Fremantle Old Boys School provides new home for DADAA

David Doyle and Ricky Arnold from DADDA with Julia Hales. Picture: Martin Kennealey
David Doyle and Ricky Arnold from DADDA with Julia Hales. Picture: Martin Kennealey

AFTER two years of preparation and anticipation the wait is almost over for DADAA, which will finally move into its new Old Boys School home next week.

The organisation, which gives people living with disability or mental illness greater access to arts and culture, will move into the newly-renovated 163-year-old heritage building next Wednesday, transforming the space into digital and visual studios, exhibition spaces, theatres, music rooms and even eventually a cafe.

DADAA executive director David Doyle said the move would mark the completion of the first four stages of the City of Fremantle’s $2m redevelopment, but there was still a little bit of work to be done.

“There is one stage to go which will see all of DADAA’s fit out complete, resulting in the fit out of the gallery, cafe, digital and visual art studios which have been developed around the principles of universal access,” he said.

“DADAA was literally falling out of Beach Street and it was vital that we found a long-term home in Fremantle that supported DADAA to expand not only space but most importantly the range and types of specialist art form programs that it offered.”

Mr Doyle said staff were excited to move into their new home, which they would share with Fremantle Foundation, CircusWA and PianoEasy.

“(The artists) are deeply excited to be working in one of the state’s most historic buildings and thrilled by the access to transport hubs, walk-ability and opportunity to truly be part of the social and cultural fabric of Fremantle,” he said.

“DADAA, Fremantle Foundation and CircusWA have a long shared history of collaboration and joint work between us and this move will support us to build on our collective impacts for the Fremantle community.

“We, along with the team from PianoEasy, are really thrilled to be working together, sharing resources and where possible co-programming and collaborating.”

DADAA’s programs and projects will begin out of the Old Boys School these school holidays, with the gallery, cafe, cinema and studio fit out expected to be finished in six months.

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