Chautauqua Institution is turning into a daylong TV show Thursday.
A Day Live from Chautauqua Institution is a way for people who can’t make it to Chautauqua to be able to experience the events in real time, said Emily Morris, the Institution’s vice president of marketing and communications and chief brand officer. The day of livestreaming also ties into Week Eight’s theme, “Media and the News: Ethics in the Digital Age.”
“I really wanted to see if we would be able to do it technologically, staff-wise, planning-wise,” Morris said. “But (it’s) also wanting to see if this more robust online platform — not just the website — but if this livestreaming platform is something that we want to make an investment in.”
The scheduled events will be livestreamed to Chautauqua’s Online Grounds. The livestream kicks off at 9:10 a.m. Thursday and goes through Dan Barry’s Chautauqua Literary and Scientific Circle lecture at 3:30 p.m. in the Hall of Philosophy.
Between events, viewers will be able to watch interviews with prominent Chautauquans and see videos featuring other elements of the grounds, such as the Miller Bell Tower and Children’s School. Matt Ewalt, associate director of education and youth services, will act as a kind of tour guide and interviewer for the livestreaming.
“It is really just a way to help widen the circle, introduce our new online platform and also to test our prowess in being able to do something like this,” Morris said.
To create the Online Grounds, the Institution partnered with Digitell Inc., a digital multimedia development company out of Jamestown. Digitell helped to create a highly searchable site that serves as a “one-stop shop” for all digital content the Institution creates, Morris said.
Over the course of the season, the digital team in Morris’ department has been doing more livestreaming, which gives those who cannot make it to the event the opportunity to still be a part of the discussion. The new Online Grounds, Morris said, allows people to engage more easily, have a conversation with others and submit questions to the speakers.
The Online Grounds is also allowing Chautauqua to expand outside of the nine-week season. When the season is over, Morris said, content can be packaged and repackaged in different ways so it can be utilized by other places, such as lifelong-learning programs and universities.
It is free to access the Online Grounds, but users must sign up first at online.chq.org. Doing so helps the Institution gain a better understanding of what is being watched and what will interest users in the future, Morris said. The livestream will also be available at facebook.com/pg/chq1874, and people do not need a Facebook account to watch.
“I think it’s a great way to lift our brand up and celebrate Chautauqua,” Morris said.