Sep 14

Gwinnett theatre to open season with “sensory friendly” performances

By: Gracie Bonds Staples

Published: Monday, September 14, 2015

The Gwinnett Ballet Theatre this year promises to delight audiences of all ages with a line-up of “sensory friendly” performances.

The non-profit will open its fall season at 7:30 p.m. Oct. 2 with a showing of “Cinderella” at the Infinite Energy Theater, formerly the Gwinnett Performing Arts Center.

Cinderella is one of two performances planned for audiences impacted by autism and other sensory issues and their families. “The Nutcracker” will follow at 11:45 a.m. Dec. 4 at the same theater.

The special performances, now in their second year, incorporate measures such as low lighting and noise that support sensory issues. Audience members do not have to sit still and can walk around, clap and cheer if they wish.

The initiative, the brainchild of Jennifer Manton, a GBT parent, is being supported by a grant from theCommunity Foundation for Northeast Georgia.

Manton initiated and supervised the first “sensory friendly” performance in December with one of GBT’s “The Nutcracker” school shows. Because it was such a success, theater officials decided to offer more performances this season.