Hickory – The Hickory Community Theatre announced today that an assistive listening (or T-coil) loop has been installed in the Jeffers Theatre. This new technology will enhance the theatre experience for patrons with hearing difficulties.

An assistive listening loop, sometimes called an audio induction loop, is a special type of sound system with a loop that acts as a broadcast antenna and provides a magnetic, wireless signal in the theatre. Patrons can access this loop directly through their hearing aids or by checking out a receiver and headphones from the box office.

The signal can be picked up by any hearing aid that is set to the ‘T’ (for Telecoil) setting. Telecoil or T-coil technology is a common feature on today’s hearing aids that can enhance hearing in difficult listening environments.

To access the loop, a user’s hearing aid must be put on a “T” or “t-coil” setting. Contact your audiologist, or hearing aid provider, to determine if your hearing aids have t-coils built in. They can activate the t-coil to turn on manually when you select a specified setting (or program) on your hearing aid, or automatically, when a Telecoil signal is detected.

Your Audiologist can also adjust the volume and frequency response in the t-coil program to make the sound clearer or adjust surrounding environmental noises while listening in the t-coil program.

This new feature will make its debut with the upcoming production of A Raisin in the Sun, which opens of Friday, Jan 31 in the Jeffers Theatre. Call 828-328-2283 or visit hickorytheatre.org for tickets or information about the performance.

The system is provided by All Ears Hear Here out of Asheville, a private company that was founded in 2008 to make Wireless Loop Technology available in Western North Carolina. This project was made possible by a generous grant from the Beaver Family Foundation and through the support of The Guild at HCT.