This paper describes an interactive dance/physical theatre work entitled Encoded, which made use of motion capture techniques and real-time fluid simulations to create systems intended to support, stimulate and augment live performance. Preliminary findings from a qualitative study of performers’ experiences with the system raise a number of issues, including the challenges of creating theatrical meaning with interactive systems, using Contact Improvisation as a metaphor for engaging creative systems, and the impact that large-scale projections can have on performers’ engagement.

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