Unique signing musical Bad Elvis premieres at MediaCityUK

A stage performance of BBC Radio 4 play, Bad Elvis, will debut at the University of Salford’s MediaCityUK campus tomorrow (21st March).

What makes the production unique is that it’s a sign, dance and theatre musical based on the radio play. Performed by touring company, Signdance Collective International (SDCI), the aim is to make radio drama accessible to everyone, including the deaf community.

Written by Katie Hims, it will star SDCI’s artistic director, David Bower, who’s probably most recognisable as Hugh Grant’s deaf brother in Four Weddings and a Funeral.

“We have moved so far beyond sign interpretation that this sign dance music theatre production creates a whole new theatrical language,” he said.

Supported by Arts Council England, the production takes place in a surreal world set somewhere between a hotel lobby and function room. The audience will be part of it as guests at a wedding.

Prior to the play, there will be an audience-participation for a sign-karaoke, followed by a panel discussion on the visualisation of radio drama, with Sue Roberts, BBC editor audio drama and The Verb (Radio 3), who produced the radio play and is a director of this stage version; playwright Katie Hims; David Bower; and Paul Bonham, the diversity relationship manager, Arts Council England.

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