UW–Madison’s Reilly is among those selected for ‘Experience Design’ program


UW–Madison’s Megan Reilly has been selected for the inaugural cohort of the Experience Design Certificate Program by Odyssey Works.   

Megan Reilly
Reilly

Reilly is an assistant professor in the School of Education’s Department of Theatre and Drama.

The 10-month, low-residency program is designed to provide participants with a comprehensive understanding of the principles of experience design and introduce them to an engaged and dynamic community. Participants will meet virtually for weekly, small-group classes and collaborations starting in Jan. 2022.

The program will culminate in a presentation of original work in New York City in Nov. 2022.

The cohort is a diverse and international group, including academics, artists, immersive technologists, scientists, marketers, and more. What unites them, says Odyssey Works, is a “shared vision of how experience design might transform their fields.”

Reilly’s research centers on actor-audience relationships in virtual reality performance, design in virtual space, and ethical issues in immersive theater. The program, she says, “will give me a chance to deepen that practice by learning more about how to create performance with interactive narratives.”

“I have been researching and writing about immersive performance for the past seven years, and experience design is where that really intersects in my mind with my primary focus on stage design,” says Reilly. “Theatre is a very intimate, subtle art form that can touch everyone in unexpected ways. Above all I want to create environments that foster connections between audiences and performers that come from a place of care for the people involved and allow for different experiences,” she adds. 

Since 2001, Odyssey Works has been creating immersive, durational experiences “for an audience of one.” The Odyssey Works team is made up of artists in dozens of disciplines who study the life of one individual and use whatever means necessary to create intimate, meaningful performances that last days, weeks, or months, and occur not on a stage but interwoven with a person’s life. 

Learn more about the 2022 Experience Design Certificate Program cohort.