Director Yehuda Duenyas of m ss ng p eces Puts Audiences Center Stage with CVRTAIN VR Experience As Part of PS122’s Coil 2017 Festival
Emmy award-winning experiential director Yehuda Duenyas of m ss ng p eces was commissioned by Performance Space 122 (PS122) to create VR experience CVRTAINfor PS122’s Coil 2017 festival, which articulates the vitality of live performance in New York City. Slated to run January 3-15 at 151 Gallery in New York, the five-minute experience places the viewer onstage in the midst of a curtain call, in front of an adoring audience that reacts based on the viewer’s gestures and actions.
“I’ve worked with Yehuda since 2002. He has always created experiences that startle, provoke and enlarge us. We emerge from his works better, smarter, excited and alive. There was no question he was the right person to lead this remarkable project – and to be there as we try to evolve our understanding of live performance,” said Vallejo Gantner, Artistic Director of Performance Space 122.
CVRTAIN transports the user into the role of an artist bowing in front of thousands of fans. The headset transforms a 2D installation into an immersive 360-degree experience of being onstage at a theatre. Two volumetric sensors capture the viewer’s position and actions, triggering audience responses ranging from a standing ovation to a mob of camera flashes. Duenyas and a core team of five created CVRTAIN in less than ten weeks with help from PS122’s production team and the NYU VR Lab.
“Theatre is by nature location-based and relegated to specific times, so there’s a bit of a distribution dilemma to get more people interested in it. Our goal with CVRTAIN was to create an experience with artistic integrity that could be replicated and shared easily at theatres and venues anywhere in the world; all it requires is a computer and an HTC Vive,” Duenyas explained.
Marrying creativity with technology, Duenyas aims to tackle one of VR’s biggest challenges with CVRTAIN – a feeling of disconnect when immersed into a digital environment. “Although striving to evoke a visceral human response in the digital space is a running theme in my work, this particular experience has never been done before. Mapping the gesture recognition, and getting the sound to feel like you are actually being adored by cheering fans – like they love you – was the biggest challenge we faced in production. Thanks to an incredible artistic and technical team, we’re able to deliver something we don’t feel everyday, if ever. We’re creating an experience that evokes genuine emotion,” concluded Duenyas.
CVRTAIN is sponsored by m ss ng p eces and will be running through January 15, 2017 in New York during PS122’s Coil 2017 Festival; the experience will be available for download from both the Vive and Steam stores in mid-January.
Yehuda Duenyas’ CVRTAIN is commissioned by Performance Space 122 with an implementation grant from the Doris Duke Charitable Foundation for the Building Demand for the Performing Arts Program. This iteration is co-presented by Performance Space 122 and Wallplay. Sponsored by m ss ng p eces, audio equipment generously provided by Skullcandy.
About Performance Space 122
In order to foster the spirit of inquiry and openness necessary in a generative society, Performance Space 122 (PS122) invites audiences to engage in live experiences that can have profound and unpredictable effects. We produce these experiences by providing contemporary artists who represent diverse genres, cultures, and perspectives with the resources and platforms to develop and present new works.
PS122’s Coil 2017 Festival is a three-week festival exploring the vitality of live performance in New York City featuring work created locally, across the US, and around the world. For more information and a full line-up, please visit www.ps122.org/coil-2017
About m ss ng p eces
m ss ng p eces is the new wave production and entertainment company inspired by the limitless potential of storytelling and technology. Since 2005, we’ve hand-crafted stories and experiences that celebrate the human spirit, innovation, art, and culture.
The studio creates original content and commercials across all mediums, supported by an extraordinary network of production and post-production talent. m ss ng p eces has been selected as one of the advertising industry’s best storytellers as part of the Creativity Production Company A-List. www.mssngpeces.com