Lion King Performance shot 2 

The National Autistic Society Scotland will collaborate on a relaxed performance of Disney’s award-winning musical, The Lion King, at Edinburgh Playhouse on Sunday 26 January.

Our charity is working in partnership with Disney on the specially adapted performance, which is designed to welcome autistic people, people with learning difficulties, and people with other sensory and communication needs.

Set against the majesty of the Serengeti Plains to the evocative rhythms of Africa, The Lion King uses breathtaking theatrical magic to tell the story of Simba’s epic journey to fulfil his destiny as King of the Pridelands.

During the performance lighting, sound and special effects will be softened to reduce anxiety, and the house lights kept on low. Audience members will also be free to move around the theatre and will have access to specially created chill-out areas to relax.

We have provided dedicated training for cast, crew and front-of-house staff to help tailor the guest experience, and ensure people attending feel at ease. Staff members from our charity will also be on-hand to provide assistance during the performance.

Nick Ward, National Director of National Autistic Society Scotland said: “Relaxed performances are a fantastic way for autistic people to enjoy the theatre.

“We know that two thirds of autistic people in Scotland feel socially isolated – but we also know that small adjustments can often make a big difference, meaning they can access and enjoy the spectacular theatrical experience that is Disney’s The Lion King.

“I’m so pleased that our charity was able to work collaborate with Disney on this relaxed performance.”

Nancy Shakerley, Education and Outreach Manager at Disney Theatrical Group said: “Disney Theatrical is committed to making theatre more accessible and this performance will give guests the opportunity to attend The Lion King in a more relaxed environment.”

Colin Marr, Theatre Director at the Edinburgh Playhouse, said: “We are delighted to be hosting a relaxed performance of The Lion King in partnership with Disney and National Autistic Society Scotland.

“Our full venue team from Front of House to Stage Crew and office staff is enjoying working with Disney and National Autistic Society Scotland to deliver this event. We are looking forward to welcoming an audience from across Scotland to this very special performance.”

Disney has created a number of online resources to help audiences attending the relaxed performance. This includes a downloadable guide which can be accessed by visiting www.thelionking.co.uk/edinburgh/relaxedperformances.

To find out more about the relaxed performance and to book tickets, please visit www.autism.org.uk/about/family-life/holidays-trips/performances.aspx.