The Waterside Theatre will host its monthly Energy of Light disco with resident DJ Oliver Brown on Wednesday, November 15 from 2-4pm.
Oliver, who has a physical disability that includes poor eyesight and balance, says the discos – which are tailored for adults – are getting busier as each month passes and are ‘so special’ for people with limited physical, learning and sensory ability.
The Energy of Light disco is funded by the Public Health Agency and forms part of a wider programme of inclusion being rolled out by Derry City and Strabane District Council.
Oliver has been involved with the ‘Access and Inclusion’ project for two years now and has been a great asset to the success of the discos. He said: “I passed all my DJ courses but I never really thought I would get any opportunities because there were a lot of DJs doing the same thing. I then completed an event management course through the Access and Inclusion programme and started to work on the discos for adults experiencing physical, sensory, and or learning disabilities. They are going from strength to strength and each month that passes they are getting busier.
“These discos are perfect for me to get involved in because I’m physically disabled myself and I know first-hand how difficult it was for other physically and sensory disabled people to access activities and events.
“I had a brain tumour when I was 8 and it was removed but it reoccurred when I was 13, leaving me with a physical disability – poor eyesight and balance. I have always liked making people happy with music and these discos are so special. The more people I make happy, the more it makes me happy too.”
Derry City and Strabane District Council Access and Inclusion project manager, Louise Boyce added: “The Energy of Light discos are very powerful events – and as an observer I clearly see the benefits that they bring, not only to the participants, but also to their families and carers.
“The Waterside Theatre provides a safe, friendly and accessible venue with disability aware staff – and Oliver provides some great music to suit all tastes. It is clearly evident to see that the discos are a great social outlet – a place to meet friends and for carers to talk to one another and have some fun too.”
Admission to the Energy of Light disco at the Waterside Theatre on Wednesday 15 November, 2-4pm, is £3 – and as part of Derry City and Strabane District Council’s commitment to developing an Access for All strategy, carers and parents will be admitted for free.
Further information on Derry City and Strabane District Council’s programme on Access and Inclusion for Arts and Culture, is available by e mailing firstname.lastname@example.org, calling 02871 253253 extn:4349, text phone: 02871 376 646 or visiting www.derrycitystrabane.com/inclusion