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Signing With Babies And Children: Impressive Expressive Signing

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Sunday, November 21, 2010

Impressive Expressive Signing

As seen here on the CBS news just this weekend, Signmark is the first rap artist. He was born deaf. And as he preforms in sign language, he is able to bridge the gap between both the music and deaf communities. He did just that in New York City during International Deaf Awareness Week.

Signmark began translating Christmas Carols into signs at a young age as he wanted to participate along with others. He became the first deaf rapper to land a record contract, and although he can't hear the music, he can feel the beat. His music and concerts are a shared experience for one and all. He strives to fight for equality between all cultures.

Signmark explains his journey towards becoming the first deaf rapper here. Take note: one of the songs does have a swear word in it. Subtitles are provided, so you can turn the volume off if impressionable ears are nearby.

For more news features such as from Hong Kong, check out his facebook page.

As Thanksgiving is approaching rapidly, and your children may be home from school, try having them choose a song and learn the signs to that song. I remember having lip sink concerts all the time on those snow days where school was canceled. How about a signing lip sink concert?

As my youngest is 7 months old and is starting to use motions to communicate, such as waving his hand, I am even more encouraged to continue to teach him sign language. Enjoy the gift of sign language and the gift of family time this holiday season.

take care, Shawna

1 comment:

Gigi Davidson said...

As soon as I finished reading the article thoroughly twice, I scanned the Internet for some of his YouTube videos—I was fascinated, curious, and needed to see his art. How could rap, a mostly audio experience, incorporate signs, or be purely composed of signs? After watching his videos, I understood. I always knew, having played the violin for 12 years, that music is a form of expression not only for the audience but for the artist. Rap too is a strong form of expression, and after viewing his videos, I am convinced that his version of rapping is no less expressive (and arguably more expressive) than vocal rapping. Rap is a statement, and by performing nonconventional rap, he is making even more of a statement. It is art within art. Although I could not understand what he was signing, his emotions shined through his body language, and in a way that was musical too. For me, this article made me think more deeply about the true meaning of expression, art, music, and for that I am grateful.