Danish Dance Theatre’s new Artistic Director Pontus Lidberg presents his first large production for Danish Dance Theatre, co-produced with The Royal Danish Theatre in Copenhagen. A work about the human consequences of artificial intelligence.
Does artificial intelligence have feelings, consciousness and desire? The answer is: not yet. However, intelligent technology can already manipulate and seduce us by analyzing and decoding emotions through advanced algorithms. The real question is whether artificial intelligence will be able to exploit us in the future and if so, what consequences there will be for humanity. Will we need to develop into a hybrid – a centaur?
CENTAUR is a production created by Pontus Lidberg together with Cecilie Waagner Falkenstrøm, an artist who specializes in artificial intelligence and visionary audio-visual artist Ryoji Ikeda. Lidberg wishes to create a unique and visually engaging dance performance about the human tendency to project feelings onto seemingly intelligent objects. A specially developed artificial intelligence, which can simulate consciousness, feelings and intentions, is both the co-creator and a participant in the performance. The dancers, as well as the audience will be able to get to know the A.I. and interact with it.
For Lidberg, it is crucial that contemporary dance examines both present and future topics and artificial intelligence is without a doubt here to stay. IBM’s Watson computer already surpasses human experts in tests concerning general knowledge. We are exposed to commercials on Facebook created by algorithms that can tailor content specifically for us. There are programs that control jet fighters and artificial intelligence that can read images from a mammography screening faster and more accurately than a doctor. Artificial intelligence has opened up a new chapter in human history, which in 2014 prompted the world-renowned physicist Stephen Hawking, to exclaim he feared intelligent machines could become a death sentence for humanity.
Could Hawking be right?
Choreography: Pontus Lidberg
Artificial Intelligence installation: Cecilie Waagner Falkenstrøm
Audio and Visual Design: Ryoji Ikeda
Light Design: Raphael Frisenvænge Solholm
Costumedesign: Rachel Quarmby-Spadaccini
Dramaturge: Adrian Guo Silver
Music: Schubert mfl.
Dancers: Dansk Danseteater & Den Kongelige Ballet
Co-Production: The Royal Danish Theatre
Development: NYU, Center for Ballet and Arts
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