The use of virtual reality (VR) and 360 degree video technology to tell a story has come along in leaps and bounds over the last couple of years and already in 2018 we’ve had numerous stories relating to the Sundance Film Festival, Slamdance Film Festival and the Raindance Film Festival with more still to come in the months ahead.
It’s not just in the world of fiction either, the VR documentary has also become quite a popular medium. In the last few days alone on VRFocus we’ve brought you news of the BBC adding yet more content to its VR hub with a new VR series exploring how the control of the flow of the river Nile is affecting politics in across the entire continent in Damming the Nile VR. There was also news from another familiar name in this part of the industry, Sheffield Doc/Fest, who have just launched an immersive documentary competition with a £12,000 (GBP) prize.
The latest announcement however comes from Australia and launched by digital agency Isobar. The documentary focuses on the varied ways the indigenous people of the country use dance and use music within their cultures. Called Carriberrie, the Sydney language word for ‘corroboree’ – itself meaning a lively indigenous dance ceremony or gathering – the documentary travels across the country from the rainforest to the desert to the Sydney Opera House itself. Looking at the traditional ceremonial pieces to how that history is inspiring modern day creations across both genres.
Premiering today at Sydney’s Australian Museum, Carriberrie will be shown throughout the month of March as part of Weave, the museum’s inaugural month-long Festival of First Nations and Pacific Cultures.
“The Australian Museum has been a great supporter of the project and I’m thrilled to present the world premiere of the work here, where I feel a kindred passion for exploring, understanding and helping to preserve First Nations cultures.” Said the piece’s director and producer, Dominic Allen.
“Isobar is committed to Australian arts and culture, and Carriberrie offered a great avenue for us to use our digital expertise in an innovative forum, showcasing a blend of traditional and contemporary dance pieces for the first time in VR.” Added Dave Budge of Isobar Australia, “Working with Dom, we’ve been able to truly capture the performances in context, showing the landscape and the country as well as the dancers.”
“For us, it’s also a great example of what can be done with VR. We believe in the power of VR for storytelling, for immersion and for giving a sense of presence and of place. This project helps show that in a beautiful way.”