The Films as Performance
To prepare The Great Human Odyssey and Equus – Story of the Horse for live performance, the filmmaker and composer returned to the drawing board. Working with a dedicated Technical Director (touring with the show), they re-edited, re-composed and rehearsed a performance tailor-made to work for orchestras and their audiences.
Knowing the importance of synchronizing picture and music, our team brings a time-coded playback and click-track system to each venue, complete with headphones for every player, monitors displaying picture and visual click track, and all the computer hardware to drive the system in a robust fashion. All members of the orchestra wear headphones playing a dynamic click track (with multiple meter and tempo changes) synchronized to the picture. All musicians, including chorus, will be able to see the measure count displayed in one of several monitors dispersed throughout the orchestra.
This system was rigorously tested in workshop (two-piano) settings, before successful performances of The Great Human Odyssey with the Edmonton Symphony Orchestra, Calgary Philharmonic and Kitchener-Waterloo Symphony Orchestra.
“I was amazed at the level of detail that the production team thought of. With a piece of music that spans over 2000 measures, everything from the click track to measure counters to the parts had musicians interests at heart.”
– Neda Yamach, violin, Edmonton Symphony Orchestra
Narrator and Host Niobe Thompson delivers lines straight to the audience from front of stage, facilitating a dynamic and lively performance. Teleprompters well below his eye-line ensure his narration synchronizes perfectly with music and picture, without distracting from his direct engagement with the audience. Synchronization of narration and picture is ensured by an automated dialogue replacement (ADR) system commonly found in film post-production houses.
“Our house staff worked with the team’s Technical Director, resulting in outstanding execution. The team anticipated all of the major issues a house faces with the performance of live scores to picture.
As a result we had three highly successful performances to sold-out houses.”
– Jerrold Eilander, Orchestra Operations Manager, Edmonton Symphony Orchestra
We have produced feature 80-minute (with intermission) and 60-minute versions of each performance, with special modifications for adult and matinée audiences. The flexibility to program across such a wide breadth of audiences makes Odyssey and Equus in Concert a terrific financial proposition for programmers. Host Niobe Thompson and composer Darren Fung are seasoned promoters, and enthusiastically participate in media events leading up to their performances.
The rental of headphones and the multiple laptop computer system, as well as the engagement of the show’s technical director (not including travel), are included in the license and performance fee.