Uncanny: A Telematic nO(t)pera (2016)

Conception and Direction: Doug Van Nort

Uncanny: A Telematic nO(t)pera is a semi-structured (via text/graphic scores and interactive insturments), semi-improvised performance linking five performers and their audience across one virtual and five real sites of performance. The musicians utilize their deep listening skills as they listen across networks, across N. America, and across radically different acoustic spaces and instrumentations, in order to find convergence through musical dialogue. 

Performers from Stanford (California), RPI (New York) and York University in Toronto (Student Projects Gallery) are projected onto materials within the DisPerSion Lab, forming an uncanny trace of their bodily presence, embedded on a blended “stage” with a live electronics performer. Public activity from York’s Accolade West  Building hallway, leading up to the Special Projects gallery, is mapped into visual and sonic art and projected within DisPerSion Lab, creating a texturized double of the activity just outside the Gallery site of performance. The custom live-stream website provided another realization of the performance, allowing audience to chat, interact via twitter, and alter the outcome by conducting the musicians during one section of the piece. The York-based audience was invited to wander between the differing performative realities of the public spaces, the virtual online platform, the live performance within the gallery, and the live performance within DisPerSion lab.


Anne Bourne (cello) – York Special Projects Gallery, York University Toronto, ON
Chris Chafe (celletto) – CCRMA, Stanford University, Palo Alto, California
Pauline Oliveros (V-Accordion), Jonas Braasch (Soprano Saxophone),
Doug Van Nort (electronics) – DisPerSion Lab, York University, Toronto, ON

Promotional Write-Up:

Yfile online magazine

Featuring Digital Media Art/Design by Students of Van Nort’s Course “Experimental Telepresence”:

Gale Cabiles – promotional video and graphics
Kevin Feliciano – audio networking and DisPerSion Lab sound engineering
Akeem Glasgow – public, interactive sonic instrument
Radi Hilaneh – video processing and in-York networking
Justin Hsieh – Gallery design and layout
Raechel Kula – DisPerSion Lab projection surfaces and visual design
Rory Hoy – network mapping design
Candy Hua – DisPerSion Lab
Tony Liu – remote conducting of performance sites
Sam Noto – visual streaming to virtual performance site
Sarah Siddiqui – website audio remixing/streaming
Keren Xu – promotional video and graphics
Yirui Fu – network lighting control, sound-to-light mapping DisPerSion Lab
Mingxin Zhang – lighting effects, DisPerSion Lab
Cary Zheng – video networking between sites, documentation
Keke Zhou – public, interactive visual instrument