You are sitting in the crowd, waiting for Hamilton to start. The audience is alive with expectation. Suddenly, unexpectedly, someone walks out in front of the curtain with a microphone and makes an announcement. “I’m sorry everyone, but the actor playing Alexander Hamilton is too ill to perform tonight.” The audience groans in disappointment. But the announcer continues: “Is there anyone in the crowd who knows the part, who would be willing to go on instead?” There are gasps in the crowd? Surely they can’t be serious? This is the moment you’ve been waiting for your whole life! You raise your hand excitedly and see only a few other hands also go up. The person on the stage scans the crowd, locks eyes with you, and gestures for you to come to the front of the house. Buzzing with fear and excitement, you approach the stage. Is this really happening? “Don’t worry,” they tell you, “everyone in the cast and crew is here to coach you through the part. Now get backstage so you can be fitted for a costume! And have fun! Everyone here is rooting for you!” As you duck behind the curtain you hear the announcer turn back to the crowd: “Ladies and gentlemen, give a warm round of applause for this brave soul! The show will go on. As the crowd roars their appreciation you suddenly wake up!
ShadowCast is a mixed reality musical theater karaoke spectacle. A performer in VR chooses from a selection of Broadway hits and show tunes, before being elevated onto a stage to perform in front of a VR audience. That audience is controlled by real-world spectators who watch the performer’s avatar on a public screen. ShadowCast allows players to live out their Broadway dreams in an immersive VR theater environment.
ShadowCast combines the accessibility of karaoke with the audience participation of ShadowCasting, while using VR to transport participants into the fantasy of performing in a Broadway musical.