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In First, Sesame Street Goes Sensory Friendly

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First it was the movies, then Broadway. Now, Sesame Street Live will do a performance designed to meet the special needs of those with autism and other disabilities.

The show Friday night at the Fox Theatre in Detroit will not be altered, but will feature several accommodations for the audience. Organizers say they are providing parents with production notes in advance so that kids can be prepared. What’s more, there will be quiet areas at the venue for anyone needing a break during the performance and extra space will be offered in the seating areas so that audience members can move around.

The performance of Sesame Street Live “Elmo Makes Music” will be the first to offer an autism-friendly experience, but those behind the show hope to do more, according to Tom Riopelle, Midwest regional director at Autism Speaks, who helped organize the event.

“Providing a place where families can feel comfortable in a public setting while experiencing such an iconic, educational performance is a wonderful opportunity,” Riopelle said. “We look forward to this being the first of many live productions of this nature.”

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Comments (8 Responses)

  1. annie says:

    wow this would be a great event to attend with my little guy. I’m appreciative of the growing interest in these kinds of activities.

  2. Laurie says:

    Sesame Street- always thinking of what’s best for the kids.

  3. Birdhouse For Autism says:

    The Birdhouse For Autism team is excited to be there tonight! What a wonderful way to make these experiences available to ALL Sesame Street fans!

  4. anonymous says:

    Great news Sesame Street, good to hear!

  5. Paula Meier says:

    Glad to see more of this kind of inclusive venue. It’s about time! My son didn’t have things like this available to him when he was young. Having autism and fragile x syndrome he still loves to dance and sing with Elmo at 12 and probably for many more years to come.

  6. Maria says:

    How wonderful! We left many theatre performances when our son was young due to sensory meltdown and the unexpected nature of shows. Knowing what is coming and a place to calm down is a great start! Lowering the sound levels and keeping the house lights at at least 50% would go a long way for many kids as well. Hope more shows follow the lead!

  7. KA101 says:

    I trust it was a worthwhile performance? Sensory-friendly shows are a good thing, so I hope that Sesame Street Live got this right and drew enough attendance to continue holding such shows.

  8. Peter says:

    My child and students thank you

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