February 13, 1997 – Thursday – 8:45 a.m.

The show opened last night.  It was a good show.  I went out into the audience afterward and a little boy came up to me.  His hands were in front of him, moving rapidly.  I realized that he was deaf and he was asking me my name.

I spelled my name out with my hands, and then I asked him his.

C-A-R-L, he spelled back.

He was really deaf.  And he was talking to me.  He was beautiful.  He instantly became so happy because the star of the show was talking to him.  Then the other deaf children saw us talking and they all came up to me.  I signed my name for them too and then signed, “Thank you for coming.”

Then one boy came up to me and spelled his name out.  It was long and he signed it very fast.  Then he touched his chest rapidly, “That’s me!” he said.  And he was so happy because I knew his name, but he did it too fast.  I didn’t get it.  And that hurt me.

All of these little kids had never heard music before.  They were real.  They weren’t actors.

They were really deaf, and they wanted to talk to me, but I just memorized my lines and a bit of the basics of sign language.  I couldn’t keep up with them.

I went into my dressing room, looked in the mirror, and cried.

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