Very well said Patrick. When one of our producer’s consults with a potential client the first thing that they do is find out what the live stream is for, who the audience is, and what the end goal is for the client. All professional production companies should be able to help their client with ideas to turn a basic event into an online experience that can rival traditional television. They should go over important details such as graphics, talent, script, lighting (both inside and outside events) and as you stated sound checks and dress rehearsals. When producing a live event you only get one chance to do it right.
One of the most important positions on a live stream is the stage manager. The stage manager sets the tone for the entire show. He/ she should be on the same intercom system as the director and the rest of the crew. Their position needs to integrate seamlessly with the director and technical director. It is the stage manager’s job to alert the talent as to where they need to be and what they will be doing. They are the bridge between the production and the talent.
If you are ever looking to hire a production crew for live streaming of an event and they do not ask you at least these six critical questions it would be my professional opinion that you should consider going a different direction.
These questions are:
1) How long is the event and what is the exact timing you want the stream to be on for?
2) Is there a graphics package required?
3) Who is the on camera talent and do they have experience in this field?
4) Does the venue have an internet connection and if so how fast?
5) What is the distance from the subject of the live stream to where the cameras will be stationed?
6) Do you have music picked out and clearances for those audio tracks to be played live?
There’s probably at least 15 to 20 questions a streaming company should ask about your live event, but these are some of the most important and could make or break your production. If these aren’t covered before you are quoted you are probably working with a less experienced company and should consider other options.
To finish this particular post I would like to make one last comment; when reviewing a potential live streaming production company for your event look at how many times they worked with the same clients. It is one thing to be able to find high end clients that would allow you the opportunity to stream their event, its another to be hired multiple times by the same client. That is truly the mark of a profesional company.