In June and July 2020 Melody VR took up residence in our Theatre. They joined forces with the team behind Wireless, the legendary rap, grime, hip hop and R&B festival, to create Wireless Connect – the first ever virtual festival, with performances streamed live in 360° virtual reality on the MelodyVR app, VR headsets and smartphones.
Having worked with Melody since 2015, we could not have anticipated how important VR would become during 2020: essentially the only way live events could be experienced at the height of the pandemic.
The Alexandra Palace Theatre was chosen as the London location for the recording, alongside state of the art Melody VR studios in Los Angeles. The Theatre, which had reopened in 2018 following an 80 year closure, was transformed into an incredible studio where artists including Stefflon Don, Mist, Steel Banglez, Jay1 and more were recorded with hi tech 360 cameras fitted all over the space. All the performances were then streamed across the 3 day festival from 3rd to 5th July 2020.
It was a ground breaking project for all involved, pushing the boundaries of ‘Live’, at a time when very little entertainment was taking place. The Ally Pally Events and Health & Safety Team took on this challenge whilst adhering to strict social distancing and government guidelines.
“There’s no more forward-thinking festival than Wireless, and there’s no more forward-thinking way of hosting a festival than in 360 VR. We’ll be filming artists in MelodyVR’s amazing studio space in LA, built just for this purpose and in the historic theatre at Ally Pally, which MelodyVR will turn into Wireless Connect.”
Melvin Benn, Managing Director, Festival Republic
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