The Kennedy Center

Information for Patrons and Visitors who are Blind or have Low Vision

The Kennedy Center strives to make its performances and facilities accessible to all our patrons. For additional information or if you have questions, need assistance, or an accommodation not mentioned below, please contact the Office of Accessibility at (202) 416-8727 or access@kennedy-center.org.

Alternate Formats

Symbol for Large Print

Large print Playbills are available at all performances. Braille Playbills are available at all performances with the exception of dance. Both large print and Braille may be obtained from the head usher or ticket taker.

Symbol of Braille

Other Kennedy Center print materials will be made available in alternate formats upon request with at least two weeks' notice. To request a document in an alternate format, please contact the Accessibility Office at (202) 416-8727 or access@kennedy-center.org.

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Audio Description

Symbol of Audio description

Audio description is scheduled for select Kennedy Center events throughout the year. Using a single earpiece connected to an infrared headset, patrons who are blind or have low vision can listen to trained audio describers give live, verbal descriptions of actions, costumes, scenery, and other visual elements of a performance. Audio describers start pre-show notes approximately 15 minutes before the performance begins.

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:

  • Hall of States ALD Desk for the Opera House and Eisenhower Theater; approximately one hour prior to performances;
  • Hall of Nations coatroom for the Concert Hall; approximately one hour prior to performances; and
  • entrances to the Terrace Theater, Theater Lab, Millennium Stage, Terrace Gallery, and Family Theater approximately 30 minutes prior to performances.

Search our calendar for a complete list of upcoming audio-described performances, or contact the Instant-Charge Services Desk at (202) 416-8528 (voice).

To receive free monthly notices about upcoming audio-described events, please log in to your Kennedy Center account and update your contact preferences or send your name, mailing address, and e-mail address to access@kennedy-center.org with “Subscribe Audio Description Alerts” in the subject line.

The Kennedy Center also offers audio description upon request. Requests to audio describe non-designated events must be received at least two weeks prior to the event by the Accessibility Office at (202) 416-8727 or access@kennedy-center.org. These requests are subject to the availability of a describer and are provided at the discretion of the management.

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Curb to Seat Service

Symbol of Accessibility

Kennedy Center doormen are available starting one hour before performances begin to assist patrons in getting from the front of the building to the theaters. Once at the theater, Access Ushers are available to assist patrons to their seats.

Please note: Doormen are not available after performances and may not be available prior to Millennium Stage performances. Staff, volunteers, doormen, and ushers are not able to assist patrons in transferring to or from a wheelchair, theater seat or vehicle; operate motorized mobility aids such as scooters and Segways; or to provide personal attendant services such as assisting patrons in the restroom, with taking medications, or with similar activities. Ushers are not permitted to accompany patrons into the parking garage

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Touch Tours

Touch tours of the Kennedy Center are available upon request with two weeks' advance notice. To request a touch tour, contact the Accessibility Office at (202) 416-8727 or access@kennedy-center.org; or visit the Guided Tours page and complete the Accessible Tour request form.

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Contact Information

Accessibility Office:

Voice (202) 416-8727
access@kennedy-center.org
Hours: Mon.-Fri., 10 a.m.-6 p.m.

Information and Tickets:

TTY (202) 416-8524
Voice (202) 467-4600
Out-of-Town (800) 444-1324
Hours: Daily, 10 a.m. to 9 p.m.

Subscriptions Office:

TTY (202) 416-8518
Voice (202) 416-8500
Hours: Mon.-Fri., 10 a.m.-5 p.m.

Group Sales Office:

TTY (202) 416-8410
Voice (202) 416-8400
Hours: Mon.-Fri., 10 a.m.-6 p.m.

Parking Garage:

Voice (202) 416-7984
Hours: Mon.-Fri., 9 a.m.-5 p.m.
Call 202-416-7987 evenings and weekends