One of the main problems for people with simultaneous hearing and visual impairments is the problem of communication. Apparently, seeing and hearing people are too little aware of the world of the deafblind, who, in their turn, are scarcely integrated into the society of seeing and hearing people, despite the fact that they live in the same country, city or even house.
The problem of communication is a universal issue, but for deafblind people, due to physical reasons, it is maximally aggravated.
'TOUCH-ABLES' is not just a stage production, but it is an attempt to establish a link between two worlds, to develop a communication strategy by practical consideration. On the stage both seeing and hearing people and deaf-blind heroes overcome fears, doubts, difficulties of mutual understanding. And overcoming of seemingly simple domestic problems (but difficult for the deafblind) allows to detect delicate emotional and sensual consonance with another person.
Deafblind characters of the performance belong to different generations, different social strata and different world views. Each character has their own unique language, so, they do not speak the neutralized interpreter's language. At that, a professor can talk about everyday horror and Lyosha Technician quietly narrates about his way from home to work. Skorokhodova Olga, the first Soviet deafblind woman scientist, has a special place among the characters. 'TOUCH-ABLES' is special not only because it tells stories of deafblind people, but also because deafblind heroes of stories testify about themselves on their own.
In the performance 'TOUCH-ABLES' the characters talk about mutual overcoming of broken contacts by overcoming physical ailment and loneliness, transforming it into love through the compromise with oneself and with others.
The work on the performance began in the middle of 2014. In October the sketch play was shown as part of the International Festival- School of Contemporary Art Territory. From this work a new idea has started up - to create art Laboratories on plastic, architecture, storytelling, music — which can help deafblind people to feel the beauty of the world of art, become creators and artists themselves. Thus the project 'TOUCH-ABLES' appeared as a social and cultural project for the integration of deafblind people into the culture, which includes the performance, Laboratories, the documentary film of 'Island studio' about deafblind people and the exhibition Touching Art which opened its doors to the public on April 28 at the Museum of Modern Art.
'TOUCH-ABLES' became an important creative milestone both for seeing and hearing actors, who experience such social theater work for the first time, and for the deafblind, because nobody paid attention to their problems for a long time.
After the premiere at the Theatre of Nations on April, 19-20 2015 the performance had a great success on other venues - Teatrium on Serpukhovka (Moscow), Meyerhold Center and on the New Stage of Alexandrinsky Theatre (St. Petersburg). In the nearest plans - performances on stage of Stanislavsky Electrotheatre. Also, the Deafblind Support Fund Con-nection has an intention to summarize the accumulated experience and transmit it into regions, where on the basis of regional theaters such creative groups and laboratories can work and help the deafblind to speak about themselves.