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Wednesday, July 24, 2024
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Camelot will hit all the right notes, including for the deaf and the hearing impaired

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Left to right: Anthony McCarthy, Jeanelle Richards, Emma O’Shea, Jeremy Ambrose, Meg Griffin, Monica Bautista and Ibrahim Zurita who form the Camelot Production Team at the Camelot Pre-Launch at the 1880 Hall, Surry Hills. PHOTO: Artes Christi

In a likely world first, the opening performance of Camelot this August at the Seymour Centre will now be Auslan interpreted for the deaf community as a special joint project of Auslan Stage Left, the Ephpheta Centre and Artes Christi.

This will be Artes Christi’s first ever Auslan interpreted performance but it will also most likely be the first performance of Camelot ever interpreted in Auslan in Australia – possibly in the world.

“Since our foundation in 2005, Artes Christi has never before hosted an Auslan interpreted performance so this is truly unique for us,” explained Artes Christi President and producer of Camelot Anthony McCarthy.

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“Artes Christi has been delighted to be raising money and awareness for the Ephpheta Centre this year through our Handel’s Messiah CD. And for Camelot and this very special outreach to the deaf community, with the interpreting of Camelot, it is a most appropriate way to take our collaboration to the next level.”

A much loved but only rarely performed musical, Camelot stars a cast and orchestra of 75 including acclaimed stage and TV actor Donald Macdonald as Merlyn and this new production will be one of the largest versions of the musical staged in Sydney in the last 30 years.

Designated seats as well as a special ticket offer will be made available to Ephpheta, Auslan Stage Left and the Deaf community in general as well as for students and teachers of Auslan with the full details available at

David Parker, the Manager of Community at the Ephpheta Centre – added, “ We are very excited about being involved in promoting this interpreted performance of Camelot and we are sure that many people in the deaf community will be keen to come along. Much of what we do at Ephpheta is about ensuring quality access to the deaf community who use Auslan (Australian Sign Language).”

“Having this performance also comes at a special time for our community. This Sunday 6 August we are celebrating Ephpheta Sunday with Mass and a special community lunch. This is an annual celebration in the life of the Church where we celebrate the richness of the gifts which deaf people, their language and community bring to the Church.”

Ephpheta is the Aramaic word for “be open” and is a reference to St Mark’s Gospel (7:31-37) where Jesus opened the ears of the deaf man.

Ephpheta Sunday is the annual celebration of the deaf community when the Gospel reading in the Sunday Mass is the story of the encounter of Jesus and the deaf man.

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