The International Folklore Festival Myjava (member of CIOFF) is one of the most eminent folk festivals in Slovakia. It has a long history dating back to the 1950s, when interest in folk culture began to grow and the first folk festivals were held in many places throughout the country. The first such festival took place in Piestany in 1956, and the tradition continues to this day. But the venue has changed, and since 1976, the festival has been held at the Trnovce Amphitheater in Myjava. Another milestone came in 2006, when the organizer, the town of Myjava, decided to live-stream the event for the first time with the aim of allowing expats living abroad to watch the festival live.
“The first year, 2006, was quite challenging regarding the IP technologies, which weren’t easily obtainable and couldn’t handle as many tasks as today. We ended up recording the festival on an analog camera and then digitalized the video afterwards and transmitted it via the internet. Back then, the available transfer rate was about 512 kbps, but we got the job done,” says Peter Marek of MMS Service s.r.o., the company tasked with live-streaming the event. Things would soon get a lot easier, however. “In the last five or six years, the only thing we’ve needed to do is install one pan-tilt-zoom camera with the CamStreamer App, and we’re ready to live-stream,” explains Mr. Marek. The camera they chose for the job was the AXIS V5915 PTZ Network camera. This camera offers high-quality audio and powerful 30x zoom and features both HDMI and SDI video output for full flexibility. In addition to 3.5 mm input/output connectors, professional balanced XLR inputs are provided to ensure high-quality audio, which is very important during events like folk festivals, where quality audio is essential. “We chose Axis cameras for their outstanding quality. And then there’s the CamStreamer App, which opened the door for IP cameras to the possibilities of the internet and online live-streaming,” says Mr. Marek. The live stream was broadcast directly to the YouTube Live Events platform, and with the CamStreamer App, a few clicks was all it took to set everything up.
Viewership of the live stream from the folk festival in Myjava is higher and higher every year. “This year again, the live stream from the MYJAVA international folk festival exceeded our expectations. The live stream channel received more than 50,000 total minutes of viewing from more than 7,000 viewers,” explains Mr. Marek. The importance of the festival is growing not only in Slovakia but internationally as well. And the technology is growing with it. With live streaming, the organizers have brought folk culture into the 21st century.