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March 2021
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A Socially Distanced Sound Installation

As the lights change at a major crossroads in a city in the heart of Europe a car grinds to a halt. Its driver can drive no more. Suddenly, without warning or cause, he has gone blind. Within hours it is clear that this is a blindness like no other. This blindness is infectious. Within days an epidemic of blindness has spread through the city. The government tries to quarantine the contagion by herding the newly blind people into an empty asylum. But their attempts are futile. The city is in panic.

Award-winning playwright Simon Stephens has adapted Nobel Prize-winner José Saramago’s dystopian novel Blindness as a sound installation, directed by Walter Meierjohann with immersive binaural sound design by Ben and Max RinghamJuliet Stevenson voices the Storyteller/Doctor’s wife in this gripping story of the rise and, ultimately, profoundly hopeful end of an unimaginable global pandemic.

This ticketed installation for a limited number of visitor runs up to 3 times a day, with seating arranged 2m apart in accordance with social distancing guidelines in a transformed Oxford Playhouse. Visitors will listen on headphones as the narrative unfolds around them. 

The installation includes extended periods of complete blackout, strobe and bright flashing lights in close proximity to visitors and loud noises. Blindness contains the following themes: discussion of sexual assault, description of an act of physical assault and explorations of psychological trauma

Please Note:
We are so excited to be welcoming our audiences back to Oxford Playhouse.  We want to reassure you that we have implemented all the necessary measures to ensure we are a COVID-19 secure venue and operate within the government guidelines.

View our Covid Secure Measures


Duration: 1 hour 10mins with no interval

Enjoy & Full Circle Members

25% off on Sat 29 May 3.15pm & Sat 5 Jun 3.15pm (max. 2 tickets discounted)

Audio Description:
Audio description is available at every installation. You do not need to book an Audio Description ticket, just speak to a member of front of house staff when you arrive and they will show you how to access the audio introduction and audio description through your headphones.

An audio described version of the installation is also available to stream on demand from home between 28 May to 5 June (Booking Required)

Closed Captioning:
Closed captions are available for the live installation on Wed 2 June at 7.30pm. Book a captioned ticket and you will be given a hand held device which will automatically display the captions during the installation. (Booking Required)

A captioned version of the installation is also available to stream on demand from home between 28 May to 5 June (Booking Required)

How Do I Book?
If you are interested in booking or have any queries related to the audio described and captioned installations of Blindness please contact the Box Office team by calling 01865 305 305 or emailing

Book Tickets

A Donmar Warehouse Production

With the voice of Juliet Stevenson
Based on the novel by José Saramago
Adapted by Simon Stephens
Directed by Walter Meierjohann

Age Guideline 15+

Due to the subject matter we recommend this installation for people aged 15 years and above.


If you require Wheelchair access, please contact or call 01865 305 305


NHS Track & Trace

It is important that ALL audience members please sign in to the NHS Track & Trace App when they arrive at the Theatre. QR codes will be clearly placed outside and inside the building to make this as easy as possible for you.  If you cannot sign in via the App, please let a member of the Front of House Team know, and they will take your details. 

  • a triumph.”
    New York Times
  • Stevenson’s narration is so vivid, and the tech design so atmospheric, that you’d almost swear you could see each scene playing out in front of you.”
    The Guardian
  • Blindness is an exquisitely told story of resilience, violence, and hope."
    The Guardian
  • An exhilarating testament to the power and necessity of art… a unique and unforgettable achievement."
  • “Artistically and technologically pioneering… Stevenson relays the story with her usual impeccable verbal poise."
    Daily Telegraph

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