The innovative new opera by Tod Machover, Death and the Powers, opens this Friday for its world premiere in Monte Carlo at Opéra Garnier de Monte-Carlo. Machover gave Festival-goers a sneak peak of this hugely ambitious work earlier this summer at the 2010 World Science Festival, which included a thought-provoking conversation with AI legend Marvin Minsky.
The opera—a brainchild of Machover’s Opera of the Future Group at the MIT Media Lab in co-production with American Repertory Theatre—explores transhumanist and existential territory, such as mortality and theory of mind, as well as confronting the most fundamental question of legacy: what of ourselves do we leave behind when we die?
Plus, it’s going to be really, really cool. The opera incorporates a new technology developed by MIT called "disembodied performance": an elaborate system of multidimensional sensors that allows the actors to give life-like, rich performances via inanimate components from off-stage (hello, Avatar LIVE!). Oh, and did I mention that it involves a massive animatronic chandelier and a chorus of robots?
Death and the Powers comes to the US in March. More information and tickets here.