Official Selection of the 2012 Sundance Film Festival
January 19 - 29, 2012 (Park City, UT)

Created and Produced by EARLY MORNING OPERA (EarlyMorningOpera.com)

An EMPAC Commission
Experimental Media and Performing Arts Center
Rensselaer Polytechnic Institute, Troy, NY

ABACUS is a genre-bending multimedia event created by Early Morning Opera, under the direction of Lars Jan, and featuring Japanese cult icon Paul Abacus. In a blistering 50 minutes, ABACUS constructs a riveting argument for the obsolescence of national borders while simultaneously dissecting two dominant forms of contemporary persuasion: the TED-style (slide-based) presentation and mega-church media design.

Abacus leverages stunning data visualizations, generated in real-time by our internationally renowned team of designers, to catapult his empirical observations into metaphysical territory. A highly choreographed chorus of Steadicam operators transmits wireless streams of video that are then mixed live onto the cinematic screen. Fueled by our content-saturated, data-driven, personality-obsessed moment, ABACUS explodes the presentation format that has become the lingua franca of our screen-based culture.

Paul Abacus / as himself
Lars Jan / Director of Communications
Sonny Valicenti / Broadcast Specialist
Pablo N. Molina / Scenic & Video Design
James N. Sears & Jonathan Cousins / Data Visualizations & Software
Nathan Ruyle / Original Composition & Sound Design
Chris Kuhl / Lighting Design & Logistics
Nick Konow & John Luna / Steadicam Operators
Elena Gageanu / Panda Wrangler

Thanks to REDCAT, CalArts, Travis Preston, and The MacDowell Colony. Special Thanks to Kathleen Forde, everyone at EMPAC, Bill Ballou, and Garrett Brown.

Follow Paul Abacus on Facebook: facebook.com/paulabacus

Cover Photo by Calvin Knight 

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