Electronic home entertainment was invented in New York City for opera and so were headphones. The first compatible-color television program seen at home was opera in New York and so was the first bootleg recording. New York’s media technologies for opera date back to the 16th century and in the 21st century include dynamic video warping with depth-plane selection and multi-language live cinema transmissions to all seven continents (first described in a New York newspaper in 1877).
The genesis of much modern tech that we use today in broadcasting – and many business models – had their birth in Opera over a hundred years ago. Find out more!
A 200-ton music synthesizer broadcasting opera music in New York in 1907? An opera lighting dimmer in 1638? Opera for military communications tests?
It may be difficult to believe, but it’s true!
This is a special SMPTE New York-Section National Opera Week webcast event featuring Mark Schubin, esteemed engineer and explainer.
A lecture by Mark Schubin on how a 400-year-old art form helped create modern media technology.
Believe it or not, electronic home entertainment was invented for opera audiences. So were consumer headphones, movies, newscasts, and pay-cable. The first sportscasts were in opera houses.
The first wireless broadcast? The first commercial digital recording? The first live subtitles? All opera.
The idea of transmitting opera motion pictures and sounds live to theaters worldwide appeared in print in 1877, to homes in 1882. Without opera, there might not be communications satellites. And, according to pioneering radiologist Percy Brown, “No opera, no X-rays!” The first opera recordings were made 17 years before Edison’s first phonograph, and 76 years before that an automaton played opera music for Marie Antoinette. In the 21st century, labs around the world are working on ultra-high-speed communications systems for opera and have discussed neutrino communications and quantum entanglement. Galileo, Kepler, Lavoisier, Matisse – all had opera-technology connections. Stereo sound? The laryngoscope? Broadcast rights? All for opera. Really. Watch and be amazed.
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