As long as there has been networked communication available, through telephone, satellite and now fiber optics, artistic experiments have made use of the network as both stage and platform for worldwide interactive live performances. Until recently the technology has not been of high enough quality to host longer, coherent works such as opera, but this is beginning to change. The World Opera is an international organization working with artist and researchers across the globe to establish a multimodal mixed-reality staging system, the World Opera House, for the production of distributed operatic works. Currently comprised of seven nodes across Northern Europe and the Americas, the World Opera and its partners are building the necessary infrastructure for real-time, interactive performances across time and space.
A paper concerning this research was presented by the authors at the Opera Leed’s Conference 2012 and was subsequently published in The Business of Opera, edited by Anastasia Belina-Johnson and Derek B. Scott as part of the Ashgate Interdisciplinary Studies in Opera series. The paper, The World Opera: a technical, aesthetic, and philosophical introduction is available here. (PDF format)
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