The story is the richest heritage of human civilisation. One can imagine the first stories being told, several thousand centuries ago, by wise old men huddled around camp fires. Since this time, the narrative process has been considerably developed and enriched: sounds and music have been added to complement the speech, while scenery and theatrical sets have been recreated to enhance the story environment. Actors, dancers and technicians have replaced the unique storyteller. The story is no longer the sole preserve of oral narrative but can be realised in book, theatrical, dance or movie form. Even the audience can extend up to several million individuals.
And yet in its many forms the story lies at the heart of one of the world's most important industry.
The advent of the digital era has enhanced and accelerated this evolution: image synthesis, digital special effects, new Human-Computer interfaces and the Internet allow one to not only realise more sophisticated narrative forms but also to create new concepts as video gaming and virtual environments. The art of storytelling is becoming evermore complex. Virtual Reality offers new tools to capture, and to interactively modify the imaginary environment, in ever more intuitive ways, coupled with a maximum sensory feedback. In fact, Virtual Reality technologies offer enhanced and exciting production possibilities for the creation and non-linear manipulation in real time, of almost any story form.
This has lead to the new concept of Virtual Storytelling. This international conference will gather researchers from the scientific, artistic and industrial communities to demonstrate new methods and techniques, show the latest results, and to exchange concepts and ideas for the use of Virtual Reality technologies for creating, populating, rendering and interacting with stories, what ever their form be it theatre, movie, cartoon, advertisement, puppet show, multimedia work, video-games...
In particular, the conference will address the following topics: