On 8 and 9 August Read for RNIB Day joined award-winning author Patrick Ness to bring to life his latest story, written exclusively for RNIB. “Now That You’ve Died” was narrated by actor Christopher Eccleston (Doctor Who) and co-directed by Guided Collective duo Hector Harkness (Punchdrunk) and Kate Hargreaves (Gideon Reeling).
Patrick Ness was briefed to write a story that made guests at the event question their expectations of story-telling, whilst experiencing a unique sensory experience without using their vision.
Specially invited guests were taken on an exhilarating journey into the afterlife within the physical space of a conventional lift. Instead of moving up and down though, the lift moved horizontally and audience members listened, tasted and smelled their way through the story. Sound was used to create an immersive narrative which ensured that the performance was genuinely inclusive.
Patrick spoke of his delight in working with Read for RNIB Day:
I’ve been lucky enough to win the Carnegie Medal a couple times, and one of most brilliant things about it is getting a braille copy of your winning book and meeting some awesome young blind and partially sighted readers. When RNIB offered me the idea of a “play without visuals”, I leapt at it. I hope it brings a huge spotlight on Read for RNIB Day.”
Read for RNIB Day
Read for RNIB Day campaign manager, Becca McRow, said:
So many of us love to get lost in a good book, but experiencing a story isn’t just about written words on a page. We wanted to encourage people to think differently about reading. The event has gained widespread media coverage and influential supporters who have been encouraged to spread the word about Read for RNIB Day, talk about the importance of accessible reading, and ultimately help us change the story for blind and partially sighted readers.”
Whilst he was unable to attend, Stephen Fry tweeted his six million plus followers to highlight the fact that only seven per cent of books are fully accessible to blind and partially sighted people. Outside of the Twitter-sphere reviews and mentions have appeared in the Sunday Independent, and in publications such as the Huffington Post, The Upcoming website and author Frances Hardinge’s ‘Twisted City’ blog.
Behind the scenes
Watch the exclusive behind the scenes footage of the performance here:Return to news listings page