Twittering Concert Notes & More
Now here's something interesting — I read in ArtsJournal this
morning that the National Symphony is going to do a real-time Twitter
stream of program notes during a symphony performance. Here's
the article that includes the press release.
years, many people have been discussing the idea of a handheld device
in the concert hall which would do approximately the same thing. In
fact, some years ago, Roland Valliere, the new Executive Director of the Columbus Symphony, brought a good deal of thinking and investment dollars and put together a PDA
"concert companion," which enabled concert-goers to not
only read program notes in real time, but also watch video of the
conductor from other angles other than his/her back. It was the right
idea, but too early and too expensive.
Now we're looking at something more practical, and just like the iPhone tour guide product I wrote about in my last post, this is simple to execute.
Sadly, the press release above says that this experiment will be done on the lawn of an outdoor concert and that Filene
Center forbids electronic devices in the hall. Why did they have to
add that to the press release? Why couldn't they just say, "If this
works well, we may allow patrons to bring devices into the hall in the
Anyway, imagine now not program notes from a concert, but opera subtitles? Isn't a Twitter-stream of the dialogue
a better, more subtle approach than the imposing overhead titles many opera houses
have now? And of course, doing it via Twitter opens up the opportunity
for multiple streams with different content, depending on the interests
of the recipient. I, for one, would love such a thing for the next ballet performance I go to, since I usually have no idea what's going on.
This is all fascinating to me, and basically
free for any enterprising arts organization that wants to experiment. I
look forward to hearing about more of this stuff.