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Dundee Rep and Neon8 Join Forces to Create Unique Virtual Reality Experience

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The Dundee Rep and Neon8 production company are joining forces to bring a unique virtual reality experience of the Dundee Rep’s smash-hit, Smile, to audiences in the North East of England and around the world.

Charting the story of late Dundee United manager Jim McLean, written by Philip Differ and directed by Sally Reid, this virtual reality experience will give audiences the chance to experience the show without leaving the house. The VR experience of Smile will be available from 23rd February 2023, and will be presented on Box Office VR, a unique VR player developed by Neon8 and partners specifically for the arts industry.

This no-subscription based platform provides a place where audiences who may not otherwise get to see certain shows, can experience a unique, immersive, 3D version of a production. In addition, the VR experience is 180° (VR180), meaning all the action happens right in front of the viewer, just like in a theatre. This is a gentle and passive seated experience, allowing those with limited mobility to partake.

Images of Smile

The Dundee Rep and Neon8 production company are joining forces to bring a unique virtual reality experience of the Dundee Rep’s smash-hit, Smile, to audiences in the North East of England and around the world.

Charting the story of late Dundee United manager Jim McLean, written by Philip Differ and directed by Sally Reid, this virtual reality experience will give audiences the chance to experience the show without leaving the house. The VR experience of Smile will be available from 23rd February 2023, and will be presented on Box Office VR, a unique VR player developed by Neon8 and partners specifically for the arts industry.

This no-subscription based platform provides a place where audiences who may not otherwise get to see certain shows, can experience a unique, immersive, 3D version of a production. In addition, the VR experience is 180° (VR180), meaning all the action happens right in front of the viewer, just like in a theatre. This is a gentle and passive seated experience, allowing those with limited mobility to partake.

Neon8 won The Innovation Award at the Creative Edinburgh Awards 2021 for Box Office VR, and the experience supports mobile phone VR (iOS & Android). This means viewers only need a mobile phone and a simple mobile headset (available from various retailers for around £25) to watch more VR video content across other available mobile VR platforms.

Liam Sinclair, Executive Director and Joint CEO at Dundee Rep and Scottish Dance Theatre, said: “We are so excited to be collaborating with Neon8 on creating this experience for audiences. The VR experience of Smile will bring audiences right into the theatre space without actually being there, allowing them to experience Jim McLean’s trademark outbursts up close and personal – virtually!”

Kelman and Gemma Greig-Kicks from Neon8 added: “Neon8 are delighted to be partnering with Dundee Rep on this commission by The Space and Creative Scotland. Our VR work for theatre does not require you to be up on your feet or taking part – nor do you need a dedicated VR headset to view it!”

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