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Case study: Silo Theatre’s sign-interpreted performances of TRIBES

 August 2013

“Consult with the Deaf community” is the main tip Jessica Smith of Silo Theatre offers to theatres organising sign language interpreted performances. A grant through the Creative New Zealand and Arts Access Aotearoa partnership programme, Arts For All, supported Silo Theatre to present sign interpreted performances of the play TRIBES by Nina Raine.

“We wanted to connect in a meaningful way with the Deaf audience. We needed to ensure that we were delivering an experience and a work with integrity," Jessica says.

“We programmed TRIBES because it was well-crafted and a compelling story with wonderful characters. It also enabled us to engage in a conversation with an audience new to Silo because it deals with specific issues around Deaf culture and communication.

“There was a lot more involved in providing signed performances than simply booking interpreters and getting them familiar with the work.”

Jessica Smith talks to Arts Access Aotearoa about the project; how it developed; the challenges the company encountered along the way; and the key elements that made the project a success.

 

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