Virtue of Reality: An Immersive Experience
Since last September (the beginning of my masters experience) our class has been working on developing a concept for a theatrical immersive experience. We’ve gone through endless iterations of story, theme, floor plans and designs, and are finally moving into the building phase this summer.
[Sidenote: literally endless iterations… it started as an alien invasion on campus, then turned into a western themed story followed by an expedition into magical caves guided by tommyknockers, and finally, a journey to the future. Although it would have been nice to start with our final story arc, the creative process of navigating through that whole mess of events led us to our final design.]
The show is called Virtue of Reality - it’s an open world experience in which guests will be invited by a fictional corporation called VeraRev to step foot into their idealized simulation of the future. The corporation is looking for buy-in from their stakeholders (the guests) but what the simulation reveals is up for debate. This futuristic world will be constructed as a totally immersive and explorable environment, complete with interactive actors, games, and storylines. Can you tell I’ve had so much fun with all the graphic design elements of creating a fictitious company?
For the sake of our curriculum, our class is treating Virtue of Reality as our MFA Thesis Project. We’ve spent and will continue to designate endless hours towards fully realizing our collective vision for this project because we feel that as the first Experience Design MFA class at CU, we have something to prove! We’re also incredibly passionate about participating in this art form and industry, and bringing something a little different to the campus community.
As for what comes next, we’re currently in the process of:
- Building and dressing sets
- Procuring and transporting props
- Scripting and show writing
- Casting and training actors
- Creating light, audio and technical components
- Hair, makeup, and costume design
- Printing and marketing costs
- Fundraising (did I mention this costs money..??)
...and the list goes on...
Our goal is that this event will not only serve as a culmination of the knowledge and skills we are building throughout our time at CU, but that the message of this immersive experience will inspire guests and spark positive change in their lives and our communities long after the experience has ended.
When: Virtue of Reality will be live Friday, September 20 through Sunday, September 22 2019.
Where: The Carlson Gym on the CU Boulder campus
*A huge thank you to all who have donated and to the CU School of Theatre and Dance who has graciously awarded our Experience Design MFA class with an arts fund donation from an incredibly supportive donor and CU alumn, Roe Green. We wouldn’t be able to make this happen without you - I hope you enjoy our production!