Spectropia Episodes 6-10 Online!! The adventure continues…

“Fans of offbeat cinema or science fiction might find aspects of Spectropia intriguing, because moments suggest an eerie blend of The Big Sleep, Brazil and La Jetee.”

The adventure continues as Spectropia inside Verna’s body in 1932 tries to solve some perplexing problems about her father’s disappearance in time. A mystery and a romantic triangle unfold across centuries as two women in one body drive a man crazy. More info in the Spectropia category to your right.

“Shifting eras and moods are powerfully evoked by the design, from the rich cinematography and costumes to Elliott Sharp’s eclectic soundtrack.”

– The Columbus Dispatch

Featuring the song “This Time, That Place” with vocals by Debbie Harry.

SPECTROPIA Episode #6: “Time is slipping”

Ghosts appear and the mystery deepens. What the Duck knows.

SPECTROPIA Episode #7: “Keeping secrets?”

An argument and a visit to Sally Rand. Collecting clues.

SPECTROPIA Episode #8:

“It’s not a straight line at all”

Stumped and stymied. Nothing is what it seems. Who is William?

SPECTROPIA Episode #9: “The triangle ends”

William lies and Verna gets fed up.

SPECTROPIA Episode #10:

“A private detective of memory”

Looked at in a certain way, time is random access.

Elliott Sharp composed the soundtrack for Spectropia. Check out his CD Spectropia Suite featuring the song “This Time, That Place”, Vocals by Debbie Harry and his CDIncident that includes songs written for Toni Dove’s Lucid Possession with vocals by Hai-Ting Chinn and Bora Yoon. More info below.

You can also find Spectropia on
VimeoYoutube and Reel House.

Stay Tuned for an app that will release Toni Dove’s Lucid Possession is 6 episodes. It will be released when we figure out how to do it!

We’ll keep you posted here on our progress and on some other projects involving robotic clothing.

SPECTROPIA Online Now!! Episodes 1-5

“…it’s just plain cool to watch. Highly recommended.”

– Jeremy Barker, Culturebot

Spectropia is a hybrid of sci-fi and film noir, with elements of time travel and telepathy. The story opens in the future where Spectropia, a young woman in her twenties, lives in the salvage district of an urban center known as the Informal Sector. It’s a black market subculture of salvage and barter where knowledge spans only a person’s experience and recorded history is forbidden. More info in the Spectropia category on the right

Elliott Sharp composed the soundtrack for Spectropia. Check out his CD Spectropia Suite featuring the song “This Time, That Place”, Vocals by Debbie Harry and his CD Incident that includes songs written for Toni Dove’s Lucid Possession with vocals by Hai-Ting Chinn and Bora Yoon. More info below.

SPECTROPIA Episode #1: “It just looks like garbage”

The adventure begins. The future, 2099. “Give it a minute, it might grow on you.” It’s a black market subculture of salvage and barter where knowledge spans only a person’s experience and recorded history is forbidden.

SPECTROPIA Episode #2: “Maybe I can find him”

The future scans the past. Spectropia searches for her father, lost in time looking for a vanished family inheritance.

SPECTROPIA Episode #3: “I feel a little woozy”

Spectropia finds herself in the body of another woman in another time.

SPECTROPIA Episode #4: “What planet are you from?”

Spectropia inside Verna’s body navigates a strange romance and an old mystery.

SPECTROPIA Episode #5: “I think I’m beginning to see”

Spectropia gets a grip and begins to understand how it all works. The Duck worries some more.

The film’s cast features the actress Aleksa Palladino (Sidney Lumet’s Before the Devil Knows You’re Dead and Find Me Guilty; Todd Solondz’s Storytelling, Boardwalk Empire) as Spectropia and Carolyn McCormick (Law and Order) as Verna, Simon Jones as the Duck (Arthur Dent in The Hitchhikers Guide to the Galaxy, 12 Monkeys), Richard Bekins as William (Mad Men, The Good Wife)Helen Pickett (recently with the Forsythe Ballet of Frankfurt and The Wooster Group) as Sally, Paul Lazar as Eddie (Manchurian Candidate, co-director Big Dance Theater)

Elliott Sharp and the ’31 Band featuring Debbie Harry and Sirius String Quartet: “Spectropia Suite” (Neos Jazz 40905) 22 relatively short segments whose stylistic range oscillates between E#’s renowned computerized action, über-distorted and typically twisted guitar solos, swinging big bands (“an imagined meeting of the music of Duke Ellington and Edgard Varèse”), and XX century chamber music (the gorgeous “Folding” and “Unfolding”, executed by Sirius with soul and brain). The rock ballad “This Time That Place”, sung by a Marianne Faithfull-like Debbie Harry — “Heart Of Glass” has never sounded so distant — constitutes the main theme of the opus appearing in various instrumental guises all over the CD.

Elliott Sharp: “Incident” Including unusual songs from Toni Dove’s multimedia work Lucid Possession sung by Hai-Ting Chinn and Bora Yoon. The opener, Send Us A Message, features Hai-Ting’s crystalline soprano over a lattice of Sharp’s unique and lush guitar sounds. Avatar Star shows off the power and beauty of Bora Yoon’s voice over a hard metal track with electric sitar. Viscus Non Exurum is a medieval chant sung in ‘fake’ Latin by a double-tracked Hai-Ting.

To be continued – stay tuned for the final five episodes
coming in early March

You can also find Spectropia on
Vimeo, Youtube, Film Skillet and Reel House.

Spectropia Returns for Two Nights at Roulette May 4 and 5, featuring Toni Dove, Luke Dubois, Elliott Sharp and the 31 Band with guest vocalist Barbara Sukowa

Over two nights, MAY 4 and 5,  ROULETTE will present two radically different aspects of Toni Dove’s Spectropia.

FRIDAY MAY 4, Roulette presents Toni Dove’s Spectropia, a feature-length live-mix cinema event—a scratchable movie performed by Toni Dove and  R. Luke DuBois, artist and project software designer. Buy Tickets.

SATURDAY MAY 5Elliott Sharp and The ’31 Band perform “Spectropia Suite”. Guest vocalist Barbara Sukowa sings the Spectropia song “This Time, That Place”. Toni Dove and R. Luke DuBois craft live video improvisations: a silent movie to accompany the score. Buy Tickets.

A sci-fi hybrid with themes of time travel, telepathy, and elements of film noir, Spectropia features live VJs orchestrating onscreen characters through a mix of film, performance, and a system of motion sensing that serves as a cinematic instrument.

Dove and DuBois scrub and navigate up to six layers of narrative video and sound—it’s like swimming through a movie! It’s a mystery, a puzzle, a time travel drama, and a romantic triangle—and it’s never quite the same twice. The first night you’ll see the full feature film in all its crazy complexity, then join Elliott Sharp, the composer of the music soundtrack with his ’31 Band, a nine-piece band from a parallel universe in 1931. It’s a thrilling cinematic happening. On Saturday, the film becomes an improvised silent movie.

Aleksa Palladino as Spectropia, Carlolyn McCormick as Verna, Richard Bekins as William, Simon Jones as The Duck,Helen Pickett as Sally.

See Episodes 1 and 2 from the soon to be released serial version of Spectropia at Streaming Museum.

“…it’s just plain cool to watch. Highly recommended.”

– Jeremy Barker, Culturebot

“Ms. Dove, together with co-performer and software engineer R. Luke Dubois, employs her “rig” to present “Spectropia,” an interactive film as immersive for its two real-time performers as it is for the audience. “

Photo: Brian Derballa for The Wall Street Journal

“The multilayered presentation of “Spectropia” is…unlikely to sound or appear familiar to anyone who hasn’t already witnessed it—or to anyone unfamiliar with Ms. Dove. Since the early 1990s, the artist has explored the intersection of narrative experience and audience participation through complex, interactive installations aided by advancing technology.”

-Bruce Bennett, Wall Street Journal


Photos: Peter Cherches, Sascha Rheker

The musicians of The ’31 Band, all of whom have extensive experience in many realms of music, have worked with Sharp on many projects, from the various Western traditions of jazz and classical music to the farthest reaches of contemporary music, free jazz, and improvisation. For this performance, The ’31 Band will include E# playing Bb & bass clarinets, tenor saxophone, guitar & computer processing;  Briggan Kraus – alto saxophone; Nate Woolley – trumpet; Art Baron; Curtis Fowlkes & Steve Swell – trombones; Anthony Coleman – piano; David Hofstra – string bass; and Don McKenzie – drums.

Photo: Andreas Sterzing

Barbara Sukowa is known for her performances onstage and in some of the most iconic films of the New German Cinema with directors such as Fassbinder and von Trotta. She has a career as a classical music narrator and singer and is the lead singer of the band the X-Patsys, which she founded with visual artists Jon Kessler and Robert Longo.

From Douglas Detrick -About.com/Jazz:

“Sharp’s compositions, which often evolve through repetition and micro-variation, mirror mathematical processes, but don’t sound dryly scientific. Sharp is interested in discovery, and similar to the way math attempts to capture the nature of the world through the study of patterns and deduction, Sharp’s music seeks musical truth by extracting the essence of a musical concept and exploring it through various perspectives.

“Spectropia Suite… features mosaics of noise, string quartet pieces, dark and alluring jazz piano solos, and music for large ensemble, with growling blues riffs reminiscent of the Fletcher Henderson band or the early Duke Ellington orchestra… a wide-ranging tour through jazz, contemporary concert music, and avant-garde noise, three main facets of Sharp’s work as a musician over the last 30 years.”

Purchase CD

Come and see us over two nights! They should be two very different experiences – and we think you’ll want to see them both.

The Performance: Software, Puppets, People.

More about Spectropia and the performance event. Spectropia, a live mix feature film performance, will be presented at the Kitchen, NYC, Dec. 9, 10, 11, 2010. Buy Tickets. Click here or on the sidebar for The Spectropia Suite, original soundtrack to the film Spectropia, composed by Elliott Sharp. Featuring the Spectropia song “This Time, That Place” with vocals by Debbie Harry. Hope to see you all at the show!

Spectropia came out of a desire to take a movie apart like a pocketwatch and explore and reassemble the parts to learn something about cinematic language. My father, an artist, told me that when he was in the army he learned how to take apart and clean his gun by drawing all the separate pieces and then drawing them back together again. Spectropia is dedicated to him.It runs using a proprietary software program written by R. Luke DuBois in Max, MSP and Jitter (Cycling ’74). Luke and I perform the piece from laptops and a customized stage instrument created by Bill Ballou, technical director for REDCAT, and Leif Krinkle, technical director for Bustlelamp and our robotics and electronics engineer.

The concept evolved from embodied interface and interactive narrative design I’ve been developing for almost two decades. The interface that scrubs and navigates up to 6 streams of video simultaneously, uses video motion sensing. When you see us waving our arms around looking like conductors, we’re actually moving the video – changing direction, speed, changing clips and altering sound in real time. Performing it’s like swimming through the movie – you can feel your body in the images on the screen. We haunt the movie.

The performance is framed by a chorus – a meta view – made up of the characters Sally (Helen Pickett) and William (Richard Bekins). Merging sophisticated cutting edge programming and witty repartee – these digital puppets produce an experience that is both humorous and uncanny. Sally is based on the real life fan and bubble dancer Sally Rand. The characters use text to speech to synch a video puppet to a synthetic voice typed in real time.

Sally and William form a chorus that frames the live mix movie narrative, sometimes speaking in pre-scripted dialogue and sometimes improvising and commenting to the audience.

R. Luke DuBois is a composer, artist, performer and software designer who has collaborated with Bustlelamp Productions for 10 years. In his own work he explores the complexities of time in sound and image – he is pushing some boundaries that have only recently shown up on the map. And he’s really good company.Luke is co-author of Jitter software by Cycling ’74.

His remarkable talents are a significant part of the comprehensive narrative software system that has become our toolkit. Look for it in the upcoming production Lucid Possession.


Stay tuned here for upcoming posts on Lucid Possession