Animatronic opera held in a Swedish nuclear reactor

Craft & Design Music Robotics Technology

The exhibition Opera Mecatronica is on show in Reaktor 1 at the Royal Institute of Technology in Stockholm, where Ã…sa and Carl Unander-­‐Scharin present eight mecatronical opera and dance works. The exhibition room is a unique 13000 m3 space, 35 meters below earth which was Sweden’s first nuclear reactor, designed for scientific research, built in 1954 and phased out in 1970s. In the exhibition Opera Mecatronica, the computer directed marionette Olimpia made from junk, will perform for the first time. Olimpia is a three-­‐meter tall three-­‐dimensional creation built from rusty and patinated machine parts that dance in a curiously human like manner whilst singing an aria from The Tales of Hoffmann. It is also the Stockholm debut for the dancing robot swan Robocygne, who will be dancing to Carl Unander-­‐Scharin’s electroacoustic version of Tchaikovsky’s majestic music from Swan Lake. The impression created when Robocygne, which was developed at Mälardalen University, was shown to an audience for the first time at the Swedish Book Fair in Gothenburg in September 2010, was enormous. That a robot could bring tears to the eye with its captivating dance created a newsworthy item that reached as far as the USA, India, Canada and Singapore.

[Thanks, Gustaf!]

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My interests include writing, electronics, RPGs, scifi, hackers & hackerspaces, 3D printing, building sets & toys. @johnbaichtal

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