Juan Jaramillo was a former Child and Youth Advocate with the Ontario Advocate’s Office for Children & Youth for 9 years. He has managed the intake of calls regarding discrimination and rights violation complaints from children, youth, and families seeking help. He was responsible for providing consultation within the Provincial Schools for the Deaf-Blind and the Demonstration schools, disability learning program.
He was born in South America, Colombia, and he became deaf at birth. He moved to Canada at a very young age and grew up surrounded by Spanish music and learned the dance moves. His most popular performances were ASL versions of the song, “Rock Around The Clock” from the era of the 1950’s. Juan learned ASL dance choreography while a student at Gallaudet University and joined the Dance company. He co-founded Dancing Hands 1992, a group of deaf performance artists and toured for 22 years.
He specialized in ASL song Interpretation, actor, and ASL consultation for the theatre/films. One of his highlights was performing both the Canadian and American National Anthems. He has done this for the Blue Jays games in Toronto Skydome, the NHL 100 Centennial Winter Classic games in both Toronto and Ottawa 2017/2018.
He appeared in a short film called, “Toward You” as a supporting actor. This film received the MENA Film Festival’s audiences 1st Choice Awards in the short film category. He appeared in Season 2 of the CBC documentary TV series “YOU CAN’T ASK THAT.” He has also been involved in various theatre festivals, the Sound Off Deaf Theatre,, MAP Short Play (Chicago), Toronto Fringe and the Abilities Arts Festival and more.
MAP, Deaf Short Play Festival 2021, won the Judge’s Top 4 pick. His script is about Deaf people’s life experiences through their eyes. He has been selected for continued support and development of one of his scripts ” But the Truth Is”. He was invited to participate at the NTID Department of Performing Arts and will be hosting a Deaf Play Creators Festival in February 2022 in Rochester, New York.
He loves putting on a great show and providing accessible art & entertainment for everyone.
[Image description: Portrait of Juan smiling at the camera in front of a blue background, wearing black glasses and a black tee with an open white collared shirt over top.]