Sennheiser backs performers at Brit Awards
Friday, 28 February 2020
britsSinging in the rain at the O2 Arena, London
UK - Sennheiser microphones and IEM systems were recently put into use at the 2020 BRIT Awards.
Hosted by comedian Jack Whitehall and held at the O2 Arena in London, this year’s BRIT Awards celebrated its 40th anniversary.
Britannia Row Productions, long-time audio supplier for the show, provided the requirements for the audio system. The BRITs always present challenges for the audio team led by live sound supervisor Colin Pink, and this year was no exception, with three stages and two separate flown PA systems designed by Brit Row’s Joshua Lloyd.
Brit Row deployed 16 channels of Sennheiser Digital 6000 and 40 channels of 2000 series IEMs for all Sennheiser performers and presenters on the night.
Stormzy, the winner of British Male Solo Artist performed a medley of his hits, and was joined by Tiana Major9 and Teni Tinks as well as choir members and dancers, all standing on the stage under a solid wall of rain.
Raphael A. Williams, Stormzy’s sound engineer, reports: “The first time that we did the waterfall effect in 2018 it was just Stormzy in the rain and then the rest of the production cast and BVs were outside of it. And now this time, the TAWBOX creative team just thought ‘let’s put more people there!’, so we had Stormzy, Tiana and Teni with Sennheiser microphones on stage together with the 60 choir members and 60 dancers.”
Performing with Stormzy on the night were Burna Boy, Tiana Major9, and Teni Tinks all using SKM 6000 with MD 9235 capsules and 2000 series IEMs. An additional 19 channels of 2000 series IEMs were used for bands and performers with a further three channels for technicians.
“The MD 9235 capsule is unbelievable,” enthuses Williams. “It was also technically the first time Burna Boy was on in-ears - normally he does not use in-ears at all, only wedges - but we asked him to try them, as every engineer is different, and we didn’t have any problems. He had got a pack, he has got a good microphone, and he liked it, which is a real plus.”
Other artists using Sennheiser microphones included Mabel, the winner of British Female Solo Artist, who was using a Digital 6000 wireless system for her performance of Don’t Call Me Up. Mabel sang into a Sennheiser HSP 4 headset, transmitted via a Sennheiser SK 6212 mini-bodypack transmitter and received by an EM 6000. One channel of 2000 IEM was used for monitoring.
Harry Styles performed Falling standing on a waterlogged stage and with more water pouring out of a grand piano, as he crooned the ballad into his SKM 6000 with MD 9235 capsule. Monitoring for his three backing vocalists and piano player was done via four channels of 2000 IEMs.
Closing the show was Rod Stewart performing I Don’t Want to Talk About It, with Ronnie Wood joining Stewart for Stay With Me. Wood wore Sennheiser IE 500 PRO IEMs and later commented how much he liked the sound of them.
“What can I say other than a big thank you to Sennheiser for their continued support on the BRITs,” says Britannia Row director, Lez Dwight. “The two Andys bring a level of comfort to our RF team that is unparalleled.”
Joshua Lloyd, Britannia Row’s technical projects manager, adds, “Sennheiser provides a great service with their tech support at The Brits. Just knowing that they’re on site adds an extra layer of comfort, which goes a long way on a busy, live show such as this. Andy Lillywhite and the team are more than happy to assist with any and all queries and that really strengthens the wider audio crew.”
Andy Egerton, artist relations manager with Sennheiser, comments: “It’s always great to support the Brits and it’s such a long-standing relationship between Sennheiser, Brit Row and Colin Pink. With this being Sennheiser 75th anniversary and The BRITs 40th year, it’s a testament to the level of quality all concerned bring to the production.”
(Jim Evans)

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