Photo: Mona Hormia
The Short Film
Apparently, the Wheelchair Waltz (Valse Fauteuil Roulante) is the first dance piece composed in accordance with the principles of art music for a person in a wheelchair. The composer, now deceased, professor Erkki Salmenhaara has composed it for a cello and a piano. The music was designed to reflect the dreams and battles of a person in a wheelchair, for life and independent movement. However, the main focus is the dance, not the disability. As the dancer, in each performance I strive to project the meanings connected to disability through my own life experience. The first live performance of the dance piece was held on 10th November 2002.
In December 2002 we
short film during a three-day period at the Joensuu theatre, with
segments performed outside and inside the theatre. It will be
into a digibeta for as well as 16 mm and 35 mm versions. The music has
been recorded to a format suitable for the film. The short film is to
made into an approximately four-minute production on VHS and DVD. It
also be distributed to national and international television channels,
and put up for selection at short film festivals. The distributor is
was seen in YLE TV 1 at 27.11.2003.
The film has been presented
in three mainland; in Europe, in Asia and in America. The shortfilm has
touring festivals besides the Finland for example in Italy, Great
and Bangladesh. The film was presented in festivals this year for
example in Calgary and
The Wheelchair Waltz
has the following aims:
To present North Carelian knowledge in the field of modern art and technology.
To support independent employment of disabled people by creating a basic marketing structure.
Although art and culture by and with disabled people has been discussed widely in the late 1980’s internationally, in Finland the discussion has so far been minimal and sporadic. The most common fear is that this kind of distinction would somehow label and belittle art by disabled people. However, we as disabled people want to become known, not only as consumers, but also as producers of art to communicate with the rest of the art community and the society as a whole.
In 2003, the European year of disabled people, we want to initiate on our part discussion on the position of art and culture by disabled people in the general field of art and culture. We would also like to be included in the discussions on the possibilities of disabled communities to participate in independent cultural activities and thus be involved in developing new activities.
This is possible as the Wheelchair Waltz team aims to present, both at national and international arenas, modern multi-discipline technical know-how of high quality in producing picture and sound. In addition, the project offers one disabled person a chance to acquire employment as a dancer. It will also serve as a model on developing independent cultural activities for disabled people by presenting an example on how it is possible to get training in the arts and carry out an art project.The objective of the project was to make a short film about a dance. The project is funded by the North Carelian culture fund. The film is not only for disabled people, it's for all of us. The most important is doing, not stick in behind the obstacles.