Access & Inclusion
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Introduction

We welcome all visitors to Sydney Festival events and make every effort to ensure the program is accessible to our whole audience.

We would like to thank the members of the Sydney Festival Access and Inclusion Advisory Panel for their expert advice and advocacy:

Coral Arnold
Morwenna Collett
Riana Head-Toussaint
Julie Jones
Greg Killeen
Vanessa Lucas
Naomi Malone
Liz Martin
Paul Nunnari

Sydney Festival's Access and Inclusion program is brought to you in partnership with Radio 2RPH.

Radio 2RPH aims to inform, educate and entertain New South Wales’ listeners. The radio reading service features readings from the top daily newspapers, international and Australian magazines, and books for those with print disabilities, lack of access to published material or lifestyles that limit time for reading and remaining informed. The on-air programs, including book readings, are read and presented by volunteers and can be heard between 6:30am and 11:30pm each day on 1224AM, 100.5FM, and on digital.

2RPH

Accessible Festival Guide

The 2021 Sydney Festival Highlights Guide is available in the following alternative formats:


Vision

AUDIO DESCRIPTION

Trained audio describers provide live verbal descriptions of actions, costumes, scenery and other visual elements of the performance between gaps in the dialogue on stage via a discreet headset. Tactile tours allow patrons who are blind or have low vision and their companions to explore the set, props and costumes prior to the performance. Patrons must book the service in advance.

Explicit Contents
The edge of the body has disappeared; the environment has seeped inside and come to live amongst body parts; the nervous system feels far beyond the skin.
Campbelltown Arts Centre
9 January, 4.30pm. Tactile tour starts at 4pm

The Complication of Lyrebirds
The Complication of Lyrebirds is a contemporary dance work designed to break away from the social expectations of what it means to look or sound Aboriginal.
Campbelltown Arts Centre
23 January, 4.30pm. Tactile tour starts at 4pm

 AUDITORY CONTENT

Shows with this symbol indicate which shows are highly auditory and have low visual content, which can aid people who are blind or have low vision decide whether they can access a show.


SHOW PROGRAMS

Where applicable, show programs are available via the relevant event pages as an accessible Word document.

ASSISTANCE ANIMALS

Assistance animals are welcome at all Festival events and venues, bookings are essential. If you are blind or have low vision and want to attend an event at Sydney Festival, Guide Dogs NSW/ACT can provide you with free training on how to travel safely from any location to your event at the Festival. Call 1800 804 805 to discuss your travel needs.

Hearing

AUSLAN INTERPRETED PERFORMANCE

Auslan interpreted performances are for audiences who are Deaf and use Australian Sign Language (Auslan). Experienced Auslan theatre interpreters stand to the side of the stage and interpret dialogue and any text into Auslan, signing live. Audiences requiring this service are seated in the section closest to the interpreter to ensure good sightlines.


Explicit Contents
The edge of the body has disappeared; the environment has seeped inside and come to live amongst body parts; the nervous system feels far beyond the skin.
Campbelltown Arts Centre
9 January, 4.30pm.

The Rise and Fall of Saint George
Paul Mac and friends celebrate the queer community and pay homage to a musical legend
Barangaroo Reserve
15 January, 8pm.
Please choose seating in the RED section

Maureen: Harbinger of Death
A touching homage to an inter-generational friendship; celebrating the voice, wisdom and unapologetic passions of a dame who defied invisibility.
Seymour Centre
21 January, 7.30pm

Sunshine Super Girl
A celebration of tennis legend Evonne Goolagong’s inspiring story, told with signature dry Australian wit.
Sydney Town Hall
16 January, 7.30pm 

The Complication of Lyrebirds
The Complication of Lyrebirds is a contemporary dance work designed to break away from the social expectations of what it means to look or sound Aboriginal.
Campbelltown Arts Centre
23 January, 4.30pm.

To Cook Cook or Not
Details to follow
Sydney Town Hall
25 January, 6.30pm

The Vigil
The Vigil returns, offering an opportunity to gather together and experience a night of performance and reflection on the eve of Australia Day.
Barangaroo Reserve
25 January, 8pm

CAPTIONING

For people who are d/Deaf or hard of hearing, theatre captioning is an accurate text display of a theatre performance in its entirety, including actors’ dialogue, ad libs, song lyrics, musical descriptions and other sound effects. Displayed on screens at the side of the stage and/or via the GoTheatrical! mobile app.

Sunshine Super Girl
A celebration of tennis legend Evonne Goolagong’s inspiring story, told with signature dry Australian wit.
Sydney Town Hall
16 January, 2pm
Via GoTheatrical app only

Sex, Drugs and Pork Rolls*
Details to follow
Venue TBC
Dates TBC
*All performances are captioned


ASSISTIVE LISTENING

The Assistive Listening Systems symbol indicates which venues provide hearing augmentation and amplification. Ensure you inform us when booking so you can be seated in the relevant area of the theatre.

Assistive listening systems / hearing loops available at:
City Recital Hall
Riverside – all theatres
Ensemble Theatre
Seymour Centre – all theatres
State Theatre
Sydney Town Hall – Centennial Hall


VISUAL CONTENT

A guide for people who are Deaf or hard of hearing.


100% visual content. Contains no music or dialogue.

52 ACTIONS
Carol McGregor and Judy Watson 
Defying Empire: 3rd National Indigenous Art Triennial
Lindy Lee: Moon in a Dew Drop
Mariw Minaral (Spiritual Patterns)
Rooftop Projections
Space YZ
The Colour Line


75% visual content. Fully captioned or has minimal dialogue, some background music and/or sounds.

AutoCannibal
Fractures & Frequencies
Groundswell
H.M.S. Pinafore
Humans 2.0
Sex, Drugs & Pork Rolls
Spirit: A Retrospective 2021
The Pulse

Sensory Friendly

RELAXED

Designed for patrons with disability and their families or anyone who may benefit from a more relaxed environment (this may include people with a learning or physical disability, autistic spectrum condition or sensory sensitivities). Relaxed performances usually have slight modifications to sound and lighting, support aids and an open-door policy with a dedicated quiet area.

Explicit Contents
The edge of the body has disappeared; the environment has seeped inside and come to live amongst body parts; the nervous system feels far beyond the skin.
Campbelltown Arts Centre
9 January, 4.30pm.

The Complication of Lyrebirds
The Complication of Lyrebirds is a contemporary dance work designed to break away from the social expectations of what it means to look or sound Aboriginal.
Campbelltown Arts Centre
23 January, 4.30pm.

Mobility

Sydney Festival ensures that its venues are as physically accessible as possible.

WHEELCHAIR ACCESS

The wheelchair symbol indicates the venue/location is wheelchair accessible or has been made accessible for Sydney Festival. Designated wheelchair spaces (where available) will be sold at the lowest full price in the house for that performance. For access information on specific venues visit sydneyfestival.org.au/venues.

Booking

Bookings are essential for all accessible services.

To discuss your access requirements and to book the most appropriate seating for any access services or performances, please call Sydney Festival on 02 8248 6500 or email access@sydneyfestival.org.au. Sydney Festival is happy to receive phone calls via the National Relay Service. 

We encourage booking tickets prior to Friday 18 December 2020. Seats cannot be guaranteed after this date although we will always do our best to accommodate your request. All access performance tickets will be sold at the lowest full price in the house for that performance (excluding Carmen and Hedwig and the Angry Inch).

Bookings for Auslan interpreted and captioned performances can be made online by entering the promotional code SF21ACCESS during purchase


Companion Card

Sydney Festival supports the Companion Card program. Companion Card holders qualify for a second ticket at no cost for their companion. Please contact Sydney Festival directly on 02 8248 6500 to assist with your booking.

Get In Touch

Your feedback helps us continue to improve our access program and services. Please get in touch with us on 02 8248 6500 or access@sydneyfestival.org.au if you have any queries or suggestions regarding accessibility at Sydney Festival.

Disability Programming Initiative


What is the new pitching initiative for people with disability?

Sydney Festival is committed to increasing the representation of artists with disability in the annual program. We believe we build stronger communities when a diverse range of artists tell their stories to a diverse range of audiences. As such, in December 2018 we launched a collaboration with Accessible Arts to invite artists with disability or who are Deaf to pitch projects for inclusion in the #SYDFEST program.

We received over 40 fantastic submissions for the 2020 Festival which were reviewed by an advisory team* who gave their time and expertise to ensure the criteria was met by all submissions..

What are we looking for?

  • Sydney Festival programs free events, visual arts, music, theatre, dance, large public installations, online events and everything in between
  • We look for exemplary artistic and cultural endeavours that are adventurous, international best practice and have something new to say to the world
  • We look for a strong aesthetic language, demonstrable artistic/cultural skills and an articulate story to tell
  • Successful projects often have multiple partners to help fund and present the work and a clearly articulated target audience

Who is eligible to submit?

Anyone with disability is eligible to submit.

The Disability Inclusion Act 2014 (DIA) defines disability as: “The long-term physical, mental, intellectual or sensory impairment which in interaction with various barriers may hinder the full and effective participation in society on an equal basis with others.” 

The term ‘disability’ can also include people who are Deaf or hard of hearing. The Deaf community may not always identify as having disability or impairment and may define themselves as a culturally and linguistically diverse group due to their use of Auslan (Australian Sign Language).

  • Sydney Festival works with artists who have a track record of creating/performing works
  • Artists with disability and/or organisations working with/for people with disability are encouraged to submit a pitch. Groups submitting need to be disability-led. This means you must demonstrate that the artistic process within the group is led by artists with disability
  • Festival Director Wesley Enoch (aided by the Sydney Festival programming team) will make the final decision based on the balance of projects, budgets and distribution

What should the submission include?

Each pitch should be 2–3 pages long (or the equivalent) and include:

  • a 2–3 paragraph detailed description of the project
  • 1–2 paragraphs on each of the key artists involved
  • the venue or type of venue you require
  • a list of presenting or funding partners and whether these are confirmed
  • a demonstrated sense of the target audience
  • a budget which includes pre-production costs, funding sources, possible box office/income sources, in-kind support, weekly running costs
  • images / video / media / article links of previous works or of developments of the work being pitched

When can I submit?

The submission deadline for 2021 has now passed.

We encourage you to contact Accessible Arts for support or guidance on any part of your submission or the pitching process:

Liz Martin, Arts Development and Training Manager, Accessible Arts / lmartin@aarts.net.au / 02 8379 3102 (Tue/Wed/Thurs)

*Many thanks to Alex Jones, Alison Richardson, Carly Findlay, Liz Martin and Riana Head-Toussaint for dedicating their time in March 2019 to ensuring the submissions received met our criteria of being disability-led and culturally competent.


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