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£3,001 pledged of £17,000 goal
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By Kate Caryer
£3,001 pledged of £17,000 goal
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About

To view the video with subtitles please follow this link.

Who are we? 

My name is Kate Caryer. I am a rude, pink-haired, theatre lover and pain in the arse. Oh, and I have a little thing called athetoid cerebral palsy, which means I use a wheelchair and a communication aid (think a punk-haired Stephen Hawking).

I have always loved theatre, but I very rarely see people like me on the stage. If they do show up, they are usually weak, uninteresting caricatures, written by non-disabled people, and not representative of the interesting, diverse group of disabled people that I know. Such roles are also usually given to non-disabled actors!

I wanted to do something about this, so I started The Unspoken Project CIC, along with Paul C. Mooney as Artistic Director, to give acting opportunities to disabled and non-disabled actors, and to bring the real stories of disabled people to the stage. Our first production, Speechless, is due to premier later this year.

An initial readthrough at the Hackney Empire!
An initial readthrough at the Hackney Empire!

What is Speechless?

Speechless shockingly overwrites everything you know about people without speech, and introduces their own stories to stage.

It tells the story of 19-year-old Rebecca. Like Kate, our director, she has no speech due to cerebral palsy. However, like many people in the UK and worldwide, Rebecca has no access to a communication aid or other methods of alternative communication. This means that her story, opinions, and devious teenage thoughts remain unspoken.

This production challenges widespread views about disabled people, through the mediums of dark humour, imaginary friends, and disabled criminals (disabled people can be evil too).

If you are in any doubt as to why our voices are so important, check out the video below.

Plan and Schedule

We are really excited that our premier performance is scheduled for September 2016! Communication Matters, the leading UK charity for people with alternative communication needs, has given us a prime spot in their Annual Conference programme of events & we have been given the opportunity to perform to them and the wider public at the Stage@leeds (University of Leeds). CM agrees it is important that this show gets seen and the arguments heard: we are delighted to have their support. This is an opportunity that we are keen to take, but we first need to raise enough money to do so!

The play has already been written, and is in the process of being edited after being reviewed by an embedded critic. The final draft of the play will be completed in April.

Between April and August we will be finalising the cast, as well as organising costumes and props. We will also hold informal readthroughs to fine-tune the script, ready for rehearsals.

Rehearsals will take place in August and early September, in time for the final performance mid-September.

Budget

Your money will go towards all the costs of putting on a production. In particular, it is important to us that all of our actors are paid fairly for their time and efforts.
In line with Equity's 'No Pay, Low Pay' campaign, we recognise the damaging effects of asking professional actors to work for little or no pay. Equity has found that over half of their members earn under £5,000 per year from their professional acting work, which means that many people without private income are being priced out. We support the diversity of the acting community, and hope to keep it that way by paying actors fairly for their work.

The money will be spread between the following:

Risks and challenges

All adventures have risks!

What if noone wants to come?

Ideally our play will have an audience! We suppose there's always a possibility that noone will want to buy tickets. However, we think this is unlikely because we are giving away free tickets to Communication Matters Conference delegates, plus the play will be awesome! So we will definitely have a reasonably sized audience simply from conference delegates. However, it is also important to have a range of people in the audience, so we have a plan of local groups to invite, and will also sell tickets to the general public. Between all of these people, we are pretty sure we won't be performing to an empty room!

What if it's not 'inspirational' enough?

Brilliant! This is not a story of woe about an unfortunate family with the misfortune of having a disabled little girl. It is about a strong teenager breaking into adulthood. It is not 'inspiration porn'.

What if there are other unexpected costs or difficulties along the way?

We are confident that we will be able to solve any minor difficulties, as any play is bound to have some! We will also keep backers posted in the event that there are any delays. Essentially, we will let you all know how things are going!

We are really excited, and confident that Speechless will be great, and will provide exciting opportunities for sharing ideas and for disabled and non-disabled actors alike.

Thank you for supporting us!

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Support

  1. Select this reward

    Pledge £1 or more About $1.42

    Thank you for donating! We will grant you permission to give yourself a pat on the back, and say "Good job, Gladys*. Today you helped make the dreams of disabled people a reality, you are a good person!"

    *Each reward is customised for your own name, free of charge!

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    Pledge £5 or more About $7

    In an expression of our unending gratitude to you, will will announce to the whole world how amazing you are.... through the medium of twitter.

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    Pledge £10 or more About $14

    Walk a mile in the shoes of our director with cerebral palsy. Not literally. Her shoes have never walked a mile.
    We will create for you your very own, customised communication board. Featuring (but not limited to) some naughty words. Will be in PDF form, so you can even print out some for your friends.

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  4. Select this reward

    Pledge £20 or more About $28

    What's better than receiving something in the post?
    Receiving the devious innermost thoughts of our company in the form of a MYSTERY POSTCARD.
    Each will vary. None will be suitable for under 18s.

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  5. Select this reward

    Pledge £30 or more About $43

    This is not just a mystery postcard (see above). This is an EXTRA 'SPECIAL' POSTCARD.
    Our very own Director (with cerebral palsy) Kate, will HAND WRITE/DRAW you a special message. You may not be able to tell if its a picture or a drawing, and it may or may not come with subtitles. It might also be written while drunk...hmm..
    This is a one off, and we are pretty sure she won't be turning this into a full time career. I suppose you never know. #justbelieve

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    Pledge £50 or more About $71

    Kate will do an impression of your choice, and include your name In the credits of a potentially viral youtube video documenting the event.

    Her Stephen Hawking impresson is award winning.

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  7. Select this reward

    Pledge £100 or more About $142

    A copy of the script signed by the original cast.

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  8. Select this reward

    Pledge £200 or more About $285

    Have a go on Kate's communication aid!

    This reward is suitable for those who:
    -Have always wanted to sound like Stephen Hawking
    -Know about computer programming and want to f**k up Kate's life by switching the buttons for 'Hello, my name is Kate' and 'You dickhead'

    You can count yourself among an elite group of peple who have been trusted with this opportunity.

    *Must be able to travel to North London for this opportunity.

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  9. Select this reward

    Pledge £500 or more About $712

    Be part of the team! Come along on a rehearsal day to meet the cast and for a Q&A session.

    Also get free show tickets to Speechless and the next Unspoken Project production!
    You will also be credited as a supporter on our website and twitter, recognising your great contribution.

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  10. Select this reward

    Pledge £1,000 or more About $1,423

    Be a part of the creative process by naming a character in the play!

    You will also receive free tickets to Speechless and future productions, receive a signed copy of the script, and be credited as a supporter on our website and twitter.

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    Pledge £5,000 or more About $7,115

    YOU ARE A HERO.

    You will receive all of the above rewards plus the directors will follow you around for a day, bowing down to you, singing* your praises, and feeding you snacks of your choice.
    You will also receive our eternal gratitude, and an unprecedented number of good karma points.

    *where possible, otherwise speaking-from-communication-aid.

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Funding period

- (35 days)