In March 2009, Cirque du Soleil officially opened the doors of its new training center based at the company’s Resident Show Division (RSD) in Las Vegas. where technical staff can advance their skills in the use of the lighting, audio, rigging, and automation equipment behind Cirque’s extravagant, multisensory theatrical spectacles.
Meyer Sound, whose audio technology supports all of Cirque’s resident productions, has expanded the company’s worldwide education program to include regular Matrix3 audio show control and CueConsole training sessions at RSD.
The RSD facility is the brainchild of Kim Scott, technical show support training manager, with Sylvain Brisebois, head of audio of Cirque du Soleil’s Zumanity, coordinating the program logistics with Jerry Placken of Meyer Sound. Other Cirque audio department leads are also involved, including Mark Dennis of Kà, Bill Mansfield of “O”, and Jason Pritchard of The Beatles LOVE.
“Having Meyer Sound seminars here in Las Vegas is valuable for LCS beginners and power users alike,” says Brisebois. “For newcomers, it is an intense introduction to the foundations of LCS straight from the manufacturers. And power users greatly benefit from the dynamic exchange of ideas and programming styles.”
Cirque Du Soleil now has a well-equipped creative laboratory for its audio operators to fine-tune their level of knowledge, an education platform for cross-training technical staff interested in entering audio, and a facility for co-hosting courses in related fields with universities across the U.S.
“Meyer Sound has made it possible for me to achieve my mandate of developing a strong hands-on technical training program,” says Scott. “Without Meyer’s generous support of equipment, instructors, and resources, the program would not have the efficiency and quality that it does today.”
The collaboration was a natural decision for Meyer Sound, a strong believer that audience satisfaction can only be guaranteed by precision engineering and a high level of technical understanding in practitioners.
“For over 15 years, Meyer Sound has enjoyed a close relationship with Cirque du Soleil, working closely to push the envelope of entertainment technology,” says Helen Meyer, co-founder and executive vice president of Meyer Sound, “With education being one of our core values and with our large user base in Las Vegas, we are pleased to support RSD’s efforts.”
The CueConsole and Matrix3 training at RSD is an addition to Meyer Sound’s expansive education program, which roots date back to the 1980s.
Led by Education Program Manager Gavin Canaan, the international program offers a range of audio education initiatives for all skill levels.
In addition to private group sessions customized for Meyer Sound users like Cirque technicians, Meyer Sound’s education efforts include a broad range of audio seminars with topics including sound system design and optimization, acoustical prediction with MAPP Online Pro, audio show control with Matrix3, as well as the popular Mixing Workshop by veteran audio engineer Buford Jones.
Meyer Sound’s education program frequently partners with universities and industry organizations to provide seminars and trainings, as well as scholarship opportunities. To learn more about Meyer Sound’s education program, go to http://www.meyersound.com/education/.