With the mission of inspiring young people to creative and productive lives through the art of the theater, DCT is now proud to be able to create a positive, fun atmosphere for families with sensory friendly needs. A child with autism or some other sensory challenge who loves theater and the arts will be excited about this new program at DCT and, hopefully, with the transformational experience of theater, will be inspired to creatively contribute to the world and their community in their own way.
We are so pleased to be able to offer you these specially-adapted plays for the enjoyment of those with sensory needs. Throughout the course of the year, Dallas Children's Theater will present a variety of plays from which you can choose. Some stories, especially fairy tales, may be disturbing to some children, for example, the villain or conflict in the story. If you desire more specific detail about how the story is presented, don't hesitate to call us.
Next Sensory-Friendly Performance Day Schedule
12:30 - 1:30 Optional pre-show activities including facepainting, clown performances and other activities
Participate at whatever level is best for your family
1:00 Doors to the theater are opened
1:30 Show begins
(There will be an intermission for this production.)
A YEAR WITH FROG AND TOAD
February 20, 2016 at 1:30 PM - The three-time TONY-nominated Broadway hit with its jazzy score hops to DCT just in time for spring. This whimsical musical follows two unlikely best friends and their quirky egos from hibernation to planting, to swimming, to sledding with plenty of fun and lots to learn along the way. This adorably charming story captivates audiences of all ages - even those who think they're too old for make-believe. Join Frog and Toad as they weather the seasons and celebrate the differences that make them special. You and your best friends will be tapping your webbed toes all the way home!
Recommended for ages 4 and up
Sensory Shows Coming Up
Kathy Burks Theatre of Puppetry Arts
HANSEL AND GRETEL
March 12, 2016 at 4:30 PM - You don't always need a prince and princess for your heroes to live happily ever after. Two children in search of food for their hungry family get lost in an enchanted forest. They must depend on all their powers of imagination to save them from the crafty, mysterious old woman in the candy house and (in this less "grim" version) lead them back to the loving arms of their parents. The familiar, melodic music of Engelbert Humperdinck brings an inventive theatricality to the retelling of this beloved fairy tale adventure. HANSEL AND GRETEL brings another feast for the eyes and ears to the stage from Kathy Burks' Master Puppeteers.
Recommended for ages 4 and up
THE MIRACULOUS JOURNEY OF EDWARD TULANE
April 9, 2016 at 1:30 PM - The award-winning author of Because of Winn-Dixie and The National Ambassador for Young People's Literature launches the extraordinary pilgrimage of Edward, a beautiful, much-loved toy rabbit who loves only himself. When he is ripped from the arms of his doting young owner and lost, Edward finds that his breakable heart can learn to love, lose, and love again. This stunning, highly theatrical play became an immediate must-see hit following its premiere and is sure to go down in history as a family classic with your family being among its first audiences. Trust us, you'll be sorry if you miss this one.
Recommended for ages 7 and up
April 23, 2016 at 1:30 PM - BALLOONACY had people expressing all kinds of emotion in 2015! Now, we're bringing it back so many can see it again and others can experience it for the first time. Audiences were truly smitten with Karl Schaeffer's lonely old birthday boy and the unlikely friend he makes in a wandering red balloon. This inclusive, non-verbal play invites the audience to direct the action making no two shows ever alike. You'll be in awe of your child's (and your own) laughter and reaction to the adventure between the old man and the balloon. Squirmy toddlers, their parents, and grandparents are invited to experience what could be the most valuable hour of the year!
Recommended for ages 2 and up
DCT's National Touring Production
(BIG FRIENDLY GIANT)
May 14, 2016 at 1:30 PM - In the much beloved tradition of Roald Dahl (Charlie and the Chocolate Factory), we join two misfits on an unforgettable odyssey. For a young orphan "human bean", the sight of a giant outside her window is terrifying, and she fears for her life when he whisks her away to an enchanted land. This Big Friendly Giant is not like other giants, however. The job of this larger-than-life vegetarian is to blow magical dreams into children's bedrooms, and together they embark on a quest to save England from the "gizzard-gulping" giants who don't have the BFG's tender heart. The cheeky BFG ultimately shows that heroes can come in all sizes. See the play that inspired the new Steven Spielberg movie coming out July, 2016.
Recommended for ages 7 and up
PINKALICIOUS, THE MUSICAL
July 2, 2016 at 4:30 PM - Pink-A-Boo! DCT audiences were tickled...that's right - PINK the last time PINKALICIOUS was on our stage, so we're bringing her back in this exhilarating musical! When Pinkalicious doesn't heed her parents' warnings and indulges in too many pink goodies, she has to make some healthy choices to fight off a bad case of Pinkititis. Pinkalicious will finally eat a little green, her little brother will no longer be blue, and all kids will learn to show their true colors! The popular book pops off the stage in this high-energy musical treat that kids will love even more than pink cupcakes!
Recommended for ages 5 and up
Sensory Show Adaptations
General production adaptations include leaving the house lights up a few levels higher than for a standard performance and reducing the sound level. We also offer a "Quiet Room" for children who need a break.
There will be some fun and engaging activities presented before the play, so plan to come as early as one hour before the show.
To Purchase Tickets
DCT wants to make sure families have no barriers that would prevent them from at least sampling these great opportunities created especially for them! Tickets are $5 per person. Regular DCT show prices range from $13 to $28.
Thanks to a national grant, we have been pleased to offer our first shows at a greatly reduced price. Now we must prepare to secure the program for its long-term existence. This will require a combination of ticket sales and sponsorship donations from our community. It is hoped that with this kind of partnership, the theater will be able to hold at the low $5 per ticket for years to come. If at any time, this ticket price is a hardship, please call the box office and inquire about scholarships.
To purchase tickets, please call 214-740-0051
Social Story - A pictorial guide with simple language explaining what can be expected when visiting the theater.
Parent Tipsheet - Specific details about the production.
Want to arrange a pre-visit to the theater or have additional questions? Contact Gina Waits at: 214-978-0110 or firstname.lastname@example.org
Dallas Children's Theater is a participant in the Audience (R)Evolution Program, funded by the Doris Duke Charitable Foundation and administered by Theatre Communications Group, the national organization for the professional not-for-profit American theatre.
We are deeply grateful to Autism Speaks for providing a grant to DCT to document our pilot year of sensory-friendly performances [Download report here]. Local partners for this initiative include Autism Speaks, the Center for Autism and Developmental Disabilities at UT Southwestern, University of North Texas Department of Speech and Hearing Sciences and the Health Science Center and the Autism Center, Children's Medical Center and the Dallas Museum of Art.
DCT is making an impact on families with special needs!
Through three performances, here are the amazing cumulative sensory-friendly performance measurements: