• Debora Balardini

    So amazing to read this article! I am the co-founder of Nettles Artists Collective (NYC https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=YUfrl4YMVDI) and the director of Apple of My Eye

    , the first ever professionally produced play written and acted by a Latina artist with Down syndrome. We had performances as a guest company for the International Hispanic Theatre Festival of Miami and back in New York last year we presented at the UNICEF House as part of the festivities for the International Down Syndrome Day 2016. The play follows the story of Bella who has Down syndrome and is abused by her family and forced to marry an obsessed man who treats her as a slave. The main actress and writer of the play, Tathiana Piancastelli, wants to bring all the misconceptions and misleading information about the syndrome. It is a story told from the perspective of a person with the Down syndrome with her interpretation as the lead fairy tale story. Nettles Artists wanted to make sure that the whole cast of 11 actors were included in this production making sure that Tathiana was treated as an actress and writer as much as a person without the syndrome. It is refreshing to read your article and see that other efforts are being made to bring these issues to the surface. We continue to fight for inclusion in the arts and making sure that people with different abilities are included in all aspects of our lives. Thanks for writing about it, Katherine!
    Debora Balardini