Dance Performance “Doppelgänger” cycle 7 “Ningyō-buri”

As part of the research group H.A.U.S. (Humanoid Robots in Architecture and Urban Spaces), the DC students Helena Frijns, Isabel Schwaninger, and Darja Stoeva participated in the creation of a dance performance that included two Pepper robots and a professional dancer. The dance challenged the question of who controls whom? The status of being either subject or object can only vaguely be attributed today: Who plays, who is played? Who reflects who?

The performance is inspired by a traditional Japanese puppet theater known by the name Bunraku, which consist of three components: the puppeteers, chanters and musicians. The robots and the dancer represent the puppets and puppeteers, interchanging roles throughout the performance, during which the expressive motion capabilities of the robot are confronted with the dancer’s motion.

The dance was performed on three different events: 150 years of diplomatic and cultural relations between Japan and Austria, at the Volkstheater as part of the #digitalnatives19 festival, and as part of the Posthuman Flux exhibition at the Spitzer gallery (Odeon Theater).

Team members: Oliver Schürer (concept, production), Eva-Maria Kraft (dance, human and robot choreography), Sebastian Michael (recitative), Rupert Huber (composition, music), Thomas Jelinek (dramaturgy), Christoph Hubatschke (discourse) , Isabel Schwaninger (interviews), Helena Frijns (robot programming), Christoph Müller (robot programming), Darja Stoeva (robot programming).

For more information visit the official website of H.A.U.S.