Multiple-Emmy-award-winning SMPTE Fellow Mark Schubin has been working in television since 1967, writing about it since 1972, and chairing the HPA Tech Retreat program since 1997. He has shot for the Rolling Stones, lit Luciano Pavarotti, mixed Stevie Wonder, hooked up the TV in Eric Clapton’s bedroom, and performed forensic analysis for the Woody Allen/Mia Farrow child-custody battle. He worked on Japan’s first regularly scheduled HDTV broadcast, Kazakhstan’s first news network, and Hong Kong’s first cable-TV system. He has also worked on standards ranging from the VU meter to digitally compressed video transmission to the national TV system of Barbados. His clients range from the Metropolitan Opera to Sesame Street, Court TV, The News Hour, MTV, the AFL-CIO, and the World Book Encyclopedia. His writing has been translated into French, Japanese, Russian, and Spanish. His blog, http://schubincafe.com, is archived by the Library of Congress.
Schubin has also sung at most of the great opera houses of the world, appeared inside the penguin enclosure of the Central Park Zoo, and piloted a blimp from Coney Island to the Statue of Liberty. He once lent Meg Ryan a dinosaur and another time was sandwiched between Helen Hunt and Kyra Sedgwick. He is a contributor to The Coward’s Almanack and is Minister of Information of the provisional government-in-exile of Redonda. The Flying Karamazov Brothers failed to teach him to juggle.
He has been named the official opera archivist of American Way magazine, somehow made it into one of the obituaries for Steve Jobs, and shared a news story with Aretha Franklin.
Marvin Kitman, writing for The Los Angeles Times syndicate, called him “a leading thinker.” In the acknowledgements to his book Fast Forward:
Hollywood, the Japanese, and the VCR Wars, The New Yorker’s James Lardner wrote of Schubin that “he has the spectacularly rare ability to make technical matters clear to a nontechnical person.” Graham Binns of London’s Rediffusion Group said in the European publication Intermedia, “He has a complete mastery of the technical background to video. He
rattles off data and ideas with fluency and with wit.” Director Robert
Altman said of him, “We have our quiet fun together.”
This summer, for their 75th anniversary, the National Baseball Hall of Fame is co-sponsoring his lecture on Baseball and Opera. He sometimes wears pants and shoes.