POTSDAM -- SUNY Potsdam is the first campus in the State University of New York system to offer video streaming of concerts and performances live from the Crane School of Music.
Thanks to a gift from Gail Haynes Stradling, a SUNY Potsdam alumna, and Richard F. Stradling Jr. Crane can now broadcast performances by major ensembles, faculty recitals, and guest artist concerts live on the college's website.
The gift funded the purchase of video equipment for Hosmer Hall and Snell Music Theater and established an endowment fund to maintain and replace the equipment in perpetuity.
The endowment will bring Crane's music to audiences around the world.
"We haven't even begun to discover the potential of this gift," Crane Dean Michael Sitton said. "For our students, family members and friends from other places who are unable to attend performances can now experience concerts from home; a current student's parent reported to me with delight that her son's grandmother was able to see and hear his first performance with one of our ensembles, something she could not have experienced otherwise.”
Backstage in Hosmer Hall and Snell Theater sophisticated control panels allow control of cameras aimed at each stage. Each venue has four cameras, with three pointed at the stage from the audience's perspective, facing toward center stage, stage left and stage right.
Hosmer's fourth camera is pointed toward the conductor's podium, while Snell's final camera is portable so that it can be moved on stage or in the pit, depending on where the performance is being conducted. From their perch backstage, operators can pan, zoom and switch views for online viewers.
The audio feed comes from Crane's existing audio livestream equipment, which has been used to place concert sound online for the past several years. The sound is balanced and recorded by Crane audio engineers and trained students.
The video operators also have the ability to control images displayed on television monitors mounted backstage in Hosmer and Snell so that performers can see what is happening on stage while they wait to go on.
New monitors have also been placed in hallways and lobbies so that patrons who arrive late or have to step out can watch the performance while they wait to return to their seats.
For a list of upcoming performances visit www.potsdam.edu/academics/Crane/streaming.