New Rep Theatre Announces Open Captioning for 2019-2020 Season

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New Repertory Theatre
Mosesian Center for the Arts
321 Arsenal Street
Watertown, MA 02472
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Story coverage by Kitty Drexel

(Watertown, MA)  New Repertory Theatre will provide one open captioned performance per each of its six productions during the 2019-2020 season due to a grant from the Theatre Development Fund, said a July 5 press release.

This project is also funded by the National Endowment for the arts, according to the press release. New Rep will offer discounts to those who require open captioned services.

In the press release, New Rep Artistic Director Michael J. Bobbitt expressed delight to offer open captioning at New Rep’s upcoming productions.

“It is central to New Rep’s mission to make the theatre we produce as accessible as possible, so that all may enjoy it,” he said. “With the generous support from TDF, we are now pleased to provide New Rep audience members who have limited hearing the opportunity to experience our work fully through this technology.”

The Theatre Development Fund has partnered with an organization called C2 (Caption Coalition) Inc., to provide New Repertory Theatre with this service, said New Repertory Theatre Communications Director Jaclyn Dentino in an email.

She said that the grant specifies one open captioned performance per production run. “We’d of course love to do more and increase this number in the future, but this is a good place to start!” 

When asked about sharing text for open captions, Dentino said that New Repertory Theatre would not be able to include another theater on this project. “However, if a joint or shared project arises for another time, we’d be happy to look into it!”

The Dorothy and Charles Mosesian Center for the Arts is equipped with a Tele-Coil Loop System. Assistive listening devices may be picked up from the Box Office, said the center website.

“We understand that hearing and visual limitations affect many of our subscribers and newer audience members alike,” said New Rep’s Managing Director Harriet Sheets in the press release. “In the past, we’ve been able to offer ASL interpretation and audio-described performances with support from other organizations, in addition to the permanent T-Coil LOOP system in our MainStage Theater.”

The New Repertory Theatre offers additional accessibility services to its patrons. The New Repertory Theatre website requests that patrons with other accessibility concerns contact the Box Office for details.

The free parking garage across from the Mosesian Center for is accessible parking and has an elevator on each level, said the Dorothy and Charles Mosesian Center for the Arts website.

Open captioning is a term used to describe text played simultaneously to live performance for all to view. It is also referred to as OC in the colloquial.

Closed captioning is text displayed on special equipment for viewing. Captioning is a form of accessibility for the hard of hearing and deaf communities.

Information on New Repertory Theatre’s 2019-2020 mainstage season can be found on its website.

RELATED (across the web): Commonwealth Shakespeare Company (CSC) is pleased to continue its Common Access Initiative as part of its 24th season of Free Shakespeare on the Common’s production of Cymbeline.

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