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Captioning Awareness Week to include arts venues around the country

The charity Stagetext has coordinated the November campaign

Caption unit at Handbagged by Moira Buffini, Tricycle Theatre
© Jeremy Fowler

Arts venues around the country will take part in Captioning Awareness Week from 11 to 17 November 2019, it was announced yesterday.

The Captioning Awareness Week campaign will see theatres, museums and galleries holding captioned and live subtitled events to promote access and improve people's experiences within the arts.

Around 11 million – 1 in 5 – of the UK population are deaf, deafened or hard of hearing, yet fewer than 1% are fluent in British Sign Language.

Theatres in Sheffield, Bolton, Milton Keynes, Bristol, Wolverhampton, Southampton, Bradford, York, Watford, Aylesbury and Hull have all signed up to take part, as well as London venues including the National Theatre, the Royal Court, the Orange Tree Theatre, the Barbican Centre and the Almeida Theatre.

Shows in the West End, such as Noises Off, Come From Away, Mamma Mia!, A Day in the Death of Joe Egg and Groan Ups will provide captioned and live subtitled shows on selected performances across the week.

The charity Stagetext, which coordinates the campaign, says that arts venues need to do more to be inclusive to deaf and hard of hearing audiences. According to a report published in October 2019, only 19% of theatres list captioned performances on their websites and 26% fail to share any access information.

For more info on Captioning Awareness Week, visit stagetext.org