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Voyager One

Concept and design for the set of a music performance

On the top of a hill on a Dutch island, a transmission station was built. The purpose? Painting a more realistic picture of life on earth, because the Voyager One golden record is pretty rose-tinted.

Music theater company Touki Delphine, created a play about space probe Voyager One and the famous golden record it contains. The record houses music, greetings in 55 languages and sounds of life on Earth. However, life on earth is far more complicated than a Chuck Berry record and a selection of whale sounds. In this play, the actors want to send a more realistic view of life on earth into outer space, containing things like humour, emotions and banal examples – such as the microwave as a symbol for freedom and comfort. Studio Koen Steger was asked to design the futuristic backdrop for the play, performed at high level on Dutch island Terschelling during Oerol festival and on top of an old train station in Rotterdam.

Sending waves into space

Synaesthesia is a phenomenon where one person’s senses are mixed up. For example, letters or numbers are perceived as inherently colored.This phenomenon formed the inspiration for the set. During the play, the artists play musical instruments like synthesizers and drums in a ‘transmission station’: a steel construction with 34 LED lights attached. Studio Koen Steger programmed the lamps to translate music into light. Volume translates to intensity and pitch to colour. Light and sound both consists of waves. In this form, the new realistic message can be sent into space.

Voyager One is an absurd cocktail of music, theater acts, choreographies and individual texts, enhanced by the exuberant scenography of Koen Steger (…)”**** – Theaterkrant


Dimensions: 11 x 6 x 6 metres
Period: 2017
Material: Steel and LED light

Sound design: Miguel Rodriguez
Light design: Martijn Nieuwenburg / Koen Steger
Costume design: Esmée Thomassen
Commissioned by: Touki Delphine in co-production with Productiehuis Rotterdam

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