Reality Check Productions are an immersive tech company with a difference. Born out of the theatre industry the owners, Pip Brignall and Thomas Winsor identified an opportunity to create interactive and immersive experience-based theatre through mobile augmented reality.
With the challenges the Covid pandemic has generated for the theatre and performing arts industry, Reality Check Productions wanted to find an alternative technology solution that would bring new, and various immersive worlds, together in one space.
They explored initial concepts and ideas when developing an immersive VR Macbeth production with an Location Based Experience (LBE) element which allowed the user to play with magic surrealism. They then progressed to working with New Adventures, Sir Matthew Bourne’s iconic and ground-breaking British dance-theatre company, delivering a Artistic VR experience that focused on the company’s newest production ‘Romeo + Juliet’.
Reality Check Productions were introduced to Asha Easton from Immerse UK at Cannes XR when pitching their Macbeth production. Thomas said, “We connected immediately. Asha’s knowledge and understanding of the industry, the ability to connect us with key individuals and companies and the industry alignment of Immerse UK couldn’t have come at a better time for us. We became a member and started working with Asha and the team to explore potential opportunities to make our concept a reality.”
Immerse UK introduced Reality Check Productions to Innovate UK’s Covid response grant as a means to fund the development of the software and refine the product. Successful in their application, they have now created their prototype and will be launching “The Round” in June 2021. The Round is a bespoke software for the creation and distribution of live digital performance in augmented reality. As part of this grant, they were put in touch with Newable, a business adviser who has helped with a number of key areas including the organisation of an IP audit.
“We wanted to bring theatre to life in a new way using technology that we all have at our fingertips. Creatives have the imagination and drive to produce these ideas, but not the tools to make it happen. What The Round does is bring a new way to enhance the physical theatre/artistic expression and another means to generate revenue from it.” says Pip.
Immerse UK has provided a number of benefits for Reality Check Productions
- A range of industry focused events offering opportunities and introductions to relevant technologies, funding competitions and new connections;
- Regular updates on funding, networking and partnership opportunities via the monthly newsletter;
- The ability to feel part of a network, working alongside other individuals experiencing the same challenges and barriers;
- Introductions to diverse connections that offer exciting opportunities such as the RSC and Royal Opera house and practical services such as specialist lawyers, Sheridans and Marks and Clerks, and their accountants, Accountancy Cloud.
“Creating a start-up is daunting, especially in an area that is not your speciality. We came from theatre and now have a technology business. Having the support and connections from organisations such as Immerse UK and access to funding from Innovate UK really makes a difference. It’s great to see The Round concept transition to prototype stage, after many years as a concept, and we are looking forward to the next stage in our journey where it becomes a full platform that will help transform the theatre industry and give creatives a platform on which to express their artistic concepts.”