1. Recommendations (mobile phones, vertigo)
  2. How to move around
  3. If you get lost…
  4. Feedback/Questions
  5. About the piece
  6. Acknowledgements

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Mobile access: While HAYDN SPACE OPERA can be accessed on mobile devices, for performance reasons it is not recommended.

Vertigo: Virtual reality has been known to trigger vertigo in some users. If this is of concern to you, note that only one room – ‘The Apocalypse’ – has no ‘floor’ plane (that is, you appear to be flying through infinite space). Not enabling flying will prevent accidentally passing through the ‘floor’ of other rooms.

Moving around, audio & avatars

HAYDN SPACE OPERA can be navigated with a keyboard and mouse, by touchscreen devices (mobile possible but not recommended), or with VR hardware.

The basic controls for keyboard/mouse use are:

  • Turn: Click and hold the left mouse button or use the Q and E keys
  • Move: Arrow keys or WASD keys. Hold down SHIFT to move faster
  • Fly: type /fly into the chat to toggle flying on or off. Most rooms allow flying

Full control guides for all devices can be found here (opens in a new tab for easy reference while in the piece)

The piece consists of several ‘rooms’, each of which needs to be ‘joined’ to move around it (if you click ‘Spectate’ instead of Join you will be able to hear and see the room but not move around or interact with objects).

Links to other rooms take the form of panels which display a preview image of the room they link to. Hovering your cursor over the panel reveals a button – click to enter, then Join the room, set up your audio and avatar (name and form to represent you to others in the room) if prompted. Once you’ve clicked through all this, you should find yourself in the new room so start exploring! All rooms contain a link to return to the central ‘Warm-Up Room’ where you entered the piece.

If you get lost…

The exit – as on a plane – may be behind you. If you can’t find it, though, just close the browser tab, come back here and enter again. Your link to this page has no expiry time and can be reloaded as often as you need it – timed entries are to limit the number of people in the piece at any one time to try to ensure the best performance for everyone.

Feedback & questions

Comments and suggestions for improving the piece can be left here, or contact Caitlin Rowley if you have questions or problems.


HAYDN SPACE OPERA is an always-open piece created on the Mozilla Hubs online virtual reality platform. It considers generative spaces of the composer’s practice – her notebooks, rehearsal rooms with her Bastard Assignments colleagues, cafés where she writes about pieces in progress – and the piling up of ideas, which are sometimes closely tied to the environment they are generated in.

To this end, the content of the piece includes pages from Caitlin’s notebooks which have been used as graphic scores for improvisation recordings, snippets of rehearsal banter, videos of sugar sinking into coffee and other detritus from the experience of creating the piece, alongside custom-made 3D objects which reflect ideas that were being explored in the notebooks.

The experience of HAYDN SPACE OPERA is different for every visit, being shaped by the way the visitor moves through the spaces, experiencing localised and roomwide audio, turning sounds on and off.


Concept, programming and artwork: Caitlin Rowley
Performances by Bastard Assignments – Caitlin Rowley, Timothy Cape, Edward Henderson and Josh Spear

Huge thanks to my colleagues in Bastard Assignments, whose performances and conversation make up the bulk of this work.

Thanks, too, to the places represented here: Centre 151 in Haggerston, London where we recorded most of the audio material and The Premises Studios in Hackney, London where the rest of it was captured; Replay Coffee in Turramurra, Sydney where several of the notebook pages used here were created (and the coffee videos were filmed); the Illy Café near South Kensington tube station in London was the venue for the writing video; and of course the homes of Bastard Assignments members where additional material was recorded during the COVID-19 pandemic.