A prisoner's dilemma


Boho’s 2007-8 Game Theory-based performance A Prisoner’s Dilemma combines interactive theatre, lo-fi electronics and live trombone / electronica in a performance based on the science of Game Theory and the Prisoner’s Dilemma thought experiment.

The narrative follows two scientists taken prisoner, offered rewards and punishments to inform on each other. Woven in and out of this story are a number of interactive game-modules, in which the audience direct the performers using a variety of control devices including modified remote controls and torchbeam cursors.


A Prisoner’s Dilemma featured in the National Multicultural Fringe Festival (ACT), the Adelaide Fringe Festival (SA), the Brisbane Festival Under The Radar Fringe (QLD), CSIRO’s Friday Lecture series (ACT), the Street Theatre’s Independent Season (ACT), the Asia-Pacific Complex Systems Conference (QLD) and an ACT high school / college tour funded by the Foundation for Young Australians.

The show was made possible by the generous contributions of consultants Dr. David Newth from the CSIRO Centre for Complex Systems Science, Patrick Helean of The National Science and Technology Centre (Questacon) and Charles MacInnes of the ANU School of Music.