A Theatre Development Fund (TDF) spokesperson reports that the original London Theatre Tour for Patrons with Hearing Loss has been canceled and will be rescheduled when more venues are equipped to provide performances for the hearing impaired and deaf.
The original tour was scheduled to run March 24 - April 1, and would have been Theatre Access Project’s (TAP) second London theatre tour for patrons with hearing loss.
TDF has numerous programs in place to make theatre accessible and to bring young people into the theatre. Its special programs for the hard-of hearing and the deaf have helped people enjoy theatre for more than 20 years. In that time, TDF reports it has provided “access to theatre for tens of thousands of deaf and hard-of-hearing individuals through special open captioned and sign language interpreted performances of Broadway and Off-Broadway productions.”
In March 2000, TDF launched its first London tour for the hearing impaired. Presented in conjunction with the advocates for better communications/a.b.c. and the League for the Hard of Hearing, the TAP program presented “the first ever open captioned theatre performances in London.”
Originally scheduled as part of the 2001 trip were open-captioned performances of the Royal Shakespeare Company's production of Henry V, and another open captioned performance of a West End theatre production. The seven night, eight day tour was to have included “round trip airfare on British Air, seven nights at London's first-class Strand Palace Hotel (full English breakfast daily), Prokofiev's ballet Romeo and Juliet at the Royal Opera House in Covent Garden, backstage tours of the Globe and National Theatres and tours of Windsor Castle, Westminster Abbey, the Parliament and Big Ben.” For information visit www.tdf.org or call (212) 221 0885, ext. 257, fax (212) 768-1563 or e-mail firstname.lastname@example.org. TDF’s TTY number is (212) 719-4537.
— By Murdoch McBride