Tuesday, April 1, 2008

New blog post from Marlee Matlin about DWTS, her work in Mexico

This came from Marlee Matlin's MySpace page March 30, but I was tipped to it by an L Word blog (Just to give credit where credit is due. :-)

"My apologies for not blogging for a while. This little show called 'Dancing With the Stars' has me bit occupied. :o)

Wow, I can’t believe all the letters and notes I’ve received here on MySpace from all of you. I’m very humbled and honored that you’ve been watching and voting. I’m also pleased to know that some of you have taken up sign language because you might have seen one of my movies or TV shows. All I can say is 'you go!' I’m so proud of all of you and hope that I can stay around long enough on the show to make you proud.

This week has been very tough, rehearsal-wise. On Tuesday night we got our music and our dance. It’s the Jive but it’s all I can say for now. (I’ll have Jack post the song we’re dancing to after tomorrow nights performance!). Instead of 3 weeks to learn 2 dances like I did with the Cha Cha and the Quick Step, I had only 4 days to learn the Jive! GAAA! It was rehearse, rehearse, rehearse for 3 days non stop it seemed until I learned the steps and then we started practicing to the music.

But all that rehearsal didn’t mean that my life stopped. On Friday, I joined up with one of my favorite people, Bill Austin, from the Starkey Foundation, and we flew LA to Guadalajara, Mexico to fit hundreds of children with their first hearing aids. Every year, Starkey sponsors hundreds of missions all over the world, giving out hearing aids to children and adults who might never had the opportunity to get hearing aids or who could never afford them. Their effort is called 'So The World May Hear,' and I was proud to have finally found the opportunity to join Bill on one of his missions.

And this time I took Fabian with me! Fabian was perfect because he’s fluent in Spanish and he was my interpreter with children and adults who didn’t speak English. We were both blown away from the smiles on the faces of the children and adults as they heard sounds for the first time. A lot of times, both of us were crying tears of joy along with some of the kids’ parents. It was an experience both of us will never forget and we vowed to each other that we would return soon.

Remember I said we had only four days to rehearse? As soon as we were done with the mission, Fabian and I snuck away to rehearse this week’s routine. It was awesome being able to find a stage and space in Guadalajara where we could dance and though we were a thousand miles away from home in a foreign country, the dancing made me feel as if I was home. That’s how much dancing has become a part of my life! Soon it was time to go home and we flew in just as Saturday turned to Sunday. We were tired but so happy to have been part of a very important day for hundreds of Mexican children and adults and both of us felt truly blessed we were able to lend a hand in some small way.

I can’t explain how excited (and anxious) I am for all of you to see our Jive tomorrow night. I hope we are deserving of your votes. Don’t forget the number is still the same. It’s 800 868 3412.

Ok, it’s back to rehearsal now!