Provided by Hylton Performing Arts Center | Photos by Erika Spalding
On Saturday, July 22, a sensory- friendly performance of Prince William Little Theatre’s production of Oklahoma!, took place in the Gregory Family Theater. The performance was designed to create a performing arts experience that is welcoming to all people with autism or with other disabilities that create sensory sensitivities. Accommodations included lower sound and light levels, designated quiet areas, space for standing or moving about, and trained staff, among others. It was attended by 39 patrons.
This was the Hylton Center’s first sensory-friendly performance and it was made possible through support from Didlake. The venue had received questions from patrons and teachers regarding this type of opportunity, which made it clear that there was a need for it. Attendees were very pleased to have a space where “people can be who they are without judgment” (quote from a post-performance survey). The Hylton Center staff hopes to extend this program to future performances and to offer a diverse selection of shows.