Three people seen from the shoulders up all stare out at us with serious faces. From left to right: Gemma Arterton, Fehinti Balogun and Lydia Wilson, each wearing dark green clothes that blend with their surroundings. Behind them the trunks and branches of very tall trees are silhouetted against a green sky.

What’s On & Online – 20th May 2021

Hello and welcome to our brand-new weekly listings of accessible online and in-person arts and culture.

We’re excited about the re-opening of theatres, museums, galleries and heritage venues in England from Monday 17th May. We are aware that some venues will not open straight away and to keep a wide an audience as possible we will include both online and in-person accessible events for you to enjoy. We are always happy to receive your feedback so please like, comment, email or DM us. Enjoy!

Theatre Access Survey 2021

VocalEyes, in partnership with Stagetext  and Centre for Accessible Environments are seeking your views on theatre access facilities, services or support.  We want to hear from many D/deaf, disabled or neurodivergent people or people with long-term health conditions to inform theatres to what extent they are meeting or failing to meet the access requirements of their audiences. You can complete the survey online or download a large print version.


What’s On

Audio-described sound installation: Blindness – UK tour and Watch at home tickets available

With immersive binaural sound, Juliet Stevenson voices the Storyteller/Doctor’s wife in this gripping story of the rise and, ultimately, profoundly hopeful end of an unimaginable global blindness pandemic. Tour dates as follows:

The Lowry in Salford: Northern Ballet’s Dangerous Liaisons. Saturday 5th June, 2pm. Tickets £25.50 – £46.

Recorded audio description by VocalEyes. A bodice ripping adaptation of the original scandalous novel. Don’t miss this story of sexual power, cruelty and deceit.

Harold Pinter Theatre, London: Walden. Saturday 5th June, 3pm.

After returning from a year-long Moon mission, Cassie, a NASA botanist, finds herself in a remote cabin in the woods, where her estranged twin sister, Stella, a former NASA architect, has found a new life with climate activist Bryan. Old wounds resurface as the sisters attempt to pick up the pieces of the rivalry that broke them apart.


What’s Online

The Place: Audio-described interactive dance film, Inside Head. Thursday 13th – 27th May. Free (booking required), approx. 13 mins.

A powerful short film which centres around a young black man as he reflects on the systemic pressures he endures.

Royal Collection Trust: Audio-description sessions. Tuesday 1st June, 2pm, free, on Zoom.

Continuing on the first Tuesday of each month this descriptive Zoom session will introduce you to Queen Victoria’s Scottish home, Balmoral Castle. Focussing on description of The Completion of the Cairn of Craigowan by William Wyld. Email [email protected] to book your place.

Orange Tree Theatre: audio-described livestream, Shaw Shorts (double bill). Friday 4th June, 7:30pm. Touch tour at 7pm. Tickets from £15.

Two short plays by Bernard Shaw performed on the same evening with no interval – How He Lied to Her Husband and Overruled

Shakespeare’s Globe: audio-described livestream, A Midsummer Night’s Dream. Saturday 5th June, 7pm. Tickets from £10.

A well-loved Shakespeare play returns with piñatas, streamers, glitter and a cacophony of brass. Watch the livestream before opportunities to see the play in person with audio-described performances on Saturday 19th June and Tuesday 31st August.

Sadler’s Wells: Movement in still form, exhibition.

An exhibition of dance photography by Camilla Greenwell. Available as a large print exhibition catalogue or as an audio-described exhibition guide. This photographic exhibition invites us into moments not usually seen by the audience, of the creative process where artists come together to make the dance we eventually see in performance.

TNF Soundings: An Actor’s Worst Nightmare. Audio 4mins.

Listen to the recollections of an opening night, one that this actor will never forget!


With so many podcasts to choose from here are some you might like to try out.

BBC World Service – You.Me: The Musical

Stephen Fry narrates a new musical romance set during the pandemic.

BBC Radio 3 – Record Review Podcast

An edited version of the regular Building a Library slot where guest experts review available recordings of a work from the classical music repertoire and give a recommendation.

Out to Lunch with Jay Rayner

Famous names dine out with a food critic at a restaurant of his choosing. Great food and chat.


AD on TV

We are continuing to include our weekly selection of TV programmes with AD. Please note programmes are subject to change although correct at time of publication.

Thursday 20th May

Discovering Film: Janet Leigh, Sky Arts, 6pm

Britain’s Brightest Celebrity Family, ITV, 8.30pm

Innocent, ITV, 9pm

Subnormal: A British Scandal, BBC1, 9pm

Film, Blues Brothers, ITV4, 9pm

Matt Deighton: Overshadowed, Sky Arts, 11.15pm

Friday 21st May

National Treasures: The Art of Collecting, Sky Arts, 3pm

Discovering Film: Rod Steiger, Sky Arts, 6pm

Unreported World, Channel 4, 7.30pm

Film, Never Say Never Again, ITV4, 8pm

Eurovision at 60 BBC4, 10pm

Film, Testament of Youth, BBC2, 11.20pm

Saturday 22nd May

Mountain Gorilla, BBC2, 10am

Film, Jurassic World, ITV, 4.15pm

Film, Bruce Almighty, ITV2, 7.05pm

Michael Palin’s New Europe, BBC4, 8pm

Arena, BBC2, 9.30pm

Sunday 23rd May

Film, Frozen, BBC1, 2.50pm

Film, Night at the Museum 2, E4, 5.55pm

Film, Gulliver’s Travels, ITV2, 7.05pm

Soundwaves: The Symphony of Physics, BBC4, 8pm

African Renaissance: When Art Meets Power, BBC4, 10pm

The Great Butterfly Adventure, BBC4, 11pm

Monday 24th May

Discovering Film: Gina Lollobrigola, Sky Arts, 6pm

The Pact, BBC1, 9pm

The Year Britain Stopped, Channel 4, 9pm

Long Lost Family, ITV, 9pm

Tuesday 25th May

Discovering Film: Orsen Welles, Sky Arts, 6pm

Master of Photography, Sky Arts, 8pm

Film, A View to a Kill, ITV4, 9pm

Ian Hislop’s Olden Days, BBC4, 9pm

The Pact BBC1, 9pm

Wednesday 26th May

Discovering Film: Laurence Olivier, Sky Arts, 6pm

Skies Above Britain, BBC4, 8pm

The Black American Fight for Freedom, BBC2, 9pm

Film, Jaws, ITV4, 9pm

Cold War, Hot Jets, BBC4, 10pm


Image description: Three people seen from the shoulders up all stare out at us with serious faces. From left to right: Gemma Arterton, Fehinti Balogun and Lydia Wilson, each wearing dark green clothes that blend with their surroundings. Behind them the trunks and branches of very tall trees are silhouetted against a green sky.