Author Archives: Wiebke

sew the costume (additional pics)

wool for the cape
wool for the cape

_MG_0317_web _MG_0321_web

sewing the outside of the cape (wool + cotton textile)

_MG_0354_web _MG_0356_web

fixation of the motors (2nd layer of the cape): little boxes made of a type of styrofoam, the motors stick into this boxes, finally they’re fixed with cable straps

_MG_0359-web _MG_0360_web _MG_0362_web


the west (synthetic textile weaving with poly urethan fixation) without the final shoulder part (wool)

Disembodied Performance

Original: Disembodied Performance / MIT Laboratory / CHI 2009, Boston MA USA

Authors:  Peter A. Torpey , Elena N. Jessop

Keywords:  Disembodied Performance, theater, visualization, physiological sensors


Disembodied Performance by Peter A. Torpey and Elena N. Jessop informs about a prospective way of theater and acting. Including Sensor Systems, Robots and the technology of mapping Torpey, Jessop and the Director Tod Machover developed the opera Death and the Powers. The  main character Simon Powers (or the actor James Maddalena)  can control parts of the stage by his behavior shown as light, sound, movements and other projected images. This kind of performance will be part of the Future of Theaters.

Main Contents:

The Paper „Disembodied Performance“ explains a new way of staging and performance. Using the example of Tod Machover’s Opera Death and the Powers is shown how futuristic theater can look like. In combination with sensor technologies and mapping the actor is in an absolut new situation. Off-stage he is acting and and gesturing in connection with Distance- , Pressure- , Sound- and other sensors. So his role is transfered by the technic of mapping and tracking. In case of Simon Powers, the main character of Death and Powers, the character is translated into the walls and robots on the stage. Part is that Powers dies at the beginning of the story and his Personality is going to be live into the robots. Here becomes a visual language and the actor keeps contact with the other characters. Light, Sound, robots and projecting images expresses the mood of the actor and visualize this on stage.

The Performance contains the following points: Performance Data, Affect Space and On-stage representation. Disembodied Performance adapts ideas from affective psychology, cognitive science, and the theatrical tradition to create a structure for thinking about the translation of stage presence. Fact is that this system or this kind of presence on the stage opens the door to acting and allows actors to be virtual. So, a new way of storytelling develops.


Variation of the moving Part – Vibrating Motor

First tests with a vibrating motor:


  • needs some more unbalanced mass that the vibration is more powerful
  • little case for the motor that the strings getting not entangeled

_MG_0078_web _MG_0068_web

Second tests with costume:

  • the costume could have a seperate cape
  • the cape has maybe 2 “layers” – one for the strings and one for the motors
  • so the motors cannot get entrangeled with the strings (and can be as big as it needs)
  • the motors will vibrate the whole surface

_MG_0097_web _MG_0102_web _MG_0100_web



Nemo :

Characteristics and Visualization of Captain Nemo

First idea for Nemos costume
First idea for Nemos costume: a (living) coat composed of sea plants / animals


variation of the coat (more clothing, the coat becomes more a cape)
variation of the coat (more clothing, the coat becomes more a cape)
Mock-up / first tests



+ Nemo ( in the past Prince Dakkar ) is Scientist and Captain of the Nautilus – his Submarine,    developed by himself.

+ He has an immense and multifaceted knowledge

+ Indian roots

+ lives under the sea – eschews dry land

+ Isolation from humans – he was domineered by other humans in the past

+ He uses no products that are not marine in nature

+ His crew sticks by him and he sticks by his crew

+ Nemo is Latin for “no one”, and also (as νέμω) Greek for “I give what is due”  (Wikipedia)


Citation from the german copy of “Twentythousend leagues under the sea

Nemo to Arronax :

»ich ge­höre nicht zu denen, die Sie zivilisiert nennen! Ich habe mit der ganzen menschlichen Gesellschaft gebrochen, aus Gründen, die ich allein zu würdigen berechtigt bin. Ich befolge also auch nicht ihre Regeln, und fordere Sie auf, sich bei mir nie darauf zu berufen.«

„ … dieser Tabak kommt weder aus der Havanna noch dem Orient. Es ist eine Art nikotinhaltiges See­gras, das mir das Meer, etwas sparsam, liefert …“

»Und diese Musiker?« sagte ich, (…) »Diese Musiker«, erwiderte Kapitän Nemo, »gehören wie Or­pheus zu einer entschwundenen Zeit, und ich bin tot, ebenso wie die, welche 6 Fuß tief unter der Erde ruhen!«