27TH JANUARY 2012 by PAUL SAWERS
A new platform called HiBrow has launched this week, tapping digital technology and the expertise of professional film producers and directors to bring HD video arts programming to the masses.
Curated by some well-known names from the UK creative industries, such as Gary Kemp, Ruby Wax, Sir Richard Eyre, Franc Roddam, Dave Calhoun and Simon Callow, HiBrow promises to give viewers a ‘back stage pass’ to the arts.
HiBrow kicked-off proceedings with 10 hours of original programming, streaming new plays, concerts, exhibitions, dance, literary events and festivals. A further 10 hours of new material will be available on the site from February 1.
Every month, at least 7 hours of fresh content will be added to the site, ranging from interviews with authors, actors, directors, artists, conductors and musicians, to films of rehearsals and behind the scenes documentaries which will complement the professionally produced primary content.
Founded by UK-based film-maker Don Boyd, and curated by a team of high-profile professionals from the creative Industries, HiBrow offers users a direct link to professional productions from across the arts world. Moreover, to extend its service beyond professionally curated work, HiBrow has also linked up with NODA (National Operatic and Dramatic Association) – Britain’s institution representing over 2,500 amateur companies.
“For many years I have been aware of a gap in the broadcasting environment for exceptional arts programming,” said Boyd. “The advent of the Internet and broadband provides the means by which this gap can be filled. Over the past three years I have worked single-mindedly, but not without help from a diverse and predominantly youthful group of talented experts in the fields of the arts and digital technology, to create Hibrow.tv, a comprehensive international platform giving audiences an intimate insight into the creative process they would never have seen anywhere else.”
HiBrow is like a YouTube for the arts, and given that it’s free to use and curated for quality, it could prove to be a hit amongst culture vultures. Amongst other features, the website will also offer an arts-focused social network – through which a community of so-called ‘HiBrowsers’ can talk about a performance they have seen, or discuss their favourite art form from a range of subjects.