A few weeks ago Mr Purple, Wonder Girl and I had a very special day out. We were invited by Disney to go and see The Lion King in London. We received this invite because this was a special relaxed performance.
Relaxed performances are designed to provide an opportunity for people with autism, learning difficulties or other sensory and communication needs who might prefer a more relaxed environment. This was perfect for us, because both Wonder Girl and I are autistic.
We had an absolutely fantastic time watching The Lion King. It’s a spectacular show. The puppetry, actors, choreography and music all work together perfectly. I have seen a lot of musicals, and would put The Lion King in my top three!
It’s also very true to the original film, which is especially important for autistic people.
What makes a relaxed performance different;
Ahead of the show we received information about how the performance would work. As well as a link to a video visual story showing us the theatre, and how our visit would work. This was really useful for Wonder Girl, who struggles with new places. She felt much more relaxed and prepared about going to a new theatre.
There were volunteers from The National Autistic Society, and Disney all around the theatre. They were available to help anybody that needed extra support.
At the start of the show the actors who play Scar and Rafiki came onto the stage. They explained who they were and what characters they would be playing. This helped us to feel more informed and relaxed about the show.
There are small changes to lighting and sound to help those with sensory needs.
It is relaxed! This means the audience can stim, make noises, and generally do what they needed to do to be comfortable. Without worrying about negative reactions. Additionally if being in the auditorium was difficult, there was the option to leave and use one of the sensory, relaxing areas and watch the show on a screen.
I found the relaxed performance of The Lion King a really magical experience. As a big Disney fan, it was really special to be able to be in a place where it was OK to be us.
The Lion King is visiting Bristol in the autumn, and there will be a relaxed performance on Tuesday 19th of November at 5pm. Click here if you would like more information and to book tickets.
We made a vlog of our day out in London and visit to the The Lion King Musical;
We received tickets for The Lion King as a gift in order to write this post.