Cryptic and Technology

Over the past seventeen years Cryptic has explored how technology can enhance live performance, continually endeavouring to pioneer new technologies in this domain, reaffirming the company’s vision to create ‘music to be looked at…not just listened to’.

The multimedia journey began in 1994 with Bonjour Tristesse, when cellist Anthea Haddow played through a guitar effects unit to create live soundscapes on stage. This developed to exploring projection technology in 1997 moving through to live camera capture in 2001 (as well as webcasting), 3D video in 2002 and live interactive visuals in 2005. This research and development was also enhanced by Cathie Boyd’s NESTA Fellowship which gave the company an opportunity to explore numerous software including Isadora, Keystroke & Jitter (Max/MSP).

Bridging the gap between science and art, as part of the Gavin Bryars project (2006), Cryptic worked closely with the pioneering Patrick Hickey from LUX Biotechnology to transfer ‘living light’ from the laboratory to the stage and successfully integrate luminous and fluorescent proteins within the set design.

For Orlando (2010), we partnered with the Digital Design Studio (DDS) of Glasgow School of Art and this year Cryptic unveils two groundbreaking new technologies: Living Canvas and Point Cloud Data Imaging.

Living Canvas is an interactive real-time tracking and projection technology which has been developed over the past three years with support from the Arts & Humanities Research Council and is an initiative by Dr Martin Naef. This is used on stage to capture Orlando’s magical moments within his/her journey.

Point Cloud Data Imaging utilises high resolution laser scanning technology to generate accurate 3D digital depictions of objects such as buildings, and is used within Act 2 of Orlando when he escapes Great Britain.

The Cryptic App for iPhone was developed by Ludometrics in 2010 to celebrate Orlando’s arrival and to enhance audience member’s experience of a Cryptic performance, using QR codes as a Cryptic way to reward curious patrons for their fastidiousness with ‘Cryptic Treats’.

Cryptic continues to work with scientists, software developers and other creatives with a shared desire to create and innovate.

Video & Audio

Living Canvas

Living Canvas - Reveal

Living Canvas - Text

The Dell

Guy Van Belle, Locusts