A project to merge theater, cinematography, and video games to create a new form of performance in one virtual space.
Zero Gravity (zero-G) Virtual Theater Lab was created by Boston's Arlekin Players Theatre during the pandemic to serve as an online, cloud-based theater laboratory, live creation space, and performance venue for the emerging virtual theater genre.
/an experimental game/
A performance experiment in development by (zero-G)'s founder and director Igor Golyak, who has been a leading innovator of virtual theater since the start of the pandemic. His recent State vs. Natasha Banina was a Critic’s Pick in The New York Times by Maya Phillips who declared “The verdict is in: the virtual can, in fact, be an effective new stage for theater.” Golyak’s latest work fuses film, theater, and video game technology to create a new medium where viewers are able to interact with the performers. Inspired by Anton Chekhov’s The Cherry Orchard and drawing from recordings of Chekhov’s letters and dreams, this interactive online theater experience accesses the operating system behind both Chekhov’s computer and the world in which his characters live, searching for happiness.
Trailer, chekhovOS /an experimental game/ 2021
Special Appearance by Mikhail Baryshnikov as Anton Chekhov
Arlekin’s Zero Gravity (zero-G) Lab & The Cherry Orchard Festival Foundation present
chekhovOS /an experimental game/
Inspired by The Cherry Orchard by Anton Chekhov
Conceived & Directed by Igor Golyak
Produced by Igor Golyak & Sara Stackhouse
Starring Jessica Hecht
And Anna Baryshnikov, Anna Bortnik, Darya Denisova, Jeffrey Hayenga, Melanie Moore, Nael Nacer & Mark Nelson
With Mikhail Baryshnikov as Anton Chekhov
May-June 2021 Dates Announced
Arlekin's Zero Gravity (zero-G) Lab & Cherry Orchard Festival Foundation are pleased to announce the following events. To reserve, click on your preferred date.
Co-presented by BostonFIG & Snowrunner Productions
Followed by live talkback with members of the cast & creative team
Moderated by Tom Abernathy, Studio Narrative Director at ArenaNet
Co-presented by Gift of Life (UK and Europe)
Followed by live talkback with members of the cast & creative team Moderated by Sara Stackhouse, chekhovOS Co-Producer
This event supports Gift of Life (UK/Europe), a non-profit that helps children to fight and survive cancer, founded by Russian actress Chulpan Khamatova.
Co-presented by ArtsEmerson
Followed by live talkback with cast members Anna Baryshnikov and Jeffrey Hayenga, and Igor Golyak (Director).
Moderated by Rob Orchard, Founder & Creative Consultant, ArtsEmerson
Co-presented by Cherry Orchard Festival Foundation & ShowOne Productions
Followed by live talkback with cast members Anna Baryshnikov and Mark Nelson, and Igor Golyak (Director)
Co-presented by UCLA’s Center for the Art of Performance (CAP UCLA) & Portland Institute of Contemporary Art (PICA)
Followed by live talkback with Jessica Hecht (Ranevskaya), Igor Golyak (Director), & Sara Stackhouse (Co-producer)
Welcome by Kristy Edmunds, Executive and Artistic Director, CAP UCLA
Co-presented by International Online Theater Festival/Theatre Times Followed by live talkback with members of the cast & creative team Moderated by Magda Romanska, Editor-in-Chief, TheTheatreTimes.com
Co-presented by Podari.Life US
Followed by live talkback with members of the cast, Igor Golyak (Director), & Jakov Jakolov (Composer)
Moderated by Joyce Kulhawik, President of the Boston Theater Critics Association, Emmy Award-Winning A & E Critic
This event supports Podari.Life, the US-based sister charity of Podari Zhizn (Gift of Life), a non-profit that helps children to fight and survive cancer, founded by Russian actress Chulpan Khamatova.
Elliot Norton Award-winning Darya Denisova in State vs Natasha Banina (Trailer Credit: Anton Nikolaev)
Arlekin’s Zero Gravity (zero-G) Lab present
State vs Natasha Banina
Based on Natasha’s Dream by Yaroslava Pulinovich
Adapted & Directed by Igor Golyak
Translated by John Freedman
Starring Darya Denisova as Natasha
Production Associate: Marianna Golyak
Animator: Anton Iakhontov
Music Composer: Vadim Khrapatchev
Produced by Igor Golyak & Sara Stackhouse
Support the innovative work of Arlekin Players and their Zero Gravity (zero-G) Virtual Theater Lab
ChekhovOS is made possible with generous support from producing sponsor .ART, ArtsEmerson, Baryshnikov Arts Center, BroadBand Collaborative, Cherry Orchard Festival Foundation, Fooksman Family Foundation, Meghan Coleman, Robin Hanley, ZiphyCare, gifts from Arlekin's Zero Gravity Kickstarter Campaign and Aximmetry Technologies Ltd., the official software provider for Arlekin's Zero Gravity (zero-G) Lab.
“In the post-pandemic world, theater is not held back by text, place, time or gravity… Theater has now emancipated itself from the above, and shown survival skills in a space with no air or gravity, in the virtual. We are excited to be one of the first companies to embrace it and launch into the cosmos.”
Artistic Director of Arlekin Players
Zero Gravity (zero-G) LAB Inaugural 2020-2021 Season