About Hands-In Entertainment
Since its inception, Hands-In Entertainment's mission has always been: Provide and train, highly qualified, creative, professional, and passionate interpreters that will improve and enhance the American Sign Language interpretation quality and availability in performing arts venues and large event spaces in New York State and its surrounding areas.
From Humble Beginnings
Upstate New York is home to one of the most vibrant Deaf Communities in the United States (and arguably the world). Upwards of 90,000 Deaf and Hard-of-Hearing people call this region home. Although this thriving community exists, a common complaint is the lack of qualified interpreting services.
In 2016, Hunter Ekberg, an avid performer and passionate ASL Interpreter, along with Chris Kelley, an immensely skilled and experienced ASL Interpreter, formed an interpreter colloquium centering around large event interpreting. After its establishment, the group experienced an expansion beyond the original foresight of the group's administration. In 2018, Hands-In Entertainment realized the need to incorporate into an official nonprofit to fulfill a larger goal of education and improvement of interpretation literacy among community members.
"...some of the best interpreters our Deaf audience had ever seen... Your patience and hard work with our little theatre program means the world to me, and it helps teach our kids what professionalism looks like."
- Megan Barbour (Aquinas Institute - Director)
What Sets Us Apart (And Ahead)
Hands-In Entertainment goes above and beyond service provision. We began in the community and we believe in getting the community involved. We list all events interpreted by Hands-In Entertainment*, making our website a "one-stop shop" for interpreted theatre and events round the Rochester area. To expand on the skill sets of performance interpreters, Hands-In Entertainment partners with local organizations to present specialty workshops and performances.
"...the first time [our Deaf patrons] were able to "hear" a musical and actually be able to enjoy it.."
- Jenn Ward (Greece Olympia - Producer)
Like most nonprofit organizations, we depend on you - the community - to maintain our operations. Your generosity helps with community outreach, advertisement, and so much more. All gifts are tax-deductible as Hands-In Entertainment is recognized as a 501(c)(3) charitable organization.
Even if you are unable to donate at this point in time, we hope to see you at an event in the community!
Qualified, Competent, Professional... Hands-In
* - In order to maintain the quality and competency of our interpreters which we pride ourselves on, Hands-In Entertainment does not list any production that is interpreted by an external vendor on our online database.