NMU Offers Sensory-Friendly Ballet Performance

Northern Michigan University’s Forest Roberts Theatre will present a modified performance of its world-premiere ballet East of the Sun, West of the Moon aimed at children and adults who are either on the autism spectrum or have sensory issues. The goal is to preserve the entertainment value of the show so families can enjoy it together while also creating a supportive environment. The performance is scheduled for 1 p.m. Saturday, Jan. 26. Free admission for those with sensory issues is made possible through private donor support.

“We are thrilled to be the first dance production that will be sensory-friendly," said Jill Grundstrom, director and choreographer. "The fact that we can incorporate live music and dance into that is amazing. We will have adjusted sound and spectacle elements that will not compromise the experience of the performance.”

Forest Roberts Theatre previously partnered with the Theatre Development Fund (TDF) in New York City to produce a “Theatre for All” performance of the musical Tarzan. TDF launched its Autism Theatre Initiative in 2011 and Disney’s most successful Broadway musical The Lion King was the first show to offer a sensory-friendly performance. Due to the success of the performance, the program has continued to make theatre shows accessible to children and adults on the autism spectrum. Other productions that have offered sensory-friendly performances include WickedMary PoppinsMatildaAladdin and Come from Away.

For more information, contact Grundstrom at jgrundst@nmu.edu.

Prepared By

Charlie Edwards
Student Writer

Categories: Arts and Culture