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Digital Media and Technology

Digital media and technology are ever-evolving, and so is their relationship to theatre. In this section, you can learn about how theatremakers are incorporating media and tech into their art-making and career-building, as well as read New Crit pieces about work created to be shared online. Two interesting series to explore for a sense of how quickly the conversations change are Gwydion Suilebhan’s Techne—essays written in 2013 and 2014—and Performing the Internet, curated by Kate Bergstrom in January 2021. Check out content from the 2019 Digital + Performance Convening for a multifaceted look at this topic!

The Latest

Gender, Disability, Transmedia, and Balkan Folklore
Essay
Gender, Disability, Transmedia, and Balkan Folklore
by Sophie Sagan-Gutherz
10 June 2024
The Festival of Live Digital Art (FOLDA) 2024
Video
The Festival of Live Digital Art (FOLDA) 2024
Panels and Performances from the Global Community of Live Digital Art
Thursday 13 June to Saturday 15 June 2024
Toronto, Canada
The < 3 G E N Project Explores Matrilineal Connectivity Through a Digital Theatre Lens
Essay
The < 3 G E N Project Explores Matrilineal Connectivity Through a Digital Theatre Lens
by Amelia Parenteau
1 May 2024
glowing blue binary code around a shape labeled A I.
The Festival of Live Digital Art (FOLDA) 2024
Video

The Festival of Live Digital Art (FOLDA) 2024

Panels and Performances from the Global Community of Live Digital Art

Thursday 13 June to Saturday 15 June 2024
Toronto, Canada

Join us for the launch of PLAY: Dramaturgies of Participation by Dr. Jenn Stephenson and Mariah (Mo) Horner; a panel on AI in Creative Performance by bluemouth inc, Cole Lewis, and David Rokeby; and a performance of Windrush by Marcel Stewart and Oonya Kempadoo.

Two figures in abstract red and black costumes dance on stage.
Gender, Disability, Transmedia, and Balkan Folklore
Essay

Gender, Disability, Transmedia, and Balkan Folklore

10 June 2024

Sophie Sagan-Gutherz shares about Kat Mustatea’s ielele, a show that uses a unique instrument called the BodyMouth to sound out histories of the ielele, a genderless creature in Balkan folklore. Sophie highlights how this show’s use of technology illuminates connections between disability and transgression of binary gender.

An actor with one foot on a ladder hands a book to another onstage.
The &lt; 3 G E N Project Explores Matrilineal Connectivity Through a Digital Theatre Lens
Essay

The < 3 G E N Project Explores Matrilineal Connectivity Through a Digital Theatre Lens

1 May 2024

Amelia Parenteau explores the creation of The < 3 G E N Project: a documentary theatre project in which the creators, Beatriz Cabur and Giulia Cavallini, are using digital theatre to bridge the digital divide between generations of women, and invite these women into conversation on how to better connect. 

A promotional graphic for Theatre Tech Talks.
Theatre By and For Gamers
Podcast

Theatre By and For Gamers

14 March 2024

In this episode, Emma Bexell from Bombina Bombast, a performing arts company in Malmö, Sweden, takes us to the space of gamified society and theatre. Bombina Bombast combines documentary audio, gaming interface, and immersive installation in a Virtual Reality show where audience members can rest with insomniac Swedish gang members—all while criticizing the attention economy.

A promotional graphic for Theatre Tech Talks.
Aerial Performance in a Wheelchair&nbsp;
Podcast

Aerial Performance in a Wheelchair 

7 March 2024

Disabled choreographer, dancer, designer, engineer, and founding member of Kinetic Light Laurel Lawson talks about performing aerially in a wheelchair, accessibility as its own artform rather than an add-on, and their app Audimance which includes haptic interpretation and sensory modulation.

A promotional graphic for Theatre Tech Talks.
Gore and Myth in Theatre Mitu's (holy) BLOOD
Podcast

Gore and Myth in Theatre Mitu's (holy) BLOOD

29 February 2024

In this episode we talk with the founding artistic director of Theater Mitu, Rubén Polendo, about the hope for the future that inspired Utopian Hotline—now traveling through space as part of the Golden Record. We also discuss the gore, myth, and puppet-robots with their own point of view in Jodorowsky-inspired Santa Sangre.

A promotional graphic for Theatre Tech Talks.
Science Theories Are Like Swiss Cheese
Podcast

Science Theories Are Like Swiss Cheese

22 February 2024

Annemarie Hagenaars is an astronomer, physicist, and actress. In this playful conversation with Tjaša, Annemarie speculates about Einstein's famous equations, love, and shares her own experiment that she conducted with her one woman show The Story of the Einstein Girl, where she performs the play four different ways and lets the audience choose.

A promotional graphic for Theatre Tech Talks.
Finding the Individual in Your Digital Choreography Library
Podcast

Finding the Individual in Your Digital Choreography Library

15 February 2024

LaJuné shares about the inception of Black Movement Library: a database of motion capture data from Black folks they created, while seeking to avoid the paradigms of erasure, extraction, and exploitation of Black bodies. In their work, they encourage freedom and personal expression over correct data capture. They believe none of us are just numbers, and to treat our movements in our bodies as just data sets is very harmful.

A promotional graphic for Theatre Tech Talks.
A Circus Robot’s Death-Defying Act&nbsp;
Podcast

A Circus Robot’s Death-Defying Act 

8 February 2024

This week, Tjaša speaks with Josh Corn, a true renaissance man. He uses technology to tell absurd and subversive stories about humanity. Josh built René—the most technologically advanced robotic arm from 2002, who had her own circus act. He also made Field Day Games where you can compete with groups over video call to spill, drop, break, crack, ignite, and burn machines in their studio. Everyone wins except Josh. He has to clean up.

Theatre Tech Talks teaser image with guest Maud Achempong's headshot.
Automation, Slavery, Monsters, and Misery in Search of the Whole
Podcast

Automation, Slavery, Monsters, and Misery in Search of the Whole

1 February 2024

Maud discusses monsters, and the “humanization process”: the idea that humanity asks of us to leave some part of the world at the door and opt in for a very specific, very small part of all that life has to offer. They also dissect the West’s capitalist need to reject the consciousness of inanimate objects in order to participate in the consumer culture.

A promotional graphic for Theatre Tech Talks.
A Twelve-Foot Robotic Arm, Like Chekhov Would Have Wanted&nbsp;
Podcast

A Twelve-Foot Robotic Arm, Like Chekhov Would Have Wanted 

25 January 2024

In this episode, Tjaša chats with director Igor Golyak of Arlekin Players about the power of virtual theatre and the experience of using technology that had never before been used for live performance. And if you were wondering why there was a twelve-foot robotic arm on stage, serving coffee and sweeping the floor in The Orchard at Baryshnikov Center, Igor thinks that’s what Chekhov would have wanted.

Theatre Tech Talks teaser image with guest headshots.
Quipu: an Ancient Incan Recording Device&nbsp;
Podcast

Quipu: an Ancient Incan Recording Device 

18 January 2024

We dive deep with Anonymous Ensemble into LIontop: a technologically ambitious installation and multilingual performance that centers on Quechua voices; Google finally translating Quechua; and the mystery of the ancient Incan Quipus. 

Theatre Tech Talks teaser image with guest Heidi Boisvert's headshot.
Using Technology to Heal Trauma
Podcast

Using Technology to Heal Trauma

11 January 2024

Guest Heidi Bosivert believes that our bodies are archives of stories and if we can't get those stories out, the whole fabric of society will break down. When she worked in tech, addressing social issues, she had a crisis of faith and figured that bringing people into physical spaces and working with the body might be one way of mitigating deleterious effects of technology. Now, she’s creating a media biogenome.

Trevor Boffone films an actress singing into a microphone onstage.
Five Ways to Maximize Your Theatre’s Social Media Presence
Essay

Five Ways to Maximize Your Theatre’s Social Media Presence

21 November 2023

When utilized fully, social media can function as a critical extension of work being done onstage. Trevor Boffone pulls from his experience as a content creator and social media manager to share concrete steps that theatremakers and theatre companies can use to leverage the unique potentials of social media. 

Macy Kunke wears a headset and attends to multiple screens at a stage management table.
How Stage Management Can Set the Stage for a Greener Theatre
Essay

How Stage Management Can Set the Stage for a Greener Theatre

29 September 2023

Macy E. Kunke shares the practical steps she took to cultivate more sustainable stage management practices for a recent production of Men on Boats. By utilizing a variety of digital tools instead of more traditional printed paper methods, the stage management team created only a fraction of typical paper waste and found that their work that was cheaper, simpler, and more collaborative than typical stage management processes.

A man stands on stage in the middle of a spotlight, with a projection behind him of him as a child.
Composting Queer Trauma through a Collaborative Process in SEAL
Essay

Composting Queer Trauma through a Collaborative Process in SEAL

24 August 2023

As writer-performer Dante Fuoco and director Clara Wiest came together to rework Dante’s autobiographical solo show SEAL, they developed a process that centered intentional care and trauma-informed practices. In this interview with Rachel Pottern Nunn, Clara and Dante reflect upon the production, discuss the relationship between writer/performer and director, and share insights from their generative process.

event poster for Responses to Climate Crisis and Emergencies with people planet and performance.
Responses to Climate Crisis and Emergencies
Video

Responses to Climate Crisis and Emergencies

Storytelling from the Performing Arts

Wednesday 26 July 2023
Kenya, Uganda

Different art forms (such as theatre, film, visual arts, and social media) have often been used to communicate, educate, and promote climate justice issues. This episode offers the opportunity to hear stories of practitioners using their art forms in this era of climate emergency. We focus on theatre practices and digital art forms and ask guests to share their work and that of others from the continent.

From the Ground Up Podcast Teaser image featuring guest profile image.
Ontroerend Goed’s Participatory Metaphors
Podcast

Ontroerend Goed’s Participatory Metaphors

24 May 2023

Artistic director of Belgian theatre company Ontroerend Goed, Alexander Devriendt talks through their process for imagining and developing participatory content. Alexander and Jeffrey Mosser also dig into financing art in Europe, the cost of touring internationally and how COVID has affected it, and sustaining family and art simultaneously.

Illustration of several different pairs of people holding hands with each other.
Our Trauma Twin Siblings: Building Creative Spaces for Queer and Trans Tamil Community as Teardrop Collective
Essay

Our Trauma Twin Siblings: Building Creative Spaces for Queer and Trans Tamil Community as Teardrop Collective

31 March 2023

Hari Somaskantha and Gitanjali exchange letters discussing their work with Teardrop Collective, a Toronto-based group that centers stories of queer, trans, Deaf, and hearing people of Tamil, Sri Lankan, and South Asian descent.

Illustration of various cushioned chairs.
Imagining Creative Fat Futures
Essay

Imagining Creative Fat Futures

29 March 2023

Morgan Davis and Jules Vodarek Hunter discuss the process of creating Fat Fables, a theatre program for fat LGBT2SQ+ artists who are twenty-nine and under.

An illustration of a clothesline with a film strip in front of it.
Making Then Is Now During a Pandemic with Our Chinese Canadian Feminist Elders
Essay

Making Then Is Now During a Pandemic with Our Chinese Canadian Feminist Elders

28 March 2023

Julia Hune-Brown and Keira Loughran discuss crafting Then Is Now, a concept album/video playlist they created through conversations with Chinese Canadian women who grew up in Toronto’s Chinatown during the era of the Chinese Exclusion Act.

A purple stage with a lit blue backdrop.
Inventing the “Flay” (Film/Play) with Campo Santo
Essay

Inventing the “Flay” (Film/Play) with Campo Santo

16 March 2023

When Campo Santo decided to film their production of Star Finch’s Side Effects early in the COVID-19 pandemic, they were embarking on a creative journey that felt entirely novel and a little overwhelming. In this conversation, the production’s directors discuss development of the production’s aesthetic and the generative process they embarked on at the intersection of “film” and “play.

A still from Things Hidden Since the Foundation of the World.
How Javaad Alipoor’s Fourth World Trilogy Disrupts What We Think We Understand About History, Politics, and the Internet
Essay

How Javaad Alipoor’s Fourth World Trilogy Disrupts What We Think We Understand About History, Politics, and the Internet

14 March 2023

Joseph Dunne-Howrie examines the way that three of Javaad Alipoor’s plays infuse the internet into theatrical performance, creating intersecting narratives that interrogate identity formation in the age of global interconnectivity.

A performer in front of a virtual background with trees and bright sunlight.
Digital Theatre Is Here To Stay: Paula Vogel’s Bard at the Gate
Essay

Digital Theatre Is Here To Stay: Paula Vogel’s Bard at the Gate

13 March 2023

Theatre critic Jonathan Mandell discusses virtual playwriting series Bard at the Gate and looks at the impact and future of digital theatre.

Histories of the Avant-garde event poster.
Histories of the Avant-garde and Contemporary Disruptive Technologies
Video

Histories of the Avant-garde and Contemporary Disruptive Technologies

Cyber Attack: Digital Art and Activism Conference

Wednesday 16 November 2022
Berlin, Germany and international.

Cyber Attack: Digital Art and Activism is an online conference by NORDWIND in cooperation with FuturePerfect Studio (New York), Denis Semionov, Kampnagel (Hamburg), and Hellerau (Dresden). The opening session Histories of the Avant-garde and Contemporary Disruptive Technologies livestreamed on the global, commons-based, peer-produced HowlRound TV network on Wednesday 16 November 2022 at 9:30 a.m. PST (San Francisco, UTC -8) / 12:30 p.m. EST (New York, UTC -5) / 17:30 GMT (London, UTC +0) / 18:30 CET (Berlin, UTC +1) / 19:30 EET (Bucharest, UTC +2).