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We’ve Launched Our YouTube Channel!

Good news for those of you who missed Hamlet and The Bald Soprano! Footage of both performances is available on our new YouTube channel, available here. For now we are posting the raw footage, so you’ll want to scrub past scenes of the audience finding seats or Conte squinting into the camera as he makes adjustments. Someday, we pray, we will have the time to edit this footage into something a bit classier, but for now, please take it for what it is.

Those of us alive during the advent of home video technology in the early 1980’s have fond memories of Dad lugging a camera the size of a shoulder-mounted missile launcher to family functions, performances, sporting events, and the like. What now fits in the palm of one’s hand then required a pack mule to move from place to place. And the recordings, the quality, were of course crap on every level: grainy, wobbly even on tripods, vacillating wildly between dead stillness and vertiginous pans and zooms, flat, dull, lifeless–and the sound was just as bad. Nowhere were these flaws more evident than in recordings of theatrical productions.

Along the way we learned to hate watching videos of our shows. It didn’t matter whether we had acted in them or directed them; what was on the TV screen was a shadow, a record that proved an event had happened but in no way captured the essence of the event. Gone was the energy, the immediacy, the vitality of the living performance. Adding injury to insult was the tendency of video to magnify every glitch and imperfection of a production while bleeding it of its magic. They were depressingly unwatchable. (It is also possible that the shows just sucked (and some did), which could also account for the excruciating badness of the videos).

The technology of the last twenty years has changed all that. The sound, the video quality produced by consumer grade iPhones is to Dad’s VHS recordings what an eagle is to an amoeba. The Bald Soprano footage is a bit static, as we duct-taped an iPhone to a light stand and let it run for six hours, but the Hamlet footage looks great and both videographers did a wonderful job capturing the final performance from two different perspectives.

Please check it out and let us know what you think!

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