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Thursday, 23 June 2011

ECHO digital conference - Gateshead 20/21 June

The ECHO (European Concert Hall Organisation) Digital event was a big success and it was great to be asked to join the panel on Digital Media as a Communications Tool. There were some excellent speakers and case studies all in the lovely setting of the Sage, Gateshead. A stunning building with wonderful, welcoming staff.

Particularly interesting to hear from were some of the overseas speakers. Marie-Helene Serra, the Head of Education and Library of Cite de la Music, Paris showed us some of the extensive resources they offer online (check out the Media Library and Education sections on the website). Christoph Franke and Robert Zimmerman who look after the live broadcasts of the Berlin Philharmoniker via their Digital Concert Hall gave a fascinating insight into the seriously heavyweight set-up that they have in place to film and stream all their concerts. Benton Dellinger spoke about the New World Symphony in Miami and their incredibly versatile concert hall. There was also a great case study from the Manhattan School of Music and its distance learning programme. There was a scale to these overseas projects that was incredibly impressive. Tony Hall from the Royal Opera House did his bit for the UK however, talking about how much they have achieved globally through their cinema broadcasts, and it was great to see an impressive local  initiative, Live Theatre's Be A Playwright interactive course.

A big well done to Anthony Sargent for pulling together a truly international line-up and also for creating an event that was so wide ranging in its scope.

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