(Passive Experience – 360 Theater)
Hiraeth is a fully hand-drawn and animated immersive experience with spatial audio and an ambisonic score featuring 12 world instruments. Drawn in the style of traditional Chinese water painting, it is the first of its kind and pushes the artistic limits of VR. “Hiraeth” is a Welsh word that means “a homesickness for a place of your ancestry that you have never been, where you may never return to again.” It describes the sentiment of many children of immigrants who have lost touch with their ancestral roots, yet remain curious and inquiring. This experience explores the mind of those with “hiraeth”, bringing them into the land they have been seeking, yet pushing them to reflect on their identity and legacy. The mysterious village in Hiraeth is based on a famous fable, “The Peach Blossom Spring”, written in 421 CE by Chinese author Tao Yuanming. It symbolizes a utopia stuck in time, unconcerned about the world, the wars, and the flipping pages of history.
Director Biography – Yao Wang
Yao Wang is the director and composer of HIRAETH. She is an award-winning producer, composer and sound designer, as well as the co-founder of ICTUS Audio. An alumna of Berklee College of Music, Yao is passionate about new technologies and immersive storytelling. She aims to elevate art with new technologies and create novel experiences without ever overshadowing the core message and values that they embody.
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