Rocky Mountain Deaf Theatre brings
American Sign Language to the stage
Rocky Mountain Deaf Theatre actress and Artistic Director Nicki Runge does not shy away from a challenge with her performance in Six Women in Search of the Perfect Play. In this new play, written by deaf playwright Raymond Luczak, Runge performs monologues by six characters.
Each character comes from a different walk of life, and all are connected by their relationship to a production of Medea. As she portrays women ranging from a wealthy deaf housewife who is just learning sign language, to a starving artist living on the street, Runge has the added challenge of including differences in sign choices that would occur in deaf people from each background. To achieve the different sign styles, Runge worked with director and translator Joette Paulone.
“When you are translating from a written script into abstract, poetic American Sign Language, you have to look at a whole paragraph and pick keywords that create images to show the meaning. You can’t follow the original word order,” Paulone says.
The different sign styles make this production especially interesting for people who are learning sign language. However, Paulone and Runge keep the play interesting for non-signers as well by employing a voice actor to voice along with Runge’s signed performance. Six Women in Search of the Perfect Play was performed in Greeley in October, and audience members were astounded by how visually expressive the American Sign Language performance was.
The play is set for Jan 23 and 24, 7:30p and Jan 25 at 2p at the FAC.
Tickets are $20, available at csfineartscenter.org or at the box office, 719-634-5583.