Will actors one day be immortal? And in what way will the future of acting be impacted by technical breakthroughs like VR/AR and AI?
If you look at Magic Leap´s demo of ‘Mica’, a human like artificial intelligence that can be viewed through the company’s augmented reality glasses, these aren’t just interesting questions for the future, but rather vitally important questions for the present. But where can we explore them, and find a place to learn, discuss and experiment within this rapidly expanding field?
There are so many questions: What are the latest technologies available to you? How are they different? Which techniques will work best for creating believable characters in immersive media like VR/AR/MR? What new skills do actors need going forward, and what can they add to the tech revolution?
The Virtual Acting Institute offers research, consultancy and training to answer these questions. We teach the skills necessary for the acting of the future and are entirely focused on creating believable characters in immersive media: VR/AR/MR.
We understand just how complex XR can be, by partnering with other experts in the field we seek to share best practice across all disciplines involved in the process of building credible characters and accelerate learning. We’re proud to already have the support and collaboration of: The Virtual Dutchmen, Mindshow, the Radboud University, VRbase Amsterdam, Purple Pill, VRacademy Amsterdam, Mindset, the Film Academy Amsterdam, The Eye film museum, the innovation team of the Dutch Consulate in San Francisco, Lumo Labs LA and Venturerock.
Why the Virtual Acting Institute?
I used to spend the majority of my time in theatre, on film sets and writing my own stories (cassandra.amsterdam); but I fell in love with VR when I became aware of the extra dimension it adds to storytelling; how it creates an immersive experience for viewers in a way that was not possible before. However, I found the art of traditional acting still very appealing, so I decided to become a translator between the two worlds I love, and help bridge the growing gap between these disciplines. That’s when I started giving workshops and masterclasses in Immersive Acting. Then, eighteen months ago, having spent three great years working and experimenting in VR with my friends from Purple Pill, I founded my own company – Virtual Acting.
The actor becomes a fictitious character and, often working solo, needs to interact with their own imagination in a virtual 360-degree environment. Wearing a technologically driven suit, the actor has millions of possible costumes.
By using the method created by The Virtual Acting Institute we teach actors to level up their imaginative work; to anticipate action within non-literal environments; to work with other characters who may not actually be physically present; to act, interact and react within virtual situations. This method is based on scientific research, four years of practical VR experience and the expertise of fantasy writers, psychologists, actors, XR developers and character designers.
The future of acting is not only about the performances of the actor. Technology also takes on a leading role and in order for the character created to become believable all elements must come seamlessly together: the dialogue in the script, the casting of the actor, the character design, the methods of production, the attention of the director; and they all have different and specific needs in XR.
Our mission is to share knowledge, to inspire and to bring people in this field together.
We want to offer a place where we can do research, discuss ethics and help the more traditional industries easily integrate the latest technological innovations into their work.
In 2019 we’ll be starting the masterclass tour in London and LA, in addition to continuing our work in other cities, think: Vancouver, Amsterdam and Paris.
Want to keep up to date with our initiatives, masterclasses and all the other interesting stuff that’s going on in the world of Virtual Acting? Then sign up for the newsletter here: virtualacting.com/signup
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