Thursday, March 22, 2012

Interview with Sean Berdy, Star of ABC Family’s "Switched at Birth"

I recently had an opportunity to chat with actor Sean Berdy of ABC Family’s "Switched at Birth" that airs on Tuesdays at 8/7c!

Sean Berdy was born to perform and has never let his deafness get in the way of him following his passion for entertaining. His first stage as a young boy was his parents’ bed where he put on shows for delighted family and friends alongside his younger brother Tyler, who would handle DJ and lighting needs for the events.

Sean plays Emmett Bledsoe, Daphne’s sweet but protective best friend. His mother Melody (Marlee Matlin), is best friends with Daphne’s mother, Regina. Emmett is deaf and attends the Carlton School for the Deaf along with Daphne. He has a passion for photography and can be often found taking pictures or riding his motorcycle.

Sorcerer Radio: How has being on Switched at Birth changed you? Now you’re pretty well known.

S. Berdy: Well, being on Switched at Birth is a great honor because the show portrays authentic deaf characters, not the characters that we in the Deaf community have often seen in television. I’m born into the Deaf community, but raised in the hearing community as well; and, I think this show is unique in showing authentic deaf characters and authentic deaf perspectives from deaf characters. So, I think that is amazing and an honor to be a part of. The two girls on the show, Vanessa and Katie, they’re wonderful, aren’t they? I love them.

Sorcerer Radio: Have you felt like you’ve changed at all, though, from your newfound fame?

S. Berdy: No, I don’t feel that I’ve changed. I do feel that being successful in portraying a deaf character as realistically as a deaf person lives today is something that I’ve always wanted to do; and, I’m thrilled to be able to do it. But, it hasn’t changed me. I wouldn’t be well known if it wasn’t for the fans. But, certainly they wouldn’t love me if I changed and I’m always going to be Sean Berdy.

Sorcerer Radio: You have inspired a lot of people to want to learn sign language. What advice would you give someone who wants to learn ASL and how would they get started?

S. Berdy: I would love to give a little bit of advice because I have so many friends who are professors at universities and colleges all across the country who teach ASL classes. I’d strongly encourage anyone to look up their local university or college and see what ASL classes they provide. Usually, you start with ASL I and work your way up to ASL IV. Anytime you can interact with deaf people or the Deaf community, I would strongly encourage doing that.

I have seen an up swell of students in the ASL classes around the country and in my professor and educator friends out there are telling me it’s partially because of the show. So, that’s a thrill.

Read more of my Sorcerer Radio Network interview with Sean Berdy at HERE.

Learn more about ABC Family's original series "Switched at Birth" HERE.

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