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Monday, September 23, 2019
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Space Opera to feature simultaneous performances in Boston, LA

Every When At Once: A Space Opera is a modern, unique event that spans nine time zones and features three simultaneous performances at once. The space opera tells the story of one man who lives forever to find a woman on the other end of space and time. Loudon Stearns, MFA ’15, an associate professor at Berklee College of Music in Boston, is the brainchild behind the space opera, which will take place on Saturday, June 20, at 1:00 pm PST at Emerson Los Angeles, at 4:00 pm EST at the Paramount Center in Boston, and at 10:00 pm CEST at Teatre Martín I Soler in Valencia, Spain.

In LA, acrobats, a visual artist, projection, and live music will tell the story of Rae, a genius biologist witnessing the Earth on the brink of an environmental collapse. In Valencia, Spain, Teatre Martín I Soler will host dancers, music, and projection to tell the story of Cirque, a woman on the verge of transcendence. In the Paramount Center in Boston, technologically augmented instrumentalists and vocalists will perform a contemporary electronic score while large projections show animations and live feeds of the performers in LA and Valencia. Audiences are invited to view the performances at all three locations or online at EveryWhenAtOnce.com, where guests can also RSVP for the event.

Every When At Once: A Space Opera is an ambitious, unique event. Why are you doing this?

When I create, I start with resources first. I ask myself, what do I have available? Then, I base my project on that. As an Emerson student and a Berklee professor, I am at a nexus where I have access to an abundance of tools. I feel I have a responsibility to use them as creatively as I can.

Where did this idea come from? What inspired you?

I am inspired by classic science-fiction authors who create what we in the sci-fi community call Space Operas. Larry Niven, Isaac Asimov, and Frank Herbert are some authors I find influential. I got the idea by asking myself the question: What if a man lived until the end of time?

Explain some of the technological and logistical challenges you faced producing this event.

The primary challenge has been communication. When working across vast distances and time zones, establishing a strong team without being physically present has been a challenge. In the show itself, data is traveling long distances and that takes time, creating challenges in synchronicity at multiple locations.

You just graduated from Emerson College with a Master of Fine Arts in Media Art. How did your time at the College influence the production?

The very idea of staging it in multiple locations was suggested to me by one of my thesis committee members, Professor John Craig Freeman. I decided to expand on John’s idea because it was a better way to tell the story of Cirque and Rae. The story has them at opposite ends of time, so having Cirque’s story told in Valencia, Spain, and Rae’s in LA seemed to only add to getting that point of time and distance in there. It also opened a window to explore new technology with the live streaming.

Here at Emerson, I have learned to collaborate in teams and move beyond solo artistic production. That has led me to this show, which is a large team effort. What is involved in producing this show is an intense way to end my three years at Emerson. With that said, I am enjoying creating something that showcases so much of what I have learned in the Media Art program.

What do you hope attendees or viewers of the performances take away from the event?

I hope, in the least, that they enjoy the experience and are left with an understanding of the love between the two main characters, Rae and Cirque. If the audience could be left with a sense of awe of the technology and the many talented people involved with the show, then I would be very happy.

RSVP to watch the performances in Boston, LA, Spain or online by visiting the website Every When At Once: A Space Opera.