HEAR the Runway
In 2016, the Croydon Partnership (the partnership between Westfield UK and Hammerson to redevelop Croydon’s retail centre) awarded a £2,000 grant through the Youth Opportunity Grant Fund to Culturia.
Culturia’s vision was to deliver ‘H.E.A.R The Runway’, the first national mainstream fashion runway show in the UK that D/deaf and hard of hearing individuals can participate in equally as artists; fashion models; fashion designers and performers, alongside hearing participants.
The event became a reality on 31 May, 2017 with the help of the Croydon’s Partnership grant supporting the cost of the fashion show.
The event was presented by Wayne Barrow, TV star from UK reality program, First Dates, who was very passionate about the cause as both his parents are deaf.
Some of the featured art and fashion:
- Andre Ferguson’s concept “Deaf Is Cool” which featured on printed t-shirts using illustrations of sign language
- Lucinda Mulholland’s “Embrace” collection was to change the image of hearing aids into an accessory.
- Alice Amponsah’s designs were inspired by the new generation in Africa
- Annalisa Atkinson’s men’s collection was inspired by the London underground iconic moquette fabric
Performances included a solo dance by deaf choreographer Chris Fonseca from famed Smirnoff advert “We’re Open” and a group performance with Lewisham Southwark college dance students. Miss Barbados UK 2017 performed a mime/sign language piece to “Trust” by Mariah Carey.
Technology was used to translate the spoken word and even music lyrics were translated into text on TV screens along the catwalk. A sign language translator was used to interpret all speeches.
Other sponsors of the event were River Island who donated their 2017 “Summer Time Is Here” collection and also included Speakers from the National Deaf Children’s Society.