Research, community collaboration, and development of the Running Blind Dance project began in 2015 and has led to a series of accessible dance performances, community sharings, international collaborations, integrated workshops, six-week training programs, performance projects, and short films.

This project has been developed and inspired by our collaboration with people who are blind, people who have low vision, and people who are deafblind.

The below presentation shares research, principles & practices for inclusive movement practice that this project has developed over the last ten years while working with the Anne Sullivan Centre for the Deafblind and through the integrated workshops open to all community members, for the National Council for the Blind and Vision Sports Ireland.

Presented at Vision 2022 Global Conference in Dublin on July 8th, 2022.

Laura Sarah Dowdall founded the Running Blind Dance Project after her engagement as Artist in the Community working with the Anne Sullivan Centre for the Deafblind in 2015. To this day, she continues to offer ongoing weekly dance classes to the residents and support staff, having developed a longstanding relationship with the centre and its community.

Laura has collaborated with the National Council for the Blind in Ireland, Vision Sports and Fighting Blindness to enable inclusive dance experiences to their members and families, she has created collaborative community projects focused on the research and development of inclusive dance practice and performance for people with vision-loss.

To date this work has been supported by Create Artist in the Community Awards, Dance Ireland Mentorship award and Tyrone Guthrie Residency award, Rua Red Dancer in Residence Award, Dun Laoghaire Rathdown Community Grant Awards, South Dublin CoCo bursary award and Dublin Bus Community Spirit award.

In 2023, Laura was a dance tutor on the first Inclusive Dance Training in Ireland supported by Firkin Crane and University of Cork.

She was guest artist at MOVE ME! Dance Festival in the Netherlands in 2023, where she gave a performative dance-talk and facilitated workshops for festival attendees.

Running Blind is a visceral dialogue of the senses, an immersion into a tactile, imagined and experienced presence.

Creative Team
Choreographer and Performer – Laura Sarah Dowdall
Dramaturg, Creative Producer – Sabina Bonnici
Creative Producer – Hillary Dziminski
Sound Designer – Robert Coleman
Lighting Designer – John Gunning
Violinist – Colm Ó Braoin
Costume – Holly O’Brien
Mentors – Amanda Coogan & Tom Pritchard

With special thanks to members of the National Council for the Blind in Ireland, community workshop participants and all at the Anne Sullivan Centre.

Running Blind has been developed at Fringe Lab with the support of Dublin Fringe Festival.

Kind support has also been provided by Dance Theatre of Ireland,  Dance IrelandCREATE Ireland, & Smock Allies: Scene + Heard Festival.

For more information or collaboration opportunities, please email Laura – laura@runningblind.ie

For more information on Laura’s artistic practice and productions click here!