Deaf actress Nadia Nadarajah talks Midnight Movie at the Royal Court Theatre | Liam O’Dell [CC]


So my name is Nadia. I am an actor. My role? Well there is no clear role. There’s no name or character within the play. As an actor, I – myself, Nadia – am in the play, but it’s very interesting because there’s no names or characters, So as the audience, you need to work out who I am. So it’s really food for thought
for the audience to think about. Who am I? Who is my character? LIAM: Tell us more about the play, then. What’s it about and what makes it really
exciting to be involved in as an actor? NADIA: So it’s called Midnight Movie. It’s the name of the film, but the
film is within the internet world. And it’s not necessarily a real film, it’s a moment and experience throughout the night from midnight, and how you explore the Internet in
the early hours of the morning. So the character could be possibly
experiencing pain, and what’s their intention? Why are they in the world of the internet? What are they looking for, precisely? They’re kind of curious, exploring the world of the Internet and it’s almost like delving deep into the Internet And the character becomes the world of the Internet. LIAM: So you talk about it being involved in the online world, and the internet, and it seems to be also focusing A fair bit on disability as well,
with the access involved in the show. As a deaf person yourself, what’s been your experience of the online world and kind of navigating that as Someone who’s deaf and disabled? NADIA: So I feel that everybody within
the world has a disability, Whether that’s big or small. I can’t think of one person who is perfect in, you know, what that means. So everyone has some form of disability. You know, define what disability means. Myself, as a deaf person, I grew up.
My childhood was very much- I had a deaf family. I went to deaf schools, I went to deaf clubs, so very much mixed with the Deaf world within my life, But now my family live the other end of world. You know, I no longer go to school, that
was a long time ago. Deaf clubs are also closing, so
where do I go to have access? That has saved me, you know, the idea of the internet. But do I delve too deep into the internet?
You know, I have contact with my family with FaceTime, We Skype. Deaf clubs are closing down but also we have the idea of vlogs, as well, we have live streaming. You know, where do I meet my friends, for example? So I feel that the Internet- There is that idea of saving us, but also can it be too much? Can it be overwhelming, and it’s thinking about those boundaries and where you lie within that. And also what does it mean to you as a person? LIAM: And this play also looks at
something called “The Digital Body”, For those that maybe can’t go to the theatre, but also want to be involved in the show in a different way. Can you tell us a bit more about that,
and where that idea came from? Interesting question, actually, and it’s
been really exciting to explore. The idea of having the iPhone, a laptop, a radio… You know, wherever your body cannot go.
You can be in one place… So perhaps someone who can’t go to the theatre, but they really want to have access to that play. With our play, what it does, is there’s empathy there. So you become that person who can’t access all these different places. Maybe it works, maybe it doesn’t. It’s almost like, am I the same as that person?
What is the reason? What is the reason behind that? Why can’t I go there, that’s the question. So I think the play allows the audience to think about the digital body and how visual that may be. Who is the digital body? Who has a digital body? LIAM: Last question is this play has audio
description, subtitles, British Sign Language, There’s relaxed performances as well. What’s it been like as an actor in the rehearsal stages at the moment, working with all those different access Requirements or those access
provisions in the performance. What’s it been like working with all those things? NADIA: Obviously I have to think about as a deaf person, the script is in English, so I have to think about Translation and how perfect that translation will be. This play is fantastic because the language that’s used in the play and the script is very abstract, so then I have to translate that into English, and then I have to translate it back into British Sign Language. But actually, then you have to translate
it into FULL sign language. So you’re also thinking about abstract sign language and how that’s used on the stage. So I’m translating into four different modes, and forms, before I get to, you know, what I’m using on stage. With the captions, it’s thinking about the digital body. Are the captions the digital body? Or am I the digital body? Or is sign language the digital body? Or the person who is voicing, is that the digital body? And that’s the big question. So it’s thinking about access and the environment within the room and how is that set. It’s set in a bedroom, so who is the digital body? Is it the space? Is it the access to the digital body? Is it the voice? Is it the captions? Is it the audio description? It’s all those
elements that could be the digital body, So really, it’s allowing the audience to really figure out and be curious about who and what the digital body is, And what the access is. It’s been a very,
very unique rehearsal space that we’ve been in. [MUSIC: ‘Jessica’ – YouTube Audio Library] [MUSIC FADES]

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