Jessie Ware demands the use of wearable technology that enables hard-of-hearing and deaf people to experience live music just like any other fan at every venue.
At the Mighty Hoopla festival in London’s Brockwell Park, party-goers were the first ones to get a chance to enjoy the singer-songwriter Ware’s concert earlier this month using the 5G-enabled haptic harness.
This Vodafone-produced technology lets fans feel the music through vibrations that give a multi-sensory experience by delivering through 24 touch points around the harness.
Here’s a clip from Ware’s concert where people can be seen enjoying the show:
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The 37-year-old singer will be taking The Park stage at Glastonbury next weekend. While speaking to the PA news agency, she said the possibilities were “endless” and she was “excited for the future.”
Regarding the first trial she said:
“I was very, very honored to be a part of that and for that to be happening. For me, it’s really important that my shows can be as inclusive as possible.”
She added: “And for deaf and hard-of-hearing people who have felt isolated with their experience of live music, I think the special thing about these suits is that not only are you being able to feel the vibrations of the music, but you’re also feeling the vibrations of the audience.”
She also said:
“Therefore you are fully immersed in the festival – and that’s what festivals are about, togetherness. And music is about that too, and being together and experiencing this moment together.”
— Mighty Hoopla (@mightyhoopla) June 4, 2022
“For those two to be able to communicate together for deaf and hard of hearing people, I think that was what seemed even more special about this, from what I gather for them. It was just really exciting and I loved being a part of it.”
Deaf or hard-of-hearing fans who attend music festivals have to depend on lip-reading and vibrations from the speakers to be able to enjoy the music, however, this 5G technology will help them be more connected to the performing artists.
Vodafone joined hands with Music Not Impossible so that the harnesses can come into being. They combined their company’s haptic technology with Vodafone’s low-latency 5G network. Ware believes the technology can be introduced to the whole music industry.
“It’s great and it’s really big steps. The next step is now for these to be available in every kind of venue. I don’t know how that can work out but that will be the next step so that it can continue and they are included.”
There are approximately 600,000 people deaf in the USA (Source: gallaudet.edu), and as of 2020, 11 million people in the UK are deaf (Source: gov.uk). In case you’re wondering, deaf people are capable of “hearing” music as the part of the brain used for hearing produces vibrations through which they can feel the music literally.
Considering such numbers, we highly appreciate Jessie Ware going the extra mile to care for her fans and share her sentiments that such a technology should be used at concert venues more often.
Let us know your thoughts about Ware’s considerate act in the comment section below.