SFJAZZ gets into the groove with Facilis TerraBlock
July 13, 2016

SFJAZZ gets into the groove with Facilis TerraBlock

HUDSON, MA  — Facilis ( http://facilis.com/) reports that SFJAZZ and its SFJAZZ Center, the first stand-alone building in the country solely dedicated to jazz, is using a TerraBlock shared storage system to help its video production team store and manage hundreds of hours of media ranging from concert videos to educational content.

Billed as a “sanctuary for jazz,” SFJAZZ Center is located only blocks from San Francisco’s City Hall. It’s the culmination of a vision developed by the SFJAZZ organization which, for 30 years, presented year-round concerts, including the San Francisco Jazz Festival in rented venues. Purpose-built from the ground up in 2013, the 36,000-square-foot, two-story facility presents over 300 performances and events year-round, along with educational programs that reach thousands of students each year.

SFJAZZ co-founder and artistic director Randall Kline's vision was to build a venue where technology serves the music. Due to its design and use of state-of-the-art technology, the center's main performance space seats up to 700 people in close proximity to the musicians with superb sight lines, offering the excellent acoustics of a great concert hall and the relaxed intimacy of a jazz club.

Part of the mission of the center is also to digitally open its doors to jazz fans and students through the creation and production of hundreds of hours of content that range from concert videos to educational videos.

SFJAZZ director of video production, Jacob Richmond, explains: “From its initial conception, the venue was built with audio and video recording and broadcasting in mind to allow us to extend the walls of our unique center into the digital space, and promote music education for all.”

Last year, Richmond and his team recorded 142 shows and educational videos and archived over 20 terabytes of footage. To help them with their growing storage needs, they purchased a  Facilis TerraBlock 24EX shared storage system from California-based reseller, Cutting Edge Audio Video Group.

For Richmond and his team, a typical workflow involves capturing a performance with multiple robotic cameras and GoPros that are live switched to create a single line-cut recording. That line-cut is captured on an Aja Ki Pro and brought into the TerraBlock system, ready for editing. 

“We shoot everything in 1080 HD and capture to ProRes 422 with our AJA Ki Pro which means that for an hour and a half performance, we get about 110 gigabytes per show,” says Richmond. “We store each show in its native resolution and for quick delivery we also do an H.264 capture at the same time that is backed up in a separate folder.” 

According to Amy Heiden, technical manager for SFJAZZ, “Since education is a large focus for SFJAZZ , we do a lot of events where parents and their kids are invited to shows where musicians will talk about jazz as a music form, the components of the music itself and the instruments. Making elements of these events digitally available to people outside of the center will be a key element of our future strategy.”