Rochester N.Y. -- Geva Theatre is partnering with two groups to expand and improve services for patrons with hearing loss.
The theater is adding open captioning services to its performances starting this fall. They are also upgrading its aging assistive listening system.
Open captioning will be displayed on a screen just to the side of the stage to help those who are hard of hearing or deaf. An estimated 98 percent of the hearing impaired and deaf community do not know sign language.
Geva will provide open captioning during the first Saturday matinee performance of all six productions of its 2012-2013 Mainstage Season, and during the first Sunday matinee performance of "A Christmas Carol."
The theater is also upgrading its assisted listening system with an expanded system of 48 portable FM receivers. Many of those receivers are compatible with hearing aid T-switches through a personal induction loop.
The changes were funded, in part, by the Theatre Development Fund's TAP Plus and the Rochester Chapter of the Hearing Loss Association of America.