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Get Closer to the Stage with Hamlet in VR

Tribeca Film Festival has been hosting a number of virtual reality (VR) and augmented reality (AR) events and experiences this year. Among them is a new way of experiencing Shakespeare’s play Hamlet, by introducing VR to get the audience more involved.

The VR experience has been titled To Be With Hamlet and is having its North American première at Tribeca this week. The experience involves actors in a remote location wearing body-tracking suits that allow for motion capture of their performance, which drives the VR avatars. To Be With Hamlet covers the scene where Hamlet is confronted by his father’s ghost, Hamlet is played by Zachary Koval, while Roger Casey plays the ghost. Both characters were rendered into 3D for the VR experience using Unreal Engine 4.

The scene will be performed several times a day during the Tribeca Film Festival, where three viewers can watch the scene concurrently via a VR headset. Project creator Javier Molina was enthusiastic about showcasing the experience at Tribeca: “We are proud to be taking part in the Tribeca Film Festival and pleased to be at the forefront of technology that will allow anyone, anywhere in the world, to experience live theater in an enriching, communal way,” Molina says. “Hamlet proved to be wonderful source material for our first foray, but we envision adapting other great works in the future. We look forward to the time when motion capture and VR technology are being employed regularly in the surgical suite, the classroom, and other settings in which experts working from remote locations can be of service.”

To Be With Hamlet will be featured at the Virtual Arcade section of the Tribeca Film Festival, at the Tribeca Festival Hub at Spring Studios and will run until 29th April 2017 when the festival ends.

VRFocus will continue to bring you news on new VR projects and experiences.