Australia - Approximately 75km north of Sydney, in the city district of Gosford, is the rather un-prepossessing building that houses the vibrant Laycock Street Community Theatre. The theatre is the only professional proscenium arch venue in the locality, with its tiered seating comfortably accommodating audiences up to 390. The Gosford Musical Society sits at the heart of many of the theatre's productions.

Chris King is arts and culture coordinator for Gosford City Council. "Laycock Street Community Theatre is very much the hub of the area's performance culture. As such, it hosts a very wide variety of performance genres from musicals, rock concerts, pure drama performances, comedy acts, corporate events, film presentations and various community groups, like dance schools. The goal of any new loudspeaker system was to ensure all styles of performance were suitably covered, from the loudest rock show to a subtle, fine music performance, from a large musical to the smallest play.

"We were fortunate to receive funding through the Arts NSW, State Government Regional Capital Programme which was matched by Gosford City Council," explains King. "This allowed us to choose a system that not only met but exceeded all of our selection criteria, as well as acquiring equipment that would provide numerous benefits to us in the longer term, in comparison with some other proposed options. Guiding our decision were the many positive recommendations from other venues who had recently installed d&b systems.

"d&b audiotechnik had the most flexible system with the best quality of sound and coverage for our venue," acknowledges King, on why d&b was the best all round option for Laycock, providing maximum value for their investment dollars. "Another important factor in our decision was that d&b audiotechnik is also one of the few manufacturers specified at the top of most technical riders we receive for touring shows. A d&b audiotechnik installation meant we had a system that would meet all expectations and requirements of touring shows and engineers."

The chosen system was based on the Q-Series. L/R arrays either side of the proscenium include a Qi-SUB, with the low end further supported by B2-SUBs ground stacked under each array. Extra Qi10s are rigged to provide enhanced centre vocal localisation for drama, musicals and film presentations, while several 8S loudspeakers from the xS-Series cover front-fill duties. M6 monitors were chosen for onstage foldback, driven by a D6 amplifier, with the specific intention to redeploy them to the Theatre's smaller, multi-purpose, Don Craig Room, to create an additional sound reinforcement system in this very intimate space.

Australian distributors for d&b, National Audio Systems, handled the project. Dave Jacques from their technical sales department notes, "Although the design and the commissioning was done by myself, Laycock Street Community Theatre engaged Cuepoint as the dealer to do the physical installation. They are one of our rental partners and provided excellent service to Laycock."

(Jim Evans)

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