Monday, February 06, 2006

More Theater Robots

Robots wil be playing leading roles in a Elizabeth Meriwether adaptation of Ibsen's Hedda Gabler, 'Heddatron.' The play is directed by Alex Timbers and the robots are from the robot design house Botmatrix.

Heddatron includes 5 robot actors in the cast. The robots are not putting anyone out of work though because they must be controlled from back stage.

Robots from Botmatrix have been more independent than these built for the play but for this purpose:
"When you're doing a play, you don't want robots to act on their own, you want to control them," Ms. Finkelstein of Botmatrix said. "You don't want to be innovative. You want the technology to work." And the play's director, Mr. Timbers, required that the robots be tall, humanoid and metallic."
You want them to act!

Ms. Finkelstein says she has grandiose dreams of someday creating an all-robot opera: "It would be the robot creation myth. I have this vision of these clouds, all this robotic foam."

In the meantime, the Botmatrix women consider it their mission to improve people's attitudes toward androids.

"These girls think robots get a bad rap in pop culture," Mr. Timbers said. "And that caused me to reassess how we were depicting them."

More progress for the Robot Agenda.

Do Robots Dream of Electric Lovborgs? - New York Times

You can also listen to a story about producing the play from NPR.


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