BGSU presents its first ‘tweet friendly’ concert


BOWLING GREEN, O.—The College of Musical Arts at Bowling Green State University has become social media savvy, and will host its first “tweet friendly” concert, featuring the University Band, at 8 p.m. Feb. 22 in Kobacker Hall at Moore Musical Arts Center. The performance is free and open to the public.

The University Band, under the direction of Ken Thompson, will feature an electroacoustic piece for wind band and sampled ocean sounds titled “Immersion,” a symphony for winds, percussion and pre-recorded soundscape, by Alex Shapiro.

“We want attendees to ‘follow’ the concert and share it,” said Thompson. “Then, throughout the performance we will be sending photos and text about sustainable environments, oceans and conservation — we really want our audience to interact with the material.”

Audience members will be able to follow the performance at the newly launched @UniversityArts twitter feed, where they can tweet and share in real time.

BGSU is modeling the example of the San Francisco Symphony, which is the latest to set aside "tweet seats" in its concert hall. Patrons seated in the balcony for its summer concerts turned on their smartphones and dished out 140-character missives throughout the performance, to great success. Orchestras such as the Cincinnati Symphony, Indianapolis Symphony, Pacific Symphony and Dayton Opera, among other arts organizations, are also introducing Twitter sections.

Live-tweeting is one of many strategies music ensembles are trying in an attempt to enliven the concert experience and reach younger, “techie” audiences. “I’m really excited we’re doing this,” said BGSU early childhood education major Katie Riley. “I feel we can now interact with what we’re hearing and experience it at another level. It really builds a bridge to younger audiences.”

The concert will also feature the Concert Band in selections by Jonathan Newman, Warren Benson and Frank Ticheli.

Follow this concert, and many other upcoming BGSU Arts events and performances, at the new @UniversityArts Twitter handle.

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(Posted February 18, 2013 )