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Dr. Seuss's The Lorax at The Old Vic (Photo: Manuel Harlan)

Old Vic to stage The Lorax relaxed performance

Published September 11, 2017

The Old Vic will present a relaxed performance of Dr. Seuss’s The Lorax on Sunday 5 November at 2.30pm.

This performance is for families with one or more children with special needs. Relaxed performances are designed to provide an opportunity for people with autism, learning difficulties or other sensory and communication needs who require a more relaxed environment.

Dr. Seuss’s The Lorax is a perfect family show starring the irrepressible, big-hearted, mustachioed critter created by Dr. Seuss. Adapted for the stage by David Grieg with music and lyrics by Charlie Fink, Dr. Seuss’s The Lorax is a brilliant riot of eye-popping colour, gorgeous puppetry and infectious music to enchant adults as well as children.

The show returns to The Old Vic following rave reviews and an Olivier Award nomination for Best Entertainment and Family Show.

This is the 8th relaxed performance of top West End productions presented by the theatre charity, Mousetrap Theatre Projects. With generous support from the Society of London Theatre and other funders, Mousetrap is able to offer tickets which are reduced especially for this relaxed performance, with children’s tickets from £2.50 – £10 and adults tickets from £5.00 – £20.00.

Last November, Mousetrap offered families a relaxed performance of Mamma Mia! One parent wrote to say, “It was wonderful to relax and not feel stressed and scared, (which) is how I can feel taking my son who adores live performances but behaviour can be unpredictable. I found myself watching fellow people in the audience more than the show as it was so wonderful to see how much fun everyone was having.”

Prior to attending the performance, all families will be sent support materials including an education pack that explores themes and characters in the musical, a ‘Visual Story’ and a ‘Sensory Synopsis’. These resources help families prepare for their trip to Dr. Seuss’s The Lorax and guarantee that the full theatre experience is as comfortable and enjoyable as possible for the whole family. The pack also recommends convenient travel routes and restaurants.

Susan Whiddington, Director of Mousetrap Theatre Projects said, “We are delighted to be able to offer this fantastic show to families with children with special needs. We know how much these performances mean to families who otherwise would be unable to enjoy spectacular shows. It is a pleasure, too, to be working with The Old Vic to present this much loved family treat.”

Kate Varah, Executive Director at The Old Vic, said, “The Old Vic, London’s independent not-for-profit theatre, is home to 325 exciting performances a year, with 1000 seats available for each one. We want those seats to be full of young first timers sitting alongside those are happily coming back for more.”

“Working with Mousetrap Theatre Projects enables us to welcome completely new audiences into our theatre, and we are delighted to be collaborating once again this October on our family production of Dr. Seuss’s The Lorax, a fable about the plight of the environment. This critically acclaimed production is an uplifting introduction to theatre. Thanks to Mousetrap’s support, more young people will be able to share in its magic.”

To support families, MTP has a dedicated Relaxed Performance Administrator Bryony Relf, who will assist families attending Dr. Seuss’s The Lorax, and there will be fully trained staff and volunteers on site to assist families at the theatre on 5th November.

Mousetrap Theatre Projects is a theatre education charity founded in 1997 to enable young people with limited resources, access or support to engage with the best of London’s theatre. To date, it has provided opportunities for over 200,000 disadvantaged young people and young people with special needs to attend theatre, and currently offers 21 innovative theatre access, creative learning and youth engagement programmes for families, schools and in community settings.

Mousetrap’s long-term goal is to see regular relaxed performances in the West End. The Society of London Theatre (SOLT) is a key supporter of this project and both Mousetrap and SOLT are working hard to ensure that relaxed performances become a familiar fixture in the theatre diary.