EPIC-Tom (the performance)

EPIC-Tom (the Performance), interspecies audio-visual and theremin performance, 30:00, 2014-ongoing.
A collaboration with Simon Lysander Overstall and Tom (canine)

—video shows 03:20 min excerpt of the full performance—

EPIC-Tom (the performance) expands on new media performance by considering more-than-human creativity. The human and canine collaborative project is inspired by lived experiences shared together over time. Relational potentials are at the core of EPIC-Tom (the performance) where human and canine creativities co-arise

In the process of making the project, we explored Tom’s canine vitality expressed through his vocals and gestures. Biophilic attention, in the form of thinking-like-a-dog, was an empathic technique used to understand his state of mind.  We experimented in a motion capture studio and sound recording studio. The result was a live generative animation of Tom imaged jumping for a ball created using mocap data of his movements. We imagined what Tom was feeling just before catching the ball as proto-euphoric—feelings of eagerness, expectation, anticipation. In the sound recording studio, Tom contributed a sequence of utterances that complimented this proto-euphoric state. His vocals communicated desire, wonder, excitement, anticipation.

The performance incorporates the live animation and a granular treatment on the recording of Tom’s vocals. Computational techniques experiment with extensions of time and experience of space Tom may have had while catching the ball.  This soundscape provides a durational call as a foundational element for the participating human musicians’ live responses. Andreyev uses the theremin as one of the instruments in the performance because its sonic characteristics are similar to voice, even canine voice.

When the project is performed we involve the participation of local musicians.


Production Team:

Julie Andreyev: concept, editing, theremin performance
Simon Overstall: Max/MSP software, granular soundscape performance
Tom: concept, actor, vocals
Jay White: animation of Tom
Richard Overington + Hyuma Frankowski: motion capture support



Supported by:

We acknowledge the support of the Canada Council for the Arts, which last year invested $157 million to bring the arts to Canadians throughout the country.
Intersections Digital Studios, Emily Carr University of Art + Design.

VIVO Media Arts, Vancouver