The Weeknd Experience

Aug 2020

The Weeknd Experience

We went all out to stream a virtual interactive Weeknd concert to TikTok. The Wave tapped into the real time chat API to allow interactive voting moments. Unlike all the other waves though, The Weeknd is too cool to actually wear a mocap suit, so we got an actor to be him, raising some strange quesitons about the future of virtual performance and likeness…

But we ended up raising $350K for Equal Justice Initiative through merch sales!

Technically, this stream was the most straightforward because it wasn’t tehnically live. The voting results were live at some key moments, but we didn’t have to worry about live talent. So we spent a lot of time making our backup plan super solid and trying out some new video hardware.

blinding lights

save your tears

This was our first time streaming to TikTok, and the vertical aspect ratio was an interesting challenge for the creative and technical team. Especially since most phones have different aspect ratios, so the content had to be carefully checked. Like did you know TikTok agressively crops the top and bottom of the screen if you are watching on a iPad??? img these are just iPhones!

We ended up broadcasting at a 9:16 aspect ratio, with careful placement of UI elements and shot composition to work on the largest variety of devices. Later on we did some 16:9 HD landscape broadcasts for YouTube and other platforms. There was a complicated rebroadcast scheudle to hit many of Tik Tok’s international time zones. Not as many as we wanted though, due to international music licensing issues… bleh img

This was the first time orking with a chinese company, and communication was quite a challenge.

some cool shots

This was my last show as the Technial Studio Director at the wave :,(

broadcast Team

Sheltron - Technical Director

James Meyers - Technical Director in Training

Lisa Kang - Producer

Tim Lobes - Stream Jockey

Tom Marks - Live Sound Consultant

*Brandon * - Live Sound

Bobby Knutilla - Studio Manager

*Chan Park * - Super Producer

art team

Strangeloop Studios - Art Direction

Daniel Sierra - Show Director

Aaron Lemke - Technical Artist

Mike Krentz - Concept Artist

Steve Duarte - Character Design

Sutu Eats Flies - 2D Art

I definitely forgot some people but shout out to the whole wave team :D

Team enjoys a celebratory toast after the show! And the sound/ producer people in the control room monitoring

Vertical Monitor mount is crucial for neck comfort when doing a vertical stream. And friendly reminder to always check your gammas when using capture cards! Look at the difference here… using a nice Magewell





Rolling Stone