The diverse mix of participants varied from recent graduates to retired persons, those who are deaf and with other disabilities. This provided a rich source of creativity, energy and inspiration. I worked closely with several different small groups and drew from the experience of the others in the group. I found small groups made communication easier, and changes to movements were quicker and easier to implement. Chisato Minamimura brought humour and learning to the week. She guided me into a journey exploring all my senses. I experienced those individual senses being used by myself and others in the context of each section of work. Personally, I found the whole week's experience challenging in a good way. This was more mental than physical, whilst learning new skills.
David (Hand in Hand performer)
It has been wonderful to connect with the work that Nicole Vivien Watson and Paul Miller are leading. Since the BA Performance programme was launched in 2015 as the first dedicated conservatoire training in the UK for deaf performers, we have appreciated this relationship and the opportunity it gives us to share knowledge and practice. We were delighted to be invited to the performance of ‘Where our Roots are Planted’ and to take part in a workshop with International artist Antoine Hunter. It is so important for our students to connect with deaf artists and to find out about their pathways into the industry and how they approach the work they are developing. We are incredibly grateful to Nicole and Paul and look forward to an ongoing relationship.
Claire Lamont, Head of BA Performance in BSL & English The Royal Conservatoire of Scotland
Chisato's skill at bringing together two communities (deaf and hearing) was beautiful. The first introductions to deaf awareness, introduction to each other and giving ourselves 'visual names' was cleverly and sensitively done. The hearing participants were not made to feel like they were being given rules to follow (which sometimes happens when deaf and hearing work together), but instead we ALL felt like we were being introduced as a TEAM and it set the tone for the whole week.
What I learned from the week is that I count. I matter and I have a part to play in a group of people - I think I brought a creative spark, but I also allowed my co-volunteers to show their creativity too...and that Chisato invited me to perform in BSL was simply wonderful!
Collen (Hand in Hand performer)