Coachella is embracing augmented reality (AR) with an immersive stage experience that encourages the audience to take out their phones and participate with audio-reactive AR filters. The experience, which has been produced by Coachella’s digital innovation team, will debut this Friday, and will be available during both festival weekends.
“We want to provide fun and cutting edge experiences for the people who attend the show,” said a spokesperson for Goldenvoice, the company behind Coachella. “During sets, attendees can use a number of different AR filters that react to the audio coming out of the speakers.”
The AR experience will be available at the festival’s Sahara stage, where acts like Diplo, Jaden Smith, Kid Cudi, Whiz Califa and Gucci Gang are scheduled to play. Audience members can access the experience right from within the Coachella app via the Coachela Camera option. The app also offers the ability to capture and save photos and videos of the AR experience.
And while there will be some filters available during performances, the experience really starts to shine during change-overs, with Goldenvoice’s spokesperson promising “space objects like planets, asteroids, and stars,” space stations and a life-size space shuttle, as well as tie-ins with a variety of on-site installations, including one that chronicles “the spacefaring attempt from a group of discombobulated hippos.”
The AR-enabled stage is just a first step for Goldenvoice to bring these kinds of technologies to music festivals, according to the company’s spokesperson. “We always like to be on the cutting edge of technology in the space, and we’ll be nimble to change what we do depending on what is technically feasible,” he said.