Sunday, May 27, 2012


Every so often I try to make it a point to go out on a one-on-one date with each of my girls. I figure, if I don’t screw them up enough just on our daily interaction, a little quality time alone with me should do the trick to screw them up sufficiently that way as well.

The other night was date night with my 15-year-old, Mollie. I took her to see the stage show: “Addam’s Family—The Musical” at a fancy-schmancy performance hall.

A month ago, Kenny went to the hall to purchase two tickets. After he bought 2 balcony seats (‘cause that’s all us ‘po folk can afford, see), he decided to have a little chat with the guy in charge there. He told them all about his poor, little, old, deaf, wife and how I was gonna be bringing my dear, sweet daughter to the show. He asked if they ever offered any accessibility to their deaf and hard of hearing patrons. Not only do they, but he said that if I brought my tickets to the box office the night of the show, they’d trade them for two orchestra seats in the “interpreter’s section”! I had no idea they would have interpreters that night. In fact, I believe they made special arrangements to provide ‘terps that night just for me because Kenny asked. Cool, eh?

When Mollie and I arrived at the theatre the night of the performance, they were all ready and knowing at the box office. What a relief! She just let them know what was up and whom we needed to speak with. I handed the contact person our original tickets and he had the trade-ins all ready and waiting for us.

When they started seating, she and I walked into the theatre and there stood the two interpreters. I expected one specific woman, because she’s very well known in our area as a ‘terp for live theatre. With her was another ‘terp I know well—one I’ve worked with in the past and who had, in fact, just interpreted for me three weeks ago. We all greeted and hugged, and then Mollie and I went and sat to wait for the show to start.

Right before the show started, we moved over in front of the interpreters, so I didn’t have to keep turning my head to the right to see them and then back up front to see the stage. That’s just awkward and uncomfortable. Ironically, I was the only Deaf person there that night! Two talented ‘terps all for me. It was quite the treat.

But the bigger treat was the performance itself. Oh, the actors/singers/dancers were great and the props/sets were wonderful, but I hardly wanted to look at them at all. My gosh! These two interpreters were INCREDIBLE!!! Animated, fluid, funny, expressive, perfect. There was barely a need to even look at the stage. In fact, if the ‘terps had broken out in the show’s dance routines, I never would have looked at the stage at all.

Another really neat part was that during the curtain call, the character Gomez did the "deaf applause" and then motioned to the interpreters. Then, as the other actors "deaf applauded," he actually signed something (Mollie and I didn't catch what he said though, because we were too busy cheering the 'terps on, too). 

What a night! And I’m sure theatrical interpreting is extremely challenging. I’ve almost always been blessed with very skilled interpreters—and I use them a lot. Oh, I’ve had my fair share of scary ‘terps—‘terps who never should have been given any kind of certification. But the more I use interpreters in this area, the more skilled interps are sent for me. I’ve been very blessed in that sense.

Date night this time around turned out swell for both of us. Mollie had a blast with the show and, especially, the music and costumes. But the fact that I enjoyed the performance every bit as much as the hearing audience members thrills me to no end! That just doesn’t happen much in life. Maybe things are starting to change and look up!

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