Diego Ortiz and Antoine Gonot / Francia
Vanishing Walks is a show without actors. It is “acted” in its totality by the public on stage with the help of tablets. Taken together, viewers are connected to a device that is going to be inseparable from the theatrical performance. The device is both an expression space and a tool that determines the rules and restrictions of the show. Viewers follow the instructions of a text that appears on the screen of their tablet. This has the form of a classic theater text, with the stage direction, for the indications of play, and a text “dialogued” intended to be read aloud.
As much as the scenographic factory that supports reading, the tablets are connected to all the scenic elements: from video projections to lighting, to music. Each viewer intervention is synchronized with the writing of music or video projections, giving them an additional dramatic “responsibility”. Two stories are told simultaneously: the story of a community that is disintegrating -within the story- and the appearance of a new one -the spectators- actors on the scene. Vanishing Walks describes the events that led a group of people to shed their body wrapping in favor of a purely virtual existence.
Vanishing Walks describes the events that led a group of people to revel in their bodily wrapping in favor of a purely virtual existence. The characters belong to the Furry community and their group was created in Second Life before alternating their encounters between the real and the virtual. Following their will to transgress their human condition, they found a way to discharge their consciousness in a computer machine, seduced by the promise of an immortal life in the form of an artificial intelligence. But this new life, far from being singular, reduces them irremediably to a form of computer life without autonomy.
Converted into executables through a computer program, the “consciences” became script lines. Deprived of humanity, turned into computer language but incapable of developing their intelligence, “consciences” do not try to recover their human condition or escape from their new life, they simply repeat the lines of command constantly, for in this has become their function.
Vanishing Walks proposes a reflection of our relation to virtuality through a spectacle without actors. It is a form of participatory and immersive theater that aims to break the barrier between performing arts and new technologies, in particular, the inclusion of mobile technologies on stage. It also breaks the boundary between the viewer and the actor, between the audience and the stage.