Chief Executive and Artistic Director, Extant
Maria has succeeded as a writer, a performer, a director and an artistic innovator and now leads, Extant, the company she set up to provide professional performing arts opportunities for blind and partially sighted people. Nobody else is doing exactly what Maria does. There are disability art companies, however none which challenge as much the perceptions of what blind people can achieve in such a wide range of performance styles.
Maria has written, produced and directed dramas performed by both non disabled and blind professional actors, as well as comedy, burlesque, outdoor performance and dance productions with blind performers that have been met with critical acclaim.
As with many practitioners in the arts, her career to date has challenged her resources as a creative individual, but added to this, she has had to face and overcome even greater challenges in terms of what people have thought was possible of a blind theatre practitioner. Maria’s leadership at Extant has provided the opportunity for other blind and partially sighted artists to achieve professionalism as performers and practitioners in the performing arts.