Weʼve raised £1,435 to to make future Fringe shows accessible to the deaf
- Funded on Tuesday, 13th September 2022
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I wanted my show, Deaf Ears, to be signed and captioned for the deaf community. However, it turned out there is no funding available. GREAT NEWS! YOU HAVE NOW FULLY FUNDED THE SIGNING FOR MY SHOW! (See below for what happened when we wanted to provide captioned shows.) Now, we are going all in to raise money to make a fund (to be administered by the Fringe Society) to pay for making others' fringe shows deaf accessible in the future. ALL FUNDS RAISED NOW WILL GO INTO THIS FUND.
HOW I GOT INTERESTED
My solo show, Deaf Ears - How I Learned to Hear, is about how growing up with deaf parents shaped my life. I first performed it at the Brighton Fringe last year. This year, I’m taking the show to Edinburgh (a life-long bucket list item – and at 71 there’s no time like the present!) and have been lucky enough to get my theatre of choice, the Pleasance Below.
An excerpt from the show has been featured on BBC Radio 4’s Four Thought. It’s been a Finalist in the Standing Ovation Awards, and it was "Highly recommended" by the Fringe Review which also said it featured “Spellbinding storytelling."
ACCESSIBILITY AT THE FRINGE
I wanted Deaf Ears to be accessible to the different parts of the deaf community. I thought that because the Edinburgh Fringe and all the main theatres have accessibility policies, this would be no problem. I’d apply for funding and get it.
BUT I FOUND THAT THE ACTUAL COST OF PROVIDING ACCESS FALLS SOLELY ON THE SHOW ITSELF.
Perhaps you don’t know this, but, once you factor in accommodation costs, even if they play to full houses, most shows at the Edinburgh Fringe lose money.
We have now raised the cost of providing BSL signing for two of the performances (£800). (I wanted to have two shows captioned, but was told that the Fringe Society open captioning equipment wasn't suitable for the venue. I'm hoping some of the money raised will go to the purchase of portable captioning equipment!)
Talking with my producers, Graham and Townley Productions, we came up with the plan of providing a fund to make others' future fringe shows deaf accessible. Hence this JustGiving page.
BUT WHY STOP THERE?
This is a problem for all shows at the Fringe, a problem we could potentially help with. So any money we raise now will be used to create a fund administered by the Fringe Society to provide money for deaf access for other Fringe shows in the future. We hope this fund will bring attention to this major need. I'd love to raise £5000 to make this fund truly useful.
THE RIGHT TIME
Especially now, a year where Rose Ayling-Ellis enchanted the nation with her dancing in Strictly, and CODA won the Academy Award for Best Picture, the time seems right.
Let’s bring accessibility to the Edinburgh Fringe!
Updates appear here
Joe Friedman started crowdfunding
Leave a message of support
Aug 18, 2022
Jul 25, 2022
Hope the show is a great success in Edinburgh
Gavin + Siobhan
Jul 25, 2022
Sean & Fionnuala
Jul 24, 2022
Such a great cause. Good luck with your show, Joe.
Jul 23, 2022
Tom, Hannah & Charlie
Jul 17, 2022
Good luck Joe!
Jun 8, 2022
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About the fundraiser
Born in Chicago to two deaf parents, Joe moved to London and trained as a psychotherapist. He did stand up, and improvisation, and wrote a series of successful children's books, Boobela and Worm. During lockdown, he took a "Write Your Solo Show" course. Deaf Ears was the result.