Deaf comedian performs at WCU

 

Knock Knock? Who’s there? Orange. Orange who? Orange you going to get to read this review about the awesome CJ Jones?  Well maybe that wasn’t the best of jokes, but the performance of CJ Jones was anything but a joke.
            On Tuesday, March 9CJ Jones graced the UC Grandroom at 8 p.m. for a Comedy Show. This one-man show was a mix of sign language and regular speech into one show. Did I forget to say that he is deaf?
            You wouldn’t have noticed from his performance.
            CJ Jones is one busy man taking on roles such as CEO, producer, director, writer, actor, comedian, musician, and motivational speaker—just to name a couple things.
            It almost makes you wonder how he found time to visit little old Cullowhee. Mr. Jones, back in May of 2004 performed at the award-winning Deaf West Theatre in North Hollywood, California.
            A solo play “What are you … Deaf?”  was written and started by Jones himself. He has also appeared on t.v. shows “Frasier”, “Lincoln Heights”, “Sesame Street”, “Cold Case”, and he also did a voice over part in 20th Century Fox’s movie “Pathfinder”.
            Everyone during the show enjoyed himself or herself while catching on to some of the sign language during his performance. As he was speaking he would also sign the words being said. He not only put on a show, but the audience was able to get involved. He picked four audience members to come on stage and play a little game of telephone. But instead of whispering, this game was all body language.
            One thing Mr. Jones said about learning sign language is that it’s all about your body language too.
            “Use your body language, not your hands in your pocket,” Jones exclaimed.
            Some topics in the show ranged from his first day of school and growing up in a deaf family to a safari trip and trip to Japan. One joke I remember clearly was when he was driving and someone is honking his horn at him repeatedly. The guy gets up beside him and yells at him, “What are you DEAF!” Mr. Jones, slightly confused about the guy, sped right back up to him and said, ” What are you? Hearing?”
            Mr. Jones talked about when he was growing up being able to hear while both of his parents were deaf. One year he became very ill and lost his hearing. He told us that instead of his parents being sadden by the event they were more than happy to have him alive and well.
            His love for music also shined through the show. He brought out a five-gallon bucket and two drumsticks and began to play them.
The show was sponsored by the iSign American Sign Language Club. The club has some other events coming up like “Learn to Sign” week, which is April 5-9. That whole week will consist of American Sign Language classes.
A performance of songs and poetry in sign language called “Random Acts of Sign” will be coming soon. Along with “Deaf Art”, a movie involving Deaf awareness, information tables in the UC, sign languages of different cultures and so much more!    During “Learn to Sign” week there will be opportunities for people make donations as they will be collecting money for two graduating students at the North Carolina School for the Deaf.
If you would like more information on the group, they have a Facebook page, just search “iSign Founder” to find it. CJ Jones also has a website where you can look up more information about him at www.cjjoneslive.com.

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