Anthony

A Collection of New Media Performance Sources

In Sources on March 29, 2011 at 12:45 pm

Here are three interesting sources that I came across while researching for an essay on the impact on Digital Re-mediation of Theatre through the medium of Second Life. The first is an interview with Ze Moo, an “information artist”, and Joyce Timmerman, a member of the Dutch theatre company Slapelozen, done by Andrew Eglinton for the London Theatre Blog. The interview focuses mainly around the Goodbye Dollar event that took place on the 30th of August, 2008 and the various impacts, benefits and difficulties that arose from it. Goodbye Dollar was a live theatre event that took place in Second Life, but was also screened live at De Baile in Amsterdam. This particular interview offers a useful look at what challenges face performers looking to embrace Second Life as a viable medium for performing theatre, citing particular performers to give examples of what possibilities there are for artists in Second Life. One problem I found with this source was a shying away from acknowledging the possible shortcomings of Second Life as a performance medium – issues such as cost and bandwidth requirements were not addressed, and Ze Moo claimed that Second Life allowed theatre to become more like an ‘interactive movie’, where as it would seem to me that theatre should not have to look at imitating movies in order to reach a wider audience.

The other two sources are machinimas of two performances that have taken place in Second Life. The first was part of the Goodbye Dollar event, a stand-up comedy show by performer Lauren Weyland and the second is from the Metaverse Shakespeare Company (formerly the SL Shakespeare Company) and their first performance of Hamlet, Act One, Scene 1. Lauren Weyland’s performance is an interesting example of the possibilities of Second Life as a performance medium, allowing for the juxtaposing of an attractive female physique with the deep, bass voice of a male. It allows shows the interactivity that Ze Moo refers to when speaking of the interactivity of performance. The scene from Hamlet is a useful look at how customisable content can be used to create a vibrant stage atmosphere and striking costumes. The camera movements in the machinima also highlights Ze Moo’s point of the transformation of theatre into somewhat of an ‘interactive movie’.

More can be learned about Lauren Weyland here and the Metaverse Shakespeare Company can be found here.

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