Dramaturgy Lab “Creative Audio Description” (Lead: Sophia Neises & Zwoisy Mears-Clarke)

In September 2022, Sophia Neises and Zwoisy Mears-Clarke led a dramaturgy lab on Creative and Integrated Audio Description. The participants were an existing group of blind and visually impaired dance and theater lovers and professionals who had already completed a brief research session on the topic together with the leads.

The short-term goal of the lab was to explore audio description and discover and use one’ s own creativity. This involved playing with audio description as an art form and combining it with dance and music. Beyond audio description, they explored different concepts of aesthetic accessibility for blind and visually impaired audiences.

The long-term goal of the lab is to develop a method with the blind and visually impaired participants to work dramaturgically for productions. By working with blind and visually impaired dramaturges, artists will be enabled to consider blind and visually impaired audiences as their target audience from the very beginning and and that aesthetic accessibility is created from a disabled perspective and integrated into the artistic work from the very beginning.

Sophia is a freelance (visually) disabled performer, dramaturg, theatre educator and disability rights activist. Zwoisy Mears-Clarke is a freelance Black choreographer and dancer without a disability. Since 2016, the two have been collaborating on various projects.