Felix Barrett and Maxine Doyle, from the British troupe Punchdrunk, discuss creating the interpretive, interactive theater piece “Sleep No More.” Over 100 rooms are on display in a renovated space in New York’s Chelsea gallery district, and accompanied by an eerie soundtrack, masked audience members walk at through the rooms, where performers re-enact scenes from Shakespeare’s “Macbeth.”
I've spent most of my life marketing, producing and supporting the arts, in particular dance. I am also a technology-loving nerd, sharing a lot online, currently working with digital development teams. We talk about augmented reality and social networking and everything being media, but none of that compares to what "Sleep No More" accomplishes.
In short, this production is the most extraordinary and wonderful (in the true, honest sense of both words) that I've experienced in recent years, if not in my whole life.
It is wordless Shakespeare, living film noire, the best of contemporary dance, true augmented reality, masterful storytelling, respectful homage, detailed design, adult entertainment (by which I mean it provokes thought beyond the nudity that it does have, which is more like the nudes in paintings by masters,) and that is not even taking in consideration the technical requirements needed to produce and perform such a "play" every night.
Kirby Ferguson is right, everything is a remix, and Punchdrunk have taken the performing arts and remixed them creating something completely new, yet familiar, and absolutely spellbinding.