Unmute Dance Theatre is a company of artists with mixed abilities/disabilities using Physical Theatre, Contemporary and Integrated Dance to create awareness on accessibility, integration and inclusion of people with disability within the main stream society.
2023 Biennial Year Find out more
They aim to address and challenge the society’s state of mental misconception on disability(s), they encourage people to break barriers and to be aware that we are all abled and have our own abilities. They believe that having a disability doesn’t make any person less a human or less capable, therefore removing shame and stigma from society is the company’s mission towards building an integrated community.
The company came into existence in 2013 after a performance creation entitled ‘Unmute’. Unmute was the first ensemble choreographic piece by Andile Vellem. It is based on his experience as a dancer who is deaf. This work was a way of Andile finding his voice as a choreographer, using sign language as the source of the movement vocabulary. He brought together artists from different backgrounds to investigate and explore what they would like to un-mute; feelings, perceptions, social norms and expectations; while endeavouring to deconstruct what society perceives as dance. The inception of the company then developed in 2014 after a successful run of the Unmute Production and it was co-founded by Nadine Mckenzie, Mpotseng Shuping, Andile Vellem and Themba Mbuli.
Within the 8 years of the company’s existence they have developed 5 inclusive projects that have helped create access and integrate people with and without disability in one environment. They have created seven productions of which some have toured nationally and abroad in Switzerland, Germany and Russia.