Comcast Business today announced that Boston Ballet, one of the leading dance companies in the world, is using Comcast Business Ethernet services for faster Internet speeds and greater reliability across all four of its locations in the Boston metropolitan area. In addition to substantially enhancing inter-office collaboration, the new network will also improve Internet access for online ticket sales and help bring the arts to even more members of the local community by supporting an extensive collection of online videos for entertainment…
Comcast Business today announced that Boston Ballet, one of the leading dance companies in the world, is using Comcast Business Ethernet services for faster Internet speeds and greater reliability across all four of its locations in the Boston metropolitan area. In addition to substantially enhancing inter-office collaboration, the new network will also improve Internet access for online ticket sales and help bring the arts to even more members of the local community by supporting an extensive collection of online videos for entertainment, educational and promotional purposes.
Headquartered at 19 Clarendon Street in Boston’s South End neighborhood, the non-profit Boston Ballet boasts an internationally-acclaimed repertoire and the largest ballet school in North America, serving 3,000 students in Boston, Newton and Marblehead, as well as a number of local community centers and public schools across the metropolitan area. Now celebrating its 50th anniversary, the dance company is home to one of the largest and best-equipped dance spaces in the country, and its award-winning performance of The Nutcracker is an iconic holiday tradition, which has been performed annually for 42 years.
As with any arts organization, Boston Ballet relies extensively on the use of video to bring the highly visual dance experience to life through performance clips, promotional trailers, interviews with show choreographers and dancers, and more. The Ballet’s website also hosts videos for students learning new dance steps as well as an online portal where parents, donors and the organization’s more than 100,000 patrons are able to receive event-specific information in real time. As both internal and external Web traffic grew, it soon reached the point where slow network connectivity was negatively affecting office productivity – with employees being asked to refrain from using video during the workday to reduce network strain.
“We found ourselves in a situation where we would essentially sneeze and our network would go down. Transferring video files was next to impossible and, when things did work, the process was painfully slow. We knew we needed to find a better, long-term solution that wasn’t just putting a Band-Aid over a larger problem, and we found that solution with Comcast,” said Nathan Burlak, IT Director at Boston Ballet. “We now have double the bandwidth to all four of our locations to keep our multimedia content flowing, and the reliability we’ve seen thus far simply is amazing. In a recent storm, our previous service was knocked out for two weeks. Comcast came in with a backup connection that ended up carrying us the entire time, which enabled us to continue our online ticket sales.”
Boston Ballet now has a redundant network infrastructure supported by 20 Megabits-per-second (Mbps) fiber Ethernet Network Service from Comcast Business that interlinks its headquarters at 19 Clarendon Street in Boston, two Boston Ballet School Studios in Newton and Marblehead, and the Boston Opera House. A 50 Mbps Ethernet Dedicated Internet fiber circuit at its main offices also helps to support the organization’s in-house box office, as well as seat scanners at the Opera House that allow the Ballet to monitor show attendance, reseat patrons and resell unused tickets. A Comcast Business Class Internet line is also being used at all four locations at speeds up to 100 Mbps for extra bandwidth. Through Comcast Business, the Boston Ballet also is able to provide Wifi at its Boston Ballet studios to its students, parents and guests.
“While Ethernet may not immediately come to mind as a requirement for a dance company like the Boston Ballet, performance arts organizations need reliable Internet access just as much – if not more – than for-profit businesses, not just for training and community education programs, but also for internal collaboration and e-commerce initiatives,” said Steve Walsh, vice president for Comcast Business in Greater Boston. “Comcast provides the network solutions to support these goals alongside the scalability to help them grow as they continue to attract new patrons so that, at the end of the day, the show really can go on, regardless of what comes their way.”
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