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New DuSable Museum VR Experience Will Take Visitors to the 1963 March on Washington

The DuSable Museum of African American History at 740 E 56th Pl, Chicago, is set to play host to “The March”, a TIME Studios’ immersive project in 2020. The project uses virtual reality (VR) technology to bring alive 1963’s March on Washington for Jobs and Freedom event and the historic “I Have a Dream” speech by Dr. Martin Luther King. Jr.

Perri Irmer, the CEO and President of the DuSable Museum revealed that the museum is the first in the country to feature this experience. She expressed pride and remarked that the museum will offer people a great number of engagement opportunities. Irmer also said that the body is also developing educational programming based on the exhibit, also to be shared sometime in the future.

The VR exhibit will be unveiled to the public on February 28th and go on till November 2020. It is set to feature various levels of immersive offerings, including ones involving elements like spatial audio and a 10-minute VR feature. Based on a press release, the experience is set to offer a hyper-realistic digital render of any human being to date, with the recreation of the groundbreaking ‘I Have a Dream’ address.

Martin Luther King. Image source: TIME

Irmer elaborated that the exhibit will be a timed one, allowing only a set number of people to partake in the VR experience every hour. Visitors will have to avail time-specific entry tickets. Apart from the individual encounter, there is a plan for TIME Studios and DuSable to offer an experience for groups. Museum visitors will not be required to pay any extra charges for the exhibit. But, there are plans to raise museum ticket prices in 2020, after a span of many years.

In a press release, Mia Tramz, TIME Editorial Director of Immersive Experiences, said that The March’s first exhibition at the DuSable Museum will let people across all age groups witness history and become first-hand participants of it uniquely. She added that the March offers a historically accurate and educational experience by incorporating cutting-edge VR technologies, whilst showcasing immersive technology to the new breed of creators.

The exhibit has resulted from the collaboration of TIME Studios and JuVee Productions, a company belonging to Viola Davis and her husband, with the support of Intellectual Properties Management Inc. American Family Insurance is a patron of the project. Aside from being jubilant about DuSade being chosen by JuVee Production and TIME Studios, Irmer also expressed excitement about introducing Chicago residents to the immersive experience. She emphasised the city’s past as a focal point for the Civil Rights Movement and black political leadership, remarking that Timuel Black was the one who had put in efforts to bring Dr. King to Chicago.

Irmer harbours hopes for the exhibit to become an educational platform that traverses generations. She believes that raising engagement among youngsters carries the most meaning for her. Irmer explained that VR and other immersive elements used for the experiences can accurately showcase the struggle of the people in Washington during the 1963 movement.

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