Images and music excerpts from the Paris premiere of “Vocal Vibrations,” by Tod Machover and Neri Oxman.
Opera magazine reviewed the interactive simulcast of “Death and the Powers” and pronounced that this experiment in using smartphone technology to enhance the cinematic viewing experience has “huge potential for the technologically engaged operatic culture that Machover continues to pioneer.”
Read the full review here.
This video from the talk Tod Machover gave at INK (Kochi, India) last fall was just posted online. Overview of a variety of recent projects including “city symphonies”, and a discussion of doing something similar in India. Check out their post here.
Vocal Vibrations. Le Laboratoire, Paris. Opens March 28. Free.
From the people who brought you inhalable chocolate, here comes a high-tech singalong. Visitors start in a chamber filled with ethereal music by the composer Tod Machover. When they wander into a private “cocoon” designed by Neri Oxman, they can sing while an electronic necklace measures vibrations in the larynx, getting instant feedback as the sonic aura adapts to the visitor’s voice and a grapefruit-size “orb” vibrates in the hands. The installation will feed into a larger investigation on the healing power of the human voice. When it travels to Cambridge, Mass., in the fall, a cartilage expert will ask whether skilled humming might improve the health of joints, a neuroscientist will try to match up vocal performance and brain measurements, and a Tibetan monk will attempt to engineer a better method of chanting.
The Dallas Opera presents a new production of Tod Machover’s Death and the Powers, February 12-16. This visually spectacular robot pageant by the MIT Media Lab’s Opera of the Future group tells the story of Simon Powers, a powerful businessman and inventor nearing the end of his life, who downloads his consciousness into “The System” in an effort to project himself into the future. His family, friends, and associates must decide what this means, whether or not he is actually alive, how it affects them, and whether to follow.
The matinee performance on February 16 at 2:00 pm U.S. EST will be simulcast to ten locations across the United States and Europe, including New York, San Francisco, London, and at our home base, the MIT Media Lab. In addition to viewing the live, hi-def broadcast of the production, the Powers Live mobile application, developed in the Opera of the Future group, will allow you to virtually experience the performance. Live video, audio, and graphical content will be triggered in the app in sync with the performance, and your interaction will, in turn, influence the live show in Dallas. Powers Live is available for download starting February 1 for iOS 6/7 and Android 4.0+ devices.
Simulcast venues for February 16, 2:00 pm EST:
- Bing Concert Hall, Stanford, California
- Hammer Museum, Los Angeles, California
- National Opera Center, New York, New York
- Opera Philadelphia, Philadelphia, Pennsylvania
- Perot Museum, Dallas, Texas
- Royal Academy of Music, London
- MIT Media Lab, Cambridge, MA*
- San Francisco Conservatory of Music, San Francisco, CA
- University College of Opera and Royal Institute of Technology, Stockholm, Sweden
*By invitation only; please email firstname.lastname@example.org to be placed on a wait list to attend.