The Ghost Watchers
Theatre by the Bay is a professional theatre company seeking to grow the Central Ontario arts community by empowering local theatre artists, engaging local audiences with high quality programming, and telling stories that showcase the diverse peoples of Barrie and Simcoe County.
During the COVID-19 pandemic, many restrictions were put in place to reduce the size of indoor gatherings, including sporting and cultural events. So what better time than to promote an outdoor experience? The Theatre at the Bay team first approached First Descent AR looking for a new and exciting way to tell a ghost story. With a team of talented actors, playwrights, and videographers at the ready, they all worked together to tell some of the engaging stories Barrie’s rich history has to offer.
First Descent AR worked closely with members of The Theatre at the Bay to create a unique theatrical experience blending live theatre with Augmented Reality. A walking AR ghost tour of downtown Barrie, Canada, where users could view actors' portrayals of ghosts and hear their stories. The experience used AR ‘SpectroVision’ and surface detection to drop ghosts into place. Users would scan the designated stops with their smart device’s camera and be visited by an AR Ghost telling their story, The experience provide a unique picture of the town’s history.
By adding an AR element to the more traditional ghost walking tour, the audience was able to experience the theatre and their town like never before. Combining a great team of terrific storytellers, outstanding performances, and cutting-edge technology delivered an immersive experience like no other theatre performance could.