If you’ve seen the ASL “Happy” video performed by the kids at Deaf Film Camp, then you’ve seen Rosa Lee Timm! Rosa Lee is an ASL performer, artist, actress and director—and now she is the star of her own live one-woman show, called the Rosa Lee Show.
Rosa Lee Timm was born deaf to a Deaf family. Since her whole family was deaf, her first language was American Sign Language. Her family and friends were very supportive of her, and she went a state school for the Deaf during high school. When she graduated, she went to the Rochester Institute of Technology. She earned a degree in social work at college, and she also discovered her love of acting while she was there. She even founded an acting troupe called Dangerous Signs!
After Rosa Lee Timm graduated, she worked as a social worker, helping other Deaf people find jobs. But she never lost her love of acting, and soon she started her own one-woman show. Rosa Lee says her love of acting comes from two things: acting made it easier for her make friends, and acting lets her express her emotions (how she feels). She says, “It was like therapy for me. To be able to get out my emotions, you know the way some people go to the gym and work out?”
Now Rosa Lee Timm’s one-woman variety show, The Rosa Lee Show, is on the road again! In her shows, Rosa Lee uses multimedia (like videos and music) and ASL to perform stories, poems and songs. She also uses videos to help tell the stories, and says that her shows are mostly comedies (funny). Even though her shows are meant for the Deaf community, hearing people can enjoy them, too. Rosa Lee produces the shows all her on own, which means she has to do more than perform in the shows—she also has to make sure everything goes well!
To read more about Rosa Lee Timm, and see some of her great ASL music videos, visit her website here!