Comedy group Bravi Ax Gravi has just premiered a short comedy sketch which features a NASA scientist with a disability having to deal with the awkwardness of people treating him differently.
The sketch aims to challenge society’s perceptions about the insensitive comments and questions people with disabilities may face, but does so in a lighthearted way. Through its whimsical humour, Diżabilita’ Astrofiżika helps alleviate the awkwardness some may feel when around disabled people and reveals them for who they really are – people who just happen to have a disability.
And who better to convey this message than the actors themselves, most of whom have visible or non-visible impairments?
Working together alongside Jon Mallia, who led the creative workshops and writing process, the group developed a script they felt was both humorous and serious at the same time.
“All of the participants delivered at least one script to be doctored by the group,” Jon Mallia explained. “Eventually, we settled on one idea. I then proceeded to write the screenplay to the plot which was further doctored by Abigail Mallia and Carlos Debattista.”
Dizabilita Astrofizika takes place at society’s very first stage of major social interaction, the education system, where a NASA scientist (played by Mario Borg) is put through a very awkward Q&A session with a classroom who clearly feel like his disability changes how he should be treated.
“We launched the video in schools because if disabled children were to be included right from the start and given the space and support to grow, how much easier would it be for us to then be included in employment and to create deep lifelong relationships at school and at the workplace which would serve us well throughout our lives?” said the Commission for the Rights of Persons with Disability, Oliver Scicluna.
What’s great about all of this is that he cast went above and beyond to convey their message, even visiting some schools around Malta and Gozo to screen the film followed by a Q&A session on the topic of disabilities!