A Mind Apart
While reality television showing unscripted real-life situations has been popular with modern viewers, A Mind Apart is a virtual reality theatre experience. It invites audiences, who are so used to perceive reality from behind the screens, to step into the setting of an apartment. With the virtual reality technology, audience travel across time and space to experience a dialogue between a couple. The non-linear story will unfold by segments, all one perceives is a moment at a time. By re-phrasing those moments, hopefully the viewer will have second thoughts on the experience and on reality. The creative team has invited the Ashford-based dance company, AΦE, to be the technology consultant for this project. The creators wish to bring an alternative and immersive theatre experience to the viewers.
Chan Ka-wai is now an independent artist and creative producer mainly focusing on experimental theatre, Butoh-inspired works and multi media arts production. Her recent theatre works include Indigo Appetite – The Weird Fishes, Crimson Appetite and Possi/Proba-bility.
Dabinlo Lab was founded by Alvin Chan and Sing Jantzen Tse in 2016. It focuses on video art and sound art, and constantly explores the new development of media art such as AR/VR. Apart from art creation, Dabinlo Lab has collaborated with various local art organisations on art archives and documentations, including MILL6CHAT, Tai Kwun Contemporary, K11 Art Foundation, as well as Hong Kong Visual Arts Society.
An immersive theatre experience inspired by fragments of reality
A Mind Apart was inspired by a shocking news of the suicide of a celebrity who was casted in an unscripted reality TV programme in 2019. Because of her behaviour on air, the said individual was scrutinised and bullied for her every move in real life and the pressure became too overwhelming in the end. While doing the research for this production, the team realised that both the victim and the perpetrator experienced elevated levels of stress, and their roles are sometimes much less rigid nor defined as it seems. The purpose of A Mind Apart is not to create a theatre with opposing duality, but rather to remind audience the possibility of changing one’s mind set. The work takes cyberbullying as its starting point and extends the contemplation on one’s mental health.
A Mind Apart is a virtual reality theatre experience. This show invites audiences, who are so used to perceive the reality through screens, to immerse themselves into the backdrop of an apartment. With the Virtual Reality technology, the viewer is taken to eavesdrop on a dialogue between a couple. The non-linear story will unfold by segments, and the viewer is left to decipher, organise and comprehend the given situation. Hopefully, by piecing together and making sense of the various moments, the viewer will find a way out through having second thoughts.