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  • Justin Cliffe

Open Source - The Meet Ups

Updated: Nov 3

This week I've been spending (more) time online meeting artists, creatives, tech folks, audiences and makers exploring the possibilities of what we we're loosely calling New-Digital-Theatre. Although, I'll be honest, the term has been properly dismantled over the past three days.


Through a desire to share as much learning as possible (and you know... fulfil some of my Arts Council Wales demand/quota) I'm going public with the process of the past three days and sharing some of the bigger chunkier thoughts that came up in our conversations. In doing this I'm hoping to open these ideas up and allow anyone to access them.


If anything here sparks your interests or makes you feel like getting involved you can get in touch at: opensource_wales@hotmail.com




Meet Ups


On Tuesday and Wednesday I hosted two Meet Ups with people who had suggested they might want to participate or learn more about Open Source.


The Agenda:

  • Introduction to Open Source.

  • Intros from participants.

  • 10min Case Study:

  • Tuesday - Fez Miah Why Sofa Share Wales?

  • Wednesday -Jorge Lizalde Captioning Live Performance Demo.

  • Topic 1: Open discussion: What is “New Digital Theatre”?

  • Topic 2: Ideas and actions: Finding solutions through technology.

  • Topic 3: Future thinking: For Artists and Audiences.

  • How to apply for funding.

  • Q&A with Justin.

  • Wrap Up.

Ideas, thoughts and other things:

  • This is the task of building back in the experiences of live theatre.

  • The ability to play with the multitude of functions and modes.

  • What we need is some gamification.

  • Introduce scent, touch, taste, texture and weight.

  • Suddenly we are awarded the opportunity to create our own space.

  • We can (sort-of) reconnect physically through memory and space.

  • Scope for re-invention of interaction.

  • Digital allows us a broader bandwidth for information to be pushed through. Images, video, sound, music, visuals, words, personal and private interaction can all exist.

  • We can learn a lot from YouTubers.

  • The limitations presented aren't barriers but challenges.

  • Making with restrictions forces us to be creative.

  • Subverting space and time.

  • Embrace mutli-modality: Common modes and uncommon modes.

  • One story disperse across numerous mediums.

  • I recently revisited a video game I used to play ten years ago. I remember the geography within in all the levels and technically non of it really exists.

  • How many different ways are there for us to communicate?

  • We should focus on continuing to enhance the audience experience.

  • Site specific performance.

  • Performances lack immediate audience feedback.

  • How do we provide opportunities for set designers, stage managers, others in the industry.

  • Mobile cameras could remove the static nature of live-streaming. Mobile screens could enhance the visual experience for audiences.

  • How can we encourage physical touch.

  • We're too obsessed with outcome. If this allows us anything it's freedom from that.

  • Theatre is not the form. This is not theatre. Stop calling it that.

  • Psychogeography can place us in the same space and time whilst we're in different spaces at different times.

  • Chat logs allow us to connect and resuscitate some of the communal experience.

  • We've been transplanted into Zoom. It's where some of us primarily exist in the minds and imaginations of the people we know. We're a box, a picture, a video now.

  • Through this we can be ubiquitous.

  • We have a specific frame now.

  • Theatre is just a building. It's just a space. It's just somewhere.


Writing out these thoughts and responses I get that anyone outside of the actual conversations might lack the context to fully get some of it, but I think somehow it might still be useful, and maybe become a more interesting provocation because of that gap.


For me there are two things the collective is considering:


- How do we quickly break through our current perception of what New Digital Theatre is?

- How do we install what it is we miss about the physical experiences of going to the theatre?


One is bombarding bravely (and almost blindly) forward, the other is yearning and reaching back. Neither is bad. Because I think where these thoughts oppose one another isn't the most interesting territory for exploration. It's where these ideas meet that is rich and full of potential.


The next phase of development for Open Source is the application process. This is still open to anyone, whether you've attended a Meet Up or not.


Here's a link so you can read more and apply.


APPLY TO MAKE WORK AS PART OF OPEN SOURCE.


Thanks for reading.


Mucho,


JTC





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