Live streaming is now more popular than ever, but an event of this kind is often difficult to pull off smoothly. In this article, we look at ways in which you can deliver live online music, theatre, comedy or anything similar in a way that is highly professional and likely to be very warmly received.
Rehearse for the Worst
When relying heavily on technology, it’s important to put together a strong risk assessment, and once you have a clear idea of some of the hurdles you may face, you’ll need to do much more than simply come up with a solution. A great idea is to rehearse your event as planned, then repeat the rehearsal as if the worst has happened. For example, what plans do you have in the event of a faulty Wi-Fi connection? What troubleshooting can be done for a situation where the sound cuts out? If you know exactly what to do in the event of a glitch or outage, the show will be able to go on no matter what.
Make it Accessible
It’s important to make your event as easy as possible for absolutely anyone to watch, hear and understand. For example, you may wish to include captions for those who are hard of hearing. There are superb transcription services with an auto caption generator available that will allow you to create subtitles in seconds. This subtitle software will make all the difference to audience members with additional needs.
Share the Program in Advance
You should let potential viewers know of the times and running order of your event well in advance, just as you would for a live show. This can be something as simple as including this information on the webpage within which your performance stream will be embedded, or in the video description if you’re going to be doing it via social media. You could also come up with a dedicated hashtag to update fans in real time. This means that people can plan their day around the live stream and dip in or out as required.
Include an MC or Announcer
As well as written information, you should consider announcing details about the event as part of your live recording. At the very least, you should include a clear introduction and a little background to explain what is going on and who is involved. This, again, will help to make the event more accessible as well as allowing audience members to find out more about the creators and performers involved so that they can continue to follow their work in the future.
Record for Posterity
As creatives, it’s a great idea to keep a recording of the events you’ve worked on, whether to help you pitch to venues and programmers in the future or to share with audiences again further down the line. It also provides a great backup; for example, if the stream fails part way through, you may wish to share a recorded version of the gig along with your apologies in order to make up for the fault. Furthermore, it aids in accessibility. There’s no certainty that all of your fans will be able to use the internet at the time of your event, so displaying a recorded version after the fact will enable them to enjoy it nonetheless.