An Immersive Dance Project Radicalizing the Physical Body in the Virtual World
A contemporary dance performance pioneering the human body through the virtual space. This joint-institution, international, and interdisciplinary research project explores the dancing body through technologies such as motion-capture sensors, virtual reality headsets, digital avatars, and the physical stage to wield a narrative between man and machine. The resulting work seeks to question the human body’s engagement, sensorial response, and viewership with advanced technologies in the fields of virtual design and dance.
Premiered: July 25, 26, 27, 2019
Location: Uferstudios, Berlin, Germany
Collaboration: Over 30 team members spanning fields of dance to virtual design to production
Dancers: Melissa Ferrari, Cheng-Jung Tsai, Janan Laubscher, John Snyder
Art & Tech
Together a cross-disciplinary team from gamelab.berlin (of Humboldt Universität zu Berlin, the University of Applied Sciences Kaiserslautern | Virtual Design, Ghunghru Sounds (San Francisco, California) and Carly Lave forged in December 2018 to envision new methodologies of using motion-capture technology and virtual reality in a performance space.
The feasibility and creation of this project is entirely dependent on the novel and exciting art-tech collaboration. The performance will feature a radical use of the Optitrack motion-capture system with accompanying body sensors and Head-Mounted Displays (HMDs) onstage. Through live projections, the dancers will interact with a motion-captured representation of their body in the virtual environment, engineered in Unity by the Kaiserslautern team. Collectively, each party brings domain knowledge in order to complement the research and application necessary for production.
Visual conception for Golem branding and design was created by Will Hamilton (Indexthumb). Together, in collaborating with Carly, he pulled inspiration from Sci-Fi dreams and digital landscapes to envision a genderless pixelated world where the jump between physical and digital bodies melt together.
The world of Golem is brought to life through a collaboration with SF based collective GHUNGHRU. With her project as OSE, founder Arushi Jain develops the original sound design and spatialization for the Virtual Environment and live physical performance - exploring hindustani classical ragas with her voice and modular synthesizers. When watching the performance in VR, users can interact with objects which produce sound and respond to the presence of audience members.
Sample the score at:
Virtual Design of the Golem VR World is created by the talented students of University of Applied Sciences Kaiserslautern | Virtual Design. The VR Environment and Unity Design is spearheaded by Till Rheinländer.
GOlEM is created through a novel dance-tech collaboration by the following partners
Fulbright Kommission Deutschland
Stanford University (Stanford Arts)
Humboldt Universität zu Berlin