Description Victoria

Community Arts & Cultural Development

Description Victoria needs gear

Description Victoria needs FM receivers to make art, media, and theatre accessible to people who are blind or vision impaired.

Days Left
17
Funded
66%
Donated
$1,648
Supporters
14

Imagine you’re sitting in the dark of a theatre, enjoying a show.
A man and a woman talk, their voices becoming heated. Suddenly – there’s a bang and a thump. Then – silence.

What just happened?!

This is often the experience of theatre for people who are blind or vision impaired. You could lean over to your friend and ask, but that’s just going to annoy everyone else. And besides, why should your friend have to spend the whole show whispering in your ear?

Visual description is the practice of adding live or pre-recorded verbal information that allows people who are blind or vision impaired equal enjoyment of and participation in the arts.

In live performances and in-person tours, verbal description is delivered via a narrowcast FM transmission system. Describers sit in a bio-box or crying room, and speak into a transmitter. Patrons receive a personal receiver and headset that allows them to tune in when and how they wish.

Description Victoria was founded by professional describer Will McRostie in 2016. So far, I have been working largely for free, funding the start-up costs for this project out of pocket. Your support will mean less time and money spent acquiring gear, and more time and money spent describing shows, training new describers, and working with the community to develop the audience.

We have purchased a Listen Technologies transmitter with support from the Awesome Foundation and participants in The Money at Melbourne Festival.

We now need your support to purchase the receivers, headsets and a portable charging case. Owning these outright will give us the flexibility to offer a more affordable, adaptive, and innovative service to arts clients across the state. Owning this equipment will also facilitate the training of new describers in July 2017.

My current clients include Malthouse Theatre, Next Wave Festival and UK comedian Liz Carr, and I’m currently in negotiations with many other Victorian arts institutions to roll out this vital service.

You can find more about the service at www.descriptionvictoria.com.au

Live Projects

1

Creating accessible and inclusive arts experiences for people with vision impairment.

Description Victoria provides description services for art and media. Visual description adds live or pre-recorded verbal information to performances, events, exhibitions, and moving images. Designed for people with vision impairments, this information is delivered through a variety of means that complement the work. Description Victoria was founded in 2016 by Will McRostie to expand the practice of professional visual description in Victoria. Will trained in description with Access2Arts in South Australia, where he worked with most of the state’s major arts institutions. Will also works at Regional Arts Victoria as Administrator of the Small Town Transformations program, at Melbourne Theatre Company as a front of house attendant, and is active in community radio through JOY94.9.

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Emily Tomlins

VIC
CA

Carolyn Lambert

VIC
JE

Jenna Sten

VIC
CA

Cassie Tongue

NSW
TS

Dirty Work Comedy

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AM

Amanda Macri

VIC
SL

Stephanie Lyall

VIC
LC

Lauren Clelland

VIC
LH

Lucy Hamilton

VIC
LG

1983

VIC
SM

Sarah Malik

SA