Six theatres part of the OLA network implement XR Stage, a Finnish technology that incorporates AI and augmented reality for production design

Seis teatros de la red de OLA implementan XR Stage, una tecnología finlandesa que incorpora la IA y realidad aumentada para el diseño de producciones

Teatro Municipal of Santiago, Teatro Municipal of Las Condes, Centro GAM, Teatro Regional del Maule, Teatro Biobío and Teatro del Lago implemented the innovative XR Stage platform, thanks to a project led by Ópera Latinoamérica in collaboration with the Center for the Technological Revolution in Creative Industries (CRTIC) and with the support of Corfo. XR Stage is a technology developed by the Finnish National Opera and Ballet, which allows stage production to be designed and produced through augmented reality and other immersive experiences. The implementation of this platform in Chile, which was presented on Friday, May 31 at Teatro Municipal of Las Condes, marks a milestone in innovation in the performing arts with a view to building new networks of collaboration and trust between human teams.


After two months of intense training, twelve professionals from six Chilean theaters have implemented XR Stage − technology developed by the Finnish National Opera and Ballet for the production of stage shows–, in an initiative promoted by Ópera Latinoamérica (OLA), together with Centro para Revolución Tecnológica en Industrias Creativas (CRTIC), with support from the Creative Factory 2023 grant of CORFO. This is the first step for Teatro Municipal of Santiago, Teatro Municipal of Las Condes, GAM Cultural Centre, Teatro Regional Maule, Teatro Biobío and Teatro del Lago to develop their artistic work based on an innovation that allows for more efficient processes and generate work networks between human teams.


Foto: Franco Davico


Originally developed by the Finnish National Opera and Ballet, XR Stage is a platform that, using Epic Games’ Unreal Engine, allows artistic and stage teams to design and iterate sets, saving assembly and transportation times and resources in the production process of a show, as well as minimizing risks, among other benefits. In a demonstration held at Teatro Municipal Las Condes on Friday, May 31, representatives of the Finnish National Opera and Ballet and the technical teams of the participating theatres presented the progress of the incorporation of this platform in Chile. The activity also included a live exhibition, through virtual reality lenses, of the operation of the innovative technology.


The training process, which began in April, also contributed to strengthening relationships between the technical teams of the participating theatres. “One of the great potentials of XR Stage is that it encourages collaboration between theaters. For this reason, in Chile we chose to implement it at the ecosystem level, with training instances that would generate relationships of trust between human teams. These weeks this community has been forged and we believe that this is the best way to project over time the possibility of co-producing from this innovation and, of course, to move towards having a more sustainable sector that generates greater social impacts. The results have been very positive and we hope, together with the Finnish team, to scale the implementation of the platform in Latin America,” comments Alejandra Martí, executive director of OLA.


Foto: Franco Davico


The implementation of XR Stage in Chile has the support of the Center for the Technological Revolution in Creative Industries (CRTIC), an organization that promotes the adoption of advanced technologies in the creative sector. “For us as CRTIC, this project fills us with pride because it directly contributes to improving stage production systems and because it opens paths for innovation and technological adoption in the cultural sector. We hope that this project is the first step for Chile to become the first country to digitize all its theaters,” says Isidora Cabezón, executive director of CRTIC.


A collaborative project


The XR Stage showcase in Chile held at Teatro Municipal of Las Condes culminates the first stage of this project. During April and May, training was carried out in the use of Unreal Engine, the software they relied on to create digital and immersive replicas of the respective stages of the participating theaters. Unreal Engine, known for its use in productions such as The Mandalorian and games such as Fortnite, allows the creation of hyper-realistic visual environments that, applied to the performing arts, offer immersive scenic experiences that were previously unthinkable.


Foto: Franco Davico


During May, the technical teams received, in Concepción and Santiago, Kalle Rasinkangas and Riku Zukale, representatives of the Finnish National Opera and Ballet, who accompanied them in strengthening the implementation of XR Stage through meetings, training sessions and evaluations of work progress. The professionals also gave a masterclass at Teatro Biobío and visited emblematic spaces in Concepción such as the Lota Theatre, the CORCUDEC theatre and Artistas del Acero. In Santiago, they visited Teatro Municipal of Santiago and Las Condes and the second stage of the GAM Center, which is under construction.


Foto: Franco Davico


The arrival of this technology not only represents a technological advance, but also an opportunity to reimagine the future of the performing arts. “At Teatro Municipal of Las Condes, we always seek to elevate the experience of coming to the theatre and innovate in every sense, which is why it is an honor to be part of this technological transformation. XR Stage allows us to explore new creative dimensions and offer the public unique experiences and immersive. This platform not only changes the way we produce theater, but also how our audiences, especially new generations who are familiar with AI and augmented reality, experience theatre in a more comprehensive and connected way. current trends,” says Mauricio Camus, director of Teatro Municipal of Las Condes.