The MSG Sphere, already Earth’s largest sphere with massive LED screens inside and out, is now set to usher Las Vegas into the future with the introduction of robots. Sphere Entertainment proudly presents Aura, an advanced humanoid robot that will permanently reside at the arena, debuting this month.
Located within the grand atrium of the venue, five Aura robots will warmly greet arriving guests and provide informative responses to their inquiries, as announced by MSG Ventures CEO David Dibble. These “spokesbots” are engineered to maintain lifelike facial expressions and exhibit fluid mobility, creating a captivating spectacle.
Capitalizing on the vast space of the atrium, large enough to accommodate the Statue of Liberty or the Saturn V rocket, MSG Entertainment Chairman James L. Dolan sought to convey the significance of technology and science in the evolution and pursuit of humanity. Dibble expressed his admiration for Aura’s facial movements and recognition, acknowledging that some might find it eerie, yet everyone will find it utterly fascinating. He explained how Aura follows, tracks, and interacts with individuals as they move about.
In a departure from traditional carnival fortune teller robots, Aura possesses voice recognition capabilities and can focus on one person speaking directly in front of her, even in a group setting, according to Dibble.
Dibble added that Aura will harness artificial intelligence to enhance her understanding of humans through guest interactions, but the company plans to proceed cautiously with AI development to monitor its evolution. Human lab technicians will accompany the robots, sharing the story of humanity’s history of innovation, including the Sphere, to enrich the Sphere Experience for visitors.
Aura’s role extends to providing lost guests with directions within the venue, delivering details about daily performances, and answering questions about the Sphere’s engineering, technology, and creative mission. Additionally, the robot will serve as the Sphere’s brand ambassador, overseeing digital platforms and social channels.
In a press release, Aura offered a friendly greeting: “Hello, humans. While I understand the most complex concepts of math and science — you remain a mystery. Your emotions, your humor, and your relationship with technology require further study, so you must visit me at Sphere. I am excited to meet you and introduce you to the future of live entertainment at my new home.”
Each physical embodiment of a humanoid, created in early 2022, required three to four months to produce, according to the company.
Sphere Entertainment had previously teased Aura on their social media platforms and during a commercial that aired during the Academy Awards in March.
MSG Sphere will officially open to the public on September 29, commencing with a series of 25 concerts featuring U2. “U2: UV Achtung Baby Live at Sphere” will run until mid-December, celebrating the Irish band’s 1991 album “Achtung Baby.”
Bono of U2 noted, “Most music venues are sports venues. They’re built for sports – they’re not built for music. They’re not built for art. This building was built for immersive experiences in cinema and performance.”
On October 6, The MSG Sphere will premiere a 360-degree experience titled “Postcard From Earth,” written and directed by Darren Aronofsky. This show will mark the debut of the first Sphere Experience. Aronofsky recently shared an exclusive first-look video from inside the Sphere on his Instagram page, providing a breathtaking preview of the 160,000-square-foot display plane designed for immersive experiences.