The Center For Arts In Natick (TCAN) Reaches New Audiences With Broadcast Pix

New production installation enables recording and live streaming of performances

Tyngsboro, Mass. – August 31, 2021 –– The Center for Arts in Natick MA (TCAN), invested in a Broadcast Pix BPswitch FX6 production switcher to enable the recording and live streaming of artists during COVID.

TCAN is a non-profit, award-winning performing arts center, offering a wide variety of arts programs to audiences in the MetroWest and Greater Boston areas of Massachusetts. It is a regular venue for national touring artists, such as The Smithereens, Jefferson Starship, Tom Rush, Anais Mitchell, and Shawn Colvin and also presents comedy, children’s programs and classical music concerts.

“We decided to install this equipment to allow us to live-stream performances while our venue was shut down due to the pandemic,” said David Lavalley, Executive Director, TCAN. “We received excellent support from Ockers Company, the integrator, as well as from Broadcast Pix, to ensure that the equipment was right for our venue and our goals.”

The funding for this installation came from two sources: a grant from Foundation for MetroWest, and a grant from MetroWest Subaru.

The BPswitch FX6 production switcher has a full suite of broadcasting and streaming tools, hybrid SDI and IP I/O, eight channels of built-in clips and graphics, and stores up to 180 hours of content.

Three remotely controlled Sony BRCH800 PTZ cameras are installed in the main stage performance space on the first floor feeding the switcher, which is located on the second floor in the cinema room.

“The BPswitch enables us to easily stream and record video from the three cameras and the built-in transitions and clip library are invaluable for creating a professional and branded look for our live streams,” said Lavalley. “We are also finding that the ease-of-use of the switcher allows a single video operator to set individual camera angles and mix to the final output without the need for additional tech staff. It is also small and portable enough to fit into our production space and was priced within our budget.”

While TCAN was closed to in-person audiences, the production team was able to shoot and edit concerts by folk singer Tom Rush, and the classical group Neave Trio, while in recent months they recorded concerts featuring the Rasa String Quartet, and singer-songwriter Antje Duvekot.

“Now that we have reopened, our plans are to attempt real-time live streaming of concerts with a full audience in attendance. The Broadcast Pix system will allow us to expand our capacity beyond the 280 seats in the room, to an unlimited online audience,” said Lavalley.

“We are pleased to have been selected by TCAN to solve the challenges created by its Covid-19 closure, so they could continue to deliver the magic of live performances,” said Graham Sharp, CEO, Broadcast Pix. “While its local audience can once again enjoy the live experience, the new system helps TCAN expand its audience and go further in its aim to present arts programs of the highest standard to everyone.”

Performances from TCAN are available on YouTube at https://www.youtube.com/user/natickarts

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