Shalom Life | April 21, 2014

What's Next on Your Music Video? You Choose

Set up by an Israeli rock star, a new venture is promising to bring the innovative world of interactive videos to music and advertising industries.

By: Brian Blum

Published: March 8th, 2011 in Business » World

What's Next on Your Music Video? You Choose

Yoni Bloch didn't intend to become a rock star. A self-professed "geek" from the northern Negev town of Beersheva, Bloch loved playing both video games and music. One day, he thought it would be cool to release some of his tunes via the Internet. Before long, his band, with its edgy guitar pop, had hit the big time and Bloch became the darling of the Israeli alternative music scene.

Marrying his musical and geeky sides in a highly innovative, interactive way, Bloch has now moved into a new field, founding Interlude with two of his band mates (one who doubles as an electrical engineer, the other a hotshot programmer/designer).

Their web-based authoring system can mash up different video cuts into a seamless stream where the viewer gets to choose the action. If that sounds complex, it only takes a minute to get the hang of the end result.

Bloch has posted two of Interlude's interactive videos online. The first, available on his personal website, is his composition about a singer wandering through a Tel Aviv house party. At various points, the viewer is presented with two choices - for example, should the band play an acoustic or electric set? The action then proceeds down the path selected.

The result is a four-minute clip that has tens of combinations. At the end, you're prompted to see it again or start anew. The technology is compelling enough that you may very well find yourself sucked in for another round.

What should Andy do?

The Interlude website features a clip of Andy Grammer, a relatively unknown pop musician. The process is the same - should Andy dance with the waiters or hang with the cleaning staff in the hotel lobby? And what are the ramifications of choosing the black vs. the red t-shirt?

To emphasize the geek factor even further, the video features a cameo by Rainn Wilson, who plays uber-nerd Dwayne on the US version of TV series The Office.

Interlude also created an interactive video for the Israeli version of American Idol where the final contestants were all filmed singing the same song and the audience got to choose the winner.

Interlude's technology is similar to that of Turbulence, the company founded by a Tel Aviv University professor that lets the viewer guide a movie's plot. But Turbulence is focused on creating fully interactive movies, while Bloch has his eyes on a more commercial prize: the next generation of online advertising.

This article originally appeared on Israel21c. To read the rest of the article, please click here.

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