Indepen-dance was founded in 1996 by Karen Anderson on the principle of access, participation and inclusion. Karen was Dancer in Residence for Strathclyde Regional Council (as a job share with Jamie Armstrong) and worked on a project named “Disintegration”, bringing together young people with and without disabilities to dance.
The outcome was an overwhelming success and prompted Karen to set up a weekly dance class specifically aimed at people with learning disabilities at the then Strathclyde Arts Centre. Regular attendance from people across Glasgow established a core group of 12 performers.
Over the years Karen brought many established professional musicians, dancers, artists and choreographers to Glasgow work with the company. This enabled the sharing of information, experience and good practice from the field of dance and disability with Indepen-dance dancers and teachers.
In 2002 an Indepen-dance Board of Directors was formed with the mission:
To create opportunities for disabled and non-disabled people and carers to enjoy, express and fulfil their potential through dance.