Hijinx is an inclusive professional theatre company presenting work performed by actors with and without learning disabilities.
As well as creating and performing small-scale theatre for audiences across Wales, UK and Europe, the Hijinx Academies in Cardiff and Carmarthen provide the only professional performance training opportunity for actors with learning disabilities currently on offer in Wales.
Hijinx are looking to explore how they can use digital technology to track the progress and development of their group of 60 professionally trained learning disabled actors. And in doing so, how it can go about creating future employment opportunities.
Zoe King tells us a bit more about the project:
Our vision is to make it common place to see learning disabled actors appearing on stage, screen and the radio. So with 60 professionally trained learning disabled actors across Wales, and more coming through our Academies, our challenge is three-fold. How do we share information and communicate our news internally amongst our group of actors, carers, and tutors? How do we keep track of their progress while safeguarding their privacy? And how do we showcase their successes and celebrate their stories publicly? Our work with the Fund is exploring how a digital platform might offer a solution to these challenges and help encourage and empower our performers while nurturing their careers.
creating future employment opportunities
Has this process shaped or changed your relationship with digital technology?
The process has really broadened our view of what solutions are currently out there and being used to answer similar challenges in other sectors. As a result it’s really grown an awareness of how digital can be used to impact change on a companywide level.
What impact do you think this project could have on your organisation?
The project has the real potential to change the way Hijinx communicates and works in its entirety. As well as establishing us a visible leader and agency for learning disabled actors, having a digital platform dedicated to promoting the value and successes of learning disabled actors online will have huge impact in terms of visibility and equality in the acting profession.
Has the innovation process shaped or changed your understanding of the problem?
While our understanding of the problem has been fixed throughout, our understanding of the methods for finding solutions have certainly changed. Meeting and choosing tech partners has been fundamental to this and we’re really excited to see how it develops through this R&D phase.