Almost overnight, the COVID-19 crisis had a devastating impact on the performing arts sector, disrupting plans for creative artists round the globe. Deeply concerned about the enormous challenge artists were facing, NACO Music Director Alexander Shelley, NACO Managing Director Arna Einarsdóttir, and Creative Producer Donna Feore came together to create a project that would give voice to artists in an “undisrupted” way.
Through UNDISRUPTED, the NAC Orchestra (NACO) is throwing open the doors to the symphonic experience. This four-episode series takes the audience on a musical and visual journey with powerful, diverse and contemporary stories. Visionaries Measha Brueggergosman, Ana Sokoloviċ, Nicole Lizée and Shawnee Kish were each invited to draw on their own unique experiences using NACO as a megaphone to share their stories – stories that come to virtual life with the inclusion of mixed reality visual designs created by Montreal’s Normal Studio.
These four leading artists were offered a blank canvas to curate their 30-minute episode in which they each explored compelling narratives, offering unique and personal perspectives of the world. They were each empowered to collaborate with a wide variety of performing and visual artists to amplify their stories.
More than a filmed performance, UNDISRUPTED immerses the audience with the orchestra and the concert hall with multiple camera angles captured by audiovisual production company ProdCan Inc. and mixed reality effects created by Montreal-based Normal Studio. Normal merges the real and the virtual worlds together to bring NAC’s Southam Hall to life in a way that has never been done before.
UNDISRUPTED shows a reconfigured orchestra with conductor Alexander Shelley and musicians on risers placed overtop sections of the audience seating. This repositioning allowed for the nine cameras to capture unique viewpoints, thus inviting the audience to experience the Orchestra up close and personal.