‘Autism Friendly’ show featues Rockettes

Hobby Center to offer ‘Autism Friendly’ Show featuring Rockettes

The Hobby Center has announced it
will 
offer a special performance of the 

Radio City Christmas Spectacular 
starring the Rockettes on December 6 at 
10 a.m., in an autism spectrum-friendly
environment. Part of the Hobby 
Center
Foundation’s Autism Theatre Initiative,
this performance presents 
an ideal
opportunity to reach out to a traditionally
underserved community. 

    
This is the second autism-friendly 

production sponsored by the Foundation,
following a successful performance of
Disney’s The Lion King in 2012.
     

This year’s autism-friendly show will provide a welcoming and supportive environment for the audience.


With only slight modifications to the regular performance, the event will include educational materials for parents and children, quiet spaces and activity areas throughout the lobbies and assistance from a larger number of volunteers specifically trained in autism spectrum disorders. Families can also prepare ahead of time by reviewing the event’s Social Story available on the Hobby Center website at www.thehobbycenter.org/RCCSAutismFriendlyShow.

 

“Based on the overwhelming response to The Lion King autism-friendly production two years ago, we pledged to continue making the performing arts accessible to all populations, which is part of our mission,” says Fran Macferran, president and executive director of the Hobby Center for the Performing Arts. “We believe the Radio City Christmas Spectacular will be a highlight of the holiday season for Houstonians of all ages and backgrounds, including those in the autism community. I’m proud that our board had the vision to bring world-class entertainment to an underserved group of individuals who can benefit greatly from quality arts experiences.”

 

“The autism support community is thrilled that we have another chance to bring Broadway theater to Houston,” says Bryant Shaw, Ph.D., director of the Monarch Institute Diagnostic Clinic and an expert on Autism Spectrum Disorder. “After the huge success of The Lion King in 2012, we knew that the way was paved for many more performances. It is gratifying to be a part of making theater a reality to people with Autism Spectrum Disorder. Many of those who attend might never have had this opportunity if not for the efforts of Radio City and the Hobby Center.”

 

In 2012, an Advisory Committee made up of local medical, educational and parent advisors led the Hobby Center in the development and implementation of this program. The committee identified and reached out to the appropriate audiences, developed alternative activity and quiet areas during the performance and recruited trained volunteers. This template is being used for the second autism-friendly production.

  

The Hobby Center Foundation Autism Theatre Initiative independently raised all the funds to underwrite expenses related to the performance. Tickets for this show can be purchased on The Hobby Center website at www.thehobbycenter.org/RCCSAutismFriendlyShow. Discounted ticket prices range from $15.50 to $55.50. You can also call 713-315-2580 for more information.

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