The Jakarta Post
To promote positivity and raise awareness about discrimination faced by people with disabilities during these turbulent times, the True Colors Festival has created an online music video with appearances from multiple artists with disabilities.
Initiated by the Tokyo-based non-profit organization Nippon Foundation, the project takes the form of a four-minute music video, in which 46 artists with disabilities from 15 countries or areas perform an updated rendition of Ben E.King’s "Stand By Me".
The music video showcases acapella, rap, jazz, classical, ballet and breakdance -- reflecting the diverse musicians involved in the project. Among the contributing artists includes rapper Signmark from Finland, who was the first deaf artist in the world to be signed to a major record label; Sparsh Shah, a 17-year-old performance art wunderkind from America; and Yusuke Anazawa, a blind virtuoso jazz violinist from Japan.
The performance itself is translated into sign language by Amber Galloway Gallego, who specializes in interpreting concerts and music festivals into sign language.
The project aims to raise awareness about people with disabilities and also amplify the voices of artists with disabilities across different nations.
“As societies everywhere envision life post-COVID-19, the global community of people with disabilities must be factored in, right from the ‘reset’. We can build a world in which everyone’s needs are catered to and no one is left behind," said the foundation's executive director Ichiro Kabasawa in a statement.
According to the United Nations, 15 percent of the world’s population, or more than 1 billion people, have some form of disability. (cal/kes)
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