Having had a few days to chill, I’m now posting this first evidence of our performance of MelanchoLalaland™: Scenes from a Transmedia Opera at Miami Light Box in conjunction with FilmGate Interactive Conference (bottom of page).
Then, the evening began with My Little Talk, where I mostly explained what a transmedia opera is, why on Earth we’d want to make one, and technical details. This set a scholarly tone for the performance, but it also allowed me to indulge in a little geekyness (as in, all that Latin in the libretto, and not even Latin you can dance to!).
Next, two of the main characters of the opera, Booster (Santo) and Tess (Vanessa Rose Rivera) reflect for a moment on Booster’s hallucinatory visions.
Following this, the first big scene in the first act of the opera, “Team Melancuria™”, depicts a video conference between Booster, Tess, and the new CEO of Melancuria, the ever mercurial Kenny Longtin (voiced and acted by some rank amateur with at least a redemptive notion of self-deprecation, and a fluffy grey kitty!). The tables are turned on Booster, as Kenny announces Tess will be taking over as team leader.
Booster’s tumult is next recounted in a dance, Darkness is Also Of My Nature (Tenebre autem naturea mea sunt), which had the working title, The Dance of the Brain Chemicals.
Dance was followed by a sneak preview of the film Casual (Sex) Friday, where a frantic survivor of an office shooting—”Carol Burkel”— hides in a closet and desperately tries to remember who could possibly be the shooter. The voice-over of Carol is sung in full mezzo soprano by Katharine Goeldner.
After C(S)F, the cast took their bows, echoed by Kinect-activated sound essays in the closing credits.
Complete Flickr slideshow of stills here; stay tuned for video documentation!
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Thanks, as always, to Diliana Alexander and the staff at FilmGate.org, tech help at Miami Light Project, Mike Lue for technical assistance, Katie Weigman and Danielle Kipnis for their dance, and the John S. and James L. Knight Foundation, the Dorothy F. Schmidt College of Arts and Letters Advisory Board of Florida Atlantic University, the Robert and Inez Bailyn Foundation, the Avid Corporation, and the State of Florida Department of State, Bureau of Cultural Affairs, for their generous support on this project!