Broadway shows shine with DiGiCo

Friday, 3 August 2012

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Broadway shows shine with DiGiCo
Once is based on the Academy Award-winning film about an Irish musician and a Czech immigrant drawn together by their shared love of music
USA - The number of Broadway productions relying on DiGiCo technology continues to grow, the company reports. This June, two of the newest productions and their respective sound designers took home coveted 2012 Tony Awards for sound design: Clive Goodwin for Once and Darron L. West for Peter and the Starcatcher. They each found DiGiCo desks critical to the creation and design process of their shows.

Once is based on the 2006 Academy Award-winning film about an Irish musician and a Czech immigrant drawn together by their shared love of music. In transitioning the show to the larger theatre, Goodwin chose a DiGiCo SD7T after consulting with Scott Kalata at Masque Sound, a leading theatrical sound reinforcement, installation and design company, who'd been helping in the design process.

"We needed something with a lot of busses and a high input/output count, flexible theatre-friendly architecture, and the capability of using Waves plug-ins," Goodwin reflected. "And, it goes without saying that we needed great sound quality. I had used a DiGiCo D5 in a previous life in live music touring, and I was impressed with the user-friendly nature and excellent sound quality. I found the SD7's dynamic EQs - both onboard and from Waves - were extremely useful in vocal processing."

Also transitioning from the small stage to the big theatre with much fanfare is Peter and the Starcatcher, based on the novel of the same name, which gives the back story for the beloved character Peter Pan. The show got its start in several venues before moving on to the New York Theatre Workshop, where the full production team came together - including sound designer Darron L. West, associate designer Charles Coes and production provider Masque Sound - before opening on Broadway in the spring of 2012.

Enlisting the help of Scott Kalata at Masque, they spec'd a DiGiCo SD10-24 console to handle the expanding production. Key factors for their new console consideration were having an onboard automation package that could work well for theatre, a flexible bus structure, a system that offered lots of outboard control, programming and matrixing, and a transparent sound.

"The sound design of this show is very old-fashioned, as Darron is happy to say," offers Coes. "It was important for us to create a feel and a subtle sound that seems to come from the actors and from the band. Having a console that sounds incredibly transparent and clear - and lets engineer Rob Bass follow the show really carefully - keeps us from showing our hand in how much we're actually reinforcing the show."

(Jim Evans)


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