The Children’s Wards of Calderdale Royal Hospital and Huddersfield Royal Infirmary were filled with festive cheer as Beauty and the Beast at the Victoria Theatre in Halifax was live streamed for the first time ever.
The live-stream of the pantomime aimed to make sure children staying in hospital over the festive period didn’t miss out on the fun and magic of this seasonal show.
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Susan Press, the Portfolio Holder for Public Services said: "Christmas is a time for creating happy memories and we’re delighted to be able to offer a little bit of Christmas magic to children who are not able to make it to the Victoria Theatre’s much-loved annual panto, as well as to the wonderful hospital staff who work over the Christmas period providing outstanding care.”
The Trust’s Collaboration Engineer, Richard Hill, said: “It’s been a pleasure to be involved. Everyone – our patients and our staff – are thrilled this happening. A lot of organising between the theatre and Health Informatics at the Trust has happened to enable us to receive the stream.
"We think it’s wonderful offer and thank Victoria Theatre and everyone involved for creating such a special event.”
The Victoria Theatre are also offering a range of accessible performances of their pantomime Beauty and the Beast this Christmas, to ensure live theatre is available to everyone.
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A relaxed performance will be taking place on Friday 3 January at 10:30am. This performance is designed to be welcoming to everyone and especially to adults and children who may feel unable to access theatre performances for a variety of reasons, for example: parents/carers with noisy infants, people who need or want to move around and/or vocalise during the performance, people with autistic spectrum conditions, dementia or other complex access and inclusion needs. There are also more spaces for customers who use larger wheelchairs and access equipment. For the relaxed performance some special effects, lights and noise are adjusted to make the performance accessible but the overall quality and nature of the show is not changed.
Two integrated signed performances are also taking place on Sunday 29 December at 4:30pm and Monday 30 December at 1pm. For these integrated performances, there are two British Sign Language (BSL) interpreters who will be involved in the action on stage and take part in the performances! This means that our hearing impaired audience members can watch the whole performance and not keep having to look to the side of the stage to follow an interpreter. The range of seating options for integrated performances is also much greater than in a traditional Side of Stage interpreted performance. This means that customers don’t miss out on the magic or sitting with their party or family of choice.
Beauty and the Beast will run until Sunday 5 January.