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New VR technology for concerts facilitated by Telepresence

Telepresence, a new virtual reality powered venture is set to create an adventurous journey that promises to be something that most people have never seen. It is an exciting project originating from the creative visions of media stalwarts Nancy Lee and Kiran Bhumber, in association with various programmers, coders and the trumpeter JP Carter. This latest move is aiming to reinvent and uplift the entire concert experience to a different level. One of the things it aims to achieve is the elimination of the barrier between the stage setup and the seating areas.

Bhumber recently shed some light into Telepresence during a conference call with the Georgia Straight and Lee, saying that the conventional performance approach of various music genres and styles is unenterprising. She explained that usually the performer and the audience are quite separated. According to her, Telepresence is capable of opening up a whole new perspective with the use of VR technology. It is made possible with the simultaneous presence of the audience and the artist, within a singular stage area.

Media artists Kiran Bhumber and Nancy Lee use VR in new ways.

Lee expressed that although VR is largely considered as a new medium, it is still quite visual-centric in conventional usage. She further elaborated that VR movie and gaming applications are mostly focused on the visual aspect, also explaining that Telepresence aims to lay a greater focus on the audio elements like music and sound. Combined with the visual element, the audio elements will create an environment that enables highly engaged and engrossed listening.

The concert setup will feature Carter with his electronic trumpet, along with listeners. The listeners will be surrounded by a multi-channel sound setup. Carter’s innovative lopping, along with other advanced techniques and reverb will create a deep and immersive ambiance. Each of the listeners will be using a VR headset, which aims to visually place them within a vivid and varied environment echoing the sentiment of the music. The participating audience members will also get to witness a 3D image of the musician, along with probable synthetic elements. Audience participants will also have a certain level of control over the elements.

Talking about the VR concert experience, Lee stated that certain elements included within the setup will also react to the sounds created by JP. She explained that the impact felt by each audience member will depend on their distance from JP’s instrument. Live and interactive visual elements will also be present.

Bhumber further explained that the performer will also be able to witness some elements of the entire experience, mainly through some choreographic features. Carter will enhance and tweak his performance based on the movements of audience members, considering elements like their gazes and body positions. She stated that based on her observations, the performer has the ability to influence movements and audience gazes by playing music in particular timbres.

Lee stressed it can be intriguing to see how participants are likely to interact more with each other, prior to this VR experience and also following it.


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