Accessible Improv Theatre

Chicago’s famous Second City Improv Theatre, which brought the world comedy greats such as Tina Fey, Catherine O’Hara, Amy Poehler and Stephen Colbert, has started offering performances accessible to audience members who are deaf and hard-of-hearing.

Open-captioned performances incorporate projections of the text on the side of the stage, which displays word-for-word what performers are saying in real time, as well as describing the corresponding music and sound effects.

“For the first time, guests who are deaf or hard of hearing are able to laugh along with the show at the very same time as everyone else in the audience,” says Second City Producer Jesse Swanson, who is also part of Second City’s Accessibility Committee.