David Staples’ article in the German periodical Bühnentechnische Rundschau has now appeared in an English translation. Staples is Managing Director of Theatre Projects, Ltd. the world’s most prominent firm for designing performing arts centers.
Staples writes: “Machover has created a number of operas incorporating new technologies, Valis premiered at the Pompidou Centre in Paris in 1987. The Brain Opera premiered at New York’s Lincoln Center Festival and his most recent opera Skelig is based on a very successful children’s novel and adventure story. But Death and the Powers takes his explorations further than anything he, or probably anyone else has attempted in the world of opera.”
The article goes on to describe in some technical detail the principles of “disembodied performance”, the “operabots” and ambisonic system developed for Death and the Powers. “But, does all this technology produce a good opera or is it simply an academic exercise to test the bounds of computing power? Death and the Powers succeeds at both,” Staples concludes.
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