Following a successful bid to Arts Council England, Spectra has secured over £80,000 in funding, enabling them to produce two new productions while developing the scope and reach of the project. Its first large scale production for 2017: Hanging in the Balance is a multi-sensory performance, which delves into a mystical world of enchanting sights, sounds, tastes and smells. Performed at mac Birmingham as well as outside in Cannon Hill Park on Friday 19 and Saturday 20 May, the performance draws on the diverse creativity of Spectra’s mixed professional and learning disabled community cast.

Audiences can expect live music, delightful dance and fantastic action, devised collaboratively with the cast.  Fully accessible and suitable for all ages, audiences will join the courageous motley crew of characters on an adventure across a world that teeters on the brink of extinction – can the intrepid explorers survive while trying to save the world?

Commenting on the production and funding, Kate DeRight, Spectra Director said:

“We are delighted to have received a generous grant from Arts Council England to make two new productions and to support Spectra’s growth and development as a company that harnesses the creativity of learning disabled people to make compelling performance work. Our newest performance brings all the quirky fun audiences have come to expect from Spectra shows: we’ve got fairies, drifters, wizards and a gorilla.  And cake.  There’s always cake – as well as some other tasty surprises including things to smell, do, hear and see.  As our show opens, all is well in the world, all four elements – earth, water, air and fire – in balance.  It is a fine balance, though; what can we do if it tips too far one way?”

Deborah Kermode, mac Birmingham CEO and Artistic Director added:

“The Spectra project is a shining example of our ethos – arts for all. The cast bring a real energy to our venue and an enthusiasm that is infectious. It’s great that they now have additional funding to develop further and we’re proud that they continue to push the boundaries of performance at mac.”

Spectra is developed through a partnership between mac Birmingham, independent artist Kate DeRight and Queen Alexandra College, Birmingham.

To book tickets for Hanging in the Balance – prices from £7.50, carers can attend free with a paid disabled entry ticket, visit macbirmingham.co.uk/event/spectra-hanging-in-the-balance or contact mac Birmingham’s Sales and Information team on 0121 446 3232.