The Internet today has more than 1 billion users congesting cyberspace, with information flying across the globe in a matter of seconds. The information superhighway has become so busy that a new road had to be built to handle the increasing traffic.

The result: Internet2, a robust fiber connection, separate from the regular Internet, connecting more than 200 higher education institutions and a growing number of researchers, scientists and government agencies — anyone with the need to send large amounts of data, uncompressed, without delay. The original idea focused on applications such as long-distance surgeries, but once the performing arts world heard word of this technology, it wanted in.

The Eastman School of Music, through the University of Rochester’s subscription, has been using Internet2 since 2004. So far, the school has offered long-distance master classes, lectures and just recently, live interactive concerts.

In September, Eastman experimented with a live Internet broadcast, called a multicast, of the Philadelphia Orchestra from Philadelphia’s Kimmel Center to a giant screen in the Eastman Theatre. Students were able to watch the world’s top musicians up close and see how they interact with one another and the conductor. Additionally, they heard interviews with orchestra members during intermission, where questions were sent via e-mail.

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