Taking your little one to see plays and musicals is a great way to show them a whole new world (sorry!), but you might fear that the experience might be bit overwhelming for your child.
Worry no more as Disney Theatrical Productions are working closely with The National Autistic Society, the UK’s leading charity for autistic people and their families, to deliver a more accessible show for those affected by autism.
The performance of Aladdin will take place at 1.30pm on Tuesday 28 August 2018. It follows the success of previous such performances which are designed to make the show more accessible for those affected by autism.
Nancy Shakerley, from the Disney Theatrical Group, said: “This performance is becoming one of the highlights of our year!”
“We we hope that this will be a more accessible and relaxed performance for people with autism, as well as their family and friends.”
An autism access specialist explained, “Autistic people and their families tell us that they would love to visit the theatre, but because of sensory issues and anxiety in unfamiliar surroundings, they are prevented from doing so.”
He is delighted that Disney’s Aladdin are working hard to give every child a chance to see this spectacular show. He said that “the production team have taken great care in adapting the show, including having a ‘visual story’ online which can help autistic people prepare for their visit in advance.”
Why would children with Autism benefit from a special show?
Although everyone on the autism spectrum is different, a common sign is oversensitivity to sounds, smells, light or colours, which can make everyday life extremely challenging. They can also find social situations and unexpected changes a challenge, which can sometimes lead to extreme levels of anxiety.
This dedicated Autism-Friendly Performance of Aladdin includes modifications to the performance and the theatre environment, including:
- The theatre’s foyer includes designated quiet and activity areas; staffed by experts in autism throughout the performance should anyone need to leave their seats.
- The reduction of jarring sounds or strobe lighting that face the audience.
- The cast of Aladdin along with Prince Edward Theatre box office and front of house staff have been given training to understand the needs of an audience made up of adults and children who are autistic.
- A specific website has been set up for this performance, with a downloadable ‘visual story’ to help people with autism understand the process of a visit to the theatre.
Audience members can find out more information and purchase tickets here. Tickets are sold at a specially reduced rate and can be selected on a virtual map of the auditorium.