If you’ve watched any televised or live speeches or concerts lately, you may have noticed something different about what was going on onstage. More and more, performers and speakers are hiring people to use sign language alongside them on stage so that deaf audience members can enjoy what the rest of us often take for granted.
It’s a welcome chance to live speaking and performance since everyone deserves to be included and steps should always be taken to be more inclusive whenever it’s possible. One choir from Ireland is all about that inclusive life. Called the Deaftones, these amazing girls and women are primarily deaf.
They have two hearing singers perform the vocals while the majority of the group, ranging in age from 13 to 39, signs and/or lip syncs the music. According to InspireMore, “Their conductor, Shirley Higgins, started the choir seven years ago while teaching at a school for the deaf in Dublin. The 11 deaf members can’t experience music in the traditional sense, she said, and instead sense the music and words through a combination of vibrations and lip reading.”
Recently, they got the chance to perform on the hit show called “Ireland’s Got Talent” to bring their unique talents to the masses. Ciara, the only hearing member of her own family and one of two hearing members of the choir said, “I think this choir group pretty much means everything to these girls because I don’t think they’d be as confident as they are. All of them were just so excited to be here, so grateful for it and just really happy to be a part of this.”
Their work really drives home the impact and power of music. Some of the performers “hear” the music to varying degrees through vibration and some cannot hear at all. What they can all do, however, is work together as a team to put on a performance that would move just about anyone.
As you might imagine, the show’s judges were totally blown away by their rendition of a popular Ed Sheeran hit. Their determination to bring music to everyone, not just the able-bodied, is truly inspiring and it should make us all think about how we can be more inclusive in our day-to-day lives.
Check out the video below to watch their entire stunning performance.