DSO reveals state-of-the-art tech and camera upgrades for "Live from Orchestra Hall" webcast series

- With $2.5 million from Knight Foundation, DSO debuts 4K ultra-high-definition video system, which offers clearer images and performs better in low light

- Every DSO Classical Series program is webcast for free at dso.org/live and via Facebook Live; archive of past webcasts is also available via DSO Replay

- This Friday on Live from Orchestra Hall, Juanjo Mena conducts Mendelssohn’s Violin Concerto with James Ehnes

- Recently relaunched dso.org is a mobile-first website with numerous user enhancements and greater capacity for multimedia content

Detroit, (December 4, 2019) – The Detroit Symphony Orchestra (DSO) has made a series of exciting technology upgrades to its groundbreaking Live from Orchestra Hall webcast series, with a $2.5 million investment from the John S. and James L. Knight Foundation.

Live from Orchestra Hall presents free, live webcasts of every DSO Classical Series program available on every device, both online at the new dso.org/live and via Facebook Live. The series also includes the Classroom Edition expansion that broadcasts the DSO’s long-running Educational Concert Series to thousands of students in Detroit and worldwide directly in their schools and classrooms.

Eight Panasonic AW-UE150 4K robotic cameras replace six older Sony models that have been in use for several years. The DSO has also created nine new camera positions in Orchestra Hall, meaning that camera angles can be reconfigured for each webcast. The new cameras perform better in low light and offer a clearer, more colorful image.

The upgrade also includes new broadcast equipment and new wiring that will allow the DSO to film and stream events in The Peter D. and Julie F. Cummings Cube and Robert A. and Maggie Allesee Rehearsal Hall, two additional, smaller venues located within the Max M. and Marjorie S. Fisher Music Center.

“We’re among the first orchestras to have a 4K UHD camera system, and will be the first American orchestra to record in 4K UHD and have a library of concerts available in that format,” explains Marc Geelhoed, the DSO’s Director of Digital Initiatives. “And the new cameras provide fantastic images at 1080p resolution, not just at 4K. We’re excited to have greater video capabilities for the DSO and expand what we can do in our other performance spaces.”

The DSO will begin taking full advantage of the new system and offer 4K webcasts later this winter.

Live from Orchestra Hall and the recent technology upgrade are made possible by Knight Foundation, which has supported the series since its inception in 2011. Knight Foundation’s most recent support comes from a $2.5 million investment announced in 2018—one component of an overall $20 million investment in the arts in Detroit.

“The Detroit Symphony Orchestra is an anchor of the local arts ecosystem and a foundational community asset,” said Victoria Rogers, Knight Foundation vice president for the arts. “These cutting-edge technology upgrades will help the DSO make classical music even more accessible, engaging existing audiences and reaching new ones in an exciting way.”

Live from Orchestra Hall debuted in 2011 and has been enjoyed by nearly 2 million viewers since its inception. The DSO remains the only major orchestra in the world to present free webcasts of every classical program. Patrons who donate $50 or more to the DSO annually can also access DSO Replay, the on-demand streaming archive of past webcasts.

See below for a complete list of webcasts during the 2019-2020 season.

The DSO recently launched its new, mobile-first website at dso.org, which includes a new home for Live from Orchestra Hall and DSO Replay, plus ticket purchase enhancements and greater capacity for engaging multimedia content and storytelling.

Live from Orchestra Hall is presented by Ford Motor Company Fund. The technology upgrade was made possible by support from the Knight Foundation and the Al Glancy Technology Fund.

The DSO’s new camera system was designed by the video team at the Dutch firm PolyCast. Local installation support was provided by Vortex Communications (fiber optic cabling), Thunder Valley Enterprise (fiber optic cabling and electrical work), Douglas Electric (electrical work), and the DSO’s stage crew members of IATSE Local 38.

The new dso.org website was produced by Made Media.

Upcoming 2019-2020 Season Webcasts

Classical Series
Mendelssohn Violin Concerto
Friday, December 6 at 10:45 a.m.

Classical Series
Handel’s Messiah
Saturday, December 14 at 8 p.m.

Classical Series
Hadelich Plays Paganini
Saturday, January 25 at 8 p.m.

Classical Series
Ravel’s Shéhérazade
Sunday, February 1 at 3 p.m.

Classical Series
Debussy and Ravel
Sunday, February 16 at 3 p.m.

Classical Series
Beethoven’s Sixth
Sunday, February 23 at 3 p.m.

Educational Concert Series
Happy Birthday, Beethoven!
Thursday, February 27 at 10:30 a.m.

Classical Series
Classical Roots: André Watts Plays Beethoven
Saturday, March 7 at 8 p.m.

Classical Series
Carmina Burana
Friday, March 13 at 8 p.m.

Classical Series
Dvořák’s New World Symphony
Saturday, April 4 at 8 p.m.

Classical Series
Rachmaninoff Piano Concerto
Sunday, April 19 at 3 p.m.

Classical Series
Strauss Waltzes & Mozart Piano Concerto
Saturday, April 25 at 8 p.m.

Classical Series
Mozart & Prokofiev
Sunday, May 10 at 3 p.m.

Classical Series
Joshua Bell Returns!
Friday, May 22 at 8 p.m.

Classical Series
Stravinsky & Bartók
Sunday, May 31 at 3 p.m.

Classical Series
Beethoven’s Violin Concerto
Friday, June 5 at 8 p.m.

About the DSO

The most accessible orchestra on the planet, the acclaimed Detroit Symphony Orchestra is known for trailblazing performances, collaborations with the world’s foremost musical artists, and a deep connection to its city. As a community-supported orchestra, generous giving by individuals and institutions at all levels drives the continued success and growth of the institution. Conductor Leonard Slatkin, who recently concluded an acclaimed decade-long tenure at the helm, now serves as the DSO’s Music Director Laureate, endowed by the Kresge Foundation. Celebrated conductor, arranger, and trumpeter Jeff Tyzik is the orchestra’s Principal Pops Conductor, while the outstanding trumpeter and composer Terence Blanchard holds the Fred A. and Barbara M. Erb Jazz Creative Director Chair. Making its home at historic Orchestra Hall within the Max M. and Marjorie S. Fisher Music Center, the DSO offers a performance schedule that features Classical, PNC Pops, Paradise Jazz, and Young People’s Family Concert series. One of America’s most acoustically perfect concert halls, Orchestra Hall will celebrate its centennial in 2019-2020. In addition, the DSO presents the William Davidson Neighborhood Concert Series in seven metro area venues, as well as a robust schedule of eclectic multi-genre performances in its mid-size venue The Cube, constructed and curated with support from Peter D. & Julie F. Cummings. A dedication to broadcast innovation began in 1922, when the DSO became the first orchestra in the world to present a radio broadcast and continues today with the free Live from Orchestra Hall webcast series, which also reaches tens of thousands of children with the Classroom Edition expansion. With growing attendance and unwavering philanthropic support from the people of Detroit, the DSO actively pursues a mission to embrace and inspire individuals, families, and communities through unsurpassed musical experiences.