NPAPW – Then and Now

Research and education go beyond science and encompass many disciplines, including the arts and humanities, social sciences, and other cultural areas.

In 2000, Internet2, the U.S. research and education networking consortium, identified the potential of using advanced networks for arts and humanities and began bringing technicians, academics and artists together for Network Performing Arts Production Workshops in 2003. Since the beginning, the annual workshops took place at the campus of the New World Symphony in Miami Beach, Florida.

In 2002, what was then known as TERENA (now GÉANT), the European Research and Education Networking Association, started to address the needs of the user communities in the arts and humanities areas with the SERENATE study.

Since 2009, the Network Performing Arts Production Workshops (NPAPWs) have been held in Europe and the United States annually. The European workshops were held in Trieste in 2009, Paris in 2010, Barcelona in 2011,  Vienna in 2013, London in 2015 and Copenhagen in 2017. In 2010, 2012, 2014, 2016 and 2018 workshops were organised at the New World Symphony in Miami. The 2020 workshop will be organised at Rensselaer Polytechnic Institute in Troy, New York, USA at their Curtis R. Priem Experimental Media and Performing Arts Center (EMPAC).

Currently NPAPWs are a collaborative project of GÉANT, Internet2, New World Symphony, GARR (Italian NREN) and other European national research and education networks (NRENs), working together with cultural institutions around the world to organise the annual event.


    • Outreach

The NPAPWs facilitates outreach to new user communities in the arts and humanities particularly by demonstrating the use of research and education networks in supporting real-time musical, dance and artistic performances.

    • Collaboration

Identifying and supporting these communities creates opportunities for collaboration between research and education networks and cultural institutions across the Global R&E community.

    • Knowledge exchange

During the workshop, experts demonstrate the use of specific audio, video, and lighting techniques (and other tools) to support teaching, auditions and remote performances. Participants not only get a chance to work with much of the equipment featured in the workshop, but also to share their experiences and expectations with their peers and experts.

Target Audience

The NPAPWs are designed for those who want to explore the evolving role of advanced education and research networks in supporting cultural performances. Previous workshops have attracted:

  • students, academics and technical staff of institutions that offer education and produce events in the performing arts (music, dance, theatre, visual arts schools and academies, etc.);
  • people involved in audio/video production and education in other areas;
  • staff from NRENs and regional education networks, whose constituents have a need for high-end audio visual production and transmission over those networks.

Participants of previous workshops attend to build on their prior knowledge and skills, and share their experiences, while first-time participants are encouraged to attend to bring new perspectives and to share experiences.

For background information on the equipment and staffing requirements for interactive performing arts education, multi-site performance events, and high quality net-casting over advanced networks, please use the learning materials from the previous workshops.