By Tom Degun in London
October 7 - Unlimited, the UK’s largest ever disability programme, has been launched by London 2012 as part of the London 2012 Cultural Olympiad.
Unlimited, the result of a three year consultation process across the disability, arts and disability sports sectors, provides the disability arts and the cultural sector with unparalleled opportunity to develop new work for the world stage.
The £3 million three-year programme - which is primarily funded by the Olympic Lottery Distributer using National Lottery funds - is a huge celebration of the arts, culture and sport by disabled and deaf people.
Unlimited hopes to bring new audiences to disability arts through major pieces of new work that will be showcased in the UK at art festivals, venues and London 2012 events both in the build up to 2012 and during the Games itself.
Chris Holmes, the London 2012 Director of Paralympic Integration, told insideworldparasport: "I think the Cultural Olympiad is incredibly important.
"When the Games started, there was always a sporting as well as cultural dimension to them and I think we're really bringing that to life in London.
"Unlimited will no doubt expand Paralympic audiences over the next three years and I really want the programme to inspire all people about what is humanly possible.
"I believe that Unlimited’s lasting legacy will be one of great inspiration."
Tony Hall, the chairman of the London 2012 Cultural Olympiad Board said: "The UK produces some of the best disability arts in the world and by using the power of the Olympic and Paralympic Games, we can help the movement grow, foster young talent, enable collaboration between disabled and mainstream arts organisations and provide platforms to showcase excellence in the UK and around the world."
Janet Paraskeva, the chair of the Olympic Lottery Distributer said: "London 2012 can bring opportunities to us all and that is why the Olympic Lottery Distributer is investing National Lottery funds in disabled and deaf artists to enable them to work with mainstream organisations to bring their work to new audiences."
Unlimited intends to create a carnival-like celebratory atmosphere in the UK and Holmes is particular happy that London are handing over their Paralympic baton to Rio de Janerio.
He said: "I think it's fantastic that the Games are going to South America for the first time in their history.
"Rio will do a tremendous job, the Games will be fantastic on the sports field and the one thing you can be sure of, is that they do know how to carnival and party very well."
Unlimited opens for artists’ entries today.
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