Music charity Attitude Is Everything will team up with Big Jeff Johns, Exchange Bristol and Independent Venue Week to showcase the ways in which grassroots live music can be made more accessible for deaf and disabled audiences, PSNEurope sister publication Music Week has reported.
Part of Independent Venue Week 2018, the showcase will feature performance from the likes of Jesuits, Iceman Furniss Quartet and Emily Isherwood, with The Exchange promoting access information about the event on its Facebook page, and providing free-of-charge PA tickets and accessible seating locations.
“Historically, much of Attitude Is Everything’s work has focussed on ‘big ticket’ events such as festivals and large-scale shows – however, it is equally important that Deaf and disabled people can access grassroots venues,” said Attitude Is Everything CEO Suzanne Bull. “It is possible to do this in affordable, innovative and unobtrusive ways, and we are massively grateful to Exchange Bristol, to Big Jeff and to Independent Venue Week for enabling us to demonstrate these tips from our DIY guide.”
Sybil Bell, founder of Independent Venue Week said: “Attitude Is Everything have achieved great things in helping open up live music to deaf and disabled people. Independent Venue Week is really chuffed to have them onboard as one of our charity partners, and it is fantastic to see their DIY Access Guide being put into practice by the Exchange. For some music fans, even the smallest and most inexpensive changes can make a world of difference.”
Big Jeff Johns added: “In a ideal world music venues of all shapes and sizes would be accessible for everyone, but this is not the case for a fair few independent venues up and down the country. Attitude is Everything is an organisation that provides top level support and advice as to how the venues can make the shows more accessible. There is nothing like the thrill of being able to experience live music, something that is happening in front of your eyes.
“Also speaking as someone who has learning difficulties myself, live music has helped me to build as a person, I’ve made friends and developed coping strategies. Music venues to me provide a safe space with which I could exist and structured socialising which made me feel ok around people. It’s something we should share. I am really honoured to involved with both Attitude is Everything and Independent Venue Week.”
According to Government data, 13.3m Deaf and disabled people live in the UK and in 2016 3.6m disabled adults attended a live music event.
Attitude is Everything’s DIY Guide will also be promoted at a PRS for Music panel How To Get Started in the Music Business taking place at the Exchange on the afternoon of January 31.
You can read PSNEurope’s interview with Bull here, in which she discusses the work being done to make live music events and spaces more accessible.