SLiDE is a community of dancers, musicians and creatives who are based in London and the Southeast. Co-founded in 2013 by Gemma Coldicott and Anita Wadsworth, SLiDE is built on over eight years of collaboration and partnership with local residents, education settings and organisations.
Our community is mainly learning-disabled people, we strive to remove barriers to participation, addressing power imbalances, with a wider aim to bring disabled and non-disabled people together to dance. Through our dance classes, performance projects and social events (ceilidhs and discos) we engage with the wider community, uniting diverse groups.
All SLiDE projects embed our values: creativity, inclusion, empowerment, play, quality, togetherness. We use contemporary dance in creative and democratic ways, ensuring participants have equal agency throughout the creative process and performances.
Our main practice is improvisation with dialogues between dance and music. Decision making, leadership and creative direction of the work is shared, in a meaningful engagement, not tokenistic. “The dancers were given equal agency. This was a very successful example of professional and non-professional performers sharing a stage with equality and integrity. There were no divisions, only performers, side by side.” Sophie Eustace, Executive Director, Fevered Sleep.
We aim to present our work through relaxed, in the round performances, in non-traditional settings. We engage with our audiences in creative ways, such as inviting them to name the work.