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Science fiction, augmented reality and theatre collide in Thirteen Cycles

The collaboration between improvisation experts Project2 and Mercury-nominated musician Fred Deakin will be the first play to use an augmented reality set and lighting

For thirteen nights in November, improvisational theatre makers Katy Schutte and Chris Mead will create a full science fiction movie on stage every night, accompanied by a live improvised soundtrack from Fred Deakin, and an augmented reality set using projection mapped interactive visuals to ensure every element of each show is different to the night before.

Each performance will see Schutte and Mead improvise an entirely new piece of science-fiction theatre – the performance might take them into the hyped operatics of Star Wars, or the more subtle psychology of Solaris. Each piece will feature an electronic soundtrack alongside animated interactive visuals created live by Fred Deakin (of Lemon Jelly fame), creating a completely unique show blending technology and theatre into a new whole.

Fred Deakin comments: “We’re really proud of this run – Katy and Chris have a huge amount of experience creating engaging improvised theatre, and to create improvised soundtracks to their invented stories is great fun. We’ve worked really hard to uses virtual reality technology to create trigger zones, enabling the actors to create a live, immersive improvised set for each play.”

Katy Schutte and Chris Mead are widely respected improvisers: Katy is co-artistic director of award- winning improvisation company The Maydays, is a cast member of Knightmare Live, and her book The Improviser’s Way: A Longform Workbook is published by Nick Hern Books. She was recently nominated for the Latest Comedy Award at the Brighton Fringe 2018 for her new show Schutte the Unromantic. Chris is co-artistic director of improv theatre The Nursery Theatre, a member of the Maydays, and the host of Yesbot, a podcast about the theory and craft of improv.

They are joined by Fred Deakin, half of the cult electronic music duo Lemon Jelly, who will curate the live music and interactive projection mapping. Aside from his Mercury Prize and Brit Award nominated work with the band, Fred formed web design studio Airside in 1998 and is now Professor of Digital Arts at the University of the Arts London. He has also recently written a science-fiction rock opera, The Last, which has Katy guesting on it and is released later this year.

Every piece created during Thirteen Cycles will be digitally recorded, with daily online trailers for the pieces performed the night before released throughout the run. This exploratory first production marks the birth of a new show format that these acclaimed performers will be touring extensively in 2019, delivering a truly mind-blowing experience to audiences hungry for innovation.

Thirteen Cycles is on at the Rosemary Branch Theatre from 13th – 29th November, Tuesday – Sunday. Tickets available here.


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