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Jay-Z concert gets creative boost from NY-based post houses.

Creative Group, a full-service post-production facility, and Mantra Design, an award-winning creative content-design and visual-effects boutique, have transformed Jay-Z's renowned Answer the Call 9/11 benefit concert into a stirring hour-long special airing on the Fuse music network. Together, the two New York-based studios delivered a complete post package for Fuse Presents Jay-Z Live from Madison Square Garden: Answer the Call, including video editing, audio mixing and 3D graphics.


Mantra Design created the on-air identity for Fuse Presents, a concert series showcasing top musical acts such as the Jay-Z concert, a benefit show for the New York Police and Fire Widows' and Children's Benefit Fund that took place on September 11 last year. "The mandate was to create something that was epic, cinematic, timeless and signature to this series," said Mantra executive producer Casey Steele.

Mantra delivered on this directive with a graphics package depicting a gradual approach to a massive concert stadium. The Madison Square Garden stadium was completely covered with windows, which alternately depicted the name Fuse and photos of the artist from whatever concert was being highlighted. Mantra created the graphics using a combination of Autodesk's Maya 3D software and Adobe After Effects.

As the Mantra team put the final touches on Fuse Presents, Creative Group's editing team for the project, comprising editors Mari Keiko Gonzalez and Mike Levine, first delivered a cold open to accompany the broadcast of the concert Fuse aired live on September 11, then did some minor edits on a two-hour commercial broadcast of the concert aired by Fuse on September 13.

The main story for Creative Group, however, was the one-hour version of the concert for the Fuse Presents series, which premiered on September 19. A medley of performances from the concert, archival footage of 11 September 2001 and interviews of 9/11 first responders talking on-site at Ground Zero, the concert special was intended to provoke the same sense of New York pride, honour and belonging for the at-home viewer as was experienced by those at the actual concert.

According to Gonzalez, roughly 10 cameras were used to capture the live performance, giving her and her team plenty of footage to work with, including shots of Jay-Z's moment of silence for those lost on 9/11, concert-goers rapping along with the artist and shots depicting the exhilarated crowd from the vantage point of the performers on stage.
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Title Annotation:CREATION
Publication:APB Magazine
Date:Jan 1, 2010
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