16 Mar 2023

METAQUETTE #Metaverse #Musical #Mambo #Motel #Reallusion #Iclone #unrealengine #ChatGPT #Culture Q35

Tips & Tricks for negotiating The Metaverse with............Pooky Amsterdam 

The Metaverse is where the next best stories will take place, maybe even with you as a leading character starring in your own cartoon movie. The Metaverse has been front and center recently but in my own first person journey, massive multiplayer platforms have inspired me in all ways. Actually my years of virtual existence distilled itself into a Major Musical, which once produced onstage, will be streamed live into The Metaverse itself.  The vision is an uber-meta cultural configuration, moving forward onto bigger stages.  

The basis of inspiration behind my two-act 17 original song musical, whose characters are iconic both as the Players behind the denizens of Mambo Motel, and the characters they chose to represent, have roots in personal experiences. With action that occur simultaneously "behind the screen" and onstage, there are many recognizable themes, concerning relationships online we can all find familiarity with.  

I was compelled to write this play as a celebration of The Metaverse, and it's freedoms. Yet I also needed to show the pathos we leave behind in the physical world but also encounter in the virtual ones.

Tammy, who maintains her husbands avatar, TJMoney
-Trading Card-

One of the more poignant characters of Mambo Motel is the widow Tammy, who has not been able to remove her husband's account, even though he's passed away, his avatar was TJMoney. She has a small child. Isolated, worried about money and missing him greatly, she used his stored password to inhabit his Mambo, now on a daily basis. She's behind TJMoney in Mambo Motel now, running his Royal Trade & Casino empire with great skill and panache, as he sings big songs about big trades.

 In The Metaverse she has respect, opportunity to make money, friends and have fun without the responsibilities of the physical world, without the pressures of single motherhood. Tammy has her backstory moment when she has to take a call from her mother, and the audience overhears the conversation. If you have ever tried to explain a virtual obsession to someone who has no idea what you are talking about, you can relate to this video.

TJMoney mentors the show's protagonist, a n00bie named Pretender, in reality, a Prince that longs to find a place where he can escape from the ghastly media glare of his life. A place where he can just be....himself. The Prince finds the anonymity he seeks in Mambo Motel, where we all log in equally.

Q: What modern cultural works are about The Metaverse?

The Metaverse was inspired itself by a landmark cultural work.  The incredibly seminal and exciting work of fiction, Neal Stephenson's "Snowcrash" has been said to have inspired Mr. Philip Rosedale to create Second Life.  So a cultural work inspired The Metaverse, which continues to inspire, ex. Neal Stephenson is behind Lamina1 an up and coming much anticipated Metaverse. 

Mambo Motel portrays the seamlessness between who we are as physical beings on Earth and whom we wish to become in our digital presence. The Metaverse allows us to believe in our lives fantastic, as we see and speak for ourselves within this "new" being of the avatar.

AI also seems to know us well.... ChatGPT, with a few prompts was able to generate the text you will hear sent through an audiofile on Studio-Id to generate a talking character from a picture of Tammy. Here is more information about the character, yet I think you can see that the auto-generate graphics are no match for the skill and craft of an artist like Benjamin Tuttle, who is our technical director. He is using a program like Reallusion's iClone Character creator and Unreal Engine to create the video. Linked here again.  The final image is of The Royal Trade & Casino, with its spinning wheels and prizes; that set and the others were created in Second Life.

As Mambo Motel ~ The Metaverse Musical is the project closest to my heart, I want to, and will write about the characters, and scenarios while spreading some of the joyous music too in weeks to come. This work is mixed media, and multi-platform incorporating the virtual with the physical, yet contains a significant switch to underscore the seamlessness of virtual identity.  

The Players are portrayed as synthetically created while human actors portray the Mambos onstage. All of these competing aspects of our personalities, what drives us, where we find our bliss, and where we can freely express ourselves, comes to life within the virtual environment of the musical. What we can not be in the physical world, can become second nature to us behind the mask of our avatar.

The background film will also show who is playing each of the 6 lead Characters, and show us their lives behind their Mambo, with a good example seen in the video of Tammy. That scene ends with the Casino Set,  which TJMoney will stand in front of onstage during his scenes. This stage screen will also run bright digital sets, loading screens and toolbars so the audience feels they have logged into The Metaverse itself. 

TJMoney in Mambo Motel

When the lights go on center stage, we enter Mambo Motel. This is the first musical to take place in The Metaverse. Would love to hear any feedback and comments are welcome!

If you have a question, please email info@pookymedia.com with Metaquette in the subject and it will be answered.

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