MLA on tour with ‘android diva’ Hatsune Miku
Tuesday, 18 December 2018
hatsune-miku-crypton-future-mediaIn addition to Olympia, Capital supported the tour in Paris and Cologne
Europe - Capital Sound recently completed one of their more unusual mini-tours when they provided sound reinforcement, including Martin Audio’s MLA, for three shows by Japanese ‘android diva’ Hatsune Miku. The ‘Vocaloid’ music sensation uses a computer generated voicebank developed by Crypton Future Media.
This virtual persona is actually a 16-year-old blue haired girl, who is seen onstage as a 3D hologram projection. Her repertoire is entirely original and she has over 2.5 million followers on social media.
The Expo 2018 Europe tour came to Capital via Jamal Chalabi of Proper Productions, with whom they work frequently. Since the London date was the densely populated Kensington Olympia, a hugely noise sensitive site, it was obvious that only MLA would offer the level of containment necessary while reaching the considerable levels required by the Japanese production.
In addition to Olympia, Capital supported the tour in mainland Europe at La Seine Musicale, Paris, and Cologne’s 18,500-capacity Lanxess Arena.
With three such diverse venues, according to Capital crew chief Amy Newton-Smith, selecting MLA had been a ‘no brainer’. However, it required the genius of system tech Ben Turnbull to deliver a consistent and first class sound - particularly when confronted with sound that would be running at 102dB.
However, according to the crew chief, the shows were exceptional, in part due to the live backing band, comprising two guitars, bass, keys and drums, all playing to a click track, with Hatsune’s vocals triggered by Pro Tools.
“She was projected as a 3D hologram, looking just like a real artiste on stage, with all the moves - foot on the wedges and really rocking out,” remarks Amy.
The main PA comprised 11 MLA elements and an MLD Downfill each side, with 12 MLX subs along the front. Side-hangs consisted of eight MLA Compact per side and four DD12s perched on the subs provided front-fills, while a pair of Martin Audio XD12s on stands were used for talkback. At Olympia, where no side-hangs were necessary, the MLA Compacts were redeployed as delays.
The tour provided a real test for system tech, Turnbull - particularly at Olympia, where concerts rarely take place. “Vanguardia had done the acoustic measurements and were expecting levels of 92dB(A), but we managed to squeeze 98dB(A), with a lot to spare, which was more than anticipated.”
(Jim Evans)

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