Helping Kids on the Autism Spectrum through Dance

Production Notes

“Every parent who deals with Autism should learn to tango”

It took seven years of convincing before Executive Producer, Liza Krassner, took up the tango. She later discovered that tango, unlike other dances, masters the art of non-verbal communication though partnership dancing. The skills learned from dancing tango socially was what she applied in learning how to better communicate with her son who has Autism. This led to a collaboration with Ms. Miriam Larici who shared her talents into making this film along with many members of the tango community from California, Oregon and Argentina. “Every parent who deals with Autism should learn to tango. You reach your child in sensitive ways much the same way we do in dancing tango. Who would have ever expected learning to deal more effectively with a child who was less verbal would come from tango?”

“Workforce development of persons with disabilities”

Through the Heart of Tango was originally pitched as a workforce curriculum project of Inclusion Films students, a practical film workshop designed to train persons with disabilities entry level skills in the entertainment industry. In this project, the students participated as cast and crew throughout the production. “I was actually going to shelve the project when it was completed,” according to Executive Producer Liza Krassner, “until Seth M. Shulman, the Editor of this film and previous workshop volunteer, asked if I could submit the project to festivals because it would be good for his resume and for the students in the workshop. How could I refuse someone who was so gifted and doing what he just needed to do – ask for the exposure and build his resume? There’s a lot of talent out there that this group can offer the entertainment industry – just like anyone who needs a job, they need a chance to work on projects and the exposure.”

“Tango Love”

Perhaps one of the funnest days of production was the day Miriam & Leonardo came to Inclusion Films. During the break, Miriam and Leonardo were so overwhelmed with how hard the students were working that they spontaneously broke into dancing with the students and took goofy tango poses with each of them that it took some time for the production crew to break the party! This was tango love in its finest form. “This was one the most beautiful experiences of my life! A short cut to the real true…The Universal Love”, according to Miriam. “A great experience where I learned a lot about life… “The life of Love”, according to Leonardo. It was a wonderful moment – everyone was star struck with each other!

Copyright © 2013 Liza Krassner