The Difference Engine

Every performance of JOAN will be captioned using hand-held captioning equipment for deaf, and hard of hearing audiences called The Difference Engine. This will make the show more accessible for d/Deaf and hard of hearing audiences, as well as those who struggle with spoken English. 

Here's what you need to know:

We would really value your feedback and support in making more of our work d/Deaf accessible, so if you use The Difference Engine, please let us know what you think after the show.

Here is a review of The Difference Engine from an audience member who saw JOAN at Derby Theatre in 2016:

"I was most impressed in the high quality standard of the captions and how perfect it fitted into the small scale one woman monologue performance of Joan.

As a hearing aid user who lip reads, I found this technology allows me to fully understand the whole performance with ease.

I found I could read quickly ahead and to be able to watch the whole show in order to capture the emotions and the visual aspect of the character performance.

I have watch many stage close captioned which are often at the side of the stage and by the time I read them, I have missed the performance of the character. I found the large captions can be distracting the show.

I thoroughly enjoyed how the caption portrays the difference italics voices to present the various characters within the show and the description of the music genre.

The captions writing quality is a perfect colour contrast in Yellow and black was easy to read.

I most definitely would use this technology again as I feel I was in control of my access and it was discreet to have the options to glance and having the ability to read ahead. I felt integrated as there was humour, audience participation and emotions which I felt synchronised with rest of the audience instead of receiving the information second later on.

I am now a fan."

Additional information

The Difference Engine is developed by Talking Birds Theatre Company to provide access to experimental, small scale and site-specific performance. It broadcasts captions to smart phones and tablets.