Cops on Fire: Crazy Russian Hip-hop-opera Theater, Played Live on Novation Launchpad

Imagine combining sampling, controllerism, opera, hip-hop, rap, cops, live theater, sound effects, school-play cardboard props, and radio plays, and then doing it all in Russian, and you’re getting in the ballpark of what “Cops on Fire” was like. As described in English for the 2010 Moscow trailer (translated by uploader Sasha Pas): The “Cops On Fire” show is a fusion of theater, culture and contemporary urban music. The genre of the show is “hip-hopera” (hip-hop + opera). Hip-hopera = live hip-hop arias + original decorations + stage tricks and choreography by professional artists. Got it? These guys are dedicated to …

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Musical Robots from Refuse, Pyrotechnic Dancers, and More Czech Wizardry: Stanley Povoda

The very word “robot” comes from a Czech author, Karel Čapek and his 1920 sci fi theater work R.U.R.. In terms that resonate today, class, economics, and freedom play into that narrative, as Čapek introduced not only a word but the modern concept of android. So, it’s fitting that the Czech Republic would be the scene for an artist carrying on the author’s legacy. Inventor Stanley Povoda doesn’t just imagine robots; he builds them and makes them into a musical band. Repurposing refuse, the robotic creations have eyes for knobs, and play percussion and other instruments. These are liberated robots, …

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