Online navigable opera, immersive music experiences, and the 1960s precursor to IMAX

A weekly digest charting developments across live performance, technology, and the emerging Metaverse

New Forms and Audiences

A live streaming documentary theater work

Faire sa vie is a new work by the French collective LFKs in which eleven young people reflect on their experience of shooting a series of short films in the deserted landscapes of Vercors and Luberon in France.

LFKs, originally organized by artist Jean Michel Bruyère, has a long history of charting new theatrical forms from documentary theater and immersive theater to electronic theater and submerged theater. Take La Dispersion du Fils for example—a interactive and stereoscopic environment in which spectators could assemble over 600 film fragments into a 360° immersive viewing space in infinitely varied ways.

Faire sa vie will stream live on Twitch and YouTube on January 20th at 2:00 PM EST.

An Online Multimedia Opera on Climate Change by Elizabeth Swados

WEATHER#, premiering on January 30th, will take place in an online 360° space, composed of 12 rooms with video and animation. Audiences will navigate through a virtual space, interacting with the visual and musical contents of the opera, uncovering different stories, and exploring their underlying cultural and scientific references.

Tech and the Metaverse

Sony Takes Wraps Off Secret Unreal Engine Project

Sony has announced a new subsidiary focused on developing immersive music experiences. Its first project features pop star Madison Beer performing as an ultra-realistic virtual avatar inside a meticulous recreation of the Sony Hall concert venue in NYC. The experience will premiere online and on Oculus and Playstation VR later this winter.

Entangled Histories

Expo 67’s Labyrinth Pavilion

This week we're looking back to one of the highlights of Expo 67— the creation of the Labyrinth Pavilion by the National Film Board of Canada, a five-story building with two screening halls and an enormous transitional space flooded with color and sound. An antecedent to today's immersive experiences, the work was designed by producers and filmmakers Colin Low, Roman Kroitor, and Hugh O’Connor, and brought to mind Daedalus’ labyrinth where Theseus killed the Minotaur.

Standing on eight balconies spread over four floors, audiences were engulfed by gigantic screens projecting images symbolizing the entry of humans into the world, the innocence of childhood, and the joie de vivre of adolescence. Two hundred and eighty-eight speakers arranged behind the screens ensured a sound experience that had been unmatched until then.

It was this last hall that held the highlight of the show—a film projected simultaneously by five projectors on five large screens arranged in the shape of a cross. The installation was an unprecedented sensory experience that lit the way for IMAX technology that would follow years later. This video doesn't quite give justice to the immensity of the work, but it's the only digital documentation.

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Part aggregator, part independent journal, Skrim is a weekly digest charting developments across live performance, technology, and the Metaverse. Skrim is delivered every Tuesday to your inbox.