techie J.P. Hunter and I, also worked for free (yet again)
and I was only able to pay my Artists very small honourariums, far less than they deserved for their Fantastic Works!
A small group of dedicated people also came forward to help.
We have on this website for this project, and for your Inspiration, Education, and Enjoyment, talks and performances by the
Wonderful Writer, Singer/Songwriter, Dancer, Musician and Performance Artist Vivian Chong, and her Guide Dog Catcher
We have the Wonderful Writer and Performer A.M. Matte, and her young son, Writer Rohan S
. We have myself, also an
Artist, and you can see my “Who I am” short film and text, for more information about me.
, my Techie, donated countless hours of work and time, (yet again) to do my filming, editing, and my
website, along with myself.
C. Derrick Chua
Barrister and Solicitor, donated his legal services.
Dr. Carolyn Poon Woo
loaned me her beautiful dental office space, which you can see right now in the film, and A.M.
Matte arranged for the space in which to film herself.
Dr. Jaclyn Chin
(dentist) came forward, as the only Donor of money for this project.
of Christie Lights, and Artist Slade Lander
, provided advice and/or referrals for this project.
This is the overall umbrella under which this project still managed to be created.
I want to THANK ALL of Them!!!
There is an Overflow of Gifted and Talented Artists of Diverse Abilities in Canada, and all around the World!!!
There is also a near Invisibility of our Gifts, Talents and Arts Projects, in all of the arts fields. This Invisibility is
especially true, in terms of Projects which are both Created and Led by Artists, from Our Own Diversities and Communities.
I couldn’t create a better or more Current example to Illustrate this Fact for you, than what I just described to you,
concerning what just happened to my Diverse Abilities Panel Project.
It came very close to remaining Invisible and Silent, through Non-existence, due to a Lack of Respectful sponsorship, donors,
or a Belief in the Importance and Urgency of Our Work, and Our Voices.
This is exactly what happens to Countless of Thousands of other Arts Projects by Artists of Diverse Abilities, both in Canada,
and all around the World, Every Single Day!!!
Thus, this is yet another Crucial Arts Project by Artists of Diverse Abilities, which YOU, the Worldwide public, almost did NOT
get a chance to Experience!!!
Before we start, I would like to pay TRIBUTE to All of the Aboriginal, Inuit and other Indigenous Peoples in Canada and All
around the World, whose land we are living on, and who are the Original and Ongoing Preservers, Respecters, and Role Models,
of the Environmental World, for all of us.
I would also like to thank Every Advocate and Change-Maker who has come before me in time, and every one of you who are sharing
the earth with me right now. You have been, or are out there right now, Creating, Role Modelling, and Sharing your Ideas on how
to Create Safety, Equity and Respectful Inclusion for Us All. Each one of your Voices is Crucial to us all, and you are all my Inspirations!!!
I also want to Highlight all of the People of Diverse Abilities, the Womyn, Girls, Youth, Elders, the People of all Ethnicities
and Cultures, and the LGBTTIQQ Communities. In addition, I want to Highlight those who, like myself, are working towards a world
where we are Beyond All Labels, because we will have attained 100% Safety, Peace, Health, Inclusion, Mutual Respect and Equal
Opportunities, and a World where We are All simply called “People.”
My newest Hero, and Spiritual Twin Frank Kameny - who I just learned about two days ago in the Fantastic Film Lavender Scare, at
the Inside Out Film Festival - said, “Either I can change myself to fit the world, or I can change the world to fit me. I am going
to change the world to fit me.” Of course, he did change the world, and to make it better fit a Massive Number of People from the
LGBTTIQQ Communities. He was also called “The Grandfather” of the LGBTTIQQ Rights Movement in the United States.
Another Fantastic Role Model for us all!
Please Note: The day after I shot all of my short films for this project, I learned about another Phenomenal Hero and Role Model
for us All, Jewel-Thais-Williams, who was the focus of the Doc Jewel’s Catch One, at the Inside Out Film Festival this year. She
took More Action to help More People, of More Diversities than I can even list here. To donate to her health clinic, which Never
turns anyone away, regardless of their economic situation, please go to villagehealthfoundation.org
Now I Invite You to Explore Each of my Artist’s Fantastic Projects for this panel, to Imbibe in their Talks and their Inspiration,
Creation, Joy, Intelligence, Ideas, Experiences, and Their Well Informed Solutions to Achieving 100% Equity and Inclusion, for Artists
of Diverse Abilities, both in Canada and all around the World!!!
Take your time. You are Welcome to come back to my website as often as you want to be here. I am leaving this project up for at least
one year, so that as many People as possible, living All around the World can see it.
I am also going to transcribe what my Artists are saying in the films, since I do not have the complete text from them. I will be
putting what they say up, either as text right next to their films, or as subtitles within these films, to make this project as Barrier
Free as possible. Please watch for this change on my site.
You too can be Directly Inspired to Make Changes, to Achieve 100% Inclusion of Artists and People of Diverse Abilities, in Your Work and Lives!!!
Thank You for being Our Audience!!!