To write a review on something as original as Verdensteatret might be experienced as similar to being put to review a Rorschach-test. Which at the same time might not be so far fetched as a metaphor. As the symmetrical ink spot, this work is also a blend of strict order and accidental coincident and what you get out of this performance will, to some degree, be a reflection of yourself.

EMPAC hopefully incorporates, and is sure to evoke, many more perspectives than were consciously pursued up to now. The intention with EMPAC was to create an environment that was uniquely defined while remaining open to yet unimagined realms. Such intention can only be reached when personal thoughts and criteria are both as equally important and defining as they are unimportant and receding.

For Immediate Release

TROY, N.Y. — In one work, laser scans of a body are animated in 3D, inscribing the movement of an absent dancer; in another, a solitary figure is hurtled forward–seemingly in a single take of the camera–through an evolving and fanciful urban landscape; and in another, scantily clad hand puppets cope with the effects of global warming to the tune of a 1930s era ditty.

This is the sort of noble sentiment that excites artists and philosophers, as expressed by Jonathan Fanton, president of the MacArthur Foundation, a generous funder of the arts:

The arts deepen our understanding of the human spirit, extend our capacity to comprehend the lives of others, allow us to imagine a more just and humane world. Through their diversity of feeling, their variety of forms, their multiplicity of inspiration, the arts make our culture richer and more reflective.

TROY — The folks at RPI know more than one or two things about numbers. Longtime faculty member and composer Neil Rolnick named his recent piano piece Digits, referring to the numerical language of computers and the 10 digits of a performer’s hands.

A tour de force for soloist, electronics and video, Digits was a highlight of Rolnick’s 60th birthday concert Saturday night at Rensselaer Polytechnic Institute’s Academy Hall Auditorium. The event was presented by the university’s increasingly influential Experimental Media and Performing Arts Center.

Neil Rolnick has spent most of his career putting music and musical ideas into machines, and making them spit it back out again. But it's only in recent years that the composer and longtime Rensselaer Polytechnic Institute faculty member, who turned 60 last month, has found the unique musical voice inside himself and been able to embrace it.

It’s an unexpectedly warm and humid September night in Troy, and scores of Rensselaer Polytechnic Institute students are swarming around campus. It’s a Friday, and most are clearly dressed for the usual collegiate hijinks. Some, however, are making their way to tonight’s performance by the Australian dance group BalletLab, which is being presented by the Experimental Media and Performing Arts Center at the RPI Playhouse. An even mix of students and community (or faculty) members, tonight’s crowd reaches up the steps from 15th Street and into the Playhouse lobby.

For Immediate Release

TROY, N.Y. —In 2007, its inaugural year, EMPAC’s DANCE MOViES Commission received more than 150 applications from dance-filmmakers in North and South America. As the first major US-based commissioning program available to dance-film artists in the Americas, the DANCE MOViES Commission represents an important opportunity for those working at the intersection of the moving body and the moving image. Selected artists receive awards ranging up to $50,000.

For Immediate Release

TROY, N.Y. — EMPAC - the Experimental Media and Performing Arts Center at Rensselaer Polytechnic Institute - announces four projects have been selected by an international panel for this year’s round of the EMPAC DANCE MOViES Commission. With awards ranging from $7,000 to $42,000, the works represent the first commissions given out through this new program.

For Immediate Release

TROY, N.Y. — EMPAC - the Experimental Media and Performing Arts Center at Rensselaer Polytechnic Institute - announces the launch of the EMPAC DANCE MOViES Commission, a new commissioning program to support the creation of new works in the field of experimental dance for the screen.

From the Schenectady Daily Gazette

TROY — In two years, the Capital Region will be home to EMPAC, a $142 million arts center unlike any other in the world. At Rensselaer Polytechnic Institute in Troy, scientists and artists will explore and create under one roof, and the 203,000-square-foot building will be equipped with some of the most advanced acoustics and digital technology on the planet.