Chichester Festival Theatre has begun presenting specially translated performances for Polish audiences.
Polish is the second most spoken language in the region after English, the theatre said.
A performance of The Butterfly Lion was translated live into Polish via audio headsets on November 2, following a pilot performance last year, and the theatre said it intended to repeat the event in future.
Lydia Cassidy, CFT’s director of marketing and communications, said the theatre had tried to reach its local Polish community by publicising its translated performances on Facebook and in local schools.
She said: “This is the latest initiative in our efforts to welcome as many people as possible in our community. We hit on the idea of using our audio description equipment to provide a live translation by a skilled interpreter, rather than surtitles, because we thought it would be easier and more engaging for both young children and adults to listen to the dialogue in their native language rather than having to read captions”
Cassidy added that CFT hoped “to make foreign language translation performances a regular feature in future”.
The Wizard of Oz, the theatre’s Christmas show, will be translated into Polish for a matinee performance on December 23.
Earlier this year, the Stephen Joseph Theatre in Scarborough used captioning technology to stage a show with Polish captions, and said it hoped to do more to cater for the town’s large Polish community.