Hybrid Play #RealityCheck

  • Festival

Theatre in the age of digital transformation processes
The HYBRID PLAY festival focuses on interactive installations, interdisciplinary and participatory theatre and music performances as well as game formats that deal with digital forms of storytelling in a curious, risk-taking and above all speculative way, experiment with digital aesthetics and open up new spaces of interaction. In mixed forms of digital and analogue spaces, audience and artists meet and can take on changing roles in different settings: Spectator, Player, Observer …

Programmatically, HYBRID PLAY subjects theatre to a #RealityCheck. In selected works and concepts, spectators can explore unknown perspectives, act and decide, playfully and without fear of consequences: How can complex challenges like climate change be mastered? What skills will politicians of the future need? In weltuebergang’s hybrid utopia game “New Radicare”, invited guests play with and against each other in a situation room for joint public thinking and testing of social strategies. In the interactive card game “I want to believe”, K TV deals with the complex of themes of opinion-forming and the public sphere. The focus is on the visitors, who appear in the talk show setting as experts on the podium or as followers. The music show “Songs of Cyborgeoisie” by BBB_ is written from the point of view of various artificial intelligences that report on a world of the near future – to be experienced as a single-player game or as an interactive installation with live music. Chez Company send avatars from a control centre into the outside world – what kind of cityscape emerges from the subjective stories they transmit to us? What are translation errors and what are discoveries? The smartphone game “Loulu” by onlinetheater.live makes manipulation tactics and discourse shifts of “new right” networks tangible and shows that social internet platforms can be perfect germ cells for targeted radicalisation.

Robert Henke’s and Anna Tskhovrebov’s current project “CBM 8032 AV” for five Commodore computers from 1980 combines a special curiosity about current as well as historical techniques of electronic music and digital art, about the aesthetic peculiarities of fascinating “black boxes” and “toys” such as synthesisers or computers.

For the entire duration of the festival, the Great Hall of the Festspielhaus will be both an immersion space and a stage setting: the performative installation “No Man’s Land” by Swiss artist Dimitri de Perrot transforms the stage into a place of reflection and inspiration with a hybrid play between theatre, concert, installation and party. In his “disco of everyday life”, the audience can move freely – and at the same time experience the play between DJ and audience as a stage play without words.

Also for the entire duration of the festival, the collective ArtesMobiles will present, test and further develop the project “System Failed” in a try-out show. In cooperation with ZKM | Karlsruhe, CCC, CTM, Akademie für Theater und Digitalität Dortmund and NEXT LEVEL – Festival for Games, among others, a participatory performance will be created in the following months that deals with structures of power in the so-called smart age and makes algorithmic government techniques playfully tangible.


With HYBRID, a new international platform, a laboratory, experimental and discursive space for the arts in the digital age and critical phases of global transformation processes is being established in HELLERAU. HYBRID PLAY is funded within the framework of the Alliance of International Production Houses by the Federal Government Commissioner for Culture and the Media and by the Cultural Foundation of the Free State of Saxony.