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The 5th Avenue Theatre In Seattle Relies On Stock Of DPA Microphones To Support Productions

Theatrical sound designer Kai Harada employs venue’s varied DPA inventory for recent production of “Marie, Dancing Still.”
A scene from “Marie, Dancing Still” at the 5th Avenue Theatre in Seattle, which utilized mics from DPA in a range of applications. Photo Credit: Paul Kolnik

The 5th Avenue Theatre in Seattle has a large stock of DPA Microphones in its inventory for deployment on a range of live productions, including the recent presentation of Marie, Dancing Still.

Specifically, the theatre’s DPA selections includes 4061 omnidirectional miniatures, 4011 cardioids, 4099 instrument mics, and the newest addition, the 6061 omnidirectional subminiatures. “We’re happy to add DPA mics to our inventory whenever we can,” says Karen Katz, head sound engineer for The 5th Avenue Theatre. “Among high-end microphones, DPA is not only reasonably priced, but also provides the most clear and natural tone every time — they are beautiful sounding mics.”

For Marie, Dancing Still, a production based on dance and ballet, it was critical for the sound team at to implement a microphone approach that would stay in place. “The thin diameter of the 6061 lavaliers is impressive and made it easy for us to use a toupee clip to attach the microphone to the performer’s head, knowing it would remain secured throughout the show,” says Katz. “With other mics, we often had cables falling out of the clips, but the low-profile 6061 mic provided us with ample flexibility and mobility for the dance-based production.”

Marie, Dancing Still sound designer Kai Harada was pleased to find the venue’s inventory of DPA mics upon his arrival. “The theatre was already carrying a large complement of DPA 4061 lavalier microphones as part of its house inventory, but we needed to purchase additional microphones for the production of Marie,” he explains. “We chose the DPA 6061s knowing they would have a similar sonic signature to the existing 4061 stock, with the added advantage of being smaller in size. The sonic consistency between these mics is great; I might even say that I like the quality of the 6061s even better than the 4061s. We can use them all simultaneously and have a seamless, even sound throughout.”

Some of the 5th Avenue Theatre’s inventory of DPA mics.

Additionally, Harada employs DPA’s instrument mic for acoustic bass applications. “I especially love the way the 4099 instrument mic sounds on acoustic bass, which really helped to create a lovely soundtrack for Marie, Dancing Still,” he adds, noting that it was also used on violins throughout the production. “The DPA 4099 has become a staple of mine. When I need a close-mic solution for strings or percussion, it is my go-to microphone.”

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