User Not Found: Social Media as Immersive Performance

Call for Participation

Workshop on Thursday 1st March 2018 at Reading University 1.00 – 4.30

‘User Not Found: Social Media as Immersive Performance’ is a research project based at the University of Reading funded by The Arts and Humanities Research Council. It brings together experimental theatre company Dante or Die with technology agency, Marmelo, Reading’s Film, Theatre & Television Department and the Centre for Death and Society at the University of Bath.

Dante or Die is devising a performance, User Not Found, in which the central character experiences bereavement and mourning via the digital traces of his dead partner on social media. The performance will focus on the relationship between life, death, identity and social media. It will use every day social media technology to engage audience members via an App developed by Marmelo Digital to immerse spectators in the experience of the bereaved character.

Since the topic of the performance is social media technology and death, the project is keen to draw on the expertise of those people who work in areas connected to death or dying, for example, grief counsellors, funeral directors, social media developers, lawyers, palliative care practitioners to understand how they address the issue of an internet legacy. It is hoped that the experience of those in the field of the management of death will feed into the process of devising the performance.

The workshop will be an opportunity for you to discuss and inform the performance with the theatre company to address questions around:

  • how the creation of an internet archive shapes our legacies;
  • grieving, memories and virtual identities;
  • wi-fi, the internet and death rituals;
  • commemoration via the internet.

You will be invited to a light lunch in the Film, Theatre & Television Department at the University of Reading, followed by discussion workshop and exchange of ideas. The project will pay the travel expenses of participants. Following the workshop, you will be invited to a preview performance and post-show discussion at South Street Arts Centre in Reading on 27th June 2018 before the performance goes on tour to The Roundhouse in London followed by the Edinburgh Festival and a UK tour.

If you are interested in taking part please contact: Professor Lib Taylor (Principal Investigator), Dr John Troyer (Co-Investigator) or Lucy Jeffery (Post-Doctoral Research Assistant)

Twitter: @UserNotFound_18