Cinema

New pre-show notes service for audio described theatre

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Vision Australia has launched a new pre-show notes service for blind and vision impaired patrons of audio described theatre. Pre-show notes provide set design descriptions, character descriptions, synopses, local reviews, and background to the playwright, actors and more.

Audio description for theatre, delivered live by trained audio describers, provides patrons with verbal descriptions of transitions, movements, gestures, props, settings, costumes and scenery in a vivid and succinct manner during pauses in dialogue. To complement this in-theatre free service, Vision Australia will now email pre-show notes to increase access and enrich patrons’ experiences.


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Audio described movie in Mudgee NSW

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A community event is being held in Mudgee, NSW to raise awareness of audio description. A screening of the Baz Luhrmann film Australia will be screened at Mudgee Town Hall with open audio description – an additional audio track providing narration of visual elements for the benefit of viewers who are blind or vision impaired.

The event has been organised by local resident Mary Lovett, who in April received a Medal of the Order of Australia for her services to blind and vision impaired people. She is the founder and past president of Mudgee Vision Impaired Persons Friendship Group and the chairman of the Central West NSW branch of Blind Citizens Australia.


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Hearing Awareness Week: the beginner’s guide to captions

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Hearing Awareness Week runs from 25 to 31 August. To celebrate, we have put together a beginner’s guide to captioning to help raise awareness of the availability of captions across all types of media.

What are captions?

Captioning is the text version of speech and other sound that can be provided on television, DVDs, online videos, and at cinemas and theatres. Captions look similar to subtitles on foreign language content but provide additional information such as sound effects and music.

What’s the difference between ‘open’ and ‘closed’ captions?

Simply speaking, closed captions can be turned on and off while open captions are always on. In cinemas, captions are open when they are displayed on the screen and closed when they are shown on a personal device.


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Accessible movies at the Melbourne International Film Festival

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The annual Melbourne International Film Festival (MIFF) will host four audio described and open captioned movies this year. The four feature-length movies will play at Hoyts Melbourne Central over the weekend of 9-11 August and patrons are invited to reserve tickets now.

Three of the movies - Galore, Patrick and These Final Hours - will be world premieres during their accessible sessions. The fourth movie is the theatrical take on Tim Winton’s award-winning short story series The Turning, which premieres earlier in the week. All movies are Australian and further information on each can be found on the MIFF website.


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