Hamilton Hill’s Sensorium to benefit from funding boost


Disability Services Minister Stephen Dawson with Sensorium Theatre artist Amity Culver and Chyna Smith during a Sensorium story time event at the Canning Bridge Library Lounge in Applecross on Wednesday. Mr Dawson used the gathering to hand Sensorium Theatre a $105,000 Lotterywest grant.
Disability Services Minister Stephen Dawson with Sensorium Theatre artist Amity Culver and Chyna Smith during a Sensorium story time event at the Canning Bridge Library Lounge in Applecross on Wednesday. Mr Dawson used the gathering to hand Sensorium Theatre a $105,000 Lotterywest grant.

A FUNDING boost will allow a pioneer in sensory theatre for children with disabilities the chance to rocket their fans to galaxies beyond our own.

Hamilton Hill’s Sensorium Theatre was this week handed a $105,000 grant which co-artistic director Francis Italiano said would be used to create a spaceship for its latest interactive show, Whoosh!

“The idea came from some of the kids we have been working with,” he said.

“We asked them where they would like to go next and they said outer space.

“We took up the challenge and said ‘sure, we can do that’.

“Together with the kids’ imagination and ours, we can take them to galaxies far, far away.”

Mr Italiano said Sensorium, which also operates a studio in Kenwick, had been working on the set piece for 12 months.

He said the Lotterywest grant would allow them to move into the last stage of development with its team of artists.

The aim is to have the show ready by mid-next year.

“We will be planning to do a couple of test runs early next year,” he said.

“That’s about working with some of our partner schools and getting kids to give their direct feedback because they’re both our co-collaborators and our biggest critics.”

It is a busy period for the local outfit which will make its international debut next year when it presents its production Oddysea at New York’s Lincoln Center as part of the Big Umbrella Festival.

Disability Services Minister Stephen Dawson said he was “thrilled” to be able to hand over a grant that would be put to a great cause.

“The project demonstrates a clear community need and I look forward to seeing the program in action,” he said.

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