The Nutcracker Accessibility FAQs

13 Dec 2022
Claire (Mae Munuo) & Dad (Kirris Riviere) sat on stage, holding hands

We want to make sure your visit to Bristol Old Vic is as enjoyable and comfortable as possible. 

We spoke to Catherine Boot, Assistant Director on The Nutcracker, to find out more about what you can expect as an audience member of this show.

What can I enjoy in the show if I don't understand the story?

The set, music and costumes are all pretty amazing! Lots of the actors also play instruments onstage and sing. Some of the actors play more than one character, so it can be interesting to see them change between each one.

If I am d/Deaf or hard of hearing, what do I get from the show? 

There is a lot of visual imagery, with some pretty spectacular costumes, masks and set. There is also some dancing and really cool lighting effects. There will be a BSL Interpreted performance on Sat 17 Dec at 2pm and a Captioned show on Thu 29 Dec at 7pm.

If I am blind or partially sighted, what do I get from the show?

There is live music played throughout by our onstage musicians and there is either spoken or sung dialogue in all of the scenes. We also have an Audio Described performance on Sat 7 Jan at 2pm, which is accompanied by a touch tour before the show.

Are there any loud noises, sudden noises, surprises or moments that might make me jump? 

Yes, there are quite a lot of loud sound effects, some of which are sudden. If you don't like loud noises you could bring a pair of ear defenders. We also have a Relaxed performance taking place on Fri 30 Dec at 2pm, when the sound will be turned down from its usual volume.

Do I have to participate in the show? If yes, what do I have to do? 

No, you don't have to participate. There is one moment about 45 minutes in where some of the actors will throw sweets to people sitting at the front, in the seating area which is called the Pit. About 55 minutes after the start of the show, the actor playing King Sausage asks a question to someone sitting in either the first or second row or the pit. The character of Mr Choke, the clockmaker, also sometimes talks directly to people in the audience. If you don't want to be involved in any of this, you could choose seats in the Dress Circle, Upper Circle or Macara Gallery.

To find out more about accessibility at Bristol Old Vic and the Access performances of The Nutcracker, please visit our Access page or contact with any questions.