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Audiences at Children's Theatre Company

CTC understands that patrons with Autism Spectrum Disorder and Sensory Processing Disorder have unique and varying sensory needs and sensitivities, as may individuals with Post-Traumatic Stress Disorder, anxiety, and other sensory, social, and cognitive disabilities and mental illnesses.

CTC values creating accessible theatre experiences for all individuals in our community and is committed to increasing access and inclusion for individuals with sensory sensitivities.

At our Sensory Friendly performances, sensory modifications are balanced with preserving the engaging theatre experience desired by all children and families.  

What to expect

  • Audience lights left on low throughout the entire performance 
  • Overall sound reduction throughout the entire performance; noise-reducing headphones and disposable ear plugs are also available at the Audience Services and Access Desk.
  • Aspects of productions may be modified for the Sensory Friendly performance. These modifications may include changes to lighting, sounds, and performance qualities such as eliminating strobe effects, lessening the intensity of a sound effect, and modifying actor-audience interaction. 
  • Access to the Take-a-Break Space, which is equipped with a variety of fidgets, weighted blankets, and other sensory supports 
  • When attending shows on the UnitedHealth Group Stage, access to the Quiet Room, a place that allows the performance to be viewed with some separation from the audience
  • Additional CTC staff who’ve received training from Fraser and on-site volunteers from Fraser and Autism Society of Minnesota 

Audience members are welcome to bring their own manipulatives, seat cushions, comfort objects, and extra support items to the show. Families may select their own seats, but if special assistance or a buffer seat is needed, please contact the Ticket Office at 612.874.0400. 

Pre-Visit Resources

Audiences at Children's Theatre Company

Sensory Guides and Social Narratives

A production-specific Sensory Guide and Social Narrative designed to prepare patrons for the experience of attending the production, available online the week of the designated performance 


Social Story

A Social Story is a written story that shows information about a social situation to convey behavioral expectations and prepare for a new environment. It is a common tool for people with Autism Spectrum Disorders, created to structure social skills, improve appropriate behavior, and increase engagement.



Meet Your Seat

Meet Your Seat opportunities are provided to reduce stress and support successful priming for the actual event. To schedule a Meet Your Seat visit prior to your scheduled performance date, email

Video Tours

Sensory Friendly Performances

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Cargill Stage

Uprooted from his family, Lonnie couldn’t feel more alone. But when his class learns to write poetry, his verses take him back to a time of togetherness. As he finds his voice as a poet, Lonnie learns how poetry can bring him closer to others and himself.

Friday, March 3, 3023 at 7pm




UnitedHealth Group Stage

Oh no, Corduroy’s button has gone missing! Join the beloved teddy bear as he takes a rollicking ride up the escalator and begins a delightfully destructive romp through every section of the department store. Will he find his button at the top of a teetering store display, or will the bumbling security guard catch him before kindhearted Lisa can give him a home?

Saturday, April 1, 2023 at 11am

FY23 Show Blocks_American Tail

An American Tail the Musical

UnitedHealth Group Stage

In this riveting new musical based on the beloved animated film, optimistic young Fievel Mousekewitz escapes Russia by boat, making his way as a new immigrant in the vast city of New York. Despite everything stacked against him, Fievel clings to his dreams of a better life and reuniting with his family. Are they Somewhere Out There?

Friday, June 16, 2023 at 7pm

This season’s Sensory Friendly programming is made possible with support from