Learning disability charity United Response is aiming for the Christmas number one spot in the UK charts with a song written and performed by staff and people they support.
The song ‘Dance With You’ was written by senior support worker Andrew Bowen from York and features people with autism and learning disabilities from across the country.
The project offered the opportunity for people supported by the charity to shape the release, creating the artwork and accompanying music video.
The charity says in a time when there is a lack of visible representation of neurodiverse and people with learning disabilities in the UK charts, the single aims to play a small role in rectifying that.
Project and regional manager for United Response, Emma Agar, said she knows they are competing with pop music heavyweights Abba, Adele and a Ed Sheeran Elton John collaboration, but that is not stopping them.
She added: “It’s one of those shoot for the moon and even if you miss you’ll land amongst the stars things. We recognise that it won’t be easy, but everyone involved – especially the people we support – has put in so much work and had so much fun doing it, it has been so worth doing. If recent Christmas number ones show us anything, it is that anything is possible! We just really hope that people go out there and listen and share and download it now!”
Songwriter Andrew said the song was inspired by Zoom sessions during the pandemic when everyone always ended up dancing at the end.
Eileen who is supported by United Response in the North East, and dances in the music video said: “I love dancing, I showed everyone how to dance like me, it makes me happy to dance and see everyone else dancing too. I would also like everyone all around the world to watch the video so everyone can see my dancing.”