I'd always considered Broadway musicals to be a pleasantly low-tech form of entertainment. When something's live on stage, there's only so much you can do to make people look and sound better (not to mention the special effects).
But what happens when you're trying to market a musical to the tech-addicted MySpace generation--and to those willing to admit they once fell into that age group? Clearly, you start a video remix competition. It is, after all, the trendy marketing tool du jour, now that faster broadband connections and improved Web technologies have made it possible for anyone to chop up video and put it on the Internet. Consequently, it doesn't seem that surprising that the recent Broadway show Spring Awakening, about the antics of angsty promiscuous teenagers, would hook up with a remixing site for a "theater 2.0" promotional campaign. The folks behind the campaign chose Eyespot, which has also done promotions for The Colbert Report and Snoop Dogg's Hood of Horror.
Consequently, through Eyespot's promotion, fans can use song and video footage from the production along with their own home video clips to make the angstiest, most emo-ridden video mashups possible. Sweet! You've got until June 15 to enter.
It should be noted that video mashups are not always very reliable as forms of publicity--after all, one of the first campaigns of this sort was the General Motors ad competition that environmentalists turned into an anti-SUV rallying cry. Likewise, I'm not unconvinced that the Spring Awakening competition likely has a handful of entries that are facetious at best. Nevertheless, it's a sign that even lower-tech entertainment is willing to capitalize on new marketing strategies like video remixes. It'd be interesting to see what the age metrics are for the competition versus the people actually seeing the show. What's next--live streaming of Broadway shows over the Web?
(And why did we single this one out specifically? Well, because it's such a novelty when something "emo" surfaces and it doesn't have anything to do with MySpace.)