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The Audio Description Project

Audio Description Project Conferences

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Since 2016, the Audio Description Project (ADP) has held an annual conference in conjunction with the ACB Convention. In 2020 and 2021, the ADP Conferences were entirely virtual, and in 2022, sessions were held virtually, in-person, and in hybrid format. Panels offer a range of topics related to audio description, including scholarly research, national parks, streaming services, and even the circus.

The 2023 ADP Conference: June 22–24

The ADP Conference will be held virtually on June 22, 23, and 24. There will also be several sessions focused on audio description at the ACB Convention, which will take place in Schaumburg, Ill., from June 30 to July 7. To receive registration, hotel, and schedule information directly, send a blank e-mail to [email protected].

Here is the 2023 ADP Conference Schedule, which will be Virtual on Zoom.
You MUST be registered to attend on Zoom. To register, go to and click on "Register for the Conference and Convention" at the top of the page following your sign in. The fee is the same for the virtual and/or in-person attendance: $35 for members, $50 for non-members (but non-members can first join for $10, then sign up for $35 the next day!).

Thursday, June 22
11:30 AM to 12:45 PM (CDT)
The CVTA Explained
Moderator: Kim Charlson, Co-Chair, ACB Audio Description Project Steering Committee, and Co-Chair, FCC Disability Advisory Committee, Watertown, MA.
Panelists: Blake E. Reid, Clinical Professor, Colorado Law, Counsel to TDI, Boulder, CO; Karen Peltz Strauss, National Disability Advocate and Historian, Communication Service for the Deaf, Washington, DC; and Clark Rachfal, ACB Director of Advocacy and Governmental Affairs, Alexandria, VA.

The Communications, Video, and Technology Accessibility Act (CVTA) would update existing regulations to ensure better and easier access to a variety of technology for people who are blind, low vision, or DeafBlind. Panelists will discuss the writing of the bill and what improvements it promises.

2:30 PM – 5:15 PM (CDT)
More from the Streaming Services:
Moderator: Carl Richardson, Co-Chair, ACB Audio Description Project, Brighton, MA.
Invited Streaming Services include: Apple+, Disney+, HULU, HBO Max, Netflix, Prime Video, Paramount+, and Showtime.

Back by popular demand! Representatives from major streaming services will discuss how their organizations make their programming accessible now and what they've got planned for the future.

Friday, June 23
1:00 PM – 2:15 PM (CDT)
ACVREP Certified Audio Description Specialist (CAUDES) Update
Moderator: Kim Charlson, Chair, ACVREP Certification Subject Matter Expert Committee, Watertown, MA.
Panelists:  Kathie Zeider, ACVREP Executive Director, Tucson, AZ; Joel Snyder, ACB Audio Description Project Founder and Senior Consultant, Takoma Park, MD; and Martin Wilde, Vice-Chair, ACVREP Certification Subject Matter Expert Committee, Chicago, IL.

Presenters will provide background details and an update on the progress of the work to create a certification process for audio description professionals.

4:00 PM – 5:15 PM (CDT)
AD Across the Arts
(Co-Sponsor: ACB Friends in Art)
Moderator: Dr. Tabitha Kenlon, ACB Audio Description Project Coordinator, Alexandria, VA.
Panelists: Leigh Jackson, Director, IDEA Programming, People's Light, Malvern, PA; Lisa B. Lewis, Founder, Executive Director, Omnium: A Bold New Circus, Brooklyn, NY; Mark Osborne, Director, Visitor and Volunteer Services, Holocaust Museum, Houston, TX.

While film and tv might be the most well-known audio described art form, many arts and entertainment venues use AD as well. Live theatre and dance performances, museums, parks, and even the circus provide AD to increase accessibility. Panelists will share some of the challenges and the excitement of bringing all the arts to life for people who are blind or have low vision.

Saturday, June 24
10:00 AM – 11:15 AM (CDT)
Audio Description Research
Moderator: Dr. Joel Snyder, ACB Audio Description Project Founder and Senior Consultant, Takoma Park, MD.
Panelists: Pilar Orero, PhD—Professor, Universitat Autonoma de Barcelona, Barcelona, Spain; Rosiana Natalie—PhD Student, Singapore Management University, Singapore; and Joselia Neves, PhD—Professor-Associate Dean, Hamad Bin Khalifa University, Doha, Qatar.

The academic community has embraced audio description (AD) as a form of audiovisual translation and within other disciplines, particularly in countries outside the U.S. Join us to learn the latest in efforts to examine AD through survey-based research as well as lessons learned from professional practice.

11:30 AM – 12:45 PM (CDT)
Audio Description for Kids
Moderators: Carl Richardson, Co-Chair, ACB Audio Description Project, Brighton, MA; and Dr. Tabitha Kenlon, ACB Audio Description Project Coordinator, Alexandria, VA.
Panelists: Jason Stark, CEO, Described and Captioned Media Program (DCMP), Spartanburg, SC; Jamie Aznive, Audience Services Manager, Wheelock Family Theatre at Boston University, Boston, MA; Matt Kaplowitz, President, Bridge Multimedia, New York, NY; and Sam Gould Esq., Open Door Theater, & Founder, Think Outside the Vox, Acton, MA.

Whether kids are relaxing with a book or movie or doing a homework assignment, audio description provides vital opportunities for engagement with the world of ideas. Panelists will discuss resources to help parents and teachers integrate audio described content into the lives of their children and students.

2:30 PM – 3:45 PM (CDT)
Audio Description Across the Globe
(Co-sponsor: ACB International Relations Committee)
Moderator: Dr. Joel Snyder, ACB Audio Description Project Founder and Senior Consultant,  Takoma Park, MD.
Panelists: Martine Abel Williamson, Audio Description Advocate and President, World Blind Union; Auckland, NZ; Sonali Rai, Royal National Institute of Blind People (RNIB),    London, UK; Jonathan Marshall, Research Assistant, RNIB, London, UK; and Shakila Maharaj, Audio Description Producer and Consumer Advocate, Shazacin, Durban, South Africa.

Several years ago, ACB collaborated with the World Blind Union in a survey of audio description practice worldwide. This panel will highlight AD activity in New Zealand/Australia, South Africa, and in the UK.

In-Person ADP Activities in Schaumburg:

Monday, July 3
4:00 PM – 5:15 PM (CDT)
Film Screening: One Step at a Time: A Journey of Hope, Commitment and Resiliency.
Blind Filmmaker Michael McCulloch, Houston, TX, will set the stage for his documentary and answer questions after the viewing. One Step at a Time chronicles McCulloch's trek of the 26-mile Classic Inca Trail to Machu Picchu. The film premiered in February 2021 at the ReelAbilities Houston Film and Arts Festival and won the Best Cinematography Award at the Sports, Fitness and Recreation Festival in Toronto in August 2022.

Wednesday, July 5
7:00 PM – 11:30 PM (CDT)
Double Feature with the 2021 and 2022 Oscar-Winning Best Pictures!

7:00 PM: Coda (2021)
Length: 1 hour, 51 minutes – PG13
As a CODA (Child of Deaf Adults) Ruby is the only hearing person in her deaf family. When the family's fishing business is threatened, Ruby finds herself torn between pursuing her love of music and her fear of abandoning her parents.

9:00 PM: Everything Everywhere All at Once (2022)
Length: 2 hours, 19 minutes, -- R
With her laundromat teetering on the brink of failure and her marriage to wimpy husband, Waymond, on the rocks, overworked, Evelyn Wang, struggles to cope with everything, including tattered relationships with her judgmental father, Gong Gong and her daughter, Joy. She must also brace herself for an unpleasant meeting with an impersonal bureaucrat: Deirdre, the shabbily-dressed IRS auditor. However, as the stern agent loses patience, an inexplicable multiverse rift becomes an eye-opening exploration of parallel realities. Will Evelyn jump down the rabbit hole? How many stars are in the universe? Can weary Evelyn fathom the irrepressible force of possibilities, tap into newfound powers, and prevent an evil entity from destroying the thin, countless layers of the unseen world?


The 2022 ADP Conference

The sessions comprising the ADP Conference took place throughout the ACB Convention, from July 1 to July 8. Below are links to recordings of the ADP sessions.

Previous Conference Agendas and Recordings