Category Archives: ASL

Breaking Down Barriers for Deaf Access at Music Venues

14700743_10209553582429225_2822563061803083390_oKimberly Jack and Michelle Crane are two Deaf Portlanders who share a love of the diverse music and concert scene in Portland, Oregon. They planned to see a concert in October 2016 with their friend Helen Ebey, so Michelle asked the manager at Doug Fir Lounge to provide a sign language interpreter. To their dismay, Doug Fir Lounge told Michelle’s group that they couldn’t afford interpreters and that having them would be “distracting” for concert-goers. Many venues and bands are not aware of the need to provide equal access to music. They don’t know about resources to interpreting services, or stipulations related to the Americans with Disabilities Act (ADA) that may apply to them. The promoter for the band “Stone In Love” also declined the request for an interpreter.

Jack and Crane went on FaceBook and Twitter to protest the decision to deny them service. They also contacted Myles de Bastion at CymaSpace, an up-and-coming non-profit that aims to improve accessibility to the arts for patrons who are deaf or hard of hearing. In addition to creating cutting-edge sound-reactive displays, CymaSpace has identified the need to advocate for the deaf and hard of hearing community by educating performance venues about the ADA so they can provide equal access to their concerts.

de Bastion consulted with the Oregon Association of the Deaf, a leading northwest Deaf advocacy group, for guidance. He contacted the Doug Fir Lounge organizer and explained about the needs of Deaf and hard of hearing patrons. The band and the staff then understood about the ADA as well as the benefits of supporting all types of concertgoers. In a move to provide equal access to all their fans, the concert promoter hired two local interpreters, Amanda Hays and Jamie Antonick, on de Bastion’s recommendation.

Even though the interpreters had only a week to prepare for this sold-out Stone in Love “Journey” performance, they successfully were able to interpret and provide access for Jack, Crane and Ebey. Jack and Crane were pleased with the results and were grateful for de Bastion’s and CymaSpace’s intervention on their behalf. “Jason (the band promoter) met up with us before and after the concert which was very cool of him to do. He was excited to see just how much it added to their show,” Crane said.

The interpreter presence at the concert helped to spread awareness of American Sign Language and the deaf and hard of hearing community. Concert goers learned that even Deaf and hard of hearing people love music and want to be included in entertainment events.



Thanks are extended to J-Fell Productions, the Doug Fir Lounge, interpreters Amanda Hays and Jamie Antonick, Deaf Advocates Tammy Richards and Bethany DonGiovanni, and the Oregon Association for the Deaf for this successful outcome. As a result of the preceding events and positive feedback, the event coordinator has already reserved four interpreters for the next Stone in Love “Journey” concert, which will be held at the at the McMenamins Crystal Ballroom (1332 W. Burnside, Portland OR) on January 28th.



Article Author: Anne Gray Liversidge
Photography: Fotorazzo Photography, David M. Smith

ASL Hideaway receives attention and critical acclaim from Kiesza herself.

ASL Hideaway was seen by Kiesza and got their seal of approval when she tweeted, “Wow, this is amazing.” to her followers.

If you have not seen the video yet, you can watch it here. Share with anyone who would enjoy watching too!

CymaSpace is committed to facilitating projects that showcase #Deaftalent and the positive perspectives of Deaf culture.

ASL Hideaway Press Release

Check out this stunning ASL Dance video from Cymaspace featuring a cast of amazing #‎DeafTalent in this addictive rendition of Kiesza’s run-away hit Hideaway, made accessible for the Deaf & Hard-of-Hearing. Choreographed by Scott Selby of 2 Deaf Feet Dance Collective, for many of the cast, you’d never believe it was their first time learning how to dance! Filmed in Portland, Oregon 2016 and produced by Red Lab Films with support by Portland Community Media and Portland’s vibrant ASL community, the end result is a visually poetic story of intimacy, friendship and love. For more information about this Hideaway project go to #‎ASLHideAway #‎accessiblearts #‎deafcan #‎ASLDance

Copyright 2016 CymaSpace, Red Lab Films & 2 Deaf Feat Dance Collective.

We do not reserve the rights of the music “Hideaway” by Keisza (…/album/hideaway-single/id808750149)

Check out more amazing work by the team behind #ASLHideAway:




CymaSpace seeks part-time event coordinator.

Performing Arts nonprofit seeks event coordinator.

CymaSpace, a young but fast growing non-profit based in SE Portland is looking to hire a paid part-time freelance event coordinator.

Our mission is to make performing arts more accessible & inclusive to the Deaf & Hard of Hearing through Technology, Education & Outreach. Take a moment to learn more about our work and mission at

If you have experience managing and coordinating arts/community/nonprofit events, and the idea of working with the cutting-edge intersection of arts, accessibility and technology in an inclusive, Deaf-friendly environment excites you, stop what you are doing and contact us!

Key responsibilities

  • Work with Board of Directors to familiarize self with mission and needs of the Deaf community
  • Work directly with Board President to coordinate a monthly Arts & Accessibility showcase event.
  • Act as main liason and point of contact for performers, ASL interpreters, engineers and event staff.
  • Create planning documents, run sheets, stage riders and staff/volunteer shifts
  • Coordinate with digital/print designers to create promotion materials.
  • Update wordpress-based website, create Facebook events and set-up event ticketing via Brown Paper Tickets.


    • Interest in nonprofit and charity work (especially in the arts and/or Deaf community).
    • Able to commit to working on-site on Sundays, 2-3 times a month
    • Available to coordinate activities during each monthly event (6-8 hour shift)
    • Outstanding English Reading/Writing abilities.
    • Excellent project management, communication, organization and time-keeping skills (Managing grants and projects in Google Documents/Spreadsheets and keeping track of hours worked).


Priority given to candidates demonstrating:

  • Keen interest in accessibility and technology
  • Fluency in ASL (American Sign Language) & familiarity with Deaf Culture.
  • Pro-active support of local arts and culture in Portland, OR.

To apply

Send your resume, a brief introduction about why you would be a suitable candidate along with samples of prior marketing work to .

Arts & Accessibility Showcase Gala 2016 Video now live!

Arts & Accessibility Showcase Gala 2016 Video now live!
Video is in ASL & with English Closed Captions (click the “CC” icon). Thank you to all the amazing supporters and the team behind CymaSpace who made this video possible!
More event information available on the Arts & Accessibility Showcase Gala event page.


Kaylee Rob – Rock for you (Buy Track)

Arts & Accessibility Showcase Gala 2016 Promotional Video

Special CymaSpace discount to ASL Interpreted Performance of Overview Effect

CymaSpace is pleased to partner with Portland Center Stage and Tylor Neist by offering discounted tickets to an ASL interpreted matinee multi-sensory performance of Overview Effect. Guests can expect an exciting fusion of voice narration (made accessible through ASL interpretation), NASA footage, electronic soundscapes and sound-reactive theatre magic and backed by the Bridgetown Orchestra.

Portland Center Stage / Ellyn Bye Studio
128 NW 11th Ave, Portland

Thursday, April 21, 2016 from 2:00 PM to 3:00 PM (PDT)

Purchase Tickets
Discounted Tickets for CymaSpace Patrons.

Overview Effect by Portland composer and musician Tylor Neist takes us on an immersive theatrical and musical journey through the cosmos to explore the link between our inner and outer worlds. This innovative, hour-long performance is a perfectly distilled and seamlessly interwoven capsule of art and information that inspires self-reflection.

“Tylor Neist’s dramatic chamber-ensemble score controls the tone of the evening marvelously”
– Marty Hughley, The Oregonian

Neist’s gorgeous and mesmerizing musical score combines with breathtaking Hubble Telescope projections and historic Apollo footage to glorious affect. Further powered by live orchestra, electronic soundscapes, spoken word, theater magic, Portland Center Stage’s intimate Ellyn Bye Studio will come alive with possibility.

To receive your discount to the ASL interpreted performance, please follow the special eventbrite link to purchase tickets at $20 (full price $45), up to 1 hour before the show begins at 2pm, Thursday 21st 2016.