Thursday, October 7, 2010

Search for teenage and adults deaf actors for upcoming TV show

No, this is not turning into a news blog :) I will post an update about myself soon, there just hasn't been much of anything to report. I saw this page on Facebook after a few of my friends "liked" it, and thought some reader might be interested. The plot sounds interesting, and it would be pretty cool if a "typical" speaking, hearing deaf kid was plucked from everyday life into TV fame. Note that they are looking for people who can both sign and speak, and the deadline is October 15th.

From the page:



You can find a copy of the waiver, together with the audition scenes here:


** Note:  The character of Daphne will be speaking, signing (ASL) and using sim-com during the show.  The producers would like to see you do all three at some point during your audition.  So, pick some lines from the audition scene where you will speak only, others where you will sim-com and others where you will use ASL only. **




You’ll need some sort of digital video recording device.  It can be your iPhone, cell phone, Flip camera, small digital video camera, etc, etc, etc.

 -- The accepted formats for uploaded files are:  Quicktime (.mov), Flash (.flv) and MPEG4 (.mp4) ONLY!
 --  You may be able to "convert" your file into one of these formats.  But make sure you can and know how to do so, or find someone who does.
 --  Alternatively, you can supply us with a You Tube Video link, which must be set for public viewing.
 --  Do not name your video files with punctuations (for example: * " ' / \ @ &)


It doesn’t have to be a “big production.”  But, we need to be able to see you – and hear you – clearly on screen.  So make sure you have plenty of light when you record yourself, and make sure the camera is not too far away from you.

Put your camera or phone on a stable surface, like a tripod or table.  Again, make sure there’s plenty of light so we can see you.  And then … perform like the character you want to play!

Remember, be easy and just be yourself.  You have nothing to lose!  Ultimately, what we want to see, is the true essence of who you are.

When you're done, you must do two things

1.  Fill out and return the "waiver form" you found attached to the audition pages.
-  You can fax it to:  323-874-2268
-  Scan and email it to:
-  Or include it with your "hard copy" DVD submission in the mail.

2.  Upload your video.  Here's how:


Click on this link to go to the Now Casting website.  You will upload your videos there:

- When asked for the role code, use  1133bf53
- Click "submit."
- Fill out the required fields and enter only the role you are auditioning for in the "Description" field.  Do not put /&"!'@ in the description or the name of the file.
- Click "choose file" [next to where it says "Audition File" -- underneath where it says "Description"] and pick the file you will be uploading from your computer.
- Click "submit."  The audition will be delivered directly to us.

That's it!  You're done!


Please note that the preferred method of sending us your audition videos is THROUGH THE LINK ABOVE.

If you submit your video this way, there is no postage to worry about, we are guaranteed to receive your video and we will see it much faster.

As a last resort, you can also submit a "hard copy" of your audition video, along with the waiver and personal information, IN DVD FORMAT ONLY to:

Deedee Bradley
6767 Forest Lawn Drive, Suite 100
Los Angeles, CA 90068

Actors should write a short paragraph about themselves and include:
1. Their name
2. Their AGE ( Very important)
3. Where they are currently living.
4. Best way for us to contact them.


The deadline for submissions is October 15th, 2010.

Now, good luck!  We hope that you are who we’re looking for!"

Here is the plot outline for the show, Switched at Birth which will be on ABC Family and the roles they need to fill:
The show revolves around Daphne, a smart, confident and well-adjusted deaf teenager who has her world turned upside down when she discovers that she was switched at birth with another girl.

DAPHNE - ACTRESS MUST BE DEAF OR HARD OF HEARING AND MUST SPEAK WELL, AMERICAN SIGN LANGUAGE PREFERRED. Age range from 16 to early 20’s to play high school. Actress is to be light-haired or willing to dye hair blond for the role, and if the show moves to series, actress must be willing to relocate to Los Angeles in February.

Smart, confident, and well-adjusted Daphne is stunned to learn that she and Bay Kennish were accidentally switched at birth 15 years ago. Having grown up in a working-class household as the only child of a single mom, she is excited to meet her new parents, and especially thrilled at the idea of having brothers and a dad. But balancing two families is trickier than she expected, particularly because her biological parents have never been around anyone deaf, and are eager for her to enter a mainstream school and a less deaf-centric world.

EMMETT - 16, ACTOR MUST BE DEAF OR HARD OF HEARING, MUST BE FLUENT IN AMERICAN SIGN LANGUAGE. Emmett is Daphne's best friend. Raised by deaf parents and educated in a deaf school, Emmett doesn't talk orally, and is more comfortable in a deaf world. Rugged, reserved, a young deaf James Dean.

PENN - late 30’s or 40’s. male, ACTOR MUST BE DEAF OR HARD OF HEARING, MUST SPEAK WELL. Penn is Emmett's father and Daphne's mother's best friend. Penn is the one who educated Daphne's mother about the importance of learning sign, schooling Daphne in a deaf world, etc. 

I will admit it does sound a bit "stereotypical deaf", with the importance of sign, Deaf culture etc.. However, its still in its infancy and I highly encourage you to audition ASAP if you're interested! There's no telling how things will turn out!  Here is the Facebook Fan page that includes all of the information I have posted:

Deaf teacher publicizes discrimination, gets suspended

So it just seems that there has been a lot of hearing loss/discrimination related new in my area lately. This article caught my eye when I was reading the newspaper this morning (Yes, I read the paper and always have. My friends like to make fun of me for doing so, but I'm always well informed!)

My summary: Kathleen Nosek is a deaf special ed teacher and has been teaching at the same school for ten years. In the past couple of years the principal of the school, Amy Miller, began insisting that Nosek administer pronunciation tests to her students herself. In the past Nosek had other teachers perform this test (which only had to be done a few times a year) for her, and it wasn't a problem. When Nosek told Miller that her hearing loss made it extremely difficult to accurately perform the tests, Miller questioned whether Nosek's hearing loss made her unfit for her job (which she's been doing for years just fine!). Well, Nosek chose to bring allegations of harassment and intimidation by Miller before the school board. The morning of, she had a local news reporter in her classroom and was interviewed. This led to her suspension.

The full story along with hundreds of comments is available here. If you ask me, this story is blatant discrimination, and her suspension is just the tip of the iceberg.

The news reporter published a blog post with a few clarifications and updates, available here.

Saturday, October 2, 2010

Followup Article- Deafness in the Legal System

Yesterday, I posted about a deaf man freed after a DNA test proved him innocent of a crime  that he had already spend 20 years in prison for.

Today, I saw a great article that talked about his conviction and exoneration, with much of the focus on his deafness and how it impacted the case. Here is the link to the article, along with some quotes that I thought were noteworthy.
  • "Prosecutors don't routinely check whether a deaf defendant had a certified interpreter during police questioning, or whether the defendant's written words would have a different meaning in American Sign Language."
  • "When Richardson police asked Brodie in writing why he abducted and sexually assaulted the girl, he wrote, "I don't know WHY?" Those words were taken as a confession until the district attorney's office began reinvestigating the case."
  • "They said police should use a certified interpreter who is trained to sign legal words like those that come up in Miranda warnings when officers ask suspects to waive their rights. Elliott said the ideas of waiving your rights to remain silent and to have an attorney don't automatically translate in deaf culture. "
  • For 20 years, authorities have said that the 5-year-old victim told them her attacker spoke with a "clown" voice. Police and prosecutors have said the girl was describing how a deaf person speaks. But a recording of the interview shows the girl actually told police the man had a "low voice." 
    • My side note: What the heck?! What does a "clown voice" even sound like? I don't think I've ever heard a clown talk...