Virtual symbols of the internet space and its impact on the development of the modern theater

Relationship of theatrical art and virtual reality of the Internet space. Sociological analysis of the interaction of theatrical and Internet technologies in a virtual reality. The study of the interaction in the subsystem "theatrical-virtual reality".

Рубрика Культура и искусство
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Язык английский
Дата добавления 30.08.2018
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virtual symbols of the internet space and its impact on the development of the modern theater

O.I. Orlova

theatrical virtual interaction reality

The article is devoted to theoretical and applied interconnections of theatrical art and the virtual reality of the Internet space. The sociological analysis of the interaction of the theater and Internet technologies in the conditions of virtual reality, the study of interaction in the subsystem «theater-virtual reality» allows us to conclude that further convergence of the theater and virtual reality, the emergence of such a new artistic phenomenon in contemporary art as «virtual theater».

Key words: theater, internet space, simulacrum, virtual reality, virtual theater, intercultural theater.

Орлова О. И. Виртуальная символика интернет-пространства и его влияние на развитие современного театра

Статья посвящена теоретическим и прикладным взаимосвязям театрального искусства и виртуальной реальности интернет-пространства. Социологический анализ взаимодействия театра и интернет-технологий в условиях виртуальной реальности, исследование интеракций в подсистеме «театр - виртуальная реальность» позволяют сделать вывод о дальнейшей конвергенции театра и виртуальной реальности, возникновение такого нового художественного явления в современном искусстве, как виртуальный театр.

Ключевые слова: театр, интернет-пространство, симулякр, виртуальная реальность, виртуальный театр, интерактивный театр.

Орлова О. І. Віртуальна символіка интернет-простору та її вплив на розвиток сучасного театру

Статтю присвячено теоретичним та прикладним взаємозв'язкам театрального мистецтва й віртуальної реальності интернет-простору. Соціологічний аналіз взаємодії театру та інтернет-технологій в умовах віртуальної реальності, дослідження інтеракції в підсистемі «театр - віртуальна реальність» дають змогу зробити висновок про подальшу конвергенцію театру й віртуальної реальності, виникнення такого нового художнього явища в сучасному мистецтві, як віртуальний театр.

Ключові слова: театр, інтернет-простір, симулякр, віртуальна реальність, віртуальний театр, інтеркативний театр.

The theater, as a social phenomenon and a prevailing social institution, is a synthetic art form. It combines directing, the creative idea of the scriptwriter, acting performance, music, plastic, painting, scenery, artistic style, etc.

Today's theater includes a wide range of technologies - from traditional theatrical to electronic, allowing theater to be perceived as a digital performance [2].

The modern theater reliably included electronic media that enriched the scene with light effects, complicated the ability of the machine, which changes the plastic scenes. There were video projections, computers were used. The Internet, as a global network, could not but influence the development of the theater, creating not only new opportunities for advertising, but also expanding the feedback parameters of the viewer with the theater.

A modern theatrical performance includes elements of cinema and television. It expands the influence of theatrical effect on human feelings and attracts the viewer to the play space. It is the theatrical space that is also changing, going beyond the traditional model and going outside: in the premises of abandoned factories, in natural landscapes, at stations and city squares.

As the ideas of the future grow, theaters go to the viewer through the Internet in any available way. There is a situation of active «patriotization», a kind of culture of interaction based on the principle of participation or participation of the viewer in theatrical performance.

Thus, the development of a modern theater in terms of new technologies, its presence in the Internet space characterizes this social institution as a unique means of communication, which naturally aspires to the use of modern technologies that can expand its audience.

The process of transforming the theater, as a means of communicating with the viewer, is ongoing. If the traditional theater included drama, theatrical game, visual arts, music and plastic genres, today the entire stream of electronic capabilities projects a theater platform to the global Internet world.

The symbolism of the modern theater suggests that the relationship between the theater and the viewer is increasingly virtualized. In this case, the theater saves its symbols to the fullest, completing it with contemporary images: from urban to virtual symbolism of the Internet.

Let's consider in more detail the technology of virtual reality as a phenomenon of postmodern culture and the possibility of its interaction with theatrical art.

As P. Braslavskyi rightly observes, today virtual reality has already entered the set of technical means of modern theater. There are several options for using virtual reality in theatrical productions [1]:

1) the projection of scenes of virtual reality into a screen that becomes a «second scene» and allows you to increase the «dimension of presentation» (it is important to emphasize that the computer image can be coordinated with what is happening on the main stage);

2) virtual scenery (such an approach can be justified not only aesthetically, but also economically);

3) participation in a theatrical production along with live actors of virtual heroes, avatars (avatars can be full-fledged actors, and not simply «decoration» of the performance).

Various ways and variants of using virtual reality in contemporary theater are illustrated by examples of many contemporary theatrical productions. Undoubtedly, the passivity of the viewer is the same factor with which the theater fights most fiercely with the help of quite different tools, from which the Internet is perhaps the most promising.

Inside the theater itself, there are changes that are aimed at «opening» the sleeping soul of the viewer, turning it into a full-fledged player capable of participating in the energy of the performance in any way acceptable to the contemporary theater. It can be argued that at present, the information technology of the post-industrial society begins to appear in its virtual hypostasis.

This transformation in the information format of postmodern culture requires, first and foremost, a detailed sociological reflection on the concept of «virtual reality».

Taking into account the fact that modern society is informational, the specific worldview of which is postmodernism, it will be appropriate to analyze the category of «virtuality», using the means of postmodern sociological theories. The discovery of the essence of «virtual reality» is devoted to the theory of simulators, which are actively being developed within the post-structuralism- postmodern paradigm by such representatives as J. Bodriiiar and J. Delez.

Based on the theories of Bodriiiar and Delez, the simulacrum can be defined as a sign that revives its own being, creates its reality, and, in fact, ceases to be a sign in essence. In fact, the simulacrum itself is a body, but the body it is virtual. That is, it is just as real as anybody that is the referent, only real it is virtually.

That is why the simulacrum is not a sign, but he himself can be a referent in relation to the sign-simulacrum of the next order representing it. The simulacrum begins where the similarity ends. It is there that the virtual reality begins, which is nothing more than the space of simulacrums [3; 6].

On this basis, virtuality is a phenomenon inherent in the very structure of being, which embodies the ability of creative, generating activity. It is believed that a person is first immersed in virtual reality and moves from one virtual state to another. That is, the virtual reality is the resource environment that nurtured and educated a person [4].

Thus, the world of the information society is transformed into a total simulation, which, in fact, was spoken by Bodriiiar in his sociological research.

One way or another, but people have always sought to make the world around, creating their own inner worlds, which are virtually virtual. Their virtuality is determined by the «idols» of human consciousness, through which knowledge, instead of reflecting reality, results from its simulation, that is, the creation of a picture of the world that has little in common with the world it reflects. In this sense, the «modernist project» is nothing but the most global of virtual projects that was carried out by a person before which any computer reality dulls.

Concluding the consideration of the general theoretical aspects of virtual reality, we turn to the concrete manifestations of this phenomenon in social life. The changes that have taken place in society in connection with the introduction into the postmodern era point to the fact that it are in their context that the distribution of virtual reality technologies should be considered.

As you know, the postmodern culture is born at the junction of the decline of modernist ideals and the rapid development of digital information technologies, which in the process of their perfection increasingly acquire a virtual character, starting to reflect, and sometimes simulate reality. Considering the influence of virtual reality on the life of society, our focus will be mainly on those aspects that are, in one way or another, related to information and electronic technologies, that is, the basis on which the tree of postmodern culture grows.

Also, we consider it necessary to warn that a real study will be based on the position on the neutrality of any technology in relation to a person, including virtual reality. That is, the question of the benefits or harm of this phenomenon will be treated depending on how and to achieve which purposes it is used by man.

Consequently, even a brief overview of possible directions for the use of virtually constructed reality, suggests that this phenomenon already has a rather significant socio-cultural space in postmodern society, and that its role will continue to grow steadily in the future.

Based on the analysis conducted, one can make assumptions about further convergence of the theater and virtual reality, the emergence of such a new artistic phenomenon as a «virtual theater.» In our opinion, two trends determine the emergence of new forms of the theater existence: full interactivity and completely autonomous theatrical activities.

The contours of the virtual theater of the future can already be seen today in specialized gaming virtual centers, where the personality of computer games is connected with the collective spirit of theatrical action.

That is why the theater and its contemporary content, the use of technologies of virtual reality are the subject of sociological research within the framework of this part of the sociology of culture, which is the sociology of the theater.

Modern theaters are interested in introducing multimedia technologies on their sites, not only to complicate the space of the scene, but also to create a whole arsenal of means of connecting theater with other arts.

Today we are already studying the phenomenon of the modern theater as a fact of its transformation from traditional theater to a full digital performance. It is the denial of theatrical traditions that became the main principle of the theater's development, just as in art it was a denial of the artistic process, and in music it was a negation of the sound.

The modern theater is experiencing a period of important changes related to the development of new communication technologies and the globalization of the information space. As a kind of art, the theater is one of the most ancient and complex. Many discussions around the theater are now associated with the degree of its possible transformations through electronic technology.

In this regard, an important aspect of studying the phenomenon of modern theater in the virtual space is the study of ways and areas of circulation of theatrical information on the Internet.

The most extreme points of view come from the fact that theatrical art is capable of losing its uniqueness and parallelism under the influence of virtualization and Internet technology of theatrical processes.

In fact, each new technological form reflects the needs of society in information. Each new technical invention used in theater life extends the circle of viewers. The accumulation of theatrical material on the Internet allows us to get a broad picture of the modern theater from traditional to experimental.

The main problem in obtaining information about the theatrical tendencies is the network search system. A few years ago, theaters relied on traditional advertising and permanent viewers. Today, it became clear that without special work to attract viewers through the Internet cannot do. This is important because competition is growing and there is a need to «grow» its audience in the depths of global networks.

Today, some theaters are developing a system of virtual view of performances on their sites. On the sites of many theaters, you can find not only repertoire information, but links to videos hosted on handy hosts such as YouTube. An attempt to provide broad access to theatrical life through Internet broadcasts allows the user to receive information through the Internet from a large number of cameras installed in the theater space and fix a performance that allows simultaneously showing the performance of the performance from various angles.

Some theaters complement their sites by virtual tours along the corridors of their theaters, offer to see fragments of performances. Some sites have the ability to watch performances online entirely. Also is created theatrical projects with the ability to view the recordings of performances on the Internet. By paying a certain amount and receiving a special code, you can watch the performances without leaving home. For example, some theaters offer online play views. Modern video plays usually do not use a very large number of video cameras to capture a spectacle.

However, some theaters use broadcast in a three-camera mode with the ability to choose the most convenient angle at one or another moment of the play. An online streaming director who watches a multi-threaded broadcast on his own screen can interactively select the streams that, in his opinion, represent the best picture of the action. At the same time, the Internet viewer can choose a particular projection from a multi-screen player to monitor the theatrical performance. Exactly as a director who prepares a performance for a video, any user can create it own version of the installation of the play.

The technology of the Internet Theater offers a multi-threaded broadcast system, which provides attraction and interactivity for the viewer. The result that can be created by the user on the stream of multimedia stream directly from the theater space to it on the computer screen will be different from that created by its colleague who is sitting at the computer in it apartment or office and observing that the same speech on the screen.

Unlike a professional director, the user can set a rather different task. The user will be able to distract, temporarily leave the broadcast, go back and notice interesting moments, fix them in a way that seems to him adequate.

In addition, the location of cameras in theater space cannot be limited to only one theatrical production, and, for example, include at the same time several sites in one theater, or even be complemented by points in the lobby or the hallways of the theater. This may be important if the director intends to extend the performance of the play to several sites where it will be held simultaneously, and the logical connection in the play will be carried out with the help of various means - a TV screen, a computer, a smartphone or other gadgets. At the same time, all streams will be recorded, and in the future it will be possible to use archival materials for analysis and statement of creative tasks.

Modern Internet equipment allows you not only to view the performances in cyberspace in a multichannel broadcast, but also think about the possibilities for advanced users to create their own version of the show from their streams with their accents and visual versions of action. Such projects are aimed at the future, but many theaters are already concerned about preparing appropriate platforms and specialists for them.

Thus, theaters orient the traditional space of the scene on those viewers who are accustomed to «live» on the Internet. The theater, existing in the virtual space, collects from the registered users the media content for performances and places its product on the Internet. Before the beginning of the action, the audience contacts the heroes of the performance through the resources of the social networks on which materials are stored. Heroes' performances tell about their experience of life in cyberspace, revealing the actual problems of modern life.

The interactive participation of the viewer in theatrical life is one of the main ideas of the modern theatrical experiment. The Internet, with its advanced means of collecting, storing and disseminating information, can be the tool that will create opportunities for the viewer to more actively participate in theatrical life, and perhaps even influence it.

Modern directors are working on the creation of theatrical projects, in which it would be possible to connect fragments of online performances, played on sites that are far from each other for many kilometers. For this purpose, telematics connection technologies of several broadcasting of real theatrical actions are used. Such experiments are also popular in the musical environment for the organization of virtual rehearsals of musicians from different countries, which are thus preparing for joint concerts of live music.

The modern theater is increasingly trying to establish a dialogue with the viewer. It is assisted by various blogs and forums that many theaters of the world place on their sites. In connection with this, recently the term «virtual theater» is increasingly used. Under it means different things. Wikipedia claims that the virtual theater is a «gaming engine, created to facilitate the development of computer games in the genre of graphic quest» [8].

In contemporary sociology of the theater more and more it is a question of the form of contemporary theatrical art as an interactive theater. Today, the acquaintance with all theatrical events is possible not only in the theater. With the Internet, you can create a clear picture of what's happening in the world of theatrical events.

The term «interactive theater» is often mentioned in connection with the social adaptation of various categories of citizens (children, sick people, and the elderly). The use of the same interactivity in the professional theater on the one hand tends to the same goal - the involvement in theatrical life of a wide audience of people. On the other hand, it is an attempt to modernize due to the use of various forms of fantasy of people in the virtual world.

The traditional theater, which is remains quite customary for some categories of citizens (for the older generation), is outdated for others (young people who grew up in the technological boom). Young people are interested not only to see the new one, but also to realize the extent of their possible participation in the theatrical life on the same principle that there are social networks with their unlimited freedom and equal participation of all those wishing.

To this end, the theater must offer interesting technologies that allow you not just to spend time, but, when involved in the game, to improve their skills, for example, in creating their own versions of the show from a large stream of options for its broadcasts on the Internet. Typically, such a job is performed by a director who has technology and experience.

Thus, we can conclude that virtuality and interactivity act as new forms of theatrical life.

Taking into account the active development of Internet communications and technologies used by them, we can predict that the directions of their possible implementation in contemporary theatrical life are the emergence at the junction of theater and media of advanced projects, creative laboratories that are actively working within creative experiments.

The emergence of some advanced theatrical ideas into the Internet space creates the opportunity to form new expressive means of theatrical performance. Developing ideas in this way can not only stimulate the development of technologies for involving people from different parts of the world into general theatrical projects, but also become a creative environment for the formation of new forms of the coexistence of theater, social networks and individual human experience.


1. Браславский П. И. Технология виртуальной реальности как феномен культуры конца XX - начала XXI веков : автореф. дис. ... канд. культур. : 24.00.01. Екатеринбург, 2003. С. 15-17.

2. Вдовенко И. Театр и новые технологии: интерактивность, телесность, текст. Искусство и новые технологии: Методологические проблемы современного искусствознания : сб. науч. тр. / отв. ред. Я. Иоскевич ; сост. М. Тимченко. Санкт-Петербург : Изд-во РИИИ, 2001. Вып. 7. С. 127-143.

3. Делез Ж. Различие и повторение. Санкт-Петербург, 1998. С. 93.

4. Корсунцев И. Г. Философия виртуальной реальности. Виртуальная реальность: Философские и психологические аспекты. Москва, 1997. С. 50-52.

5. Baudrillard J. Simulacra and Simulation. University of Michigan Press. 1994. P. 85.

6. Brown G. H., Hauck G. Convergence and Creativity in Telematic Performance: The Adding Machine/ Towse R., Handka C. Handbook on the Digital Creative Economy. Edward Elgar Publishing. 2013. P. 47.

7. Dixon S. Digital Performance: A History of New Media in Theatre, Dance, Performance Art, and Installation. Cambridge, MA and London : The MIT Press, 2007. P. 211.

8. Virtual Theatre. Матеріал з Вікіпедії - вільної енциклопедії. URL: http://ru. (дата звернення 10.10.2017).

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