By P. Erik Meyer ’14
Rappers Dr. Dre and Snoop Dog emerged on the stage on Sunday, April 15 at the annual Coachella festival in California.
Suddenly another figure emerged with them.
Although it took the audience a second to understand what they were seeing, they soon realized that the figure was famous rapper Tupac.
Tupac has been dead or 16 years and is considered to be a pioneer in the rap industry.
The person that people were seeing on the stage was actually a digitally imaged hologram that moved and sung just as Tupac would.
Is this new technology the future of live concerts? Can these even be considered live?
Think about the possibilities of bringing back other desist musical performers such as Michael Jackson, Marvin Gaye or Elvis Presley.
Could there be new types of combinations of concerts?
What if we could bring back The Beatles?
Would the development of the hologram eliminate the need for performers to even actually appear live on stage?
Performances could be performed more often in more than one location at the same time.
The question arises: What is the technology behind the hologram.
Tupac’s hologram was designed by Digital Domain, the same company that created Benjamin Button from Brad Pitt.
The project took months of planning and four months to create the image in a studio.
“This is not found footage. This is not archival footage. This is an illusion,” said El Ulbrich to The Wall Street Journal.
Ulbrich is the chief creative officer of Digital Domain.
The person that people saw appeared to be three dimensional but the image was in fact two dimensional.
The process works by placing a piece of angled glass on the ground and projecting an image onto it.
That image is then projected onto a Mylar screen on stage producing the hologram.
The screen on stage can be dropped onto the stage in seconds and therefore makes it difficult to anticipate where the hologram will appear.
There are rumors that “Tupac” will go on tour with Dr. Dre and Snoop Dog but those are yet to be confirmed.