Get to Know the KC
What Is It?
While navigating through the app, answer a few questions to customize a pre-visit story featuring photographs, videos, and different levels of text unique to your needs. The app can be used by anyone to prepare for a visit but may be particularly helpful for young people with autism and their families. Use the “Map Location” button to pinpoint places on a map of the Kennedy Center, press the play button to have the story read aloud, and try the grid view to see what’s coming up in the story or to jump between slides. The site works on smartphones, tablets, and computers so you can build a story at home, at school, or while out and about. You can even print the story and share it online!
The first story is a look at the Kennedy Center’s Family Theater. New stories on all of the Kennedy Center theaters, upcoming sensory-friendly performances, and more will be added soon!
What Did You Think?
Did you give it a try? Do you build stories on your own, with your family, students, or friends? Tell us about it!
About the Project
The Kennedy Center’s Office of VSA and Accessibility and ArtsEdge are working in collaboration with the Temple University Program of Occupational Therapy, the Ivymount School and Programs and other special educators, experts, parents, and community representatives to develop this online pre-visit story tool. This site is designed to meet the needs of and to be accessible to individuals of all ages with varying disabilities.
About Sensory-Friendly Performances
Sensory-friendly performances are designed to create a performing arts experience that is welcoming to all families with children with autism or with other sensory sensitivities.
Accommodations for these performances include:
- Lower sound level, especially for startling or loud sounds;
- Lights remain on at a low level in the theater during the performance;
- A reduction of strobe lighting or lighting focused on the audience;
- Patrons are free to talk and leave their seats during the performance;
- Designated quiet areas within the theater;
- Space throughout the theater for standing and movement;
- Limited crowds and visitors at the Kennedy Center during the day and timing of the performance; and
- Kennedy Center staff trained to be inviting and accommodating to families' needs.
Families will also have access to resource materials to prepare for their visit. Please contact the Accessibility Office at 202-416-8727 (voice/relay) or email@example.com for more information.
To receive free notices about sensory-friendly performances and events at the Kennedy Center and in the DC metro region, please send your name and e-mail address to firstname.lastname@example.org with "Subscribe Sensory-Friendly Alerts" in the subject line.
The Kennedy Center strives to make its performances and facilities accessible to all our patrons and visitors. For additional information, please visit our Patron Services page or contact us at (202) 416-8727 or email@example.com.
Visit the VSA Programs page for more information about opportunities for youth with disabilities to learn from, participate in and enjoy the arts!