Virtual Event: “Boom! Boom! X”

Virtual events take on a lot of forms these days. On the one hand, there are the fan panels I’ve been producing for Twin Cities Geek (more on that later). There are the more packaged videos that some groups are sending out instead of annual events. For “Boom! Boom! Out Goes Childhood Cancer X”, Vince Murray and I put together a hybrid virtual event in lieu of the traditional concert in Minneapolis.

Outside of Grumpy's Bar - when it isn't a virtual event.
Grumpy’s NE, the home of Boom! Boom!

For much of the year, this live music event and fundraiser for St. Jude Children’s Research Hospital was on wait and see status, and as the outlook for a live music event held at a local bar grew dimmer and dimmer we began discussing virtual approaches to this event. After a phone calls (Vince lives in Little Rock these days) we put together an event using live video, packaged content, and call-ins. We decided to approach it something like an old-school telethon.

Vince recorded the performances at the Whitewater Tavern and Lucero’s practice space, then his local video team sent those videos to me to be included in the streaming event. Likewise, past performers of the event sent in some recorded shout-outs to support the fundraiser. Vince himself would act as a the virtual host and I would provide some highlights of the past few years, as I’ve been documenting the show for the last few years too. Within a matter of a few weeks, we had a show ready to go.

There were a few bumps, of course, but honestly that was just fine for an event that is more about having a community rock and roll event than putting on a completely polished production. Most of the team are volunteers and it all happens for a very solid cause.

This is a Standard Definition video extracted from the vertical video that Instagram Live requires. Most of the audience for this show prefers Instagram over Facebook, so we had to prioritize their video specs over the landscape version used, well, almost everywhere else. As a result, it’s slightly lower resolution than normal. If you want to see the full letterboxed IG video, you can see it on Vince’s Instagram account.

So, it looks to be like virtual events of all stripes are going to be a thing for quite awhile. Currently, I’ve got another hybrid Zoom/Broadcast project in the works, which will be a very in-depth blog entry after it’s come and gone. Stay tuned for that one!

As always, if you have a virtual event that you need a hand getting out into the wider world, please send a message and I can let you know what we can do for you and your message.

Onward!

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