THEATRE AND DANCE PROJECTS
Peer Gynt (H. Ibsen) - 2018, The Croatian National Theatre
In this production I was hired as a sound designer and digital instruments designer, developing motion sensor technology for use on stage. Utilising four to five wireless motion sensors on the actors' arms, legs and head, I was able to transform their movements into meaningful sound. I named the resulting motion/sound-hybrids "sound costumes": The actors would put the sensors on, and have their bodies appear like they were made of stone, or slime or any imaginable auditory thing, just like with visual costumes. The sound costumes were mainly used within the play's dreamlike/mythological sequences, like the appearances of the Bøyg, a giant serpent creature from Norwegian folk tales, and the Mountain King, king of the trolls.
This production was part of the European Theatre Convention's project European Theatre Lab. A casebook, including a more indepth text of mine concerning the creative process working with motion sensors and sound design, can be found here.
The play was very well received, being described at the time as bringing "a new digital era" to Croatian theatre. It was also nominated for Best Theatre Play in Croatia 2018. A slightly altered version was subsequently staged at The Norwegian Theatre in Oslo, and a film version is in progress.
PAN (Knut Hamsun) - 2018, Rogaland Teater
PAN is a novel written by writer Knut Hamsun in the late 19th century. The story revolves around a socially awkward man who tries to adapt to life in a small village in the north of Norway. He finds comfort and freedom in the ragged northern nature, but struggles to understand and interact with its people. As he falls in love and grows increasingly weary of the hidden social structures, the line between fantasy and reality starts to blur.
For this production, I had the pleasure of making an elaborate sound design in 72 channel surround, plus digital instrument design, again based on movement sensor technology connected to both actors and scenography. The main idea was to create hyperrealistic natural environments and take the audience on a real journey, from the forest to the ocean to snowy mountain tops, from realistic landscapes to surreal dreamscapes seamlessly and quick. The precence of one of the most advanced surround setups in existance in any theatre worldwide, made this a very interesting job, enabling things like having a gust of wind fly through the room, waves suddenly rushing over the audience's heads engulfing them in swirling water, and then in a split second transporting everyone indoors with a little fireplace crackling and a grandfather clock ticking in the corner. The motion sensor technology was used on some of the scenography, and also on one of the female characters in a dreamlike sequence, where the actress' hands would sound like sensual female breath.
Why not before premiered in Hålogaland Teater (The Arctic Theater) in january 2018, and has since been performed in Oslo, Norway and in the international theatre festival Moving Worlds in Nanjing, China. The play has also been invited to Beijing Gallery Week, and new shows are being prepared at Vega Scene in Oslo. The text has been translated into English, Chinese and German, and will be showcased as part of Frankfurt Buchmesse 2019. The production has received financial support by The Norwegian Arts Council and Notam.