Tuesday, August 04, 2015

RAVENNA Digital Network Deployed For Orchestre Nationale de Lille

Lawo mc256 consoles and Neumann DMI-8 interfaces equipped with RAVENNA cards support 40th anniversary concert.

Over 16,000 people attended the 40th anniversary concert of the Orchestre Nationale de Lille (ONL) in the Pierre-Mauroy stadium just outside Lille.

The event ticked off a number of “firsts”; the first time for the ONL in the venue which is the first of its kind in Europe, and the first time that a full RAVENNA digital network has been deployed on a live event of this scale.

“It was an impressive setup,” recalled digital audio specialist Fred Blanc-Garin, who was there on behalf of the ONL.

“We essentially brought in the ONL’s recently installed digital studio setup that now features a RAVENNA network, but we had to supplement it with additional material.”

In total there were two Lawo mc256 consoles: the first at front of house operated by engineer and ONL veteran, Francois Gabert, who was also managing monitors from front of house, and the second console from Paris-based live audio recording specialists, Yasta, in a separate room for audio capture for recording and broadcast. The recording console was set up and operated by Delphine Hannotin from INA.

For the 100-piece orchestra and 200-strong choir the ONL team deployed a total of 78 digital microphones on stage, which meant that ten Neumann DMI-8 interfaces equipped with RAVENNA cards were required. Once collected by the DMIs, the microphone signals were packed into RAVENNA multicast streams and sent to a network switch where the streams were automatically duplicated. One set of streams was received by the front of house console and the second went to the broadcast console, and then on again to the Pyramix DAW.

“It was the first time any of us had set up an event of this scale using RAVENNA technology which needed to demonstrate flawless interoperability between equipment from several different manufacturers,” explained Blanc-Garin.

“As such, it was a lot of work (we expected that) but we were lucky to have first-class support from all concerned, especially Lawo and Neumann. The results were worth every second of the time invested – on the night everything worked perfectly and we all had huge smiles on our faces, from the technicians to the musicians and of course the audience. No other networking technology can offer this level of performance and scalability, and I’m convinced we’ve set the standard for the future.”


Posted by House Editor on 08/04 at 09:59 AM
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VUE Audiotechnik Delivers At BottleRock Festival

Miner Family Winery Stage features al-Class line arrays, h-Class subwoofers, side-fills and stage monitors with V Series system engines for amplification.

BottleRock Festival in Napa Valley welcomed over 100,000 fans and more than 70 acts featured Robert Plant, Snoop Dogg, Michael Franti & Spearhead, Public Enemy, No Doubt and Imagine Dragons performing on five different stages.

One of those stages - the Miner Family Winery Stage - featured an exclusive lineup of VUE Audiotechnik products including al-Class line arrays for mains, h-Class subwoofers, side-fills and stage monitors, and V Series system engines for amplification.

The immense undertaking of complete technical production for BottleRock from staging to sound to video & lighting was provided by Delicate Productions, with Jason Alt, president of Delicate Productions, and George Edwards, GM of San Francisco facility of Delicate Productions at the reigns.

Fans of acts performing on the Miner Family Winery Stage - which included Los Lobos, AER, Xavier Rudd, Napa Crossroads featuring David Pack, Grizfolk and Lettuce - were treated to VUE’s al-Class line array systems paired with VUE’s V Series systems engines for amplification and networked DSP.

Each side of the main PA was outfitted with ten al-8 high output line array cabinets hung over four al-4 subcompact line array cabinets used for front- and down-fill. Additional front-fill was provided by four stacks of two al-4s arrayed along the stagelip. The al-8 employs dual 8-inch woofers, four 4-inch Kevlar/Neodymium mid-frequency drivers and dual 1-inch high-frequency compression drivers, while the al-4s each house dual 4-inch Kevlar/Neodymium woofers and one HF compression driver. The high-frequency elements for both models utilize VUE’s proprietary Truextent beryllium driver technology, which reduces mechanical breakup while improving linearity and high-frequency extension.

Audio engineers manning the desk for acts on the Miner Family Winery Stage were impressed with the results.

Tib Csabai has been mixing front-of-house for 15 years, the last year and a half for alt-rock act Grizfolk. “Given this band and my personal taste,” Csabai says, “I want what’s coming out of the PA system to be about as flat and representative as what’s coming from the console. Good coverage is important too, but a neutral-sounding PA is key. If I want it to rock a little harder, have more edge, or have it be smoother when I’m mixing jazz, I like to be able to control that.”

“The guys in Grizfolk do a lot of harmonies so the vocal range needs to be on top,” continues Csabai. “I didn’t have any issues getting the vocals up on top of the band. Two areas where PA systems tend to be trouble for me are the high-mid area (2 to 4 kHz tends to be kind of stabby), and then there’s usually some funny business going on in the low-mids, which doesn’t sound right. I found myself not having to make corrections to those areas on the VUE PA because it was so smooth. I’ll definitely be happy to see this PA again.”

“I mixed on the VUE system tonight and it sounded great,” agrees Mark Allsbaugh, front of house engineer, Lettuce. “I loved it. The VUE system was nice, clean, and rich. I had a good experience mixing the show and I look forward to the next time I can mix on a VUE system.”

As Deanne Franklin, front of house engineer for Napa Crossroads at the festival, with an impressive list of bands she’s mixed since 1982 (Tom Waits, David Byrne, Sonic Youth & The Breeders), reveals, “It’s really important to have a PA that’s powerful, meaty, yet clear everywhere, without mud. My first impression of the VUE al-Series was the clarity. Sometimes that clarity can be almost unforgiving. I’ve only mixed on this system once but I felt that it was more forgiving, that it had more ‘meat’ to it. The midrange sounds really sweet. I enjoyed mixing on it and I would mix on it again.”

Sebastian Poux, a freelance engineer supplied by Delicate Productions, was systems and front of house engineer for the Miner Stage. “The angles are easily moved once the cabinets are rigged together, the system actually rigged pretty fast.” he observes.  “I am very sensitive to high frequencies. I like a well-tuned PA right out of the box, a PA that is very round at the edges - and I can hear that out of the VUE al-Class.”

The combination of twenty al-8s and eight al-4s elements in the main hangs, another eight al-4s on the stage lip for front fills, twelve powered hs-28 Dual 18-inch ACM subwoofers arrayed on the ground in front of the stage, and VUE V6 and V4 System Engines boasting a 96 kHz sample rate, 64-bit digital processing and ultra-premium converters provided the PA system with plenty of headroom. “The first thing I noticed,” explains Aaron Gittleman front of house engineer, AER, “was the full dynamic range and power. I had my master fader at half and actually even my sub-masters too. Usually when I walk into a festival situation I have to push, push and push those faders but with the VUE system here, I had all I needed. I actually ended up backing faders down. It was awesome.”

VUE Audiotechnik gear was also used for the stage monitor system, which included four h-12N high definition systems as side-fills stacked atop of a single hs-28 subwoofer and a dozen hm-212 high output stage monitors. The drum riser had two hs-25 subwoofers with a single hm-212 on top for additional drum fill. Adam Deitch, drummer for Lettuce and Break Science, found the hm-212 to be “crispy clear with just the right amount of thump. It felt like a record on stage. I had a great night.” Chris Bargie, monitor engineer for Lettuce adds, “The monitors sounded really great, and the guys were very happy and if the guys are happy, I am happy.”

Following a successful sold-out weekend, BottleRock Festival announced that a limited quantity of tickets is already on sale for next year.

VUE Audiotechnik

Posted by House Editor on 08/04 at 07:03 AM
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Monday, August 03, 2015

SES Deploys Martin Audio At Red Rocks For Avett Brothers

Special Event Services manages three sold out nights in challenging Colorado amphitheater with MLA.

Currently touring the US with Martin Audio MLA loudspeakers provided by SES (Special Event Services) of Winston Salem, NC and Nashville, TN, the Avett Brothers recently sold out three nights at the Red Rocks Amphitheatre in Morrison, Colorado.

“This time of year, it’s everything from large format sheds like Red Rocks to smaller theaters and, as we move into the fall and winter, arenas,” notes Jeff Cranfill, vice president of SES. “When it comes to the Avett Brothers, you name it and they play it.”

Formed in Concord, North Carolina in the late 90s by brothers Scott (banjo) and Seth Avett (guitars), the band also includes Bob Crawford (double bass) and Joe Kwon (cello), with Mike Marsh (drums), Tania Elizabeth (violin) and Paul Defiglia (keyboards) as touring members of the band.

An eclectic mix of bluegrass, country, punk, pop melodies, folk, rock, honky-tonk and ragtime, the Avett Brothers are hard to categorize, but are generally defined as “Americana.” A popular mainstay on the touring and festival circuit, they’ve produced chart albums that include I and Love and You (2009), The Carpenter (2012) and Magpie and the Dandelion (2013).

The Avett Brothers encompass an unusually wide dynamic range during a typical performance, which adds to the challenge of adapting to different venues throughout the tour.

SES system engineer Andrew Steelman points out, “They’re not a highly compressed band that lives in a pocket during the show. They go from very loud, aggressive, in your face rock, to acoustic guitars, banjos, a cello, violin and small high fidelity stringed ensembles. In terms of dynamics, it’s a constant rise and a fall, and then another rise and a fall, and you’re on the edge of your seat the entire show.”

Because MLA has smaller format compression drivers, the system offers the engineer a more neutral canvas that’s very responsive to the smallest EQ changes, making it a perfect partner for the dynamics of the band.

The Martin Audio MLA system has proved pivotal in coping with the specific challenges that Red Rocks presents. Known for the short distance from FOH to the PA and a limited trim height to the top of the system, Red Rocks also has an audience area extends out roughly 300 feet from the front of the stage with a 105 feet vertical climb to the top seats about 60 feet above the roof of the venue.

Members of the SES team on hand at Red Rocks, left to right: Jeff Cranfill, Andrew Tucci, Jim Brammer, Jason Farah, Michael Brammer, Andrew Steelman. (Credit: Linda Evans)

Detailing the challenges, Steelman notes, “You’re so close to the PA at Red Rocks that sometimes when you make changes to correct the sound at FOH, where there is usually a lot of high end and low mids coming off the system, it can have an adverse effect at the top of the hill. Also, you’re at much higher altitudes where there’s less dense air for sound to travel through and you’re very susceptible to winds blowing through the audio at the top of the venue.

“With MLA, we were able to walk the show at the highest seats and see that the people were enjoying the show and they were as engaged as those down in front, even in the quieter moments, which really made me satisfied with the system’s performance. MLA covered every seat in the venue and helped us accomplish what we needed to in that environment, which is to have an Avett Brothers show translate to every seat in the house. I’d have to say it was one of the best sounding shows I’ve heard at Red Rocks.”

For the three sold-out shows at Red Rocks, SES deployed 16 MLA and two MLD (Downfill) enclosures with 6 ground-stacked MLX subs per side.

Expanding from Red Rocks to MLA’s overall benefits during the tour, Cranfill adds, “It goes without saying that Martin Audio speakers sound good. What’s especially useful for us is that the system can scale from a large amphitheater like Red Rocks down to a small theater and still maintain that performance level with high quality audio and the ability to put the sound where it needs to be. Regardless of where the band is performing, MLA keeps the coverage so consistent and non-intrusive on the stage that they don’t even notice the difference.

“Ultimately, the sound quality at Red Rocks was great for the band at all three sold out nights. The same goes for Sturgill Simpson who opened on Saturday night. As far as country music goes, he’s definitely one of the new country pioneers out there whose music and style of playing is a perfect fit for the Avetts with a wide range of dynamics that translated extremely well throughout the venue and fully engaged the audience from the front seats to the back seats.”

In addition to MLA, MLA Compact were used for outfills in several venues: “It’s really good how you can get both systems to voice well with each other,” Andrew explains. “You can go back and forth seamlessly between the two systems and sometimes it’s very difficult to discern whether you’re listening to MLA or the MLA Compact.

“Mixing consoles for the tour included a pair of Midas PRO6’s with DL371 DSP racks and a DL431 24-channel 5-way mic splitter. The two consoles have their own head amp control via a digital split and the combination of the MLA and Midas consoles is like a match made in heaven.

“The control we have with MLA is especially helpful in situations where we’ve been in civic centers with lots of concrete and metal surfaces,” Steelman concludes. “When a band’s dynamics rises and falls as much as The Avett’s, having MLA be able to project at long distance and eliminate some of those surfaces is as simple as going into the software and getting rid of it with a few keystrokes. It’s quite a nice tool to have in the arsenal without having to sacrifice something somewhere else.”

Justin Glanville, the Avett’s front of house engineer, feels “the MLA’s strengths really show up in large areas where there’s a long throw, like Red Rocks, the Brooklyn Bowl or the Garden In Boston. It’s still really clear up top and seems to be very steerable for the Systems Engineer, which is great in those spaces because you’ve got to reach every seat so that everyone can feel the show.

“The system has smooth, warm quality that works well with the band. An Avett Brothers show is acoustic instruments for the most part, there are a few songs with electric guitars but it’s mostly an upright bass, cello, fiddle, banjo and an acoustic guitar. It needs that warmth.”

Martin Audio

Posted by House Editor on 08/03 at 01:15 PM
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Outline Covers One Million Spectators At Rome’s San Giovanni Square

Cipiesse supplies Butterfly and Eidos loudspeakers for reported crowd of one million people from all over Italy.

At the beginning of the summer, Rome’s San Giovanni (St John Lateran) Square hosted a reported crowd of a million people of all ages from all over Italy.

Cipiesse (Centro di Programmazione Spettacoli) Srl of Rezzato (Brescia) partner Marco Riva selected loudspeakers from Outline to cover the crowd.

“As well as the event’s sound reinforcement, our company also supplied the stage and backdrop, support systems and technical staff, says Riva.

“This was our first job in the enormous historical square and we had to do the utmost to meet the organizers’ requirements while keeping our work’s impact on local residents’ day to day life to a minimum.”

The design of the system, by Giancarlo “Jerry” Paladini and front of house engineer Raffaella Gatti, was based on measurements carried out three years before with Outline, on the occasion of the huge May Day concert organized by the country’s major trade unions.

Apart from the obvious fundamental necessity of ensuring intelligibility for the presenters, another key aspect of the brief received buy the organizers, was that the audio system had to have a very low profile.

For the event Paladini and Gatti opted for two main stage-side clusters, each with twelve Butterfly, plus two small arrays (each with four Eidos 265 enclosures) on either side for front fill duties. Two delay towers were also deployed, each with two hangs: two with 12 Butterfly enclosures and the other two with 12 Mantas elements, approximately seventy yards from the main rig.

Apart from guitar groups accompanying choirs and singers and video contributions, the majority of the sound reinforcement was for presenters at the event (journalists, legal experts, psychologists, as well as Catholic, Christian Orthodox, Muslim and Sikh leaders), so for low frequency coverage, four Outline Subtech 218 subs installed at the stage and two at each delay tower were more than sufficient.

This set-up enabled the company to ensure coverage throughout the large square and in the streets leading into it, with optimum power and clarity up to almost 150 metres.

Gatti explains: “We used Outline’s Open Array software simulations, which are always very realistic, so - as usual on events of this scale - we did a considerable amount of work with the software, as we knew the rig would respond accordingly.”

Following the event, Gatti stated: “The delay systems, set according to the software calculations, only needed a very slight tweak during the sound check.”

Paladini concluded: “Things definitely went very well. We saw that the simulations corresponded with reality and, as far as system calibration was concerned, it was mainly a case of ‘plug and play’, thanks to Outline’s default presets.”


Posted by House Editor on 08/03 at 12:07 PM
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The Old Soundman: Club Restrictions

Here’s one of those situations that make you wonder about your career choice or where you are in your life path.

Pay close attention, our buddy Brian is showing us how to keep the disgustedness in check and not resort to a brick through the front window of this fine establishment…

Dear OSM:

O.K., try this one out…

Hit me with it, Bri! Let me have it!

You just found out the band you regularly mix for has a gig at a “new” or “never played there before” club…

Surely this is not an unknown experience for you.

So you lock out the night for the gig, then the band calls back and says “uh, the club guy says ‘no outside soundman touches the board’ but you can stand next to him and assist.”

Ah, that’s brutal, Brian! I can see why you’re ticked off. But don’t freak out if I tell you that this is exactly what happens if you and your band go on Conan or Letterman or “The Tonight Show” or any of the 99,000 awards shows.

So in a weird way, what you’re faced with is good training for the big time! Although those broadcast mixers usually have a conscience and spend a little time studying the record.

I’m actually going to have my own awards show next year! It’s going to be called “The People’s Radio Scene Superstar Vibe-A-Thon For Players and Soundpeople.”

All of the servile tools-of-the-manufacturers audio mags are going to cover it, and my co-hosts will be Ann Wilson of Heart, Martha Davis of the Motels and the chick from Evanescence.

I’m pretty sure she has a “thing” for me! (But don’t tell the Old Soundwoman.)

And I reply, “Did you mention to the club I’m a ‘professional’ and do this for a living, know the band’s material backward and forward, and have special cues for each song?”

Of course your pals did! Didn’t they?

They reply, “Sorry, we get too many boneheads running the board and screwing things up.” (Gee thanks, boneheads.)

Yeah, thanks a lot, boneheads!

So at the gig, I’m supposed to tell the house guy, “O.K., on this next chorus, hit the lead vocal with a 360 ms delay to trail off on his last note, then a big snare hit, followed by a guitar solo… ?”

May I make a suggestion, Brian? Go to this club as a customer one night, and strike up a conversation with the soundman.

Tell him exactly who you are. Have a couple beers with the guy, and tell each other some tales of the soundman life.

Of course, if the club is far from your home, this may not be practical. But if it’s nearby, go ahead and do your best to make friends with this individual who you’re busy demonizing, just as he is demonizing you.

Because, really, we all know he has a point – there are so many boneheads out there running around ruining sonic life for everyone within earshot of their ham-handed hijinks.

But – he is taking it pretty far. After all, he’s not controlling a major network program going out to millions of people every night.

Ahh, forget it – I’d rather stay home and watch reruns of “The Twilight Zone.”

Brian W

Can I come over and watch with you? How about the one with William Shatner as the nut who sees the ape out on the wing of the old airliner?

Yeah, you know exactly what I’m talkin’ about! You’ve now established yourself as a soundman of great taste and discernment.

I’m sure this is only a tiny, momentary stumbling block in your rampage to greatness!

Luv –

The Old Soundman

There’s simply no denying the love. Read more from the Old Soundman here.

Posted by admin on 08/03 at 07:18 AM
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Friday, July 31, 2015

Adamson Reinforces Miller Lite Oasis Stage At Milwaukee’s Summerfest

Blueprint AV software designed rig reinforces the 52,000 square foot Oasis with E15, E12 and S10 enclosures supported by E219 subwoofers.

Adamson Systems Engineering was tapped to provide sound reinforcement for the Miller Lite Oasis Stage at this year’s Milwaukee Summerfest.

The 11 day music festival features 11 stages, more than 800 acts, 1,000+ performances and draws an average of 900,000 music lovers from across the country.

The E-Series rig reinforced an assortment of big-name acts including Bastille, Public Enemy, Time Flies, Kip Moore, Sublime With Rome, Sammy Hagar and Smash Mouth.

The 52,000 square foot Oasis accommodates up to 9,500 fans. Adamson’s applications engineer Brian Fraser created the system utilizing Adamson’s Blueprint AV software to design a rig that would blanket the area while not overflowing into the festival grounds.

Fraser specified left-right arrays made up of six E15 and three E12 line array enclosures hung from ceiling trussing located above the stage. Front fill was provided by four S10 enclosures positioned along the lip of the stage while eight more S10 boxes handled outfill duties. The system was completed with 16 E219 subwoofers, ground stacked in front of the stage, to provide the low end needed to accommodate the variety of performances scheduled for the stage. 

“Mixing on an Adamson E series rig for the first time, I was blown away,” adds Ben “Snake” Schmitt, front of house engineer for Kip Moore. “The coverage was second to none, and maintained a consistent sonic quality from the first row to the last. Punchy, transparent, responsive and clear, these boxes are fun to mix through. I’m already looking forward to the next time I’m able to mix on an Adamson rig.”

Amplification and processing were provided by four 12-channel E-Racks loaded with Lab.gruppen PLM20K44 amplifiers with Lake Processing.

“The E15 is a very versatile and powerful rig, it kept up with our entire set without breaking a sweat,” adds Bryan “Froggy” Cross, front of house engineer for Sublime with Rome. “I really wanted to drive it at the end and it barely touched limit – and my monitor engineer said I shook her coffee off her case, so I’ll take that as the subs kicked ass. I got a super tight controlled response from them.”

Milwaukee-based Clearwing Productions was responsible for the sound, lighting and staging for all stages at the festival, including the Miller Lite Oasis. Bryan Baumgardner, audio operations/logistics for Clearwing adds, “The Adamson rig performed flawlessly. The ease of deployment as well as the low end was quite impressive.”

Adamson Systems Engineering
Blueprint AVTM software

Posted by House Editor on 07/31 at 03:10 PM
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L.A. Opera Premieres The Ghosts of Versailles With Lectrosonics

Soundmirror’s Grammy Award-winning team takes 24 channels of Lectrosonics wireless to the Music Center campus in Los Angeles.

Classical music recording and production company Soundmirror took the new Lectrosonics Digital Hybrid Wireless bodypack LT transmitters straight from the production line to the stage earlier this year to capture L.A. Opera’s West Coast premiere of The Ghosts of Versailles.

Soundmirror utilized 13 of the new L Series Large Bandwidth transmitters in combination with 11 Lectrosonics SMQV transmitters and 4 six-channel Venue receivers for a total of 24 channels of wireless to record composer John Corigliano’s opera, which was being fully staged in the U.S. for the first time in two decades.

“We got the first 13 LTs ever straight off the production line,” confirmed John Newton, who founded Soundmirror in Boston, MA in 1972 to provide digital recording services to the major record labels.

Newton had no concerns about putting the first production models straight into service, he said: “We have used Lectrosonics products so much over the years that we know that the reliability and ease of use is there. Sound Mirror is known for being an innovator, and our clients want the very best. Lectrosonics equipment sounds good and is of the quality that we require.”

Soundmirror’s veteran Grammy Award-winning team capturing the production at the Dorothy Chandler Pavilion, part of the four-venue Music Center campus in downtown Los Angeles, included producer Blanton Alspaugh, recording engineer Mark Donahue and Massachusetts-based independent wireless specialist David Williams.

Operating out of a temporary control room at the venue, the team recorded three of the six performances of The Ghosts of Versailles, which was being produced in repertory with The Barber of Seville and The Marriage of Figaro, the two classic “Figaro” operas that inspired it.

The 24 channels of Lectrosonics Digital Hybrid Wireless were paired with DPA 4071 lavalier microphones, positioned at each performer’s wigline.

“The 24 wireless got paired up with another 30-something Schoeps mics in the orchestra pit, and 15 or so mics on the stage and buried in the set,” reported Donahue.

A total of 80 tracks passed through Merging Technologies Horus interfaces to a SmartAV Tango control surface then into redundant Merging Pyramix DAWs, with a laptop for back-up, recording at 192 kHz.

“My job, when I’m mixing, is to mix the wireless,” said Donahue. “I have my 24 wireless mics and I have eight channels of VCAs if I have to rebalance the orchestra. I don’t pan the wireless mics—they all go into the center and support the zone mics to add a little bit of dialogue clarity. As Blanton is listening for audio quality issues and marking the score he’s also giving me on/off cues when people leave the scene and come back.”

The ability of the new LT to tune to as many as 3,072 selectable frequencies across a 75 MHz range—three standard Lectrosonics blocks—allowed Williams to successfully navigate the hostile RF environment in downtown L.A. “It was really nice to have the LT,” said Williams, who initially planned to evenly distribute the 24 channels across three Lectrosonics blocks before discovering that there was no space available in block 23. That necessitated squeezing 10 channels into block 22, he said. “The SMQVs are locked into a block, but the LTs have that three-block range,” which enabled them to be tuned to fit into the available frequency spectrum.

“Lectrosonics’ sound quality has always been superior, the reliability has been great and the cost is reasonable,” adds Donahue. “They were also the first to wade into the digital hybrid market, which gave us more channels with greater fidelity. You factor in all those things, and how many channels you need, and Lectrosonics really does rise to the top.”

Soundmirror’s orchestral, solo; opera and chamber recordings have received over 80 Grammy Award nominations, with the company’s staff collectively winning 25 Grammys. John Newton has won seven Grammy Awards, Blanton Alspaugh is a four-time Grammy Award-winner, including one for Producer of the Year, Classical in 2012, and Mark Donahue has five Grammy Awards to his credit.


Posted by House Editor on 07/31 at 08:28 AM
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Code Of Practice

Sidney Wilson’s worldview takes in the concept that one man’s music is another’s noise, and then transcends any conventional meanings the phrase may imply.

For him and the Erevu Group, a San Francisco, CA-based firm he founded that’s dedicated to the task of offering creative solutions to noise problems arising at outdoor music venues, harmony is a matter of striking a delicate balance between the needs of fans, artists, promoters, and communities at large.

In practical terms, there are three primary areas Erevu focuses upon as part of its problem solving core services: Real-time noise monitoring, sound system specification, and compliance reporting.

Relying upon an increasingly proprietary analysis platform utilizing hardware and software culled from the pro audio and sound and vibration industries, the company provides guidelines for optimizing venue coverage while simultaneously minimizing the impact on local residents.

Among these guidelines – which are commonly presented to clients in a formal “Code of Practice” document – are detailed recommendations for deploying sound systems, recommended maximum audio levels, loudspeaker types, trim heights, system focus points, and subwoofer configurations.

Getting Started
The Erevu Group came together in a collision of destiny and providence. Wilson, who also serves as operations manager for Hi-Tech Audio in Hayward, CA, was called in to help Jason Alt and George Edwards of nearby Delicate Productions with troublesome noise issues they faced with a Northern California client that owned a winery and hosted outdoor musical events. With an undercurrent of complaining neighbors and litigation swirling around him, Wilson dove into the project without really knowing how deep the water was, and with no real map of how to proceed.

“I only had logic to guide me,” Wilson says of the experience, “so we began by looking at the existing ordinances and made our first measurements based on those ordinances. What we found was that the client was in compliance. As a result the litigation went in an entirely different direction, and we wound up measuring for every event, and helping them design an acoustical shell. Overall it turned into about four and a half years of work, and we created our first Code of Practice document. Over that time we got better and better at doing these measurements, and realized the market potential for our specialized services.”

Sebastien Poux and Sidney Wilson going over data at the Delicate Productions Bay Area facility.

Ultimately, the winery’s noise-related problems were solved thanks to Wilson’s work and Delicate Productions’ willingness to let him experiment with the process until the desired results were achieved and all parties involved were satisfied. Future revenues generated by the events were saved, and Erevu’s techniques were greatly refined.

As the company continued to evolve, a new generation of clients enlisted its skills. Among this group were the California Roots Music & Art Festival and last year’s First City Festival, both of which were held at the Monterey County Fairgrounds. A site that can easily be classified as one where if anything can go wrong it probably will in terms of acoustical issues, the fairgrounds are bordered by residential areas, the Monterey Pines Golf Course, Monterey Regional Airport, and a mix of commercial strips, churches, and schools.

Add to this the vagaries of being next the ocean and the related microclimate changes it spawns, and one can better appreciate the hotbed of conflicting community issues that Wilson regularly faces underscoring the importance of having a predictable source.

“One of the things we discovered over the years was that despite whatever noise ordinance is in place in a city or county, a venue can be in total compliance and still be considered a nuisance,” he explains. “One neighbor will say the level is fine and then another will be spitting mad and saying they can’t take it. Against this backdrop, it didn’t take us long to determine that a big part of what should determine our best practices is discovering exactly what is disturbing people. Are they complaining about high frequencies, or the low-end? These are major questions you need to answer in order to solve the problem.”

According to Wilson, to a large degree the process of determining exactly what the neighbors are complaining about revolves around whether measurements are being made using A- or C-weighting. Unlike when using A-weighting, audio data measured and viewed with C-weighting allows engineers to see precisely what their relative levels are across the entire frequency spectrum, thereby making individually offending or excessive levels readily apparent.

This, in turn, makes self-correction quick and accurate: Rather than taking the whole bottom-end down if low frequencies are a problem, engineers can simply see that the kick drum is really the issue and fix it. The end result is mixes get significantly better.

Complete Correlation
This year’s BottleRock Festival in Napa, CA (Summer’s Leading Edge, July 2015 LSI) represented the third time out for an Erevu system at the popular Wine Country event. Front of house engineer Sebastien Poux, who oversaw activities for Delicate Productions at the Miner Family Winery Stage, concurs with Wilson’s preference for C-weighting.

“Over the years, we’ve always been walking on eggshells around the low frequencies at these shows,” Poux says. “They would be the ones that always put us ultimately into the red. What was great about the Erevu system this year was that I could see everything.

“If I heard too much bass, I didn’t have to mute all of the bass frequencies,” he continues. “I simply modified those where the problems showed themselves. This really helped me when I was dealing with guest engineers too. I didn’t have to tell them to change their mix in order to be compliant with the local noise regulations. I could just show them where things were a little hot and needed to come down a notch.

“With C-weighting you get all the frequency content for the signals you’re measuring. When you have those kinds of numbers in front of you, it unleashes your creativity to a much larger extent. What you hear and what you see on your monitor screen correlate completely.”

No engineer likes to be tapped on the shoulder while mixing and be told to turn it down. Taking that into consideration, one of the real strengths of an Erevu system is the ability it provides for engineers to self-regulate themselves. At BottleRock, if there was a problem, they could assess the situation in real-time and correct it almost immediately.

Bird’s-Eye View
At the hub of the BottleRock noise monitoring system was Erevu’s command center/production office, manned this time out by Louis Adamo of Hi-Tech Audio. Seated before multiple monitors, Adamo had a bird’s-eye view of measured data streamed in real-time from all remote locations both internal and external to the festival.

Screenshots of the Leq and other information measured over time at multiple stages at BottleRock 2015. While the Miner Family Winery Stage faced south toward the Napa River, two of the other main stages faced residential and commercial areas. Both showed significant improvement with regard to noise mitigation, despite Erevu moving its measurement locations outside the grounds 1,000 feet closer to both stages.

Inside, monitoring stations were setup at each stage. Outside, monitoring stations were placed in strategic areas within the community. From his post, Adamo could view everything happening from at that moment to over the course of a day or the entire weekend at any station. Beyond the Leq and other acoustical information, weather data was available as well for air temperature, barometric pressure, wind speeds, humidity, precipitation, and all other relevant factors.

Complementing this already broad picture was an overlay of Google maps revealing the locations of the stages and monitoring stations.

With all data stored to the cloud, Erevu had no problem providing its client with a legally-defensible document at the end of the event that would stand up in court should a question of compliance come up.

Lab-style measurement mics were chosen for the remote measuring stations, all of which were equipped with a LAN connection to facilitate the transmission of information via TCP/IP to the production office, as well as to the cloud-based data archive.

Twenty-one-inch monitors were placed at each of the festival’s house mix positions. Erevu’s recommended trim heights and loudspeaker/sub placement strategy, combined with the Miner Family Winery Stage’s VUE Audiotechnik line arrays, allowed Poux to drive the sound cohesively across his intended area of coverage and keep it there.

“The VUE rig was a very clean sounding PA,” Poux reports. “We had a nice, well-rounded sound. Adding the Erevu monitor to my mix position out front let me keep constant tabs on my levels, and provided a constant visual confirmation of what I heard in front of me and all around at every level. I was also constantly monitoring every other stage location, looking at the Leq in other spots, the weather…it’s all useful and brings a whole new dimension to how I think about my job.

Another screenshot showing measurement and weather data at BottleRock 2015, joined by a Google map showing the site’s boundaries.

“Hearing what’s going on around you – especially in a festival situation with multiple stages all going at once – is one thing, being able to see it too, that’s another. With sound bombarding you from 360 degrees around, sometimes it’s hard to tell just by listening what’s going on. Now all I have to do is look at my screen and I can see that the guy over there is hitting 105 and that’s what I’m hearing. If something has to be done or said to someone, this system gives me a straight-up answer.”

A New Norm
In the not-so-distant past (and even within the present for some), Wilson notes, the idea of noise monitoring and compliance to community standards was something many engineers didn’t know anything about, or simply didn’t care to know about.

“That’s rapidly changing in this country,” he says with the same passion that has fueled Erevu’s conviction to mediating the situation. “In Europe there’s a well-entrenched concern for monitoring our industry’s performance, and going beyond simple compliance with local sound level ordinances to insure that everyone in the community can coexist in harmony.

“It will soon be the norm here, and we’re happy to supply the tools that will make it all happen.”

Gregory A. DeTogne is a writer and editor who has served the pro audio industry for more than 30 years.

Posted by Keith Clark on 07/31 at 06:25 AM
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Thursday, July 30, 2015

Roskilde Festival Deploys Meyer Sound LEOPARD

The smallest member of the Meyer Sound LEO family leads a lineup of more than 200 loudspeakers covering four stages at festival.

At Denmark’s Roskilde Festival the new LEOPARD linear sound reinforcement system led a lineup of more than 200 Meyer Sound loudspeakers at four different stages.

The smallest and most versatile member of the Meyer Sound LEO Family of loudspeakers, the patent-pending LEOPARD system was launched this spring.

“LEOPARD was amazing—I could hear every instrument clearly and distinctly more than 50 meters from the stage,” says Lars Liliengren, production manager for Roskilde.

“We strive for perfection here at Roskilde, because we have only one chance each year to get it right.”

Roskilde technical manager Paul Jensen adds: “The sound was very open and very dynamic. I could close my eyes and hear every detail of the instruments from the bands that were playing.”

Supporting the Rising Stage, the LEOPARD system was provided by Glostrup-based Comtech and included main arrays of 12-each LEOPARD line array loudspeakers and dual, ground-stacked, steered-gradient arrays of six-each 900-LFC low-frequency control elements.

“We needed a lightweight system for this stage and LEOPARD was exactly right for the job,” says Jes Hylby Christensen, head of production for Comtech, “ And it was also easy to integrate the new LEOPARDs with our existing Meyer Sound inventory. It’s like working with Legos—they all fit together perfectly.”

In addition to LEOPARD, a LYON linear sound reinforcement system, another member of the Meyer Sound LEO Family, was provided for the 16,000-capacity Avalon Stage by Aarhus-based Victory Tour Production. The system was anchored by dual front hangs of 10-each LYON linear line array loudspeakers and four flown cardioid arrays of six-each 1100-LFC low-frequency control elements, one at each front and delay location. Two delay towers comprised another 10 LYON loudspeakers each.

“LYON is small but powerful, which made it the perfect choice for the Avalon stage, as the stage rigging allows only ten boxes per side,” says Theis Romme, head of audio for Victory Tour Production. “It was easy to rig everything in less than a day, and all the engineers were very happy with the sound of the system.”

Elsewhere, Roskilde’s Pavilion Stage was supported by a system built around side clusters of five-each JM-1P arrayable loudspeakers and twin cardioid stacks of three-each 1100-LFC elements. A “Ghettoblaster” mobile DJ truck powered by six JM-1P loudspeakers and eight 1100-LFC elements also carried high-energy EDM music around the festival site. Galileo Callisto loudspeaker management systems provided system drive and alignment for the Rising, Avalon, and Pavilion Stages.

Morten Büchert, the principal sound consultant for Roskilde, played a key role in determining system providers and evaluating their performance. “All stages must be ready to fully serve the artists and the audience,” he says. “In that respect, the LEO Family is a step forward in sound reinforcement and is a significant complement to the music at Roskilde.”

Meyer Sound

Posted by House Editor on 07/30 at 01:45 PM
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Michael Bishop Uses Royer Microphones To Win 10th Grammy

Recognized for his work on Vaughan Williams: Dona nobis pacem, Symphony No. 4, The Lark Ascending; using Royer SF-24 and SF-2 microphones.

Recording engineer and producer Michael Bishop won his 10th GRAMMY in the category Best Engineered Album, Classical; a project recorded with ribbon microphones from Royer Labs.

The award was issued to him at the 57th annual award show for his engineering, mixing, and mastering work on the ASO Media release Vaughan Williams: Dona nobis pacem, Symphony No. 4, The Lark Ascending, which features Robert Spano, Norman Mackenzie, and the Atlanta Symphony Orchestra and Chorus.

Shortly after on March 4th, he could be found in Dallas, TX engineering the Cancer Blows benefit concert recording for PBS at the Morton F. Meyerson Symphony Center.

In each case, the microphones that contributed to Bishop’s success on these two projects were drawn from the catalog of Burbank, CA-based Royer Labs.

As the co-founding member and recording engineer / producer for Five/Four Productions of Shaker Heights, OH, Bishop’s resume resembles a Who’s Who of music and entertainment.

Bishop’s recording credits include projects with Dizzy Gillespie, Wild Cherry, Hiromi Uehara, the Stanley Clarke Trio, Bonnie Raitt, The James Gang, Manhattan Transfer, Robert Spano and the Atlanta Symphony Orchestra and Chorus, plus Franz Welzer-Möst and The Cleveland Orchestra to name but a few. Michael has also recorded major film soundtracks including the MGM musical The Fantasticks and the Oscar-winning film Reds.

Presently, Bishop’s Royer Labs microphone arsenal includes an SF-24 Stereo Active Ribbon microphone, four SF-2 Mono Ribbon microphones, an SF-12 Stereo Ribbon mic, an R-122V Vacuum Tube Ribbon mic, four R-121 Mono Ribbon mics, and four R-101 Mono Ribbon microphones.

“For the Vaughn Williams project with the Atlanta Symphony Orchestra and Chorus, I used the Royer SF-24 as the main surround pickup of the orchestra and four SF-2s on the chorus,” Bishop explains.

“For the Cancer Blows project,” he continues, “I deployed an SF-24 as the main orchestra surround pickup while the SF-12 was used for the orchestra’s wind section as well as the overall big band pickup. I used the SF-2 for drum kit, the orchestra bass section, as well as the upright bass of the rhythm section. The R-122V was used as the primary downstage solo microphone while the R-121s were used as additional downstage solo mics and for the big band trumpet section. I also used the R-101 on the big band trumpet section.”

“I’ve used the SF-24 stereo ribbon mic as the main surround orchestra pickup on most of my orchestral recording sessions,” Bishop reports, “including the two recordings that had consecutively won the “Best Surround Album” GRAMMY. Accurate imaging, the ability to beautifully capture the ‘space’ around the orchestra, an un-colored sound, and perfect integration into the overall mix are among the attributes I can point to as to why I always rely on the SF-24 on my sessions. I also incorporate the pickup of the SF-24 to a degree into the stereo mix to add extra size and depth to the overall stereo image of the orchestra.”

The Royer SF-2 is another of Bishop’s favorites. “The SF2s have been the perfect chorus pickup microphone for me, especially when working with the challenging stage acoustics of the Atlanta Symphony Hall, where the physical layout of the orchestra and chorus can be quite difficult from a miking perspective,” he reports.

“With careful placement of the SF-2 ribbon mics, I can effectively use the natural -90dB null points of the mics to minimize the leakage of the percussion and brass instruments into the chorus microphones, yet maintain a proper distance with the chorus pickup. The SF-2s also interact far better than condenser mics would with the challenge presented by a strong soprano and alto section. A strong soprano section is capable of producing intermodulation distortion in the air around them. This is a natural phenomenon that can present some difficulty to condenser microphones, but a good ribbon microphone easily handles such a signal without adding any edginess to the sound.”

With the high profile projects characteristic of Bishop’s work, quality customer and technical support is crucial. Here too, he gives Royer Labs high marks, “The customer / technical support team at Royer Labs has been a lifeline for me in my work. I’ve been able to depend upon their assistance at a moment’s notice and they’ve always come through. I’ve found the Royer team to be among the best in the biz.”

Before turning his attention back to the business of the day, Bishop offered these final thoughts, “I’m fortunate to have a good set of tools available to me in my work and the Royer mics are there every time. The Royer ribbon mics play an absolutely essential role in all of my sessions. When I think of the sound I want to present, the Royer mics are a key ingredient.”

Royer Labs
Michael Bishop

Posted by House Editor on 07/30 at 08:07 AM
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Wednesday, July 29, 2015

Full Compass Systems Supports Opera In The Park In Madison

Sound team deploys several solutions that contribute to quality sound reinforcement to more than 15,000

A record crowd of more than 15,000 converged on Garner Park in Madison, WI last Saturday night for the 14th annual Opera in the Park, featuring performances by professional opera singers, the Madison Opera Chorus and the Madison Symphony Orchestra.

Jonathan and Susan Lipp, Full Compass Systems CEO and chairman of the board, respectively, as well as Bag End owners Henry Heine and Jim Wischmeyer once again donated their time and equipment to help the event deliver quality sound reinforcement. The team is rounded out by a number of Full Compass staff members and Sennheiser national key account manager Adam Livella, who also volunteers time and lends equipment to the event. 

“It’s the largest concert of its kind in the nation per capita, and who knows, maybe the world,” Susan Lipp states. “Which is totally amazing. You’d think San Francisco or New York would have the largest, but no, it’s right here in Madison.”

Now in it’s 13th year of aiding Madison Opera, the group is expanding, adding grandson Jake Lipp to the team in recent years. The 25-year-old comes from Chicago each summer to mix audio alongside his grandfather. He’s the third generation to make music and sound his career, working with the IATSE Local 2 as a stagehand, engineer and audio freelancer around Chicago.

Instead of close-miking instruments, the team deployed a minimum number of overhead mics to help the instruments blend naturally.

Jake Lipp working side-by-side with his grandfather Jonathan at Opera in the Park.

Further, Sennheiser MKH 800-P48 microphones were also placed at the front of the stage for the vocalists. In this instance they were set to the figure-8 pattern. The approach helps eliminate sound from the sides, reducing feedback and affording more control over the sound projected. This allowed the team to set up side-facing Bag End floor monitors at the front of the stage so the vocalists could hear themselves, while also saving space on a full stage.

The team also utilized Sennheiser A5000-CP passive antennas to send directional wireless signals to remote loudspeakers placed high up the hill at Garner Park. It streamlines the process in eliminating the need for cabling while also being resistant to dropouts.

Full Compass Systems

Posted by Keith Clark on 07/29 at 02:14 PM
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Manhattan’s YASI Piano Salon Retrofitted With Yamaha And NEXO

The 4,000 square-foot YASI Piano Salon features a performance venue housing concert-ready pianos, Yamaha digital consoles and NEXO loudspeakers.

Established in 1987 in New York City, Yamaha Artist Services (YASI) provides a wide range of professional services exclusively for performing artists, concert venues, performing arts organizations and educational institutions.

In 2005, it relocated to the heart of midtown Manhattan, to a historical landmarked 1925 building that originally served as Aeolian Hall, the headquarters of the Aeolian Piano Company.

Occupying over 4,000 square feet, the YASI Piano Salon features an elegant performance venue housing a large selection of concert-ready premium pianos.

In 2005, the Piano Salon installed a Yamaha Active Field Control system (AFC), a state-of-the art acoustically adaptable sound environment.

The sound processing technology of AFC can optimize room acoustics to suit the size of a performance, from solo to ensemble, and can recreate authentic acoustic simulations of other performing arts venues.

This past June, the Yamaha Professional Audio Division commercial audio team upgraded the YASI AFC system replacing 12 ceiling loudspeakers with the new VXC8 loudspeakers, replacing the 10 wall loudspeakers with VXS8 loudspeakers, and adding four VX10S subwoofers.

The new loudspeakers are all part of the Commercial Installation Solutions (CIS) group of products. AFC electronics were replaced and the original AFC1 system was upgraded with AFC3 processors (a special build with two FIR cards each). The team added a Ri8-D remote input mic pre-amp, CIS XMV amplifiers (Dante version), and several VXC4 ceiling speakers to the guest holding area for pre-show music or for events that may be played out in the main salon area to be heard.

The Yamaha commercial audio team also installed a new PA system consisting of three NEXO PS8 loudspeakers and an LS400 subwoofer powered by one NXAMP4X1 with NXDT104 Dante controller card. A Yamaha MTX5-D processor was installed to facilitate integration of the PA system with the AFC loudspeakers. The MTX5-D processor has two Shure ULX-D mic channels and inputs from the YASI 5.1 video system as well as tie lines from the NUAGE Advanced Production DAW studio currently under construction. ATK installed an AMX control system that allows the AFC operator to easily select different application configurations.

“Simple applications might involve just the wireless mics and computer video and audio inputs to wall panels,” states Joe Rimstidt, AFC systems applications engineer.

“The signals can be routed to the main PA or to the ceiling speakers of the AFC system. There can also be a background music mode where music is played through all of the AFC speakers for receptions in the piano salon and again, a mic may be used for announcements during certain events.”

Rimstidt said that for more complex shows, Yamaha installed a QL1 digital console with Rio1608-D stage box to allow for more inputs which can be sent to the main NEXO PA for events on the “stage” end of the room, or a pair of Yamaha DSR12 self-powered speakers can be used for events in other areas of the room. There are also setups to allow YASI to easily demo the Remote Live applications with the renowned Disklavier Player Piano in addition to hosting a variety of events in the facility.

“Yamaha Artist Services New York is delighted to be able to partner with our colleagues at the Yamaha Professional Audio Division to provide state-of-the-art audio and acoustic enhancements to our beautiful Piano Salon located in the heart of midtown Manhattan,” states Bonnie Barrett, director, Yamaha Artist Services.

“The upgraded Active Field Control system, together with our new PA system and NUAGE Advanced Production Studio will enable us to provide a suite of services to Yamaha Artists that is simply unparalleled in the music industry.  Only at Yamaha could the latest audio technologies be harnessed and seamlessly integrated into high-profile acoustic environment sought after by the most discriminating performing artists in the world.”

The YASI conference room located on a separate floor of the building was equipped with a similar CIS system including an MTX5-D processor and VXC4 ceiling speakers, and VXS10 sub.

For more information on the Yamaha AFC system, QL digital console, NEXO and Yamaha speakers, as well as CIS products, visit Yamaha’s website.


Posted by House Editor on 07/29 at 12:44 PM
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Friday, July 24, 2015

The Cardigans On Tour With Allen & Heath’s GLD Chrome

Swedish PA company, Parashoot selects Chrome GLD-112 for front of house, with a Chrome GLD-80 for monitors.

Nordic rock band, The Cardigans, are currently touring with Allen & Heath’s GLD Chrome digital mixing system, supplied and managed by Swedish PA company, Parashoot.

“We have been using Allen & Heath’s iLive systems on The Cardigans since the revival tour in 2012.” says Parashoot’s Oscar Söderlund.

“More recently, I used the GLD system on the Nina Persson’s Animal Heart solo tour, so it felt natural to move to the GLD Chrome for this summer tour. Nina’s vocals in particular sound so wonderful through GLD, I was confident about making the switch.”

Parashoot selected a Chrome GLD-112 for front of house, with a Chrome GLD-80 on monitors.

The band’s monitor set up is mixture of wedges, and wireless and hardwired in-ears. An AR2412 remote IO rack is installed as a stage box, with two 2 AR84 racks in another rack containing a multi-track player/recorder and the band’s and techs’ in-ear monitor system. This is connected by running two Cat5 cables between monitor/stage-box and the rack. A double CAT5e/6 connects monitor and front of house, and the monitor GLD-80 sends rack inputs to the front of house GLD-112 through a redundant ACE card setup.

“The speed of GLD makes it very easy for us to drag, drop, add or lose channels on the fly. This is particularly useful when, for example, guest musicians or new instruments are added during sound check or even line check,” says Söderlund. “At front of house, I use the onboard FX and dynamics. It’s fantastic that the same FX that I used on iLive also work and sound great on the GLD. I always use the classic A&H channel compressor, and am loving the new 16T and 16VU - they sound great and very much like the real deal. The Transient Controller is amazingly good, and so are the new delays.”

Parashoot has also established a simple stage communication system, enabling front of house and monitors to talk to each other through the PFL buses, plus the ability to talk to just the backline staff, or the band during sound check.

“In my opinion, Allen & Heath is leading the way in digital sound - it’s ground breaking stuff,” concludes Söderlund.

Allen & Heath

Posted by House Editor on 07/24 at 09:08 AM
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Masque Sound Provides Complete Audio Overhaul For The Muny Theater

Tony Award-winning sound designer John Shivers with co-designers Hugh Sweeney and David Patridge select all new equipment for America's oldest outdoor musical theater.

When The Muny, America’s largest and oldest outdoor musical theater, kicked off its 97th season, Masque Sound celebrated a decade as the venue’s AV equipment and services provider with a complete audio overhaul. 

A St. Louis tradition since 1918, The Muny produces all its musicals in the summer season and operates every year from mid-June to mid-August.

The outdoor amphitheater seats 11,000 people, with approximately 1,500 free seats in the last nine rows available on a first-come, first-served basis.

New this season was the addition of Tony Award-winning sound designer John Shivers, who along with his co-designers Hugh Sweeney and David Patridge, was instrumental in bringing new equipment to the venue.

“With 11,000 seats, all outdoors with no roof or walls, everything is exposed to the elements,” says Shivers.

“Weather is very hard on equipment so we needed to make sure that what we selected was very robust. We took a big departure from what had been used for several years. Working with Masque Sound was a major benefit, especially because they have been providing equipment to the venue for the past 10 years.”

In choosing the PA system, Shivers decided to use Meyer Sound’s LYON linear line array loudspeaker since the venue required much more coverage than a typical Broadway show. 

“I heard the LYONs previously and knew they would be a good choice for the far field coverage,” adds Shivers. “Meyer Sound had been out to see the venue and agreed the LYON would be a good match. Masque Sound purchased the new speakers for us and they sound great. We have received a lot of compliments about the sound; it’s a noticeable difference to everyone from what they have had in the past.”

The self-powered LYON linear line array loudspeaker is a member of Meyer Sound’s LEO family of linear loudspeakers. LYON delivers the same headroom and precision as the LEO-M with the same technology housed in a lighter and more compact cabinet. Optimized rigging and self-powered configuration streamlines both setup and breakdown for LYON systems. LYON is for medium- to large-scale array applications that do not require the long-throw capability of LEO-M.

“With the LEO system, we have shown how a system that stays linear across all frequencies and at very high sound levels can provide a whole new listening experience for everything from the New York Philharmonic to Bassnectar,” says John Meyer, Meyer Sound’s CEO and co-founder. “By combining LEO’s high level of linearity with a more flexible package, LYON is opening up many more opportunities for listeners to experience the performance advantages of a linear system.”

In addition to the LYON line arrays that were used for the far field, Masque Sound provided Meyer Sound M’elodie line arrays for the near field, Meyer Sound CQ1s were used to fill the mid area as well as its UPA-1Ps to fill in the near field and center.

Additionally, 14 d&B audiotechnik EO loudspeakers were used for front fill. Masque Sound also supplied a DiGiCo SD7 Live Digital Console, DPA 4066 microphones for the actors as well as a selection of instrument microphones from Shure, Neumann and DPA. A 48-channel wireless package from Sennheiser, including the 9000 Series and 5212/5012, was also supplied by Masque Sound. 

“Masque Sound was great in providing us the equipment, support and additional speaker coverage we needed for this huge venue,” says Shivers. “It was great that Gary Stocker from Masque Sound came out for an on-site visit, as he really knows the idiosyncrasies of this venue. He made modifications to the DiGiCo console, including some additional fans, to prevent it from overheating in the sun.” 

Additional system upgrades included the installation of a fiber optic infrastructure, not only to accommodate the SD7 but to also future-proof the venue. The bandwidth of fiber optic is far greater then CAT5, and according to Shivers, just made sense. 

“In addition to the great collaboration we had with Masque Sound, our two mixers Mitch Tracy and Lucas Indelicato, do a wonderful job night in and night out,” adds Shivers. “We also have to give kudos to the backstage audio crew who handle the microphones and orchestra pit. They have the unenviable task of striking the pit every night and making sure the mics are working and in good positions. These latest audio equipment and fiber updates really set up The Muny for success, this season and into the future.”

My Fair Lady was the first of seven shows this summer at The Muny. Hairspray, Holiday Inn, Buddy: The Buddy Holly Story, Into The Woods, Beauty and the Beast and Oklahoma! round out the rest of the summer’s scheduled plays.

Masque Sound

Posted by House Editor on 07/24 at 07:49 AM
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Thursday, July 23, 2015

France Celebrates Bastille Day Under The Eiffel Tower With Lawo mc²36 Consoles

The National Orchestra of France and of the Radio France Choir perform with 250 musicians through consoles and routers from Lawo.

More than 400,000 spectators gathered on Paris’ Champs de Mars for the 14th July La Fête Nationale (Bastille Day) public holiday.

The crowd assembled at the foot of the Eiffel Tower for a performance of Carl Orff’s “Carmina Burana” by 250 musicians from the National Orchestra of France and of the Radio France Choir.

Sound for the concert was mixed on two Lawo mc²36 desks at front of house – one handling the orchestra and the other for the choirs.

Two Lawo DALLIS I/O systems, used as stageboxes, were connected via RAVENNA/AES67 Audio-over-IP technology to a newly developed Nova router.

An additional Yamaha console was connected via MADI. This setup allowed easy networking and sharing of all resources and busses between all consoles.

“The 24-fader mc²36 was set up for mixing the choirs and the 40-fader desk for the orchestra. Both consoles – plus the Yamaha console that was used for the presenter’s microphone and music playout during the firework display – along with all of the DALLIS I/O and the audio recorders were connected to our new plug & play Nova router,” explains Hervé de Caro, Lawo’s live sound specialist.

“The mc²36 features a very intuitive configuration page for setting up and managing the rights within the network, controlling the preamps and feeding the different outputs and recorders.”

“The Nova router allowed us to use up to 32 busses between consoles, so the premix of the choirs, the ‘spare’ mix from the OB van and the presenter console were assigned directly from the mc²36 consoles,” he continues.

The flexibility of the RAVENNA-based ‘all-in-one’ mc²36 demonstrated here its capability to meet the requirements of broadcast, live and install applications, providing reliability, audio quality, routing flexibility, and high channel capacity.

“In combination with the mc²Compact I/O and mc²36, this new Nova router, which will be officially launched at the upcoming IBC, becomes a very smart package for live performance, installed sound and houses of worship,’ de Caro elaborates. “It is just plug & play – you connect your consoles and I/O systems via RAVENNA/AES67 or MADI, and the audio network is up and running, providing immediate access to all sources. And user rights are easily done directly on the console’s touchscreen.”

Back at the Eiffel Tower, the singers’ performance of the popular opera pleased the enthusiastic crowd, as well as those listening to the outstanding broadcast on Radio France.

“The show went very well,’ Hervé de Caro agrees. “The sound engineers were very impressed by the sound and the tool-set given by the processing of the channels. They also appreciated the GUI, which allowed them to quickly flip, route and mix to any of the auxes.”


Posted by House Editor on 07/23 at 12:12 PM
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