Virtual Reality Band


International media attention is rapidly growing for Vincent John Vincent and the band 20th Century Kid, whose dynamic concert performances are introducing the world to the concept of Virtual Reality as the next wave in live concert experience. Having pioneered the integration of virtual reality into the concert environment since 1986, they have not only sparked the imagination of the press, but also the computer, music, film, and video industries with their state of the art performances. Their current project, Virtual Dawn, combines the power of Vincent's virtual performances and 20th Century Kid's masterful song writing into an exciting new CD, and video release.

The concept of Virtual Reality and the ability to immerse oneself in the computer worlds may seem totally new to some, yet it is second nature to Vincent John Vincent, who started performing in VR in 1986 in The Vivid Group's now popular Mandala Virtual Reality System, that he co-developed with Francis MacDougall, and Susan Wyshynski. The world premiere VR performance for V.J.V. and 20th Century Kid took place at the Tunnel Club in New York City to an audience of over 4000. Since then, Vincent alone and together with the ever evolving band has performed well over 200 times at various night clubs, concerts, special events, and TV shows around the world. (see performance examples list). He has appeared on the same bill with some of the great names in the business, including : Graham Nash, Edgar Winter, Jon Anderson (YES), Todd Rundgren, John Entwistle (THE WHO).


But what exactly is a virtual reality performance like? Well, when 20th Century Kid takes to the stage, and Vincent steps in front of a video camera and monitor setup, he sees his live image placed inside of the interactive, real time computer animation and video worlds of the Mandala VR System. The audience sees the same thing on large screens above the stage. Without touching anything in the real world, Vincent can interact and play with the objects that surround his video image. This is because the system is able to track his movements in real time, at all times, and recognizes what he is doing to the animation. This could be as simple as picking up an animated 3-D ball, and rolling it around his body or as complex as jamming lead riffs on an animated electric guitar, or a drum solo on an virtual drum kit. This VR instrument is a Gesture Triggered Musical Synthesizer that uses MIDI information to trigger any synth, sampler, or other MIDI controllable device. The theme of their performances usually consist of taking the audience on an audio/visual adventure through time and space. Vincent recreates his dreamscapes into computer realities and then steps into them with his whole body. It is the world's first interactive music video playground.

Virtual Dawn, the bands new project integrates the use of virtual environments into the recording for the first time. MICHAEL, the driving force behind 20th Century Kid is a keyboardist, composer, singer, songwriter, producer, and engineer. His own music receives national air play and appears in virtual installations around the world. He performs worldwide, both independently and with V.J.V. and has produced numerous environmental benefit concerts, many of which have been turned into TV. shows. The process of creating Virtual Dawn has been similar to that of creating a rock opera. Only here, virtual environments that act like live music videos must be created to match Michael and Vincent's music and lyrics. When recording the CD and videos, Vincent must step live into the virtual music video and perform the song on the animated video instruments. This same process is followed when the band performs the pieces in concert. The potential is infinite.


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