Boston Pops host first ever Sensory Sensitive Symphony performance for autism community

BOSTON (WHDH) - The Boston Pops are offering their first ever sensory friendly concert at Symphony Hall on Saturday.

The concert is specially crafted for families with children or adults diagnosed with Autism Spectrum Disorder and other sensory sensitivities.

“If the Boston Pops is about anything, it is about music being for everybody,” Conductor Keith Lockhart said. “That includes kids who have issues which might make it difficult for them to enjoy what we do in the normal concert environment.”

The Pops want to make sure everyone feels welcomed.

“A lot of times parents of kids with these sorts of difficulties don’t take their kids out because they are afraid of how people around them will react to them,” Lockhart continued. “That people will frown or say things to their kid that will make them uncomfortable. So I think in many ways the biggest accommodation is we’re saying, ‘It’s alright, this is for you, come here and come the way you are.”

The show has made a few changes and additions to create a calm yet captivating show for everyone in attendance.

“Thoughtful conversations about lighting, too much or too little? Volume, too much or too little,” Executive Director of Juvo Behavioral Health of Massachusetts Dena Shade-Monuteaux said of her collaboration with the Pops. “Even the piece that was chosen was thoughtfully chosen around something that would have appeal with the video backdrop and the visuals to help keep the audience members engaged.

The show is on June 1, and the Pops say they are looking forward to this one-of-a-kind performance.

“Leading by example is what I think they’re doing,” Shade-Monuteaux said. “They’re setting a tone for this city, for our culture, for society where we are today, that everyone is valuable. everybody deserves equal opportunity.

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