Dance Like Kinect Is Watching: The Interactive LED Amphitheater

'Tis the season for outdoor music festivals—which, traditionally, means days of sliding over mud-slick fields in galoshes. But in Lyon, a group of designers and engineers dreamt up an alternative: a Kinect-powered interactive amphitheater that radiates light based on the footsteps of attendees.

The pyramid was custom-built for Nuits Sonores, an annual EDM festival that included performances by Dan Deacon and Nosaj Thing. Housed primarily inside of a giant warehouse in Lyon, the festival also included an outdoor stage. So organizers tapped London interactive studio Is This Good? and Lyon architects Looking For Architecture to create an installation where concert-goers could dance facing performers.

Their five-tier system is made from semi-transparent plastic embedded with LEDs. These are controlled via an OpenFrameworks script, which draws information about the location of attendees from six nearby Kinects. When a person moves or jumps onto one of the platforms, the lights turn on and change in intensity as their movements are tracked—meanwhile, a Processing-based program pushes generative, dynamic animations to five hanging screens behind the platforms. It's lovely, in a futuristic, Saturday Night Fever kind of way. Check out the full video below. [Creative Applications]