UM’s Hand Band Performs Mashup of Holiday Tunes (with Video)

You've gotta "hand" it to this bunch: They know how to put you in the holiday spirit.

The University of Mississippi’s Hand Band sings and signs a few Christmas favorites at the Pavilion. Photo by Kevin Bain/University Communications Photography

Dozens of Ole Miss Hand Band members drew a crowd of spectators recently as they performed holiday hits outside the Pavilion using a combination of music, choreography and American Sign Language.

The Ole Miss Hand Band is a group of students from Ole Miss with a passion for sign language. Learning sign language to songs is a practical but fun approach to acquire sign language skills. Not only must everyday vocabulary be learned for these songs, but fluency skills are also gained immediately. The songs do not slow down the pace in order to accommodate the beginning signer. The signer is immediately forced to increase the rate and fluency of his or her expressive signing.

Photo by Kevin Bain/University Communications Photography

The Hand Band also takes its show on the road. The members learn several different songs each semester and perform at various events, such as banquets, conferences, football games and local assisted living facilities.

Anyone can join Hand Band at any time. New songs are continually being taught, and new members are joining with each performance. Interested participants do not need to know sign language to join. Those interested in joining the Hand Band or having them perform at an event can contact Rebecca Lowe or Ronda Bryan at the University of Mississippi Speech and Hearing Center by phone at (662) 915-7271 or e-mail at csd@olemiss.edu.

Watch a video of yesterday’s Hand Band performance below:

Photos by Ole Miss Communications/Kevin Bain; Video by School of Applied Sciences/Sarah Sapp

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