Lara de Wit (lara6683) is a pianist, violinist, composer, music teacher and partnered Twitch streamer. Today, she talks to us about her experience on Twitch and playing music to thousands of people every day.
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Streamlabs: What type of content do you usually stream?
Lara: I stream piano performance on Twitch. It is chat driven content so people can request songs. I play songs I already know, and I also play a live learns, which is where I essentially learn a piece of music that is new to me, live on stream for their requests in as little time as possible so that the people watching me don’t get completely bored. I play a lot of video game music. I also play a load of TV and movie themes. Some anime, I will play in whatever style is requested. So if someone wants a country song or an EDM song, that is exactly what I will do.
Streamlabs: How long have you been playing piano? What inspired you to start playing music?
I’ve been playing piano since I was five or six years old. It wasn’t a case of me as a five-year-old being inspired to start music. I believe it was my grade one school teacher who said to my parents she might have something here. Why don’t you enroll her in music lessons? So that’s where it all started. I can’t take credit for actively wanting to learn piano.
Streamlabs: What is the story behind why you started streaming?
As Bob Ross would say, it was a happy little accident. I was having dinner one Sunday night, February 2017, in a chicken shop. So we’re having dinner, and my friend Pyromaniac1010 suggested that I start streaming music on Twitch, and I did already have a Twitch account. I used it very rarely and only to view other musicians, and I don’t know what it was about his suggestion, but I was up and running in two weeks. Absolutely potato setup. I had a webcam that I hadn’t tweaked the settings of at all. I had no lighting. It was very, very basic. But I think the important thing was I got started and the rest is history.
Streamlabs: We’ve seen a lot of musicians begin using platforms like Twitch to connect with people during lockdown, is there any advice you’d give them as musicians starting to live stream?
I have two bits of advice for people coming to Twitch. I guess in the midst of this lockdown. The first one would be discoverability can be rough. If you don’t already have a preexisting community on another platform, it can be really tough to start from zero on Twitch. So I guess don’t expect too much too soon. And then the second piece of advice would be, look, you probably heard this all before, but Twitch is very, very different from YouTube. Youtube, it’s evergreen. You can upload something once a week, once a month, and it stays there, and it generates new subscribers. Whereas for Twitch. You really have to show up day after day, week after week. You have to show up consistently, put the timing and really hold your own because you are not gonna grow your community if you’re not there. And I see quite a few streamers, they’re going great. They’ve been streaming for weeks, maybe months, and then kind of starts to peter out because it is, it’s quite a time investment, and you have to just keep on coming back. Of course, you can take breaks. But it really is day after day, week after week to grow. It depends what your streaming goals are. But that is my advice.
Streamlabs: Do you have a favorite piece of video game music?
My favorite piece of video game music. I’m going to answer this instead with my favorite video game soundtrack. It would have to be something from the nineties super Nintendo. I think that’s the golden era of video game music. I think music then was just, it was so unique and so effective because composers had, they had limitations but they also had freedom and I think it was a really good balance of the two. So my favorite, my favorite soundtrack, I’m going to go with Secret of Mana by Hiroki Kekutta and why? Basically, because I think it was just such a unique sound. The soundtrack really uses texture. I think in a very novel way. It’s, it’s tough to pick just one, but that would be my number one top soundtrack.
Streamlabs: Were there any live streamers that you look up to or inspire you?
Okay. I have two answers is here. The people who inspire me genuinely the ones who are using the platform Twitch in a different way. The first person I’m going to throw out there is someone who, I’m sure you all know kitboga. You guys know what he does. He trolls, scammers, and I think using Twitch to do that is just fantastic use of the platform. Another streamer that I admire is Cardboard_Cowboy. He is an Australian gaming streamer. But what he does that I think is so different, he uses Twitch as a vehicle for storytelling. But I’m not just talking about a story within one stream. I’m talking a story arc over multiple streams, multiple seasons. He has seasons. I think the way he is telling a story over years and months is really novel and I’m not sure how many others are actually doing what he does. Also his animations, he makes them all himself and they are insane. His OBS must be going absolutely crazy. Check him out. I think he does a really cool different stuff.
Streamlabs: What are some goals you’d like to achieve this year?
So my goal for this year, it might be a little different to previous is in previous years, well what does anyone want when they start? They want to make affiliate, they want to make partner, they want to grow. You know, you just want to get your stuff out everywhere. You want to put it on YouTube, get it on Reddit. You want to do talent shows, you want promotion, you want front page, you want to grow indiscriminately. Just real to mean, right. This year, 2020 I’m all about the top 1% and I think that every single streamer has got that top 1% in their community. These are the people who show up for you in a multitude of ways. They are your regulars. They’re the folks on discord who are always chatting either to you or amongst themselves. They are usually the people who subscribe and financially back your channel.
They are the entire reason that I’m still able to do this, and a lot of streamers are still able to stream either full time or in whatever capacity they’re aiming for. So my goal this year is going to be to cater to that 1% that’s not to say that we are not an unfriendly community. If you pop into my chat and you say something at all positive, you’re going to be gifted to sell against your will. Very, very welcoming. But this year it’s really about quality over quantity. It’s about prioritizing the entertainment of my regulars as opposed to the entertainment of drop-ins. Thank you guys so much for watching. I am Laura. Six, six, eight three. You can find me under that exact name on Twitch. Also on YouTube. I hope to see you in a stream soon.