In 2011, the Royal Shakespeare Company installed a DiGiCo SD7 console in the refurbished Swan Theatre, Stratford upon Avon. It proved to be such a success that when the Company needed an additional mixer for its touring shows and West End transfers, they chose another DiGiCo board – this time the SD9.
“We have a long relationship with DiGiCo and needed a console to transfer shows that currently exist on an SD7, but would be playing in smaller venues,” says Jeremy Dunn, head of sound at the Royal Shakespeare Theatre in Stratford. “We looked at all the usual comparable desks, but the audio team were very keen to stick with DiGiCo software and their way of working.”
The smaller footprint and ease of transferring shows programmed on the SD7 were important for Jeremy and his technicians, but he is also impressed with many of its other facilities.
“One of the great features is the MADI I/O. This means we can connect a laptop directly to the SD9, via an RME MADI card, to run all our sound effects using one cable,” he says. “The I/O at the back of the desk is great for the limited amount of radio mics we use and the remote rack will sit between the band and the amp racks - perfect!”
The SD9’s first use will be on a tour of The Taming of the Shrew, which visits Newcastle, Milton Keynes, Nottingham and Richmond in late February and March, before Julius Caesar and Much Ado About Nothing at London’s Noel Coward Theatre in the summer and working with an SD7 (supplied by Autograph) at the RSC’s 2012 Roundhouse Season.
Jeremy concludes, “The amazing thing about the SD9 is that it has great facilities and you can transfer shows designed on the SD7, but it’s much more compact in terms of both the size and price.”