100 Decibels: A Deaf Mime Troupe
Program and component
Explore and Create, Professional Development for Artists
St. François Xavier, Manitoba
Field of practice
Deaf and Disability Arts
An Actress Hones Her Skills at the Awakening Deaf Theatre in Canada Conference
With a grant awarded to 100 Decibels: A Deaf Mime Troupe, Winnipeg actor Joanna Hawkins was able to expand her professional skills in Deaf theatre by attending a unique conference in Montréal.
Skills development leads to new artistic projects
With a professional development grant, 100 Decibels: A Deaf Mime Troop sent Joanna Hawkins—an actor with the troop who is deaf—to the 2018 Awakening Deaf Theatre in Canada conference. Joanna credits the conference, which was hosted by Seeing Voices in Montréal, with boosting her skills in translating scripts and connecting her with other artistic opportunities. For example, the conference prepared her to perform in The Threepenny Opera in Winnipeg, the city’s first American Sign Language opera. After that performance, Hawkins received two more offers for creative projects.
A truly unique training opportunity
Training for Deaf artists in Canada is limited, so this conference is an important opportunity for professional development. As the only event that provides professional Deaf theatre training to deaf actors in Canada, the conference was an invaluable opportunity for Hawkins to learn about integrating American Sign Language into musical theatre.