questions on videotaping class play

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    • #39148

      I have been approached to videotape a kindergarten class play. I’ve done weddings but nothing like this. Some questions:

      1. Whats the best way to mic it? I’m thinking shotgun mics from the cameras (I was going to use 2 cameras). I’ve read Compusolver reccomend the Azden SMX – any other thoughts?
      2. Pricing? I want to come up with a price per DVD to offer parents (theres about 60 kids). Any ideas?

    • #169688

      As always, thanks for your reply Hank. I went back and checked your earlier post and it was the SGM-X that you recommended. It’s $99 on B&H, a seemingly good deal. About the copy protection software you mentioned – any idea what it is? I would definately like to use it. Also, any specifics on hooking into the sound ystem? I use Sony 2100’s, so I would need to go down to a 1/8 jack. Thanks again.

    • #169689

      One thing that I discovered is that kids may tend to get distracted if they see someone walking around with a camera. If it is at all possible, see if you can attend one or two of the rehearsals (with kindergarten, I know this may be a bit of a stretch) so the kids can get accustomed to you and you might be able to get some "behind the scenes" action. This is some footage that the parents won’t be able to get – you might be able to edit in the rehearsal footage with the actual production.

    • #169690


      I guess I can throw my 2 cents in here too. I dont know how elaborate you want to get but what I end up doing is I use my UHF wireless equipment. In fact Im just finishing up another high school spring musical play. I have an Azden 200UPR UHF receiver which allows me to record two channels at the same time. I also have 2 handheld (10 HT) mic transmitters. I use two GL2 cameras (manned on sticks) situated about halfway back in the auditorium towards the sides. Their auditorium is about the size of an average theater (800ish seats). The stage is very large and on each side there was a huge column of speakers which was primarily used by the house for all of the miced voices on the stage. Hank is correct in that the guy running the house sound should know what hes doing to help the cause. I also had to deal with the pit orchestra as well which was only somewhat miced but here again they are louder by default so they dont really need it as bad.

      What I did was I put 1 mic on both sides of the stage and positioned it between the speakers and the pit orchestra. I manually controlled each channels volume on my camera so that they were balanced and at the right level. You HAVE to use headphones to make sure it sounds correctly! Im finally finishing this up in post and because I had the mics positioned on two different ends of the pit orchestra, it really sounds great and in true stereo.

      IMO, if you have wireless I would use that instead of a shotgun unless you have no other option. Shotguns pick up too much other unwanted stuff in the background which drives me nuts.

      One other little tidbit regarding pricing. Im not sure where you are in the world but dont under estimate what parents will pay when it comes to memories of their kids. Especially grandmas and grandpas with kindergarteners. Remember that youre doing them a favor and these parents know that their kids wont be kids much longer. I just did a MAJOR project for my kids high school varsity football team of which they had a very success full season and I sold them for $50.00/ea. I ended up selling around 70 of them and there wasnt one parent or player that complained at all. In fact they all felt fortunate and lucky that they had a chance to own a little piece of history of which they all participated in.


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