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Video editor taking on Olympian task

Free-lance video editor Tara Kelly works in Salt Lake City for the Canadian Broadcasting Corp. during the Olympics.
ALL | GrassValleyArchive

There is nothing like the Olympics, even if you don’t get to see much live action.

“It’s a high-energy thing,” said Tara Kelly, a free-lance video editor from the Grass Valley area who is working for the Canadian Broadcasting Corp. at the 2002 Olympic Winter Games in Salt Lake City.



The pace is hectic and it is hard to remember what day it is, Kelly said from her hotel room on the outskirts of Utah’s capital last week. So far, she said, she has not been able to see any of the competitions live.




Her home away from home is an editing room known as the “Blue Suite” at the International Broadcast Center in downtown Salt Lake City, where she spends up to 12 hours a day editing Olympic footage for the CBC.

Kelly’s work day starts in the early afternoon, when she leaves her hotel for the one-hour bus ride to the broadcast center. The day often ends well after midnight, she said.

The broadcast center provides facilities for the CBC, NBC and a host of broadcasters from all over the world. Monitors display the medal counts and other statistics, while giant television screens show all events live. There are rows of cubicles with phones and computer jacks, fast-food places, salons and massage therapists, she said. “It’s incredible.”

Kelly, 43, works alongside a CBC editor and producer who decide what needs to be edited.

The team prepares clips of Olympic events for evening and late-night shows in Canada. She has to make the videos look good and sound good under tight deadlines.

“We have to keep moving,” she said.

The controversy over the pairs figure skating gold medal has overshadowed other events for the Canadian audience.

A former Grass Valley Group employee, Kelly provided technical support to television crews at the Olympic Games in Barcelona and Atlanta. This time, however, she gets to edit, a job she first learned 20 years ago.

Bob Lefcovich, a vice president at Editware Inc., a Grass Valley company that supplied the CBC and NBC with video editing systems, was in Salt Lake City last week to provide technical assistance to the CBC.

Security is tight, Lefcovich and Kelly said, but the security personnel and their dogs have become part of the scene.

The CBC’s English division is showing 250 hours of Olympic footage.


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