PBT to Present Sensory-Friendly Peter Pan in February


Pittsburgh Ballet Theatre is proud to announce that its 2015-2016 Season will feature a sensory-friendly performance, geared toward patrons with special needs, of the family favorite “Peter Pan” at 7 p.m. Thursday, Feb. 18, at the Benedum Center.

The performance experience is specially designed for people with sensory sensitivities, autism and other special needs to enjoy the ballet experience in a supportive theater environment. Accommodations include specially trained staff, quiet and activity area in the lobby, relaxed house rules, minor adjustments to potentially startling light, sound and special effects and pre-performance guides to the performance and theater. Throughout the performance, the house lights remain dimly lit and audience members are free to come and go from their seats as needed. PBT will continue to partner with local advocacy groups, including Autism Connection of PA, to maintain best practices for performance adaptations and training as well as communication efforts in the special needs community.

“The audience response at our sensory-friendly performances has been tremendous. We can’t wait to share ‘Peter Pan’ with these families,” said PBT Artistic Director Terrence S. Orr. “’Peter Pan’ is one of our most popular full-length productions. It’s incredibly engaging – especially for young people – with the charisma of the characters, high-energy level of the dancing and its fantastic aerial effects.”

Following sensory-friendly performances of “The Nutcracker” (2013 and 2014) and Beauty and the Beast (2015), “Peter Pan” will be the third story ballet to enter PBT’s sensory-friendly repertoire. PBT began presenting sensory-friendly programming in December 2013, when it became the first professional ballet company in the country to present a sensory-friendly performance of “The Nutcracker.” Beyond experiencing ballet as a patron, PBT also offers programs designed for people with special needs to actively participate in ballet class. This season PBT will again offer Adaptive Dance classes designed for high school and elementary school students with autism and Dance for Parkinson’s program designed for people with Parkinson’s disease and their caregivers. New sessions will begin this fall.  

Single tickets for the sensory-friendly performance go on sale Aug. 24, and will be available online at pbt.org/sensory-friendly-performances or by calling 412-456-6666. Subsidized tickets are available for qualifying families; please call 412-454-9107 for additional details.  Group tickets – for ten or more patrons – are on sale now by calling 412-454-9101 or emailing groupsales@pittsburghballet.org. Groups save up to 50 percent over single tickets.

About Peter Pan 
February 12-14, 2016 – Benedum Center
Imagination takes flight and time stands still in the mystical world of Jorden Morris’ Peter Pan. Atmospheric scenery transports audiences through starry skies to the tangled forests of Neverland and the decks of Hook’s Jolly Roger. Set to works by English composers, high-flying choreography and aerial acrobatics animate a fantastical realm where fairies flit through the sky, pirates patrol the waters and Peter Pan leads his Lost Boys in endless adventure. 

About PBT Accessibility Initiatives

In addition to sensory-friendly performances, PBT also offers audio description for dance, large-print and braille programs, adaptive dance classes for students with autism, the Dance for Parkinson’s class series and other accommodations for patrons with special needs. For more information, please visit pbt.org/plan-your-visit/accessibility.

About PBT’s 2015-2016 Season

From the choreography of George Balanchine to the music of Johnny Cash, PBT’s 2015-2016 lineup includes major contemporary choreographers, audience favorite “Peter Pan” and the company premiere of the full-length classic “Le Corsaire” with the PBT Orchestra. The five-ballet season runs October through April. Season ticket packages are available online at pbt.org or by calling 412-454-9107. Single ticket sales open Aug. 24, 2015 at pbt.org.