Video Recording

Classical Media provides a full range of location HD and 4K video recording, live-streaming and post-production services aimed principally at classical performers, promoters and concert venues.  Our multi-camera rig is compact and unobtrusive making it ideal for filming concerts in prestigious venues such as London’s Wigmore Hall and we offer a wide range of packages for everything from promotional videos to live streamed concerts.

Concert Videos

Classical Media provides a comprehensive multi-camera video production service for live concerts, ranging from solo instrumentalists to a full symphony orchestra.

As with all our video productions we start with the audio, ensuring that the audio-for-video quality is every bit as good as you would expect from an audio-only recording.

Our video equipment comprises compact remote controllable HD cameras (small enough to be hidden on-stage or within an orchestra), and six professional 4K broadcast cameras.  A normal concert set-up such as the examples below might include 5 locked off cameras giving a variety of angles (usually including an on-stage or reverse-angle camera) and one or two manned cameras at the back of the hall.  This approach is very discrete from an audience perspective and is approved at top London venues such as Wigmore Hall, St John’s Smith Square and the Royal Albert Hall.

Post-production includes a full HD or 4K multi-camera edit to produce either short clips for the internet or full length concert for viewing on-demand.

Key things to remember are:

  • Artists, promoters and venues must be informed in advance that the concert is to be filmed
  • We are familiar with the majority of London venues but if going to a new venue we will preview it at no cost to you
  • We aim to capture faithfully the live event
  • We will attend the rehearsal as a balance and camera test
  • Where possible main microphones will be slung to be visually discrete
  • We are well known for our efficient rigs and de-rigs
  • Optional surround recording as well as conventional stereo
  • Archive concert videos are edited to remove unwanted gaps etc. and include opening/closing titles and lower third captions as required
  • Master provided as mp4 video file via Vimeo
  • We observe Health and Safety procedures, fire regulations, and have public liability insurance

Live Streaming

Live streaming – effectively broadcasting over the internet – provides an excellent way of increasing the audience for your concert to anyone in the world with an internet connection. The stream can be free to view or paid for and after the concert finishes the event can still be made available for any length of time you choose.

Live streaming is particularly relevant during the Covid-19 restrictions where audience capacities are limited by social distancing.

Our multi-camera live streaming of concerts is in full HD (1080p) and can access all the standard streaming platforms such as YouTube and Facebook Live via our streaming partner Vimeo Live.

Using an 8 camera BlackMagic ATEM HD switcher and a Teradek video encoder we are able to stream from any venue with a fast stable broadband connection that provides an up speed of 12Mbps or more.

For more rural venues we may also be able to stream via 4G/5G mobile broadband in HD 720p subject to signal availability.

Streams also include provision of graphics before and after the concert and lower third titles of repertoire or performers during the concert.

The live stream is hosted on the high quality and advert-free Vimeo Live platform. It can be easily embedded into your website and is password protected. We can also prepare a “How to watch the stream” document for your subscribers that details ways of watching the stream on computers, tablets and even on Smart TVs using Apple TV or Chromecast.

Grid Videos

Since the Covid-19 lockdown took hold in early 2020 we have been inundated with requests to produce grid videos – performers playing on their own at home, recorded on a smart phone and assembled into a video grid of players.

Amongst the many projects we have worked on one client, Chineke!, stands out in particular for their adventurous approach to this genre. Projects we have done for them include a collaboration between Chineke! in the UK and the Sphinx Foundation in the USA to produce an 81 player grid – a full symphony orchestra with nine conductors! They performed Samuel Coleridge-Taylor’s suite from Othello and the film was featured as part of the South Bank Centre’s Music in Lockdown.

Promotional Videos

Promotional videos are used as part of a broad marketing strategy on video sharing and social media websites such as YouTube, Vimeo, Facebook and Twitter.  As the examples below demonstrate there are many different approaches but generally they will include a mixture of interviews and rehearsal material gathered during recording sessions and are used to accompany the launch of a CD, DVD or download.

These are often made as part of an existing CD/DVD package but can also be done as stand alone projects.

Here is an example of a promotional video made for our longstanding client Opera Rara, filmed in Valencia, Spain.

Competition Videos

Many international instrumental or vocal competitions now require a video submission as part of the entry process.

It is essential that this is recorded and filmed to a professional standard and it is normally stipulated that the video comprises a single un-edited take from one static camera, certified as such by the recording company.

The example below shows such a video, made at St. John’s Smith Square, London for the pianist Jayson Gillham as part of his first round entry for the Leeds International Piano Competition in which he went on to become a finalist.

Music Videos

A full length music video can be released on DVD, Blu-ray or via the internet and can be produced from live performance, from recording sessions, or from a combination of the two.

While the video is filmed on multiple HD cameras, the audio can be either in stereo PCM format, giving quality equal to a conventional CD, or in 5.1 surround giving a more immersive aural experience.

Choice of recording venue becomes even more important for video production – not only must it work acoustically for the audio recording but it must also be aesthetically pleasing so that when lit it produces a perfect backdrop for the performers.

Full length DVDs and Blu-rays can also include a sophisticated menu structure to allow immediate access to specific tracks, and additional material such as interviews and behind the scenes footage.