Technology to improve access to Tasmanian theatre Mon 4 June 2012 Lara Giddings Premier Premier and Minister for the Arts, Lara Giddings MP, today announced an innovative pilot program to caption live theatre performances using broadband technology. Ms Giddings said that Arts Tasmania's Arts and Disability program, was partnering with TasDeaf, Terrapin Puppet Theatre, the Theatre Royal and The Captioning Studio from Adelaide, to deliver the technology. "The captioning will be shown on a plasma screen in a reserved seating area. "It includes the text, timing, intonation, and description of sound and is captioned from Adelaide live via laptop. "Internationally renowned performers of Terrapin Puppet Theatre will perform their dynamic digital puppet show Sleeping Horses Lie, for the Tasmanian pilot of this captioning technology. "It's wonderful the first Tasmanian performance using this technology is a heart-warming show that the whole family can enjoy." Ms Giddings said Tasmania had a higher number of people who identified as deaf or hard of hearing than the national average. "It is estimated that one in six Tasmanians are deaf and hard of hearing. "The captioning technology has been chosen to give the greatest accessibility, as not all Deaf people can lip read and not everyone who is hard of hearing can understand sign language. "This is exciting technology for theatre goers who may otherwise be excluded from fully enjoying the performance arts". Performances of Sleeping Horses Lie that will feature the captioning are: • Tuesday, 5 June, 2:00 pm - Theatre Royal, Hobart • Friday, 8 June, 11:00 am - Burnie Entertainment Centre • Saturday, 16 June, 1:00 pm - The Earl Arts Centre, Launceston For more information contact Shannon Challis at Arts Tasmania on 0403 416 615.