#1082 Roman Rappak’s Mixed Reality Live Music Performance & an Art History Perspective on XR + music

Roman Rappak‘s Miro Shot band had a unique mixed reality performance of a single song at SXSW to an audience of 50 people who were wearing GearVR headsets. The experience was live mixed by Rappak, who was switching between a monoscopic VR passthrough scene and a fully-immersive, stereoscopic VR explorations of a variety of virtual world scenes. It was an ambitious production that attempts to blend the physical with the digital in the context of a live musical performance, and continues long tradition of music experimenting with the latest emerging technologies to push the boundaries of musical experiences.

Rappak & co-founder Anne McKinnon also recently launched the Ristband platform, which translates some of the insights from his mixed reality experimentations into a pixel-streamed online immersive platform bootstrapped by an Epic Games Mega Grant.

I had a chance to catch up with Rappak at SXSW on March 16th, 2022, which happened to be exactly 6 years after he originally reached out to me via email after listening to a number of Voices of VR podcast episodes. We talk about his journey into music and VR, the art history perspective on XR & music, how the music industry fails to serve the basic needs of most musicians, the experiential design of his mixed reality performance, and how he hopes the Ristband Platform he co-founded with McKinnon can help provide new opportunities for musicians to create XR and immersive experiences for their audiences.


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Music: Fatality