Here's how to see spaceships at Coachella 2019

The festival's first AR-equipped stage will feature larger-than-life celestial objects floating above the crowd.

Leslie Katz Former Culture Editor
Leslie Katz led a team that explored the intersection of tech and culture, plus all manner of awe-inspiring science, from space to AI and archaeology. When she's not smithing words, she's probably playing online word games, tending to her garden or referring to herself in the third person.
  • Third place film critic, 2021 LA Press Club National Arts & Entertainment Journalism Awards
Leslie Katz
2 min read

If you're on the ground at Coachella this weekend and get tired of posting selfies between acts, you can fill the time tracking flying space objects instead.

An AR-equipped stage at the music festival's Sahara Tent will shoot space-themed content around for those who open the Coachella Camera in the Coachella iOS or Android app and point their phones at video screens during changeovers. The giant images will include interactive planetary objects, space stations and astronauts that appear to be floating above the crowd. 

Voila. Your reality, already augmented from hanging out in the California desert with tens of thousands of strangers, gets even more so.


Childish Gambino headlined the festival's opening night Friday with a 90-minute performance, urging attendees to put their phones down and take the moment in. He'll perform again this weekend, as will Ariana Grande, Billie Eilish, Kacey Musgraves, Weezer and many more artists who hit the Coachella stages last weekend. Sunday also brings Kanye West's highly anticipated Easter Sunday Service

Acts scheduled for the spacey Sahara Tent this weekend include Kid Cudi, Dillon Francis, Diplo, Jaden Smith and Wiz Khalifa.  

And if AR astronauts don't feel tangible enough, there's always Overview Effect, a 36-foot spaceman by Los Angeles art studio Poetic Kinetics that's been roaming Coachella grounds. 

The gigantic sculpture has radio-controlled animatronic arms and hands that make gestures such as "peace," "OK" and "thumbs-up" signs. Through a live interactive facial capture system, festival-goers get their faces projected into the helmet visor three stories up, while their name simultaneously appears on the astronaut suit's enormous name tag.  


A giant astronaut roams Coachella 2019. 

Poetic Kinetics