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Transcript of Digital Theatre
An examination of the relationship between the transformative and liminal qualities of digital sound, image and interactive applications, in the theatrical context.
"something which is neither theatre nor film, but partakes of the evanescent reality of dreams"
"…until sophisticated computer control, the movement and mechanics of state scenery, however skilful in operation, was apparent to the audience – scenery was lifted, pushed or pulled. New control systems, involving miniaturised hydraulics and below stage tracking, have enabled scenes to have a far greater complexity of manoeuvres, and return to the theatre spectacle the gasp of surprise and delight that has historically always accompanied the visual scene change”. (Baugh 2005: 210)
Multimedia in Theatre
Robert Lepage and Ex Machina
Dixon, S. (2007) DIGITAL PERFORMANCE. Massachusetts Institute of Technology.
Baugh, C. (2005) theatre, performance and technology: the development of scenography in the twentieth century. Hampshire, Palgrave Macmillan.
Harvie, J. and Lavender, H. (2010) Making contemporary theatre: International rehearsal processes. Manchester University Press.
Machon, J. (2013) IMMERSIVE THEATRES: INTIMACY AND IMMEDIACY IN CONTEMPORARY PERFORMANCE. Hampshire, Palgrave Macmillan.
Auslander, P. (1999) LIVENESS: PERFORMANCE IN A MEDIATIZED CULTURE. Oxon, Routledge.
A new stage age: why theatres should embrace digital technology
Digital Drama: The technology transforming theatre
New Paradise Theatre
"An attempt to recreate in actual space the experience of surfing through cyberspace".
Katie Mitchell on directing multimedia productions
“…where live action is combined with media technology to create a distinctive visual language, where the text does not pre-exist the process of development and the way it is performed results from the performers’ immediate experience – depending on location, audience and, most importantly, the actors’ personal material”.
(Harvey & Lavender 2010:178)
New Paradise Laboratories
“Theatre tends to hold its Luddite credentials
high. We fancy ourselves to be the antidote
to all that digital stuff.” He believes it is
the wrong attitude. “If we’re serious about
reaching young and nontraditional potential
theatregoers, we’ve got to think of the Internet
as a delivery system, not just of marketing but
"These physical/virtual portals were objects that would become active when the physical participant came near them. The online participant would be instantly transported, or teleported, to the equivalent section of the online space".
In relation to Artaud's film scenarios - Steve Dixon likens this quote to the liminal qualities of digital theatre.
The birth of the Personal Computer in late 70's
Mechanics of Mise-en-scene
“We try to not let the technology take over, and just because something is possible isn't necessarily a good reason to do it… Using technology without it being apparent is something that we aim for”
“His theatricality is founded on mixing live performance and multimedia, combining the actors action on stage with visual projections (photography and film), sound and new technology (digital and robotics)..."
(Harvey & Lavender 2010: 160)
“Awakening and engaging the fullness and diversity of sensory awareness is a central feature of immersive practice”
(Machon 2013: 75)
"eyes which touch"
(Schneider 1997: 32)
"touch is the body asking questions"
(Machon 2013: 78)
Artuad’s ‘total theatre:
"Theatre will recapture from cinema, music-hall, the circus and life itself, those things that always belong to it… The magnitude and scale of the show aimed at the whole anatomy… An intensive mustering of objects, gestures and signs used in a new spirit”. (Artaud, 1993: 66)
Antonin Artaud (1896–1948)
A French playwright, poet, actor and theatre director.