Fri. Feb 23rd, 2024

Precipice, an innovative binaural narrative podcast, will launch as part of the Vivid Ideas 2017 program, part of Vivid Sydney the world’s largest festival of light, music and ideas.

This pilot production is an exploration of the potential for 3D audio narrative storytelling.

AFTRS’ has created Precipice in partnership with New York’s WNYC Public Radio, Sydney Philharmonia Choirs VOX, and in consultation with the BBC’s audio research division.

Podcasting has taken the world by storm, with Australians amongst the most avid adopters.  Australians spend an average of 5.5 hours per week absorbed by serialised audio storytelling. Binaural technology creates an enhanced, immersive audience experience.

“Precipice is an example of the exciting innovations coming out of AFTRS, working in partnership with industry colleagues and, in this instance, with our radio division. AFTRS is road-testing cutting-edge technologies to help empower current and future storytellers, and partners with industry to trial new storytelling platforms and innovations. We are re-booting the radio drama for the podcast generation.  Precipice has been a truly collaborative project, our Radio team working with industry, students, artists and alumni to create an incredible binaural experience,” said AFTRS CEO Neil Peplow.

 “I would like to thank the BBC research and development department for consulting with us on this project and our partners WNYC and Sydney Philharmonic Choirs Vox.” 

The BBC recently broadcast a special binaural version of an episode in the latest series of Doctor Who.

AFTRS Project Manager Penelope Thomas describes the binaural experience:  “Imagine adding an immersive story world layer to your everyday life by simply putting on your earphones and clicking ‘play’ – on the bus, in the coffee queue, at the airport… wherever you may be.   Imagine sounds that move around your head: sounds that are at times so intimate you actually feel a physical presence as your ears warm, your neck tickles and your head turns to see who’s there.”

With Precipice, audiences will be taken through the labyrinthine lucidity, menace and dreams of international student Amira and her unsettling experiences with psychiatrist Dr Ferenc. This pilot episode challenges existing podcast story formats by not using narration, experimenting with the potential texturing and intimacy achievable with binaural recording methods and a more fragmented narrative.

The Precipice experience is a studio installation at AFTRS.

The 30-minute sessions run between Wednesday 31 May – Friday 2 June, 4pm – 9pm and Saturday 3 June, 11am – 2pm

A maximum of eight people can participate at one time. You can buy a maximum of 4 tickets.

Precipice is rated M: suitable for audiences 15 plus.

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