Marking the start of Deaf Awareness Week (2-8 May 2016) Digital Theatre today announced plans to caption every single one of its productions in time for the 2017 academic year (2016).
The initiative is already underway with Shakespeare productions of As You Like It, King Lear, Much Ado About Nothing, Macbeth and The Comedy of Errors due for imminent publishing with captions on Digital Theatre Plus as part of #ShakespeareLives – a series of events and activities marking the 400th anniversary of Shakespeare's death.
Production Manager Stephen Quinn, who has led the captioning at Digital Theatre, commented: “With over 13,000 minutes of content it's our aim to have 100% of this material captioned as soon as possible. Digital Theatre has an ongoing remit to make the performing arts accessible to all and this current captioning project is a significant first step on the way to rolling out multilingual captions across the platform. We are delighted to be working with our partners Stagetext and White Label Productions to ensure that this project is completed to the highest standard."
This captioning is further evidence of Digital Theatre taking its commitment to accessibility and compliance with the United States' Section 508 and the UK's Disability Discrimination Act seriously.
Digital Theatre's Co-Founder and Creative Director Robert Delamere said: "By captioning our productions we are ensuring that we make the performing arts more accessible than ever."
CEO of Stagetext, Melanie Sharpe, added: "Stagetext and Digital Theatre’s continued partnership is bringing great theatre to the home and classroom in an exciting and accessible way. Stagetext captions bring the same great experience from theatre onto screen; students, teachers, families, and theatre fans can all benefit from the enhanced experience captions provide.”
White Label Productions' Director of Product Management William Toll said: "We are thrilled to be working with Digital Theatre on this fantastic initiative, making this wonderful content accessible to as many people as possible. Everyone has the right to enjoy these treasures of the performing arts regardless of ability, and together WLP and Digital Theatre are committed to making universal access to these productions a reality."