They said because I was Deaf, I couldn’t be an actress, so I went to Brit School : Labbie Jolaoso tells all

‘One of my biggest achievements was getting into the Brit School’

Labbie tells me all about what it’s like to be in the Brit School as a Deaf person in tell-all interview

What is your biggest achievement?

I have four achievements

  • Getting into the Brit School
  • Performing with Deafinitely Theatre Company
  • Going to East 15 Acting School for University this year 2019/20
  • Bronze Arts Award

What’s it like being at the Brit School as a Deaf person?

It’s hilarious, I got to teach my class sign language for my Year 13 final show, the entire script was signed in BSL/SSE which was a fun experience for me and the other students

Sometimes, it is hard because there wasn’t really any other Deaf people. When I was in primary school, I had a deaf unit, so there was lots of other Deaf people I could talk to but I didn’t have that in college

People also can forget that I am Deaf because I use speech to communicate and my new hearing aids are quite small and unnoticeable

Have you ever come across people who have doubted you as a Deaf actress?

Yes! Someone said that I would ‘never be an actress’ because it’s a ‘dream too far away’ and I am disabled to have a talent… but I went to Brit School and now I’m going to University to become an actress

What is your message to other Deaf people, in particular, Deaf women who want to pursue a career in performance, acting, singing and dancing?

‘I chose to ignore those people who said I couldn’t do it, and look where I am now’

‘Be confident in yourself and say I AM ENOUGH when you are in doubt’

‘Being Deaf does not affect your ability to showcase your talent, being Deaf is an additional bonus to your talent’

Can you give some future changes that you want to see in performance, music, dancing and acting for Deaf people?

Obviously, more BSL integrated and captioned shows and I want to see more Deaf musicians

Most importantly, when there is a Deaf role in a movie, play or whatever, there should be a Deaf actor playing that role. When a hearing character plays a Deaf person, it’s an insult to the Deaf community, and that hearing person is acting out and pretending what it is like to be a Deaf person just because they ‘studied Deaf people’ and learned sign language’

Deaf role = Deaf actor.

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I am deaf, obviously. I am passionate about deaf rights and want to raise awareness on the issues that deaf people face on a daily basis while bringing in my own personal experiences as a deaf person in a deaf and hearing world....

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