As I think about it now, I think I take for granted the fact that I’m a hearing person. I have always been able to enjoy performances in the art world, theatre and television fully, hearing every flicker of emotion whether it’s real or not and sometimes the difference between how a person is saying something and how they are behaving. The way that someone’s vocal delivery can evoke emotions in me is a powerful thing.
It’s interesting to see how we adapt these forms of expression and entertainment to reach people who can’t hear well or can’t hear at all.
Yesterday, I went along for short while to Experience The Christmas Story by Bottle Top Theatre Company in Wokingham which had someone interpreting the performance. It was a very uncomplicated set and costumes with slightly more elaborate songs which were well performed. Placed upstage wearing what looked like white gloves was the interpreter. People who are d/Deaf were asked to stand near the front of the stage so they could see the action and the interpreter. It’s a great thing that the theatre company put the effort and time into using British Sign Language in this free performance. Making the Performing Arts accessible to a community who can’t hear helps them experience it along with the hearing community and I believe this helps with understanding and a feeling of togetherness.
Let’s hope there is m0re of this accessibility as it can only be beneficial in promoting inclusivity and more understanding from all sides of the community.