ASL Variety Show
For thirteen years, the ASL program has hosted one of the most unique highlights of the Ayala school year. The show was previously led by Joni Kerby but with her retirement, new teacher, Marina Williams, the ASL club officer board, along with the remainder of the students carry on the legacy.
This event is both a contribution to the Deaf community due to the whole show being performed in their own language and as a testament to the ASL level 4 honors students who have been preparing for this moment ever since they joined the program.
The following students were selected to become Showchairs for this year’s variety show and all happen to be seniors: Erin Chang, Anmol Walvekar, Belen Robles, and Carol Byuon. They were all in the previous levels 1, 2, and 3 Honors. Some of their inspirations for pursuing ASL specifically was that Anmol and Belen shared a fascination with an unspoken language and Carol sought to extend communication with those with disabilities. Throughout those years, they watched their predecessors perform in their own variety shows and soon enough, were elected to direct their own.
Carol Byun said, “ I love planning out songs and bringing them to life by acting out lyrics.”
Anmol W. found it the perfect opportunity to combine her interests, claiming, “I’ve alway held an interest for the visual and performing art and I really like interpreting the meaning of songs, so translating them into ASL was really fun.”
Erin Chang said, “ I’m a control freak and thought it would be fun because she loves having ideas and making them happen. Seeing the end result is always worth it.”
However, there are some difficulties that come with every title, especially one that is in charge of a whole class of seniors. Most of the showchairs agreed that “communication is hard” because “uniting the people” isn’t easy. Though, Erin Chang asserts, “making everyone happy isn’t the job. The job is to put on a great show.”
In fact, senior Vianney Rodriguez performs in nine songs throughout the show. Her favorites, she said, “ are Cruisin for a Bruisin from Teen Beach Movie because it’s fun to dance to and the Glee version of Cell Block Tango”. The show’s song program makes sure to include a variety of songs, pop songs like Lazy Song by Bruno Mars, sad love love songs like Like to Be You by Shawn Mendes, and so much more. One of the unique highlights in the show include a blacklight version of Bury A Friend by Billie Eilish.