REVolutions Dance was created with the intention of uniting diverse communities of individuals with and without disabilities through movement, creativity, and artistry. Our efforts to achieve equity and unity in the dance world can be experienced through our education, community outreach programming, and professional performances which are always rooted in our belief that compassion, understanding, and empathy are the building blocks of a diverse and inclusive community.
"The disabled body comes in endless forms and varieties of capabilities. Some that are easily seen and others that are less obvious. While two people using wheelchairs may appear to be functionally identical, it's very possible, in fact it is likely, that they are vastly different in how they move and how they navigate the world around them and the stage beneath them. For me, years of dance training and performing have allowed me to create an illusion. When audiences see me reach across my body, give and share weight with another dancer, flip my wheelchair on its back and return it to its wheels, they imagine a person using superior upper body strength and core muscles. The reality is, I have limited function in my hand, and my core is as limp and paralyzed as my legs. Dance, for a performer with a disability, opens the door to a more complete understanding of their own body and its interesting and unique abilities. I seek to invite others into understanding the complexities and beauty of the disabled body. Through conversation and performance."
~ Dwayne Scheuneman
In 2005, Dwayne Scheuneman and Amie West set out to introduce their local community to the creative and artistic contributions of artists with disabilities. At that time, there were no professional organizations in the area that were exploring ways to include disabled community members in their training and performance opportunities – and so began the mission of REVolutions Dance.
The duo filed as a 501(c)3 nonprofit organization in August of 2005 and REVolutions Dance became more than an idea; it became a living organization that would eventually grow into a cornerstone of the Tampa Bay Arts community. Dwayne and Amie began by collaborating with local dancers and choreographers to gain visibility and access to performance opportunities. In 2008, REVolutions Dance produced their first full length concert at Ruth Eckerd Hall Performing Arts Center. Since that time, REVolutions Dance has maintained a steady and consistent performance schedule and has established a national and international performing presence. Over the years, REVolutions Dance has performed nationally throughout the United States and internationally in Russia, Italy, China, and Palestine – to mention just a few.
In addition to performing, REVolutions Dance very quickly discovered a strong need for community outreach and education that moved beyond the stage and focused on creating opportunities for participants to engage in inclusive dance themselves. In 2010, team members from REVolutions Dance began to conduct a variety of community outreach and education programs which include dance classes for adults and children in the Tampa Bay area. The education and community building efforts provided by REVolutions Dance now extend beyond Tampa Bay to other areas of the US and around the globe.
Serving as one of the founding members and the current Artistic Director, Dwayne Scheuneman, continues to lead REVolutions Dance as it navigates 2020 and looks forward to the future even in these uncertain times.