The role of interactive technology in live performance has increased substantially in recent years. Practices and experiences of existing forms of live performance have been transformed and new genres of technology-mediated live performance have emerged in response to novel technological opportunities. Consequently, designing for live performance is set to become an increasingly important concern for interaction design researchers and practitioners. However, designing interactive technology for live performance is a challenging activity, as the experiences of both performers and their audiences are shaped and influenced by a number of delicate and interconnected issues, which relate to different forms and individual practices of live performance in varied and often conflicting ways.
The research presented in this thesis explores how interaction designers might be better supported in engaging with this intricate and multifaceted design space. This is achieved using a practice-led methodology, which involves the researcher’s participation in both the investigation of, and design response to, issues of live performance as they are embodied in the lived and felt experiences of individual live performers’ practices during three interaction design case studies.
This research contributes to the field of interaction design for live performance in three core areas. Understandings of the relationships between key issues of live performance and individual performers’ lived and felt experiences are developed, approaches to support interaction designers in engaging individual live performers’ lived and felt experiences in design are proposed and innovative interfaces and interaction techniques for live performance are designed. It is anticipated that these research outcomes will prove directly applicable or inspiring to the practices of interaction designers wishing to address live performance and will contribute to the ongoing academic discourse around the experience of, and design for, live performance.