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Staging Mixed Reality: A Theatre Design Symposium

Event date
5 March 2020 (9.30am to 5pm)
Staging Mixed Reality: A Theatre Design Symposium

Join world leading designers, directors, theatre companies and leading academics for a one-day symposium considering the practical and creative possibilities of mixed reality and virtual worlds in theatre and performance.

Staging Mixed Reality will focus on the ever-evolving field of mixed reality performance and will examine the new aesthetics being developed through digital possibilities. From interactive media to virtual reality, animation to video gaming, technology has enabled theatre practitioners to offer varied perspectives of reality that reimagine theatrical worlds.

The symposium will consider how real and virtual worlds have been combined in performance to produce new environments and encounters for audiences. It will explore the critical and creative processes involved in the discipline and ask key questions of its practice, such as:

  • What methods do designers, digital designers and directors use to achieve their intended effects and affects in performance?
  • How are the boundaries of performance expanded through mixed reality and virtual worlds? And, to what extent do virtual worlds in theatre reframe or transform how we interact with the real world?

With these questions and more in mind, this theatre design symposium will explore how experiments with technology and digital media have shaped and altered the versions of reality represented on stage today.


Suzanne Andrade (Co-Artistic Director of 1927) 

Arnold Aronson (Professor at Columbia University)

Toby Coffey (Immersive Storytelling Studio at National Theatre) 

Steve Jelley (Dimension Studio)

Sophie Jump (Senior Lecturer in Theatre Design at UAL and Co-Artistic Director of Seven Sisters Group)

Roma Patel (Scenographer and Installation Artist at dIGITAL sET dESIGN)

Dick Straker (Video and Projection Designer at Mesmer)

Staging Mixed Reality is convened by Dr Matthew McFrederick, Professor Jane Collins and Professor Eileen Hogan.

Book a ticket via the National Theatre website.

UAL students and staff should use the promo code when booking tickets. Please contact

The symposium is a collaboration between research at Camberwell, Chelsea and Wimbledon, the National Theatre and the Jocelyn Herbert Archive.

Image: Monostatos threatens Pamina in Barrie Kosky’s 'The Magic Flute.' 1927 Production. Photo ©Scott Masterton.

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