~ The Next Sessions ~

Performers & Presenters

too long, didn’t read:
1. original content only
2. family-friendly
3. there’s a release form you need to sign
4. byo backline

Our intention is to document without much interference — but we want everyone to shine, so we’ll stage-mom just a little when we think we should. We might interrupt to suggest a do-over if something was iffie. (You can make that decision too — judiciously though, because it eats your stage time.) No stress. Be prepared, and have fun. It’s supposed to be fun.

The public is welcome to attend scheduled listening event / tapings, but this is about honoring the stage rather than servicing an audience. It’s about getting a good live recording of you doing your thing, and then getting that out in the world.

It should be noted that nearly every presentation or performance we’ve hosted has been the result of us being contacted rather than the other way around. Don’t be shy, and don’t wait for an invitation. If you’d like to participate as a performer or presenter, drop us a line at stage33@stage33live.com.

In addition to music, informative and/or entertaining presentations, comedy, recitations or readings are all on the table. It just has to be your own original, family-friendly work. Humanities and science topics are always super-welcome along with artful words.

The recorded programming is presented in audio-only formats as well as video; the material can have a visual component, but it also needs to work without. We don’t have a projector or screen… you’re better than Powerpoint anyway. And in most cases, sessions will be in a daylit room.

We can also accommodate sit-down panels of up to seven people — six plus a moderator.

Musicians, you need to supply your own instruments and backline.

We shoot under white light, though we’ll probably get a fancy light show someday when we can afford it.

We have eight mic inputs; and while our mic locker is semi-decentish for what we are, it’s not amazing. If you’re looking to make a world-class recording, we heartily recommend Guilford Sound. (Verdant Studio is up for sale as Pete moves more into mixing and mastering rather than tracking, but he may still be booking time.)

Everybody needs to sign a a release form before performing or presenting. It might look intimidating, but it’s only meant to cover your butt and ours by spelling out every conceivable possibility as completely as possible. We don’t want to use the recording that we make of your performance in a way that that you didn’t realize we might… and on the other side of things, if you sign with a major label or big publisher and their lawyers decide they need to justify their retainers, we need to be protected. You and us, we’re just trying to do good in the world. But it’s hard to anticipate what motivates other people sometimes.

A short Stage 33 Live edited-media crash course for anybody interested

The produced, edited episodes of Stage 33 Live exist in a wiggly world where diverse content collides and gets squished into a broadcast clock that conforms to the needs of radio and television. This means that lecture-length spoken word presentations almost always have to be excerpted, and music sets are almost always cut into individual songs. (The advantage of this, however, is that one performance or presentation can get spread out over two or more episodes for better exposure potential.)

That said, we also post less thoroughly groomed footage to the web.

It will take an agonizingly long time before a recorded segment is released in a produced broadcast program. The turnaround for web-posted segments is typically be faster, but we can’t make any guarantees. (We’re all volunteers at Stage 33 Live, doing our best.) Consequently, Stage 33 Live isn’t a good option for promoting a specific upcoming concert or appearance, and the material should be evergreen.

The broadcast clock

We mentioned something called a Broadcast Clock. PRX, a distributor of radio content, explains it like this: “A clock is a template that stations and networks use to program on-air: when to start and end a show, where to place breaks for local announcements and underwriting, when newscasts should be inserted, etc.

Our clock is super-simple compared to some, but strict because it has to be. Ours has an optional billboard and three content segments. Broadcasters can insert news, weather, station IDs, commercials, their own underwriting acknowledgements, or whatever they need to between segments.

Each produced show contains 55 total minutes of content (a one-minute billboard and three 18-minute segments). Our segments need to accommodate our opening and closing sequences; our own sponsor and underwriter acknowledgements; and other bits that support each presentation, performance, or the program generally. This means that the absolute maximum length of an edited presentation or performance for broadcast will be maybe 16 minutes.

The podcast 99 Percent Invisible did an interesting program about Broadcast Clocks. And that raises the question: Why not just do Stage 33 Live as a podcast and leave it at that? Answer: Because we can reach a way bigger audience on broadcast outlets. As podcasting continues to explode, media consumer behavior analysts are finding that the amount of time people spend listening to podcasts is going down, even while the number of podcasts they retrieve is going up. Podcast listeners are channel-surfing. So why are radio and TV producers increasingly podcasting their broadcast content? Because despite the long odds and extra effort, doing all the things is the smart thing to do. It lets people time-shift to suit their own schedules and whims, there’s that teensy chance of winning the lotto and going viral.

What this means for you

All of that boils down to there being between about 13 to 16 minutes per broadcast segment for stage-generated content. Each final produced segment will probably have more than one presenter or performer.

Music sets will normally be edited into individual songs.

Spoken word presenters should expect that only an excerpt of their material will be in the broadcast program, even if the material is shorter than 16 minutes.

That said, full presentations and performances will normally be posted to the web either as a single file or cut into multiple files.