WINNER OF BEST OUT OF HOME VR ENTERTAINMENT OF THE YEAR AT THE 2021 VR AWARDS!
On 21 May 2021 the Royal Opera House released the world’s first opera in hyper reality: Current, Rising – a unique collaboration between the Royal Opera House’s innovation programme, Audience Labs and Figment Productions, with audience insight research undertaken by Royal Holloway, University of London. The project was funded by Innovate UK and Figment Productions as part of the “Audience of the Future” programme.
Developed by a female-led creative team and funded by UK Research and Innovation, Current, Rising was a timely experiment blending historic stagecraft, artistic excellence and cutting-edge technology, turning the notion of what it means to go to the opera on its head. Current, Rising is a 15-minute hyper reality opera experience, combining virtual reality with a multisensory set, inviting audiences to step into a bespoke ‘Opera Tardis’ and experience a dream-like journey carried musically by a poem layered in song.
The experience took place in the Royal Opera House’s Linbury Theatre between 21 May to 10 June 2021. Inspired by the liberation of Ariel at the end of Shakespeare’s Tempest, Current, Rising took four people at a time into its magical universe, traversing together the landscapes of the night, from twilight to dawn – exploring ideas of isolation, connection, and collective reimagination – a prescient moment and experience of our time.