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NYCB's $9M Media Control Center Is Idle


abatt

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http://www.nytimes.com/2011/11/28/arts/dance/mediasuite-at-david-h-koch-theater-goes-unused.html?_r=1&ref=arts

Here's a link to an article in today's NY Times regarding a media center that would enable NYCB to do high def broadcasts. However, NYCB is not making use of it,for reasons discussed in the article. The most amusing part of this is where a NYCB stagehands rep states that City Opera wanted the facility, and a City Opera official flat out denies that assertion. Life seems to move at a glacial pace on some issues over at NYCB, but on others (like kicking people out of the fourth ring so that half their usual audience is gone on most rep nights) it was full steam ahead.

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The delay is frustrating, but I'm delighted that NYCB seems to have decided that there's a market for taping their performances and selling them in some format, other than the live HD broadcasts. The story is a little vague on this, but I'm hoping they intend to distribute via DVD or downloads on sites like iTunes. We've been waiting for this for a long time. I can think of several things I would snap up -- Robbins' Glass Pieces and Balanchine's Symphony in 3 Movements, for starters.

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I thought Sloan made many good points in her piece (thank you, cinnamonswirl). Society doesn't participate in entertainment in just one way. Working in sports, I liked that Sloan used football or a Yankee game as examples. The more you get people watching, thinking, talking, posting, Tweeting about a subject (hopefully, your arts organization or business or whatever) the better. And there is money to be made doing it. Companies and organizations that realize this and use new technology will be the ones still standing. Those who are tied to a rigid course will be forgotten. I watched the Bolshoi's Sleeping Beauty and loved the experience. It wasn't the same as being in the theater. As Sloan points out, it was a different experience but an experience all the same. And one I paid money for. Think of the total attendance that performance garnered world wide. Maybe a company wouldn't want to do that for every performance but I would pay to watch San Francisco Ballet's Opening Night (it seems full lengths would be an easier sell for these performances but one billed "Opening Night" could have its own cache).

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When I think of how much great dancing I have seen on screen compared to the few performances I have seen in person (and not from good seats)... I couldn't wish for more than that some angel hear Kristin Sloan and pour funding into the administrative negotiations necessary to make NYCB digitally accessible. Yes, there are a lot of intricacies that make it too difficult to accomplish for a normal live performance targeted administration, but surely if another arm to the organization was underwritten and added, the benefit to the main company would quickly accrue.

Of course, if they produce bad video, which is very easy to do, it might NOT inspire live performance support.

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Of course, if they produce bad video, which is very easy to do, it might NOT inspire live performance support.

True. I wouldn't want to see ballet after watching the Miami City Ballet broadcast (due to the very poor editing) but would after the Bolshoi. Note to Dance in America directors/editors - notice how the Bolshoi showed one extended shot for the solos. That's what we want to see when principals dance.

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