Accessibility Information for Patrons with Disabilities
Patrons who are Blind or have Low Vision
Audio Described Performances for Visually Impaired Patrons
Seattle Opera offers one performance per opera with additional audio described information to assist those with visual impairments. Using a single earpiece connected to an infrared headset, patrons who are blind or have low vision can listen to a member of Seattle Opera's Education Department give live, verbal descriptions of actions, costumes, scenery, and other visual elements of a performance. The description begins 10 minutes prior to the start of the performance.
Patrons who wish to listen to the description must pick up a headset. Headsets are distributed free of charge on a first-come, first-served basis from the assistance booth (around the corner from coat check) located on the main entry level of McCaw Hall. You will be asked to leave your ID in exchange for the headset. Please ask for a headset with audio description.
We encourage you to arrive at least 60 minutes prior to the start of the performance to allow for traffic delays and give you enough time to pick up a headset, find your seat, and enjoy the pre-performance audio description that begins 10 minutes prior to the performance.
The McCaw Hall usher staff or Seattle Opera volunteers are happy to assist any patrons needing additional assistance. When you arrive at McCaw Hall, please ask any usher for the assistance you need in finding your seat or generally finding your way around McCaw Hall. Please note that usher staff and volunteers are not able to provide personal attendant services.
Performances Available with Audio Description
The following performances will offer audio description. Description begins at 1:50 PM, ten minutes prior each of the following 2:00 PM matinee performances:
- Madame Butterfly: Sunday, August 13, 2017
- The Barber of Seville: Sunday, October 22, 2017
- Così fan tutte: Sunday, January 14, 2018
- Beatrice and Benedict: Sunday, February 25, 2018
- Aida: Sunday, May 13, 2018
Binoculars are available to rent from the assistance booth located on the main entry level of McCaw Hall (around the corner from coat check) for $5.
Patrons who are Deaf or Hard of Hearing
Infrared hearing devices are available at every performance. Using a single earpiece connected to a personal headset, patrons who are hard of hearing can have the performance amplified through their device. (Part of what differentiates opera from other art forms is that the performers sing without the aid of microphones or speakers; amplification is not used in the auditorium and is available only via headset.)
Patrons who wish to listen to the audio described performances (as detailed above) must pick up a headset. Headsets are distributed free of charge on a first-come, first-served basis from the assistance booth (around the corner from coat check) located on the main entry level of McCaw Hall. You will be asked to leave your ID in exchange for the device.
All performances feature English supertitles (captions) visible from all seating areas. These titles are projected above the stage and translate any non-English or English sung or spoken words.
Patrons who have Mobility Disabilities
All entrances to the building, theaters, restaurant, and gift shop are accessible.
Wheelchair accessible seating is available on every level of McCaw Hall. Patrons can either remain in their wheelchair or transfer to a theater seat. Accessible seats are available in the following seating areas: Orchestra, Orchestra Back, Dress Circle Center, Dress Circle, Dress Circle Upper, Gallery Upper, First Tier Back, First Tier Box, Second Tier Back, and Second Tier Box.
Purchasing Accessible Tickets Online
To find accessible seating, please use our Select-Your-Own Seat option. There are accessible seats on every level of McCaw Hall; however, some areas may be sold out. To locate accessible seats, click on the “Seat Options” box above, and select your accessible option from the drop-down. Levels with available accessible seating will be highlighted. Accessible seats will be starred and information about the type of seat will be shown when you hover your mouse over those seats. For further assistance purchasing accessible seats, please call 206.389.7676 or 800.426.1619.
When purchasing accessible seating you acknowledge that you or a member of your party requires accessible seating.
Arriving at McCaw Hall
The Mercer Street Garage, located directly across from Marion Oliver McCaw Hall at 3rd Ave North and Mercer Street, has accessible parking stalls located on levels B and C. Level C is attached by a pedestrian sky bridge linking directly to McCaw Hall. There are also elevators in the parking garage.
In addition, there is curb side drop off on the south side of Mercer Street directly in front of McCaw Hall.
McCaw Hall staff are happy to provide curbside services for anyone who needs additional assistance.
The use of a house wheelchair can be provided to assist patrons to and from their seat. Pull up to the curb in front of McCaw Hall and request assistance from a door usher. Due to the limited number of house wheelchairs, patrons wishing to use a house wheelchair may not remain in the wheelchair during the performance, but will need to transfer to a physical seat.
Inside McCaw Hall
Elevators are located at the north and south ends of the lobbies and provide access to all levels. The Dress Circle wheelchair locations are accessible through the south elevators only. Restrooms are available on all levels and are accessible. Please ask ushers to direct you to the appropriate elevator.
In Need of a Last Minute Accessible Seat?
If you have recently injured yourself or find you need an accessible seat location, but your current ticket is not in an easily accessible location, either contact the ticket office ahead of time or ask an usher for another seat location upon your arrival at the hall. We cannot guarantee that we will have an accessible seat available, but we will do our very best to try to accommodate any last minute seating needs.
More Information on Accessibility
For more information about accessibility, please contact the Ticket Office.
Administrative Offices: 9:00 a.m. to 5:00 p.m., Monday through Friday
McCaw Hall Box Office: Opens two hours prior to performances
Outside of Seattle: 800.426.1619
For TTY Service: 800.833.6388
Administrative Offices: 1020 John St., Seattle, WA 98109
Please note our administrative offices require walking down a flight of stairs. However, there is a phone on the entry level from which you can request assistance. Someone from the Ticket Office can come up the stairs and assist you on the entry level.
McCaw Hall Box Office: 321 Mercer St., Seattle, WA 98109
Main Photo © Rozarii Lynch