Powers Live: A Global Interactive Opera Simulcast

Torpey, P., Bloomberg, B.


The live global interactive simulcast of the final February 2014 performance of Death and the Powers in Dallas, Texas made innovative use of satellite broadcast and Internet technologies to expand the boundaries of secondscreen experiences and interactivity during a live remote performance. In the opera, the character of Simon Powers uploads his mind, memories, and emotions into The System, represented onstage through reactive robotic, visual, and sonic elements. Remote audiences, via simulcast, were treated as part of The System alongside Powers and the robots. Audiences had an omniscient view of the action of the opera, as presented through surround sound and augmented, multi-camera video. Multimedia content delivered to mobile devices, through the Powers Live app, privileged remote audiences with perspectives from within The System. Mobile devices also allowed audiences to influence The System by affecting the illumination of the Winspear Opera House’s Moody Foundation Chandelier.

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