Modern society often maintains patterns of isolation for people with disabilities. Many of these individuals live in institutions or homes where they receive little to no education and do not develop plans for re-integration into society. Alito Alessi decided to establish new ways for disabled people to become cohesively integrated in society. Through DanceAbility, he facilitates interactions between people with and without disabilities. After attending workshops, follow-up meetings, and career counseling sessions, participants come to realize that their body and disabilities are not limitations. Thus, they gain a new sense of awareness and self-confidence.
DanceAbility transformative experiences allow participants and audience members to overcome their prejudices and assumptions about each other. The strategy began in the late 1980’s in the context of an annual mixed-ability dance festival that Alito Alessi organized in Eugene, Oregon. Through these early interactions, Alessi was invited to share his knowledge and methodology in Austria, Germany, Italy, and Switzerland.