I’d Be Lost Without It is at the Old Fire Station, Friday 16 March. We caught up with the company, Wet Picnic, to find out more about the show.
How did the idea for the show come about?
The creation of I’d Be Lost Without It was born out of the idea that in 21st Century society, we are increasingly connected with one another and the world around us through technology, and yet feel a sense of disconnection on a human level with ourselves and with one another.
We became fascinated with the idea today’s generation of young people will grow up developing two sides of their personalities – online and virtual – more powerfully than ever before. We wanted to explore the ways in which our interaction with technology and the virtual world, are having on behaviour in society and particularly young people.
We wanted to develop an idea that combined our expertise in creating work for the street with developing work for indoor venues, and this show is the result. While researching our show Suitcases in 2015 – where we chart the destruction of an individual’s identity after an off-hand comment made via social media – we realised how central these phenomena are becoming to our social narrative, with generations of young people potentially growing up with addiction and social integration problems. There is an increasing sense of urgency to explore this subject further.
What is cyberpsychology?
Cyberpsychology is a term to embody the psychological phenomena associated with or affected by emerging technology. It is a study of the human mind and behaviour associated with technology use.
Do you think people are addicted to technology?
There is much discussion in the scientific community about whether technological addiction can be classed alongside alcohol and/or drug addiction for example. The World Health Organisation has decided to include technology addiction in the diagnostic manual of addictive behaviours. There is certainly a dividing line between problematic use versus addictive and pathological use of technology. It’s probably safe to say that the average person only suffers from problematic use.
Dr Kuss, who is working with us as scientific consultant, has witnessed first-hand individuals who are seeking help for gaming addiction.
Wet Picnic is well-known for creating performances that blur the lines between audience and performer. What can the audience expect from I’d Be Lost Without It?
The best way to describe the experience is probably Black Mirror with a large dose eccentricity and silly playfulness. Audiences will be part of the action and will enter into a space wearing a pair of binaural headphones and experience an immersive tech world bought to life by our 6 performers with set pieces accompanied by a voice over experienced through headphones. It’s an exploration and a celebration of the tech world we live in, in 21st century. It will be very funny, absurd and quite dark!
What do you hope audiences will take away from the show?
We hope that they will come away from the experience more mindful of their relationship with technology, their phones and how it is affecting the way we think, the way we behave, and the ways that we perceive one another.