expanding focus
Image of the Infinite Rhyme Reality Prototype

Infinite Rhyme Reality

Performative VR Experience

INFINITE RHYME REALITY (WT) is a musical performance or rather a performative VR experience for the 360° space, which simultaneously interweaves three different stances to current events in our world in an artistic and unprecedented way. The protagonist, embodied by the successful Leipzig musician and performer David “Jahmica” Trautmann, expresses the three different stances: dystopia – utopia – apathy.

The audience is in the middle of the action and can decide, by adjusting their vantage point, which of the three stances they want to watch and listen to. Due to the spatial sound set-up, only one of the three alter egos can be heard, namely the one that is viewed by the audience at that moment. All three stances are assigned to three different pieces of music which all fit together in terms of speed and general sound.

All the verses by the three different stances rhyme with eachother. So not only do the individual lines of the individual verses of the respective stance rhyme, but the verses from the other two stances also rhyme with one another.

The viewer sees three performances, each embodying a stance or an attitude towards our world – and no combination is like the one before. The content is put together differently with each new head movement, turning the recipients into performers themselves.

And that’s not all! The audience can also record “their” very personal experience and share it as a video with their friends via social media. Especially in times of increased isolation through Covid-19, we consider a distance-based communication format to be a very innovative and appropriate option.

Portraeit from Artist David Trautmann in front of a green tiled wall

Content

In terms of content, the songs encapsulate current socio-political debates. The three stances each embody a utopian, a dystopian and a neutral third party. We follow the three protagonists through different scenarios. Hangout places such as a fair, parking lot, hotel lobby and a forest clearly represent one of the three stances in which the three characters then behave accordingly and counter their thoughts in the form of rhymed verses. The clear figures and the clear settings are reshuffled through the participation and interaction of the receiving performer (the audience) and thus demonstrating the complexity of our society today in a smart and multi-layered way. The performance uses prominent quotes from politicians, activists and literature and combines them into a mix of political journalism and pop culture, thus raising the question of how we position ourselves today (in the truest and figurative sense) and who we will listen to or turn to.

In a playful way, the boundaries of all three positions within the individual songs become apparent while at the same time these positions are mixed up and new partly humorous, partly profound meanings are opened up.

The body of the protagonist Trautmann – supported by seven dancers – always revolves around the recipient/audience. The imagery also works with clear lines and allocations on the one hand, but because the positions constantly change from one another, our protagonist is swallowed up by his environment and spat out again elsewhere as he switches from the microcosm to the macrocosm – and vice versa. So the protagonist also acts as us, the performative audience, by constantly changing between object and subject in relation to the environment.

Picture of the prototype showing the three different stances and the verses rhyming

TECHNOLOGY AND ARTISTIC POSSIBILITIES

Portraeit from Artist David Trautmann in a industrial hall with lights falling through the window

With the new technical possibilities of the 360°/VR space, the simultaneity of three actions can be represented in a way that previously wasn’t possible. Thus, this project is new territory in terms of form, content and art, the ingredients of which will result in more than the sum of its individual parts. We will record the scenes in 360°/3D and assemble the three stances into coherent overall panoramas.

In addition to our VR experience, the three stances should be distributed as three separate songs in digital format as an EP. When the EP is bought by a customer, they will receive a QR code/link with which they can download the VR experience as an app from the Google Playstore. The aim is also to purchase the experience individually from the Google Playstore at a discounted price. Even if a VR headset is required for the best experience (Gear VR, Oculus Go / Quest / Rift, HTC Vive Pro, Valve Index), it is important for us to grant the widest possible access to our performance, which is clear because every user can download the performance to his or her smartphone and then take part in it.

Roadmap

We want to have finished the music production and the writing of the lyrics by autumn and have started the pre-production for the technical recordings. We would like to then finish the production in winter and then use the late winter and spring 2021 for the main distribution.