Michel van der Aa
Will we be able to carry on living after death by uploading our consciousness? It sounds like science fiction, but scientific advances could make it possible one day to map our own memories and experiences using artificial intelligence and create a digital copy of ourselves. This would mean a sort of “virtual resurrection” and perpetual existence. And how high would the price of this immortality be?
The film opera Upload explores what being human is, poses questions about our identities and social relationships. Against the backdrop of present-day and near-future technologies, the story revisits ancient philosophical debates. A father who is suffering from severe trauma hopes that a digital version of himself will make him happier. He selects memories that shaped his life, leaves behind his physical body, and returns home to his daughter as an “upload”. She tries to understand why he resolved to undertake the experiment. Is he still the same person? And what rights does the digital copy of a human have?
The composer, film and stage director and librettist Michel van der Aa ventures to the frontiers of technological innovation in this highly topical contemporary opera. In Upload — as in his previous internationally successful productions Eight, Blank Out and Sunken Garden — he presents an intriguing visual and musical spectacle.
Father Roderick Williams
Daughter Julia Bullock
Music Director Otto Tausk
Director | Film script writer Michel van der Aa
Set and lighting designer Theun Mosk
Dramaturges Madelon Kooijman, Niels Nuijten