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AutismFriendly Performance FAQ


What makes the performance Autism-Friendly?

It’s the same great show, first and foremost. The production team, in response to suggestions from TDF’s autism specialists, has made slight technical adjustments, where possible, to soften any extreme sound and lighting elements that may be uncomfortable for children or adults on the autism spectrum. Lights in the seating area dim rather than go to dark during the performance. If someone on the spectrum is especially sensitive to sound, he or she is welcome to bring your own headphones or earplugs. If anyone needs to take a break during the performance, there are designated Quiet and Activity Areas that are staffed by trained volunteers. Family restrooms are also made available.


Is this performance only for families affected by ASD (Autism Spectrum Disorder)?
The performance is designed for children and adults on the autism spectrum and their families. Tickets are not available to the general public. We welcome patrons with other sensory sensitivities, as well, if they would benefit from the supports that are specifically geared towards the autism community. The goal of the Autism Theatre Initiative (ATI) is to ensure a welcoming and safe environment for families affected by ASD.


Will the staff at the performance include professionals trained in the autism field?
Yes. TDF volunteers are a combination of autism specialists and individuals who have hands on experience with autism. All volunteers, theatre staff and cast members undergo training to learn about autism and what to expect during the performance.


Can we bring our own food/drinks?
Yes. If your child has specific dietary requirements, please feel free to bring your own snacks, but we encourage you to enjoy your food in the lobby.


Are there snacks available at the theater?
There are snacks available for purchase at the theater. Again, we encourage you to enjoy food in the lobby area.


Can we enter and exit the theater during the performance for breaks?
Yes. If you feel the need to utilize one of the Quiet or Activity Areas, please feel free to enter and exit the theatre as needed.


What do I do if I lose my tickets?
If tickets are lost, please contact Philip Dallman, Coordinator of the Autism Theatre Initiative (ATI) at 212-912-9770 x383. Arrangements will be made with the box office to ensure admittance to the performance. Please keep in mind that this may require extra time and/or waiting in line before entering the theater.


What if we have to cancel our tickets?
Canceled orders for a refund are handled on a case by case basis, contingent on TDF’s ability to resell your tickets to individuals on our waiting list. In the event that you need to return your tickets, please contact ATI Coordinator, Philip Dallman, at 212-912-9770 x 383 up until two full weeks before the performance for this option.


Will there be souvenir merchandise available for purchase at the show?
The retail counter at the theater will be open for business before the show begins, during intermission, and directly following the performance if you wish to purchase souvenirs.


Will there be other supports (i.e. fidgets, earplugs, etc.)?
TDF will supply general supports, such as fidgets and earplugs. There will also be a variety of supports available in the quiet and activity areas, for example, coloring supplies, bean bag chairs, stuffed animals, puzzles and foam mats. If you know your child responds to a specific support, we encourage you to bring it to the performance.


What can I do to prepare?
On TDF’s website, a social story that can be edited and a character guide are available, as well as a short video clip of the show. You can use these materials to introduce your child to the characters and the experience of attending a live performance on Broadway. You can also download songs that will be performed on iTunes or Amazon to familiarize your child with the music.


Is there parking nearby?
There is some street parking available, but it is extremely limited. There are many parking garages in the Times Square area and you may go to nyc.bestparking.com
 
Can I use public transportation to get to the theatre?
The theater district is easily accessible by public transportation. Visit new.mta.info for information on Metro-North and Amtrak train schedules and fares into Grand Central, located on 42nd Street and 5th Avenue, or Penn Station located on 34th Street and 7th Avenue. The A, C, E, 1, 2, 3, N, Q, R, 7 and S subway lines will take you to the Times Square, 42nd Street station. Visit www.hopstop.com for transit directions.


How do I find out about future performances?
Sign up for the mailing list to receive information on future performances. You can do so at TDF’s website, www.tdf.org/autism . The link on the right hand side of the page will lead you to the sign up form.


Still have a question? Please contact ATI Coordinator, Philip Dallman, at 212-912-9770 x 383 or E-mail autism@tdf.org and someone will get back to you as soon as possible.