A lovely idea, so simple: Karoake Cinema presents muted old film footage and lets participants improvise the dialogue in voice-over. They can also take instruments lying around and make their own musical soundtrack. The set up is a straightforward invitation — a set of microphones standing in front of a wall projection, a set of instruments on the floor. The bold drama scenes showed on screen serve as exciting motivation to take part.
Interestingly, Celine Semaan, the creator of Karaoke Cinema, said initially she had the film’s original subtitles showing, for inspiration, or guidelines – but people plead to have the subtitles removed and started improvising, happy to take a more creative role in the project.
You may have heard of a similar project, Teevx, which is in fact the project’s former edition. Teevx imagined a rather complex screen interface to let participants not only create their own soundtrack, but also draw or write live on TV footage. Teevx was meant to be a call to take over the media, a call for freedom of expression (and it also made it to Cannes Festival).
Karaoke Cinema’s call to revolution is a little more subtle — the project rather focuses on the performance of participants. Its character finds a new elegance — a simplicity focusing on the playfulness at the heart of the improvisation game.