Happenin’ hands: a preview


Hanna Dupre

Students watch and wait for their part as senior Kaiden Holley signs the lyrics to a song. The ASL students are working hard to prepare for their fall ASL show on Nov. 19 and 20.

Audrey Sun, Staff Writer

Every year, ASL students have the opportunity to show off their hard work by performing in their fall show: Happenin’ Hands. Like their other shows, ASL students in levels three and four entertain the crowd by signing pop songs and choreographing stories.

Happenin’ Hands is entirely student-produced and serves as an educational outlet for students to help further develop an understanding of the language. To prepare for the show, students work within groups, practicing inside and outside of class to translate songs into ASL poetry.

“To prepare, all the students bring in song ideas and audition them in front of a panel,” senior Lorraine Debbas said. “The judges featured on the panel include Mrs. Den, a Deaf ASL teacher who used to teach at Carlsbad High and Mrs. Large, the current ASL teacher. They are the people who choose whether our songs get cut or put into the show.”

Not only is this event a privilege for the upper level ASL students to preform in, but it also works to bring together the deaf and hearing communities of Carlsbad.

“We grow closer as a class and our show is a nice event to go to,” senior Riley Demarais said. “I think it’s important for kids who are hard of hearing and for people who know ASL to come and support.”

The ASL show displays the cultural significance of learning American Sign Language. With this, it promotes understanding and acceptance for the Deaf students on campus and in the community.

“There is a big Deaf community in San Diego that Mrs. Large invites to our shows,” Debbas said. “The signing and the ASL story we tell is our biggest priority and every year we get a good response from the community.”

This year’s production features an even larger ASL 4 class filled with experienced signers, making way for a show filled with a lot of energy.

“I’m looking forward to making so many memories with my friends,” Desmarais said. “This year’s show is going to be great.”