V FOR VIRTUAL is a thirty-minute audio-visual play by Debby Friday produced while in residence at Western Front. The work marked the final installment of a sci-fi sonic theatre trilogy that began with Friday’s LINK SICK (2021), followed by the immersive installation, VOW (2021).
In this cumulative project, the future world of VIRTUAL finds itself under siege of corrupted code, warring factions, and rolling whiteouts from ABC Inc. Digital consciousness interfaces mediate the lives of inhabitants, who party at non-stop raves amidst the world’s collapse. Borrowing from Dante Aligheri’s Inferno (1320), the hellscape of VIRTUAL is divided into levels that viewers traverse with the help of CHEV, the play’s protagonist, in an attempt to return to real life. Projected across three screens, Friday’s multi-channel audio-video installation extended the work towards the audience to reference mixed reality and question the boundaries between the real self, the digital self, and collective online worlds. The project incorporated a fusion of new media approaches to visual and sound art, including experimental music production, generative art, chroma keying, and algorithmic composition.
V FOR VIRTUAL screened over three days in the Grand Luxe Hall every hour on the hour.
Presented with the support of the Government of Canada and the SOCAN Foundation. With special thanks to Shoreline Studios.