A recent 24-hour livestream concert dubbed “Covidhagen,” originating from the roof of the Copenhagen Opera House and presented on the Twitch TV platform, saw production specialists DPA Soundco deploy CODA Audio loudspeakers for monitoring.
Audio engineer Ally Kerslake, the project manager for the ambitious event. dealt with more than 50 acts, some with multiple personnel, in the round-the-clock event on a roof that’s accessed via a small elevator and an even smaller stairway.
“This was only the second time an event had been staged on the Opera House roof,” Kerslake notes. “The first was a Red Bull diving event in 2018 where we supplied an audio solution, so having been chosen again, we knew the kinds of challenges we’d face. Safety was a key concern, both in terms of COVID-19 and the access issues.”
The fact that the audience for the event would be at home rather than on the Opera House roof meant that there was no requirement for a traditional main PA. Instead, the need for an extremely solid monitor solution was the engineer’s top priority.
“The stage was situated on the center roof section of the Opera House,” he notes. “It was effectively a blank canvass in terms of planning, because there had never been a concert style production up there. We knew there wouldn’t be a stage roof because of building regulations and no chance of a usual monitor mixing position.”
In fact, the consoles for monitoring and broadcasting were located three floors below inside the main building, with performances watched on a screen, and since the nature of the event demanded five-minute turnovers, it was more similar to a festival rather than a TV production.
DPA Soundco deployed six biamped CODA Audio CUE TWO stage monitors across the front of the stage, with a CODA Audio APS :booth” system to cater for the many DJs who performed. This consisted of a single APS-SUB and three APS per side. The team also used a stereo system of CODA Audio SCV and HOPS8 for broadcast reference monitors as well as a further pair of CUE TWO as listen wedges for the monitor engineers downstairs.
“The power of both the CUE TWO and APS systems was perfect to fire through the windy conditions on the roof, and for such fast change-overs the light weight of the CUE TWOs definitely helped,” Kerslake says. “It’s the lightest 15-inch, 3-way wedge I’ve come across, and the crew onstage were certainly glad of that after 24 hours. We didn’t have a single issue of tonality throughout the whole production and actually had multiple artists asking if we could provide the same solution for their future tours.”
Every aspect of the production scrupulously complied with the regulations regarding COVID-19. A work station was placed on the roof equipped with a full disinfection set-up, with dedicated windscreens for each artist and all IEMs and transmitters thoroughly cleaned between uses.
“I’ve worked with most of the main PA systems out on the road, and in my opinion CODA brings all the required principal elements together in one package,” he concludes.They’re by far the easiest to rig and fly and as an operator, the high fidelity and power you get from a CODA box is pretty astounding. The size and weight of the bigger line arrays like AiRAY and ViRAY is very favourable compared to other manufacturers. In today’s world, where truck space is at a premium, the advantages add up in economic terms without compromising audio quality in any way.
“At DPA Soundco, we manage a wide variety of productions, from large-scale arena tours and stadiums to TV and corporate shows, and CODA’s range of speakers always gives me the options I need for any type of show.”