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In the Land of Babari-an: Description and Images
live dance performance with interactive 3D stage set
The dance performance In the Land of Babari-an is an inner journey in which the dancers, Shinichi Iova-Koga and Ishide Takuya, incorporate their own East/West experiences with the fantastic stage set of The Travels of Mariko Horo, deriving inspiration both from Japanese mythology (Urashimataro, Musume Dojoji) and from Dante’s Divine Comedy. The two dancers are not however the wise Poet Virgil and naïve Pilgrim Dante, but rather two bumbling tourists who stumble – sometimes in harmony, sometimes in brutal conflict – between Heaven and Hell, between jewelled underwater palaces and the ruins of a post-apocalyptic Venice.
The space of the dance performance encompasses the stage in front of the screen, the 3D virtual world on the screen itself and the shadow world behind the screen. In front of the screen, colored stage lights controlled by light artist Rainer Ludwig integrate the dancers into the virtual world. Behind the screen the back-lit dancers – inspired by Dante’s “shades” – move as shadows through the virtual world, playing the full depth of the back stage to deepen the third dimension of the virtual image. Additionally, pre-processed images of the dancers appear in the virtual world, sometimes as angels, sometimes as lost and tortured souls. Thus the performance space traverses and includes the virtual space, integrating the dancers both in front and behind the screen as real and as virtual figures.
Here is a review of the performance (in German) from Ursula Hentschlaeger in the online journal artmagazine.cc.
The following photos were taken by Peter Graf and Horst Konietzny.
Library of the Immortal Poet
Riding the Gondola
Dance among the Ruins
Cosmos of the Goddess of Mercy
Limbo of Lost Souls