Caravan Theatre’s 18th annual Halloween event will see groups explore what happens when a mysterious contagion starts appearing in the community. The audio-driven immersive performance takes place Oct. 13-30, 2021. (Contributed)

Caravan Theatre’s 18th annual Halloween event will see groups explore what happens when a mysterious contagion starts appearing in the community. The audio-driven immersive performance takes place Oct. 13-30, 2021. (Contributed)

North Okanagan theatre turns up the volume on Halloween horror

Walk of Terror: System Failure is Caravan Theatre’s newest immersive audio-driven performance

Spooky season is around the corner and Spallumcheen’s Caravan Theatre is ready with its new immersive audio-driven Walk of Terror.

And it promises to be the most terrifying yet.

System Failure is the theatre’s latest binaural sound experience — it’s like virtual reality for your ears — that runs Oct. 13-30. Sound designer Kate De Lorme, alongside six professional voice actors, explore what happens when a mysterious contagion appears in the community.

For three weeks, guests will be able to experience the immersive 40-minute journey complete with surround sound, spectacular set design and live performances of Kelowna’s premiere fire-spinning, stilt-walking performance troupe, Kinshira.

“The audio by itself is terrifying,” said Caravan’s artist director Estelle Shook. “And then we build on that aural experience with lights, sets and performers so that when you walk the walk, you don’t know what is real and what isn’t.

“Mixing this media allows us to create a rich, authentic fantasy world.”

Nightly groups are staggered between six start times from 6-9 p.m. Each guest is provided with a sanitized MP3 player and headphones and sent to walk through the forest, unable to see the group ahead of them, creating an isolating experience.

“This is a high calibre theatrical production, created and performed by professionals at the top of their game,” Shook said.

“We have a professional running crew who manage the entire performance in the woods, and so the entire experience is carefully orchestrated to produce maximum effect.”

Strobe, haze, fog, disturbing images, mature subject matter and strong language are used in the performance so it’s not suitable for children under 13 but Shook said a family-friendly version may come yet.

“We see these Walks of Terror as medicine. A purge for the anxiety we all carry. These days, we are in need of a lot of purging,” Shook said. “After a big scream and jump out of your skin, people feel better. We are pleased to be able to offer this service to our community.”

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