A silent world to go on display

PUBLISHED : Monday, 01 November, 2010, 12:00am
UPDATED : Monday, 01 November, 2010, 12:00am

An exhibition will invite visitors to a world where, unlike the hurly-burly of the daily one, those with hearing must cling to the deaf to survive.

During a 75-minute guided tour, visitors will put on soundproof headphones so they will hear only their own heartbeat. Led by a hearing-impaired guide, they will complete tasks in groups.

Having been franchised to eight countries and visited by more than 160,000 people, the show will come to Hong Kong next year.

The exhibition, Dialogue in Silence, is aimed at inspiring people to rethink the relationship between communication and social barriers. It is part of the Make a Difference (MaD) Forum, which will run from January 21 to 23 at Kwai Tsing Theatre. The event targets those aged between 16 and 30.

The concept was initiated by German social entrepreneur Andreas Heinecke, who also designed Dialogue in the Dark, where visitors were led around a pitch-dark room by the blind.

'A reversal of role is created: hearing people are torn out of social routine and familiar perception. They discover their repertoire of non-verbal expression in order to communicate creatively through gestures and body language,' a spokesman said.

The event will feature talks and workshops by more than 20 change-makers from seven countries. They include Perry So Pak-hin, an assistant conductor of the Hong Kong Philharmonic Orchestra, and Casey Wilson, a co-founder and chief executive of Wokai, a microcredit company.

MaD will select 1,200 people from around the region to take part in the activities.

Also part of the event, the Social Enterprise Summit will take place on November 19 and 20. It will feature talks by seven young and innovative entrepreneurs, including Kelvin Cheung, who founded FoodCycle, which brings surplus food to the deprived in Britain.

To find out more, visit www.mad.asia.