VR/AR entertainment tech company WITHIN today announced plans to collaborate on virtual reality music experiences with Universal Music Group (UMG). This move builds on two projects already created by WITHIN, in collaboration with UMG artists OneRepublic and The Chemical Brothers.
This development is the latest in an apparent trend for UMG to be involved in more expansive projects. Following their entry into the film and TV production industries with their 2014 purchase of Eagle Rock Entertainment, UMG entered an arrangement this May to co-develop feature films with Red Bull GmbH, StudioCanal and Terra Mater Film Studios.
Today’s announcement will see WITHIN and UMG collaborate on immersive, musical VR experiences accessed via WITHIN’s mobile app. The companies also plan to produce AR and VR experiences across all aspects of UMG’s production and marketing cycle, citing venues such as “the recording studio to the release parties, concert stages and beyond.”
Immersive musical experiences have become a major focus in the VR space over the last two years, with the advent of complete platforms to develop such projects.
More recent is the appearance of on-site VR experiences offered in conjunction with live performances across all genres. The Welsh National Opera, for one, has leveraged Google Daydream mobile technology to create a pioneering VR experience that re-imagines scenes from two classic operas: The Magic Flute and Madam Butterfly.
“Music is one of the most uniquely transformative mediums of human expression; combining it with immersive AR and VR experiences creates a new artform exponentially more powerful than the sum of its parts,” said Chris Milk, Co-Founder and CEO of WITHIN.
“This partnership allows us the incredible opportunity to work with top artists at UMG to create ever more meaningful and expressive immersive music experiences.”
“We are huge admirers of Chris’s innovative and creative work in music and VR, as well as the premium experiences WITHIN offers to music fans,” said Michele Anthony, Executive Vice President at UMG.
“Working with our labels and artists, UMG has produced numerous VR experiences and this agreement will help evolve our strategy. Together, UMG and WITHIN will push the boundaries of how audiences experience music and create new ways for artists to forge deeper connections with their fans.”