Let the games begin!

Like a lot of things we try and do, what started off a little script read with a few actors, a director and a kitchen table has all of a sudden blown up into a full scale event! I guess we’re just too excitable – we come up with ideas that we think “would be cool” to do, and then next thing you know, we’ve all agreed to go ahead with the harebrained scheme, and now it’s time to work out how we actually pull it off!

As I’m sure you now know, instead of just having your usual script read with actors and director, we have decided to open up the session to a group of carefully selected individuals who will attend the read in person, but also, just to complicate things further, we have decided to stream the whole event live on the Internet for everyone to see!

In theory, this should be fairly simple. We just need a venue, send out some invites, hook up some cameras, and some microphones, set up a streaming system, then you’ve got to think about catering, how you’re going to afford all this gear, how you’re going to pick up all this gear, now that you’re streaming it the venue has to look good on camera, what happens if the Internet fails… the list all of a sudden explodes into an achievable, but very large project!

That said, with only a few days until the event, things are looking very good. We have tested the streaming software (after various tests, we have decided to go with USTREAM as our hosting provider), and tonight I picked up all the audio gear, very kindly supplied by Frank from Madzin Productions. Tomorrow (meaning Friday!) we will pick up some cameras, video mixers, and a few other bits and piece to tie everything together.

From a technical standpoint, the event is quite simple – but there is a fair amount of gear. We have decided to mic every single actor – so that’s 18 lines of microphones in itself. We are using a Yamaha O1V96 as our primary audio console, plus another bunch of preamps that connect to the console via optical adat. We will have three Sony V1Ps (thank you Jill & Dennis!) connected to a Panasonic MX70 (thank you Hugh!) as our primary vision mixer. This will then be fed into a MacPro via a Canopus Analogue to Digital Converter, supplying video to the USTREAM Producer Pro software package.

We will also be shooting behind the scenes footage on a Z1P, and live streaming that as well via an iPhone 4 on a separate stream.

Despite the fact that we now have a million things to consider, rather than just a few hundred, we wouldn’t do things any other way! It’s a lot more fun trying to push the boundaries, and really just get out there and test new software, than just taking the easy route.

So stay tuned until Sunday, as we post more information about the live streaming event! It should be a blast!

Onward & Upwards my friends!


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