Live Captioning at Pacific Northwest Ballet 2019-2020 Season

In News by ALDA News

We are happy to announce that there will be​ ​six ​Saturday matinees with Live Captioned events during the 2019-2020​ ​season​ ​of the Pacific Northwest Ballet (PNB). ​Plus, there will be​ ​four additional captioned student events.

The first ​event​ includes captioned​ pre- and post-performance talks for the matinee​ ​September 28, 2019, which is very soon. Please send this message to all who may be interested, individuals and groups.

As far as we know, the introduction of accessibility with live captioning for the Ballet is a national (if not international) “first.” The introduction of new and needed accessible systems always requires a lot of thought and coordination, and we commend PNB for their enthusiastic interest, support and planning..

Captioning is the immediate display of all spoken words – projected from a captioning provider’s system to a screen near the stage for all to see. Many are familiar with opera texts displayed at the stage, or subtitles on foreign films. Now spoken words about the ballet will also become accessible for so many with hearing loss or with other hearing or sensory differences.

Enjoyment of ballet is not confined to the visual beauty of the dancers during any performance. It is enhanced and deepened by learning more about the programs, choreography, work behind the scenes, the ballet company, and the dancers themselves. With live captioning, many more will have access to “hear” information by reading live text on a screen at the theater.

The PNB website is ​​. Click under “On Stage” to see each Program, the captioned Performance, and the captioned Ballet Talk​ ​and Meet the Artist (free events for performance ticketholders).

A captioned performance means that there will be live captioning ​of comments made to the audience by Artistic Director Peter Boal onstage before each ballet on the program. There are three of these: Saturday matinees on November. 9, March 14, and May 30. They are offered on the same days as the captioned Ballet Talk and Meet the Artist events.

A captioned Ballet Talk is a​ 30-minute pre-performance talk given by PNB Audience Education Manager Doug Fullington one hour before the performance. A captioned Meet the Artist event is a question-and-answer session with the dancers immediately following the performance. There are six of these during this season: Saturday matinees on Sep 28, Nov 9, Feb 1, Mar 14, Apr 11, May 30.

Support for live captioning is provided by a grant from the Collaborative for Communication Access via Captioning (​​), a non-profit that encourages inclusion and access with quality captioning of all spoken words wherever needed. One in five persons, all ages, on average, everywhere, has a hearing loss. Captioning serves millions of people with hearing differences, and many others who also use captioning to make the spoken word more accessible to them..

To summarize and with special thanks to Doug Fullington, Audience Education Manager and Assistant to Peter Boal, Pacific Northwest Ballet – ​“We are offering live captioning on the days of our six regular Saturday matinee performances during the season. All performance ticket holders may attend the pre- and post-performance events free of charge.

Ballet Talk is a 30-minute pre-show discussion that begins one hour before curtain and is held in the Nesholm Family Lecture Hall at McCaw Hall. ​​Meet the Artist is a post-show question-and-answer session held immediately following the performance in the Nesholm

Family Lecture Hall. The performance commentary will include remarks made by PNB Artistic Director Peter Boal from the stage before each ballet on the program.

Tickets may be purchased at the PNB website (​​), by calling the box office at 206-441-2424, or by visiting in person at 301 Mercer St., Seattle, WA 98102.

Saturday, September 28, 2 PM matinee – Carmina Burana + Agon
Saturday, November 9, 2 PM matinee – Locally Sourced
Saturday, February 1, 1 PM matinee – Cinderella
Saturday, March 14, 2 PM matinee – One Thousand Pieces
Saturday, April 11, 2 PM matinee – Giselle
Saturday, May 30, 2 PM matinee – Pite—Tharp—Liang” (September 17, 2019)