Bringing performance and gaming technology together to explore new ways for audiences to experience live theatre.

Dream is a live performance set in a virtual midsummer forest. Inspired by Shakespeare’s A Midsummer Night’s Dream, it will give you a unique opportunity to directly influence the live performance, from wherever you are in the world.

Performances take place from Friday 12 March to Saturday 20 March 2021. Visit on your mobile, desktop or tablet and enjoy a performance that uses the latest gaming and theatre technology, as well as an interactive symphonic score which responds to the actors’ movement during the show.

Under the shadow of gathering clouds at dusk, lit by the glimmer of fireflies, Puck acts as the guide. You’re invited to explore the forest from the canopy of the trees to the roots, meet the sprites, Cobweb, Mustardseed, Peaseblossom and Moth, and take an extraordinary journey into the eye of a cataclysmic storm.

An actor standing on a plinth in a motion capture suit and also projected onto a screen
The actor and avatar of Puck (EM Williams) performing in a motion capture suit and moving through the virtual forest.
Photo by Stuart Martin © RSC Browse and license our images

The 50-minute online event will be a shared experience between remote audience members and the seven actors who play Puck and the sprites. You can choose to buy a £10 ticket to take part and at key points in the play directly influence the world of the actors, or to watch the performance for free.

The performances of Dream use motion capture as the culmination of a major piece of cutting-edge research and development (R&D) to explore how audiences could experience live performance in the future in addition to a regular visit to a performance venue.

To create the project, we are working with Manchester International Festival (MIF), Marshmallow Laser Feast (MLF) and Philharmonia Orchestra. This is one of four Audience of the Future Demonstrator projects, supported by the government Industrial Strategy Challenge Fund, which is delivered by UK Research and Innovation

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