Thousands applauded last month in the de Jong Concert Hall, while twelve thousand others cheered at the same time in more than fifty countries. Thanks to BYU School of Music’s new streaming system, anyone around the world with Internet can join the audience.
“We hope the experience will be similar to professional concert broadcasts on TV and videos,” said Kory Katseanes, director of orchestras. “It’s the first time we’ve been this sophisticated with our broadcast technology.”
The new experience provides three high-definition cameras, each equipped with the ability to zoom in, pan out and switch angles. These effects are hand-operated to provide a personalized tour of each performance while highlighting individual performers.
“I’m most excited to think of parents and loved ones seeing the faces of their students while they’re performing,” Katseanes said. “People see how beautiful the students really are, and how beautiful it is to see them perform.”
The stream has spread throughout the U.S. and Europe, attracting viewers from Argentina to Vietnam. This improved system not only showcases performers to their families, but also markets the school’s level of excellence to a future generation of potential students.
The entire streaming system demands the attention of only one operator, usually a graduate student. Not only does this provide a great opportunity for a resume, but it also replaces broadcast crews, trucks and support networks usually necessary to provide global coverage.
“Enter to learn, go forth by stream. It’s our motto right?” Katseanes said. “It certainly is our mission.”
Streaming patrons have reported back on the success of that mission.
“This streaming is wonderful beyond words. The production quality was excellent,” commented a patron. “I was a proud parent, tears in my eyes, thankful to be able to participate in such an intimate way.”
Another patron looked towards what the future might bring.
“The status of my children’s experience will rise exponentially,” he commented. “What a PR coup! Thank you for establishing a trend-setting positive example for higher education for the future. Lead on!”
Faculty and staff at the School of Music are confident that this new system will drastically improve the way concerts are experienced outside of the home and raise the bar for other university’s music programs.
“With its expansive capabilities, the new system is sure to be one of the most exciting things to come from the School of Music this year,” Katseanes said. “We believe it will be the gold standard of university based concert streaming, and is another reason the BYU School of Music remains one of the country’s premier music programs.”
Live streaming of selected performances and their schedule is available at http://music.byu.edu/web-streaming-winter-2016/