New Statesman Media Group asked us to provide event coverage for the Spear’s 500 Live all-day event at the Savoy in London. We were asked to film ‘as-live’, which meant that we set up the coverage as if we were live streaming, so that we could lay down a live edit, which would be ready to publish soon after the event closed. We had three cameras in the main plenary room, running through a switcher attached to a programme monitor, from which our Camera Director could choose angles live, which were recorded and also fed onto a large display on the stage. We also had live feeds from the sound desk, so that audio was also synced live.
While filming the main plenaries we had another team recording vox pops with speakers and guests in the networking room upstairs for use in the highlights video. We produced two event highlights videos – the main one below and a social cut short enough to use on Twitter.
Getting the best results from complicated live set-ups like this comes from meticulous planning, which started several weeks before the event with a scoping visit to the Savoy. We brought three camera operators, a camera director and a production manager, all of whom had a clear plan for the day ahead and had run all our cables and staged our equipment in the venue the night before. We had also prepared lower thirds videos with an alpha channel containing the names and job titles of all speakers to lay over the plenary sessions so that we could export each sessions quickly and deliver back to the client in good time.