Panasonic and Stagecast specialists bring Edinburgh International Festival to remote audiences

Stagecast and Panasonic have helped the Edinburgh International Festival reach an international audience by streaming six classical concerts. Stagecast drew upon its experience of bringing remote audiences closer to the orchestra.

The filming was carried out in pavilions that were built at the Edinburgh Academy Junior School during the pandemic as a safer alternative to the theaters where these concerts are usually held. However, broadcasting these concerts in these locations posed the problems blamed on the varying Scottish weather and daylight shooting.

Stagecast used a rig system to film the concerts built around a total of eight Panasonic AW-UE150 PTZ cameras, one of which was mounted on a Panapod. They also used three Panasonic AK-UC4000 Studio System cameras – one on a crane and the other two at the back of the venue with super-telephoto lenses for front coverage of the enormous venue. Using the UC4000 cameras meant that the images could be accurately picture-matched with the UE150 cameras using scene files provided by Panasonic. Scene files are special files that alter the image output from a camera to ensure that each camera can be picture-matched despite having different sensor sizes.

The backstage production team consisted of the director, script supervisor, vision engineer and two camera operators, working four cameras each. One of these operators also controlled the upward and downward movement of the Panapod, for shots behind the orchestra. The vision engineer’s role was to maintain the colour shading of each of the UC4000s on the Panasonic AK-HRP1000 remote operation panel.

“Without that Panasonic PTZ technology, we would not have been able to deliver the quality and range of concert coverage that we’ve been able to do this past year. The PTZ workflow allows us to be fast and efficient in a way that nothing else would and has transformed what we are able to do for the musicians,” assures Matt Parkin – Co-Founder/CEO, Stagecast.

Andrew Moore, the Head of Music at the Edinburgh International Festival, added that the festival had captured much more content on-demand this year than any other year. He explained: “We’ve managed to integrate video capture in a really discrete and subtle way, capturing wonderful film without the audience in the venue even realising until they see it at home. I think the way that all our technical providers have worked together is fantastic,” adds Andrew Moore, the Head of Music at the Edinburgh International Festival.

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