Review: Paddington’s First Concert with BSL interpretation


Limping Chicken (The world’s most popular deaf blog! Laying eggs since 2012) has just published this article.

We, as Signed Culture, believe it’s worth sharing here too.

The article is written by Rebecca A Whithey – a freelance creative; consultant, tutor, writer, performer – who is also Deaf.   She seems to have really enjoyed her experience of going to see this, primarily, sound based event.

“As soon as she arrived on stage it was clear Sarah (Sarah Gatford, the BSL Interpreter) had fully studied and absorbed the music prior to the day as she relayed the musical nuances, dynamics and rhythms with confidence and ease. Swaying her arms and tapping her hands, I could see through Sarah’s interpretation that the concert had well and truly begun!”

But the venue had not just provided an interpreter, but also captioning for those who prefer this access mode.

“As well as the BSL interpretation, there were live captions relaying everything the narrator spoke and sang and the large centre screen also shared images and song lyrics with titles whilst the orchestra were playing too.”

Rebecca says,

“There were even moments where the BSL interpreter assisted with the narration, taking props out of Paddington’s suitcase and sharing these with the audience. It was lovely to see an interpreter so involved within a production and on a completely level platform to the narrator as they sat side by side.”

It seems that Rebecca was helped to really enjoy her outing to the venue because the interpreter who had been booked, was a true professional who had properly done her preparation, worked with the venue and the orchestra.  This review shows how happy and confident Sarah was with being on stage; happy working between the two languages fluently, creatively and effectively; knowledgeable about her role and responsibility as the interpreter for the event – to herself, her profession, the Deaf community, the venue and the orchestra.

This event wasn’t only the concert, but there were other associated activities provided for the children who were attending, maximising the visit made by families.

“The arts and crafts on offer were a great way for families to enjoy making memories together and the whole set up for the event was truly one of inclusivity and relaxed enjoyment.”

Please read the full article on this link.

All Deaf people deserve to have an experience like this when they go to an interpreted event: a venue that is welcoming, an interpreter who truly reflects their profession to the best of their ability, a chance to meet other Deaf people/friends and ultimately enjoy a great night out.  

Leave a Comment