Magic is in the Chair

At St. Declan’s School in Dublin, Ireland, children can often be found sitting in the Magic Chair – a place where they go when they want solitude, understanding and support. No ordinary school, St. Declan’s is a community for children with special needs and disabilities that focuses on the education of the whole person.

“There are sacred places in the world, places where the sanctity and beauty of life is known and cherished,” said Gregory Ruzzin, SFTV Associate Professor of Film Production and a documentary film director. “St. Declan’s School is one of these places.”

Victoria Graf, Professor in the School of Education and a leading advocate for inclusive education in the U.S. and Ruzzin are currently working on a documentary about St. Declan’s called The Magic Chair. With the support of Loyola Marymount University, they have launched an Indiegogo campaign to close the gap between the amount that LMU has contributed to the project and the additional funds needed to complete the film.

“After seeing my film Lost Child?,” said Ruzzin, “Victoria asked me to partner with her in the making of a documentary about St. Declan’s School in Dublin. She spoke glowingly of St. Declan’s children and teachers and, intrigued by the possibilities, I agreed to visit the school.”

The film will be the first part of a multi-faceted storytelling project that empowers individuals with disabilities, educators and families to tell their own stories and advocate for change around the world.

Visit The Magic Chair Indiegogo page to find out about campaign goals, read a director’s statement, see video teasers and more here.

Meet one of the stars of The Magic Chair, 10-year-old Oscar: