Upon invitation from Kevin MacLeod, manager of Digital Media and Learning Technologies at Canada’s National Ballet School, Don Sinclair and Doug Van Nort teamed up with NBS choreographer and Assemblée Internationale 2017 Co-Director Shaun Amyot to create ORIGIN8, an interactive dance work which premiered in Toronto in May 2017.
In ORIGIN8, each of the performers wore a Myo band, a wireless sensor technology developed by Waterloo-based Thalmic Labs, that measures the movements and speed of the human body in motion. Using customized machine-learning software integrating a custom-made sound-performance interface and 3D graphics generator created by the AMPD artist-researchers, data captured from the dancers’ movements generated dramatic, kinetic image projections and an ever-changing musical soundscape.
The project was an exceptional experiential learning opportunity for several York students. The software and media used in ORIGIN8 were developed by Sinclair and Van Nort with the assistance of three AMPD students who are members of the DisPerSion Lab at York. The lab, founded and directed by Van Nort, is dedicated to research-creation projects focusing on instrumental and gestural expression, embodied perception, time consciousness and performative agency.