Whoever thought theatre could be live-streamed? When William Shakespeare wrote ‘All the world is a stage’, he definitely did not envision a future where one could hold the stage in his palm, literally. Something that revolved around audience interactions is today being streamed on to handheld devices. And, surprisingly, the transition has been smooth. Artists are also going the extra mile. They are not only performing monologues and one-act shows, but also ‘stitching’ together different performances to present a composite performance. If you are still wondering how to go online with stagecraft, we break it down for you.
Broadcast platforms such as Facebook Live and YouTube are one of the most sought-after when it comes to streaming theatre. Available on a variety of devices, the intensive social media integration also helps. In case you are using mobile streaming services, Periscope and Instagram Live can be your best bet—operable on smartphone or tablet.
Office Tools Work
With webinars becoming the new routine, using various software to broadcast a one-to-many stream to an invited audience, is making it easier for theatre-related workshops and interactive sessions. The most popular platform is, of course, Zoom, followed by Google Meet. The advantages are manifold—from managing user numbers and creating interactivity, to streamlining payment.
Browse for the Best
It’s important to get the right platform. Know what the audience wants. Try out newer platforms such as YouNow, Twitch and Mixer to determine what suits you and your audience the best. Remember not to confuse your audience by bombarding them with too many platforms.
Consistency is Key
Keep your broadcasts regular. The audience should expect you. Being on schedule will make it easier for your viewers to follow you. Otherwise, make use of the Discord server. This way you can update your followers about when you plan to go live. It also helps you interact with your supporters.
While a smartphone may seem handy, opt for a professional PC/Mac set-up to maximise the quality of your performances. Invest in good software and hardware. No budget is too small to get the right equipment. Google and speak to experts about what might work for you without burning a hole in your pocket.
It is important to create a setting for your streams. Even if it is just your bedroom or living room, treat it as a live-stream studio space. Pay attention to the right lighting, placement and camera angles. These can do wonders for your performances. Remember, as in life, first impressions are critical—maybe, more so online.
Slow and Steady
Don’t expect viewers to flood straight to your new single or new music video if you don’t mention it on your stream. Calls to action are important, especially during live broadcasts. If your supporters are already there, living with you in the moment, they’re likely to jump across to a link to new music if you mention it.