Accessibility Services

Minnesota Opera is committed to breaking down the barriers to participation that can impede access to the performing arts for the members of our community with both physical and hidden disabilities. In partnership with Ordway, our performance home, we offer a range of accessibility services with the goal of creating a more inclusive space where our performances and events are accessible to all.

Please read on for a description of the services offered by MN Opera and Ordway. You can indicate your needs when ordering tickets by contacting calling our Patron Services department at 612-333-6669 or emailing tickets@mnopera.org.

 

  Accessible Entrances

The Ordway is located at 345 Washington Street in downtown Saint Paul directly across from Rice Park. The main entrance on Washington Street is accessible and a cut-out area is available. Music Theater elevators operate between the Orchestra main level, Mezzanine 2nd level, and Balcony levels on the northwest side of the lobby.

The Travelers Artist Entrance on 5th Street, on the north side of the building, has an inclined entrance.


  Accessible Parking

Accessible parking near the Ordway is limited. Any parking meter is free for vehicles with a validation.

There are numerous parking ramps within two blocks distance. There is no direct skyway connection to the Ordway, but if you are coming through the RiverCentre you can get very close to the main entrance. View more parking and public transportation options.


  Accessible Restrooms

The Ordway has two accessible companion care/family restrooms. One is located next to the coat check on the south side of the Ordway’s main lobby and the other is located on the Concert Hall Lower Level.

Additional Music Theater accessible restrooms are located on the Mezzanine level and Balcony levels (when available) on the northwest side of the lobby; and Concert Hall accessible restrooms are located in the lower level.


  Accessible Seating

Accessible seating includes designated spaces for individuals who use wheelchairs or need aisle transfer seats and companion seats.

The Music Theater has accessible seats on the Orchestra Main level, Mezzanine 2nd level, and 3rd level Balcony Loge (right side). View a detailed seating chart for the Music Theater that shows the location of accessible seating here.

Purchasing Accessible Seating Online: When selecting seats online, note that accessible locations are marked with this symbol Wheelchair accessible icon. Hold the cursor over the seat location to verify that the location is accessible. By purchasing these seats, you are acknowledging that you, or another member of your party, have mobility/accessibility needs. If you have questions about accessible seating, please MN Opera Patron Services at 612-333-6669 or tickets@mnopera.org for assistance.


  Allergies/Chemical Sensitivities

Please be considerate of those who may have allergies or chemical sensitivities. It is recommended that you refrain from using strong perfumes and colognes so as not to distract the patrons sitting around you.


  Assistive Listening

Assistive listening devices amplify and clarify sound by cutting down or eliminating ambient noise. Infrared assistive listening systems are installed in both theaters; headsets may be used at any seat, and are available at all performances.

To check out a headset for use during the performance, be prepared to leave your state identification card, driver’s license, or other form of ID with an Ordway staff member. Your card will be returned to you upon receipt of a headset following the show. Headsets are distributed free-of-charge on a first-come first-serve basis.

Please contact Ordway Ticket Services at at 651-224-4222 (Voice), 651-282-3100 (TTY), or access@ordway.org for more information.


  Audio Description

Audio description is scheduled for select MN Opera performances throughout the year. Using an infrared headset, guests can listen to trained audio describers give live, verbal descriptions of movements, facial expressions, costumes, scenery, lighting and other visual elements of a performance, providing the context they would otherwise miss. Parts of the program are also read aloud before the performance.

To check out a headset for use during the performance, be prepared to leave your state identification card, driver’s license, or other form of ID with an Ordway staff member. Your card will be returned to you upon receipt of a headset following the show. Headsets are distributed free-of-charge on a first-come first-serve basis.

Audio description will be available for the following upcoming Minnesota Opera Sunday matinee productions:

Patrons who would like take advantage of Audio Description are entitled to a 50% discount. Tickets can be purchased online at the links above or by calling MN Opera Patron Services at 612-333-6669.


  Alternative Format Materials

Braille and Large Print Programs are available for all performances and may be obtained at Patron Services in Ordway’s first level lobby.


  Curb to Seat Service and Drop-off

An accessible drop-off cut-out area is available and located at the main entrance of the Ordway at 345 Washington Street (on the east side of the building). Please note occasionally this option is not available for pick-up as Washington Street may be closed for pedestrian traffic.

Ordway doorkeepers are available prior to all performances to assist guests before and after the performance. Medics are available to assist guests to their seats and/or wheelchair-accessible locations.

Mobility aids that cannot be stored safely within the guest’s seating area and wheelchairs for those guests who transfer to a theater seat will be stored outside the theater as close as possible to guest’s seat.

At intermission, medics make every effort to check in with guests who may need assistance getting to restroom entrances or intermission bars. At the conclusion of the performance, Ordway staff members are available to assist guests.

Please contact Ordway Ticket Services at at 651-224-4222 (Voice), 651-282-3100 (TTY), or access@ordway.org for more information.


  Noise-Canceling Headphones

Noise Reducing Headphones are available for guests’ use. Headphones can benefit individuals with autism spectrum disorder and others with sensory sensitivities. No reservations needed.

To check out a headset for use during the performance, be prepared to leave your state identification card, driver’s license, or other form of ID with an Ordway staff member. Your card will be returned to you upon receipt of a headset following the show. Headsets are distributed free-of-charge on a first-come first-serve basis.

Please contact Ordway Ticket Services at at 651-224-4222 (Voice), 651-282-3100 (TTY), or access@ordway.org for more information.


  Open Captioning

English translations or captions are projected above the stage for all performances.


  Service Animals

Trained service animals are allowed in all areas of the facility where people are allowed unless the animal poses a direct threat, a fundamental alteration, is not housebroken or is not under the control of the person with the disability. Service animals must remain on a leash or harness at all times and will rest in the seating area of the individual with a disability. Service animals may not use additional seats unless a ticket has been purchased for the adjacent seat. All other animals are prohibited.


  Questions

For additional assistance, to inquire about an accommodation not mentioned above, or if would like to receive additional information about accessibility at MN Opera performances, please contact us and let us know what we can do at 612-333-6669 or tickets@mnopera.org. For a listing of the full range of accessibility services offered by Ordway, please visit their website.

 

Stay in Touch With Our Newsletter

Support the Opera and Donate

Find Out More