The pandemic and its edict to seek refuge from home turned many into streaming services and binge-ready shows. While it was easy to be inundated with the multitude of options on many different platforms and the onslaught of entertainment on devices, nothing could recreate a live performance.
Now the San Francisco Opera is partnering with Aloha by Elk, a new real-time remote music service that allows performances to be streamed without delay. SFO Artists-in-Residence, The Adlers, rehearse with Aloha as they prepare to kick off a drive-in series on April 29th.
“From the moment the pandemic started, we really wanted people to sing together,” said Matthew Shilvock, general manager of the San Francisco Opera. “It is the vital force of our art form, but we quickly realized with a heavy heart that it is impossible to connect musicians to traditional video conferencing while making live music. That is why Aloha came up as such a necessary solution. It suddenly opened up to the possibility of music to make that does not exist for our artists. “
The San Francisco Opera was one of the first arts organizations to use Aloha to safely advance their music programming during the pandemic.
“Aloha’s ultra-low latency service connects artists remotely, effectively eliminating the lag time that disrupts the creative flow,” the announcement said. “This way, artists can work together and play live together as if they were in the same room. For the classically trained artists of the San Francisco Opera, whose personal musical collaboration was interrupted during the pandemic, this means important musical cues such as listening to breaths, Tempo changes and expressive variations are now in sync during remote rehearsals. “
Currently in beta, the pocket-sized device and app from Aloha offer the fast performance of Elk Audio OS to keep remote users in sync with a high quality audio experience. Features are set in a video chat dashboard, which includes “custom monitoring controls, effects, and recording capabilities with options for streaming performances and collaborating on popular social channels,” the announcement continued. The service runs on smartphones, tablets and computers via high-speed internet and 5G networks.
For live music, the typical delay time for traditional video conferencing applications can be 15 times the minimum that artists need to make music together. Now the Internet of Things is improving that for the San Francisco Opera.
“Digital transformations in this IoT world have linked almost every market imaginable, but music is still isolated. That pain point only got worse when the pandemic of live music as we know it ended,” said Michele Benincaso, founder and director of Elk Audio. “With 5G on the horizon and ever stronger and faster networks, we are at a turning point that has created the conditions for Aloha’s real-time service that connects artists and instruments in an unprecedented way. Aloha is more than just catching up. ” Musicians and artists to jump into the connected world and collaborate with everyone, everywhere. “
The eleven artists based at the San Francisco Opera will give three live concerts on April 29, May 6 and May 13 in an open-air drive-in at the Marin Center in San Rafael. The Adler Fellows play a 70-minute program with opera favorites by composers such as Mozart, Rossini, Puccini, Verdi and Lehár.
“Music is a driving force that connects people on a deeper level, but it’s one of the few things in the world of IoT that remains incoherent as it emerges,” said Benincaso. “For artists, this separation has severely affected their ability to collaborate, rehearse and perform effectively during the pandemic.”
“Aloha brings music to the IoT finish line,” concluded Benincaso. “It connects artists in unprecedented ways and changes the way music can be created today and in the future. As the 5G network matures, Aloha will open doors for artists to connect with fans and the music business and monetize content in a whole new way. This is just the beginning, and the future of music is much better now that it’s part of the connected world. “
“It allowed us to make music together again,” said Shilvock. “For us, Aloha was a transformation that brought spontaneity back to making music.”
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