Announcing our LIVES IN SIGN LANGUAGE tour

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D/deaf stories, on screen. We present our next touring shorts programme tailored to Deaf and HoH audiences, fully supported with BSL and subtitles.

London, we love you, but our feet got itchy. We’re very pleased to announce we’re headed nationwide with a programme close to our hearts. This January saw our first screening of shorts exclusively for Deaf and Hard of Hearing audiences, Lives In Sign Language. Now, with the support of the BFI awarding funds from The National Lottery, we’re taking the programme on tour - from Lewes to Lancaster, by way of Glasgow, Derby and Sheffield.

Curated by LSFF’s young Deaf programmer Zoë McWhinney, we present a fresh selection of contemporary short films foregrounding the richness of D/deaf culture and reality of the D/deaf experience. Helmed by this year’s Academy Award-winning Best Short, The Silent Child, the programme spans genres, refuting tired tropes to tell D/deaf stories outside of convention - from the surrealist comedy of Max Clendaniel’s Nonsense to bite-sized dystopian conspiracy, Samuel Ash’s Imagine; a romance of stolen glances in Lina Jakobi’s Deaf to Young Deaffest’s Best Short of 2015, Ian Bustard’s reinterpretation of Romeo & Juliet, A Love Divided.

*”I chose the title Lives In Sign Language because these films are about D/deaf and signing characters. Not everything we do is ‘fighting’ or ‘struggling.’ This is a chance to see ourselves on screen, as flawed human beings and people just living - “doing life” - in and through BSL. It’s filled with stories depicting young love, horror, suspense and a little light comedy.”* - *Zoë McWhinney**

At LSFF, we’re committed to platforming both the eclectic stories and storytelling of the D/deaf community on screen, in a space inclusive of all but tailored specifically to the needs of D/deaf cinema-goers. All films will include BSL dialogue and/or subtitles, and additional BSL support where necessary, and the programme will be introduced on screen by programmer Zoë McWhinney.


9 April - Showroom Workstation, Sheffield Tickets.

14 April - The Dukes, Lancaster Tickets.

16 April - The Depot, Lewes Tickets.

25 April - Glasgow Film Theatre Tickets.

12th May - Derby QUAD Tickets.


Nonsense, Max Clendaniel, 10’ (UK)
BSL and English/HoH subtitles Surreal comedy. Born without the ability of sight, sound, smell, touch or taste, Gene has become afraid of the world. But when he finds an experimental kit that will give him human senses for the first time, the only thing he needs to worry about is his selfish roommate, Richard.

The Silent Child, Chris Overton, 20’ (UK)
BSL and English subtitles, with additional BSL support Drama. Centring on a profoundly Deaf four year old girl, Libby, who is born into a middle class family and lives in a world of silence until a caring social worker teaches her the gift of communication. Winner of the 2018 Academy Award for Best Short Film.

My House, William Horsefield, 8’ (UK)
BSL Horror. This short film follows a female student who moves into an old student house. Immediately, she notices some strange things happening in the house. Will student living ever be the same again?

Imagine, Samuel Ash, 5’ (UK)
BSL, English/HoH subtitles Sci fi. Two friends wonder what it would be like to be the last man on Earth. Then a mysterious thing happens in the world. The main protagonist is sitting alone when there is a knock on the door. But is everything real?

Deaf, Lina Jakobi, 5’
English/HoH subtitles Romance. Stolen glances and a crush from a far develop into the start of something special.

A Love Divided, Ian Bustard, 24’ (UK)
English/HoH subtitles Romance. Loosely based on the story of Romeo & Juliet, a beautiful haunting silent film of the story of two young people from different sides of the river who will not let their differences, or their friends, keep them apart. Winner of Best Film at Young Deaffest 2015.

Dawn of the Deaf, Rob Savage, 12’
BSL, English subtitles Horror. When a strange sound infects the hearing population, a small group of Deaf people must band together to survive. Officially selected at Sundance, LFF, Fright Fest, Encounters, Glasgow Short Film Festival, LSFF and more.

Recommended 15 rating