Deaf-Blind Theatre

   Na Laga’at    نا لاجاعات     נא לגעת

Imagine that you are an actress and a  director.  You are asked to teach a drama class for a social club in Jaffa (Joppa), a suburb of Tel Aviv.  Now imagine that the social club is for Deaf-blind people.  That is what happened to Adina Tal in 2002.  A commitment to teach a workshop for a few months turned into years.  She is now the president of Na Laga’at, the world’s first Deaf-blind theatre company.

There are some challenges with Deaf-blind actors.  Each actor has an interpreter.  The actors can neither see nor hear the other actors.

There are some benefits to working with Deaf-blind actors. Adina Tel says,

“Because they can’t see each other, they can’t imitate each other. So everything they do is completely unique. If you ask them to mime eating grapes, you get 11 entirely different ways of eating grapes. That wouldn’t happen with seeing actors. They can’t be like anyone else. None of them has ever seen Marlon Brando or Al Pacino act. They can’t copy. That’s why they are great.” –

In the play Not by Bread Alone the actors make bread during the show which the audience gets to enjoy at the end of the play.  The play is a mixture of real life scenes and the fantasies, hopes and dreams of the actors.  Bread is not enough, they need communication and contact with other people.

There are several varieties of communication used with the actors.  Itzik Hanuna was born blind and became deaf at age 11.  Interpreters and other actors communicate with him using glove language, in which the Hebrew alphabet is spelled out on knuckles.  However, with other actors finger spelling is done on the palm of the hand.

Nalaga'at News Article - Hebrew - Glove Signing2

Some communicate with Israeli SL and some with Russian SL.


For more information see

Two “Lost” C. S. Lewis Articles

Christianity Today online on 13 December 2017 published an article by Stephanie L. Derrick –

Christmas and Cricket: Rediscovering Two Lost C. S. Lewis Articles After 70 Years

In the article she writes about two C. S. Lewis articles she discovered in the magazine The Strand.  She found the articles whilst doing research for her dissertation at the University of Stirling. Her book, The Fame of C. S. Lewis: A Controversialist’s Reception in Britain and America, based on her dissertation research will be published by Oxford University Press.  One Lewis article is

“A Christmas Sermon for Pagans”

Her description made me want to find and read the article. The article only indicates that the article was published shortly after World War II.  First I looked for online copies of The Strand.  Some are available at Project Gutenberg but none after the second world war.  The Hathi Trust Digital Library has later issues but these are not available publicly due to copyright restrictions.  I searched the volume 112 which was published 1946-1947 October-March and found that the words “sermon” and “pagans” appeared on page 30 but I did not get access to that page.

I found that Joel Heck has an online PDF The Complete Works of C. S. Lewis.  In that PDF he lists –

“258. “A Christmas Sermon for Pagans,” The Strand, Vol. 112, No. 672. December 1946.”

However, I am not able to find an online version but Derrick indicates that it “is due to be reprinted in VII: The Journal of the Marion E. Wade Center in January 2018.”

Derrick’s 2013 dissertation, The Reception of C. S. Lewis in Britain and America, from the University of Stirling is due to be available starting 1 January 2018 from STORRE (Stirling Online Research Repository).

“Cricketer’s Progress: A Famous Reputation and What Became of It”

This article was published under a pseudonym, Clive Hamilton, a pseudonym that Lewis had used before.  Derrick indicates that nowhere in The Strand is the article attributed to Lewis but an index lists the author as Lewis.

This article on cricket is not listed in Joel Heck’s The Complete Works of C. S. Lewis.  I did not find it in a search of The Strand issues.  If I find out more I will comment on this post. If you find out more please add it in a comment.  Thanks.

Singing and Dancing with Ebola – Part 2

On 25 August 2015 I wrote a post about a patient and medical staff celebrating the release of the last patient and starting the countdown to being Ebola free – Singing and Dancing with Ebola.  If there were no Ebola cases for 42 days the country would be declared Ebola free.  Now almost three months later I am writing again.  It wasn’t until 7 November that Sierra Leone had 42 days with no new cases.  Again they celebrated with singing and dancing.

I especially like the hearse driver at 1:40 in the video.

On the same day, 7 November, the BBC reported that the last Ebola case in Guinea had tested negative twice so the 42 day countdown had started.  She was a three week old baby whose mother was infected and died after giving birth.

Liberia had been declared Ebola free on 9 May 2015 but then there were more cases but on 3 September Liberia was again declared Ebola free.  Yesterday, 20 November, three new cases were reported in Liberia.

I hope and pray that soon all three countries will be rejoicing.

Gurrumul – Revisited

In my May 2015 post I wrote “My Favourite Australian Aboriginal Singer – Gurrumul”.  Here is some more information.

There is an interview on NPR (National Public Radio) in the US.

There is also an interview on  FBi radio 94.5 (Sydney, Australia) but I cannot get it to play.  Perhaps one of you will have more success.  It is number 177 on FBi Music Interviews  iTunes Podcasts –  It is also supposed to be available from

Shortly after I published this I discovered a link to a BBC interview on Skinny Fish Music.

Here is a recent music video.


Here is an earlier video when he performed with Sting.  Some of you may find this hard to believe but I know more about Geoffrey Gurrumul Yunupingu than I know about Sting.  I assume Sting is some famous musician.  Later on I will write a blog post about the importance of intertextuality in music.


Since Christmas is coming up soon I will post links to Silent Night sung with Delta Goodrem.

Here is a longer audio version.

Mandili Trio – Revisited

Mandili Trio since May 2015

Since I wrote about them in May the Trio Mandili have branched out.  Their first video has now been viewed on YouTube more than 2,800,000 times.  They have released an album

which is available on –

Google Play

They have performed in


Kiev –

Poor English Skills in Nigeria – Really?

“Letters from Africa: Nigeria’s Disappearing Storytellers”

The BBC this morning has a story which talks about the decline in the level of English used in Nigeria.  The article starts out talking about the fact that in 2015 the “Nigeria Prize for Literature announced that there would be no winner for 2015.”  The prize is only given for books written in English and it was reported that the entries had many errors.

(accessed on 25 October 2015 at 0600 GMT)

In this BBC article which derides the mistakes in English in Nigeria I found at least two mistakes.  I am not blaming the author for these mistakes.  I have had editors add mistakes to my writing.  I just found it fittingly ironic that the premier English language news service in an article talking about the English language mistakes made by Nigerians itself contains mistakes in English.

I have marked the first mistake in bold and underlined it.  I believe the word intended was supposed to be “at” and not “as”.

“In our series of letters from African journalists, Nigerian novelist and writer Adaobi Tricia Nwaubani considers if Nigerians are getting worse as writing good stories.”

Here is the second example.  There is a section which talks about the English language mistakes made by former first lady Patience Goodluck.  Please note that this is the “first lady” and not the “first lad”.  Again I have added bold and underlining.

“And when she paid a hospital visit to some victims of a Boko Haram attack in Abuja, the former first lad expressed satisfaction that “the doctors and nurses are responding well to treatment”.”

These are mistakes which I noticed on a quick first read through. I note that these are the sorts of mistakes a computer’s spell checker would not catch since each word is a correctly spelled word in English.

I read the article because I was hoping it would talk about the traditional oral storytellers in Nigeria.  I continued reading the article for the delicious irony.

Singing and Dancing with Ebola

On 24 August 2015 Adama Sankoh was released from an Ebola treatment centre in Makeni​, Sierra Leone.

(Alie Turay / Associated Press)

She was the last confirmed Ebola case.  Now the country waits during a 42 day period to make sure that there are no new cases.

(WHO / M. Harris)

Here is the video posted by International Medical Corps.

Published on Aug 25, 2015

On August 24, 2015, the last known patient with Ebola in the entire country of Sierra Leone stepped out of the treatment center after having recovered from the disease. If no new cases are diagnosed in the next 42 days, Sierra Leone can finally be declared Ebola free. In this video, International Medical Corps Ebola workers celebrate with Adama, the Ebola survivor, as she walks out of the Ebola Treatment Center for the last time.

As you can see from this graphic below from the WHO, only Guinea is still reporting new cases of Ebola.

World Health Organization – Ebola Situation Report – 26 August 2015

Hopefully, there also will be celebratory singing and dancing in Guinea very soon.