Rubicon Installs New Hearing Loop in Theatre
Hearing-aid users attending performances at Rubicon Theatre will now find the experience more enjoyable thanks to the recent installation of a new hearing loop system. A hearing loop sends pure, clear sound directly to the audience member's hearing device without the need to use any additional equipment. It effectively turns the user's hearing aid into wireless earphones that broadcast sound specifically customized to their pattern of hearing loss.
Already widely used in Europe and Scandinavia, hearing loops are gaining popularity across the United States thanks to advocacy campaigns like Let's Loop Ventura, brought to the community by the Independent Living Resource Center. Most of today's hearing aids already have the required t-coil receiver in them and can easily be programmed to use hearing loops.
Rubicon joins the growing ranks of local and national venues that have adopted the optimal access hearing loop technology which provides for the hard of hearing. Over the last year, more than 20 locations in Santa Barbara and Ventura have added this technology. "Every seat of our theatre - including the balcony - now has coverage from the new hearing loop," said Christina M. Burck, Executive Producer of Rubicon Theatre Company. "Our patrons can sit in any seat and experience the play as if they were sitting in the front row."
The hearing loop installation for Rubicon Theatre was partially funded from an anonymous donation from a private donor who is hearing impaired.
"Many times, hearing loop projects are funded by individuals who themselves wish to be able to hear better or to have greater sound clarity during performances, sermons or events at venues they frequently visit," said Kase Martis, Hearing Loop Advocate from the Let's Loop Ventura campaign. "A hearing loop installation can be similar in price to a pair of high-end hearing aids, so donors find this type of gift a great investment."
Rubicon's mission is to entertain, enrich and educate the region's residents and visitors through production of innovative professional theatrical productions, festivals, special events, and education programs. The addition of the hearing loop will enable Rubicon to share that mission with the estimated 160,000 residents within our region with hearing loss who will now have the chance to experience professional theatre with full clarity.
The Independent Living Resource Center, Inc. (ILRC) is a community-based, private non-profit organization of, by and for persons with disabilities. ILRC promotes the independent living philosophy and its tenets of full access, equal opportunity and maximum success and self-sufficiency for all people with disabilities. The goal of the staff is to eliminate barriers to full participation in the community.