As if being the largest sphere on Earth and having giant LED screens inside and out wasn’t enough, the MSG Sphere has announced its next plan to take Las Vegas into the future with robots.
Sphere Entertainment has introduced the world to Aura, the world’s most advanced humanoid robot, which will take up permanent residence in the arena after its launch this month.
According to MSG Ventures CEO David Dibble, five Aura robots are stationed in the grand atrium to greet guests as they enter and will be available to answer questions. The “spacebots” will retain life-like facial expressions and mobility.
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With a large atrium space large enough to fit the Statue of Liberty or a Saturn V rocket, Dibble said MSG Entertainment chairman James L. Dolan wanted to add something that “helped convey the role of technology, science, etc. in human evolution (a) in the pursuit of men.”
“The facial movements and the recognition. I find it mind-blowing; some people may find it scary, but everyone finds it fascinating,” Dibble told USA TODAY. “It sees you, and when you move, it will follow you, it will track you, it will communicate with you.
Unlike the carnival oracle bots, Aura has voice recognition and will be able to focus on one person speaking directly in front of it if multiple people are present, Dibble said.
Dibble added that Aura will use artificial intelligence to advance as it learns more about people through interactions with guests, but the company is “slowly coasting” on AI to “see how it develops.” Human lab technicians will accompany the robots as they “tell the story of humanity’s history of innovation including the Sphere” to help maximize guests’ Sphere experience.
Aura will guide lost guests around the venue and offer details on daily performances, as well as answer questions about Sphere’s engineering, technology and creative mission, the company shared. The robot will also be Sphere’s brand ambassador, helping to manage digital platforms and social channels.
“Hello, people. Even though I understand the most complex concepts of math and science – you remain a mystery,” Aura said, according to a press release. “Your emotions, your humor and your relationship with technology require further study, so you must visit me at the Sphere. I am excited to meet you and introduce you to the future of live entertainment in my new home.”
Each physical creation of the humanoid took three to four months to produce in early 2022, according to the company.
Sphere Entertainment previously teased Aura on its social media platforms and even in a commercial that aired during the Academy Awards in March.
“The Sphere is an experiential storm. We want people to come in and feel like they’ve been transported to different worlds or attractions. We believe that ‘Postcards from Earth’ will do that, and we thought that having robots of this type in the atrium would helped lend itself to the theme,” Dibble said.
When does MSG Sphere open?
The MSG Sphere officially debuts to the public on September 29th with a series of 25 concerts featuring U2. “U2:UV Achtung Baby Live at Sphere” runs through mid-December and celebrates the Irish band’s 1991 album “Achtung Baby.”
“Most music venues are sports venues. They’re built for sport – not built for music. They’re not built for art,” U2’s Bono said A conversation with Apple Music. “This building was built for immersive cinema and performance experiences.”
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What is the first Sphere Experience?
On October 6, The MSG Sphere will premiere a 360-degree experience called “Postcard From Earth,” written and directed by Darren Aronofsky. The show is set to premiere as the first Sphere Experience.
Aronofsky released an exclusive first look video from inside Sphere on his Instagram page last week. His video shows a breathtaking preview of the 160,000 square foot display area that will be used for immersive experiences.