Inaugural Event Links San Diego to Jerusalem in New Digital Humanities 'Co-Active' Connected Commemoration

Scholars and cultural institutions in Israel and the United States collaborated on a high-tech interactive platform linking audiences thousands of miles apart to mark the official United Nations commemoration in honor of the victims of the Holocaust.

On January 27, 2011 at 9:45AM Pacific time and 7:45PM Israel time, audiences in San Diego and Jerusalem were part of 'Expressions', a musical program in what’s being dubbed as a ‘co-active’ cultural event, with simultaneous performers at both venues and audience members communicating with each other over the Internet and determining the sequence of musical tributes.

The Center for Research in Entertainment and Learning (CREL) at the University of California, San Diego and Beit Avi Chai in Jerusalem hosted the venues. They are collaborating with Visual Exchange Network and to introduce the new digital humanities platform, joining scholarly communities in real time across the globe for the inauguration of an annual co-active commemorative event.

This new capability has been made possible by the support of the UC San Diego division of the California Institute for Telecommunications and Information Technology (Calit2), National LambdaRail, Pangaea Networks, and Bezeq International.

Producer Ella Belzberg, in conjunction with UC San Diego music professor Shlomo Dubnov and Co-Active Director Benjamin Stuart Thompson of Visual Exchange Network, together with Executive Producer Eitan Eliram of and Beit Avi Chai, are presenting the venue-to-venue event.

The project aims to kick off a series of community events that would allow audiences to experience a new form of interactive and international engagement.