A New Kind of Listening -- A NEW KIND OF LISTENING is the story of a visionary director, a one-of-a-kind theater group, and a young man who could not speak, yet found the voice he had been looking for all his life.
The film takes us inside the creative work of the Community Inclusive Theater Group as director Richard Reho inspires cast members, some with disabilities and unable to speak, to be writers, actors and dancers in an original collaborative performance piece. In the process, Chris Mueller-Medlicott, who has never spoken a word and has been mislabeled profoundly mentally retarded, breaks through into stunning self-expression. Together the theater group proves how a small community arts project has the power to transform lives.
A NEW KIND OF LISTENING is witness to Chris' early, unrecognized attempts to communicate and to his journey from a lonely withdrawn adolescent to his recognition as co-director of the theater group. Using intimate footage of rehearsals, synthesized voice recordings of Chris' words, archival home video, and interviews with cast members, the film is a remarkable record of events documented over the course of a year which culminate in the group's triumphant performance of 'The Song That Greens the Earth .
A NEW KIND OF LISTENING weaves together deep feeling, playfulness, vulnerability and unexpected loss into a joyful celebration of our connection to each other. The result is a groundbreaking film that will change your beliefs about intelligence, disability and what it takes to be heard.