The Theatre Royal is very proud to announce that we are the first UK Theatre to have been honoured with the Autism Access Award by the National Autistic Society.
‘Relaxed Performances’ are specifically designed to welcome people with an Autistic Spectrum Condition, learning disability or sensory and communication disorders into theatres to give those who otherwise might feel excluded the chance to experience live theatre. They have a less formal, more supportive atmosphere in order to reduce anxiety levels. It is a specialist provision created to provide an opportunity for people who would otherwise find it difficult to come to see a show – for example people who make involuntary noise, or are likely to need to talk a lot, or move around. During a regular performance this can disturb the other audience members, and the show, but at a relaxed performance it’s fine.
Lighting and special effects will be slightly altered - for example removing strobes and flashing lights and reducing very loud noises, however the content of the show will not be specifically changed.
The auditorium may possibly be quite noisy, with people coming in and out – our ushers are there to support and manage this behaviour, rather than stop it.
“Many disabled children and particularly those with autism are more sensitive to loud noises, flashing lights and generally too much unexpected stimulation. The pantomime can be an experience they long for but they can be freaked out so quickly by sudden sounds. By providing a relaxed performance these children and their families have the opportunity to enjoy the magic of pantomime without the anxiety of the unexpected. The Theatre Royal need to be congratulated on listening to the needs of this vulnerable group, I know the children will have a great time."
Helen Milner, Chief Executive, Northeast Special Needs Network
"The Theatre Royal has been pro-active in this their new venture and have already taken part in the Disability and Customer Service training delivered by service users at the Percy Hedley Foundation. The Theatre Royal have introduced a variety of adaptations which aim to reduce anxiety and ensure a safe and enjoyable live theatre experience for all. They have have invited groups from throughout the Percy Hedley Foundation with varied disabilities, including: autistism, sensory or communication difficulties or leaning disabilities to experience this innovative project. They will gather feedback from all which will help to continue to improve upon all aspects of the services they deliver. This is a great and innovative idea - well done Theatre Royal."
Christine Shanks, Employability Project Manager, The Percy Hedley Foundation
“I am absolutely delighted that Newcastle Theatre Royal are taking this step towards making the theatre an experience that can be enjoyed by more and more people including those on the autistic spectrum and those who have communication, learning or sensory needs. Going to a pantomime is an experience that many children and adults look forward to and enjoy during the winter season and this relaxed and supportive session should make it possible for even more to take part.”
Angela Slater, Equalities Coordinator at Time To Change
for the seating plan
For more information about the show, please click here
Tickets are priced at £9
Whilst we offer online booking, we do recommend you talk to our Group Sales Team as they can advise the best way to accommodate your party. Please call our Group Sales Team on 08448 11 21 22 (calls cost 7ppm plus your phone company’s access charge.)