SignTalk Foundation Sponsors Theatre Manu’s Crying Hands

SignTalk Foundation is proud to sponsor Norway’s Theatre Manu production Crying Hands. Based on interviews with Deaf Holocaust and civilian survivors, Crying Hands explores the fates of the Deaf and disabled in Nazi Germany, a neglected story of the Holocaust.


The play is the story of a Hans a Deaf political prisoner who struggles to survive in Sachsenhausen and later in the Auschwitz concentration camp.

This original production by Teater Manu, an award-winning NationalDeaf Theater in Oslo, has toured extensively across Norway and abroad. With four of Norway’s most dynamic actors, it is performed in both ASL and English.

The play was translated from Norwegian Sign Language to American Sign Language by creative performer, Douglas Ridloff. “As a Deaf individual, I must say that this production is so important to our history. Everyone, regardless if you’re Deaf or hearing, should learn about this powerful history that needs to never be repeated. If you have the chance, go and watch the performance when they’re on tour.”

Tickets are available for performances in NYC, Washington and Toronto and can be purchased here.

Update – Photos of the amazing event:

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SignTalk Foundation Sponsors Doug Ridloff Israel Performance & Workshops

Douglas Ridloff, poet, artist, performer, and ASL SLAM’s Executive Director, has gained national and international attention performing in various US cities, Australia, New Zealand and parts of Europe, as well as presenting a TEDx in Austria. SignTalk Foundation is proud to have sponsored several of Doug’s international efforts. In May, Doug will be travelling to Israel where he will be performing, providing workshops at Deaf Clubs, participating in an annual Bar/Bat Mitzvah celebration in Jerusalem for Deaf and hard of hearing children and meeting with members of the Deaf community.

Help us in launching this amazing project. These performances, workshops and meet ups work to bring attention to sign language, Deaf artists, and Deaf culture, thereby unifying the global Deaf community. Please donate so we can open up international venues and opportunities for members of the Deaf/hard of hearing and signing communities to present their work in inviting and supportive environments using ASL.

SignTalk Foundation Sponsors Doug Ridloff’s Grand Vienna TEDx Tour

SignTalk and SignTalk Foundation are pleased to have sponsored Doug Ridloff’s ASL Slam Grand Vienna TEDx tour, part of his movement to carve out a creative space in the signing community. Please consider making a donation to SignTalk Foundation to support future projects such as these.

Lauren Ridloff, Tony Nominated Deaf Actress Receives SignTalk Award

Lauren does not cease to impress all for being on the forefront of empowering and advocating for the signing community. Congratulations, Lauren, on your SignTalk Award, and we can’t wait to see you on The Walking Dead! Rumor has it that her first appearance will be on Sunday, October 28th.

SignTalk Foundation Presents Lauren Ridloff with Outstanding Achievement Award

The SignTalk Foundation is honored to present Lauren Ridloff with the 2018 annual Outstanding Achievement Award for her work advocating for the Deaf Community and advancing ASL as a mainstream language. To see a short video of the award ceremony, please go to


Tony nominee Lauren Ridloff, star of the best story on Broadway

Just in time for Tony Sunday: the tale of an actress who never expected to see her name in lights. Jamie Wax has her story…

What’s the best story on Broadway? Consider this: At age 40, Lauren Ridloff, a stay-at-home mom with no professional theater experience ever, and who is deaf, was offered a starring role.

“Is there a part of you that still can’t quite believe it’s real?” asked Wax.


Joshua Jackson and Lauren Ridloff in “Children of a Lesser God.” Photo by Matthew Murphy

“A part of me? No, all of me!” she laughed.

And Ridloff put all of herself into the performance in the revival of “Children of a Lesser God.” She plays Sarah, a cleaning woman at a school for the deaf who falls in love with an able-hearing teacher, played by Joshua Jackson.

When asked how unusual Ridloff’s story is in the business. Jackson said, “Oh, she’s a one of one. She is a totally unique woman, person, mother, and now actor.”

Ridloff was born deaf to hearing parents. As a child, she worked on using her voice to speak, but spending time at a camp with kids and counselors who communicated only with sign language, led to an awakening, as Lauren told Wax through her interpreter, Candace Broker Penn:
“And for the first time, I never had to use my voice to communicate clearly with anyone. And I realized I could speak without thinking so much about how to say what I had to say.

“So, when I got back home, I really told my family, in a sense I ‘came out’ to my family. I said, ‘I’m not going to use my voice anymore.’ And my family accepted that, and accepted who I was.”

She was asked, “Does this feel like a dream? “It’s a wonderful dream!” she replied.

To see the interview with Lauren, please see CBS News’ full article at

The Imposter Interpreter: How Should the Profession Respond?

1749985693001_5668991812001_5668987134001-vsI recently found myself pulled into an argument on Facebook, responding to a friend’s post about Derlyn Roberts, the woman appearing to interpret a news conference by law enforcement in Florida.

The argument revolved around the question of whether this woman was a fake interpreter, as stated in many headlines reporting the story, or merely a bad interpreter, unqualified for the job and in over her head. Continue reading