NLP THEATRE: Innovative Applications of Natural Language Processing and Digital Media in Theatre and Performing Arts

The aim of the project is to investigate new digital techniques and tools, offering the audience innovative, attractive, enhanced and, at the same time, accessible experiences. The project will focus on performing arts, particularly theater, aiming at designing, implementing, experimenting and evaluating technologies and tools that will expand the semiotic code of a theatrical performance by offering new opportunities and aesthetic means in stage art and by introducing parallel accessible narrative flows. The approach will follow two dimensions:

(a) The opening of a theatrical performance to new means and technical opportunities offered by modern technologies. Emphasis will be placed on the introduction of stage elements which will be smoothly integrated in the performance and will contribute to an enhanced multilevel theatrical experience. In addition to lighting, video projections and audio interventions, the introduction of digital characters who will be integrated in the theatrical performance will also be explored, introducing aesthetic features and performance means beyond those that are feasible by natural actors.

(b) Removing obstacles faced by broad audiences when accessing a theatrical performance, whether sensory obstacles (for example, some form of disability) or language-related obstacles (for example, foreign audiences with little or no skills in the performance language). Basic accessibility elements are super-titles, interpretation of the show in sign language and its acoustic description, while the voice translation of the performance is also an interesting feature.