Brazil - Developed and published by Riot Games, League of Legends has become one of the world’s most popular third-person multiplayer online battle arena games, attracting more than 100m active players each month.
This year the Brazilian finals took place on 2 September at the Mineirinho Arena to a live audience of approximately 8,000 and was also broadcast live on ESPN in Brazil. Audio supplier Gabisom were there to ensure the gamers aural experience would match the intensity of the final battles taking place, trusting DiGiCo as their weapon of choice.
Gaining popularity since 2010, multiplayer online battle arena or ‘MOBA’ is currently one of the most widespread forms of game play and League of Legends is at the forefront of this, attracting thousands of eager gamers to the championships.
For this large-scale, multi-facted production, Gabisom was tasked with providing the entire audio system, including the OB truck. Wanting to be equipped with the most flexible solution possible, they chose a combination of three DiGiCo SD7s - one at Front of House, one at monitors for the opening ceremony and one in the broadcast truck - and two SD10s at monitors for the gaming element of the event, all running on an Optocore fibre loop, with an L-Acoustics K1 and K2 system used for the main PA and out-fills.
“For the opening ceremony, there was a live band and a lot of video mapping,” explains Eder Moura, system engineer for Gabisom. “For this, we used the three SD7s with two SD Racks, for each SD7, with the FOH console utilising 120 ch
UK - Cardiff-based events specialist 11th Hour will bring its 11th year in business to a close by supplying a huge New Year’s Eve fireworks spectacular to its home city.
Sayers Amusements, with whom 11th Hour work to deliver Cardiff’s Winter Wonderland, commissioned the public display which will be fired from Cooper’s Field in Bute Park on the stroke of midnight.
The six minute aerial show will comprise professional Category 1.3 explosives with calibres ranging from 75 - 200mm, culminating with a loud, rapid-fire finale. Fireworks are a growing area of 11th Hour’s portfolio, the company having already delivered a number of high profile displays, not least of which was at this year’s Pride Cymru Big Weekend in Cardiff.
The New Year’s Eve show will be its biggest to date but as 11th Hour Director and British Pyrotechnists Association qualified and registered firer, John Davies explains, the in-house team is well equipped for the challenge:
“We’re using fireworks that are not available to the general public. They arrive with us incomplete and we finish their construction in our licensed store and at the site, inserting suitable fuses, e-matches and inter-fusing materials to help sequence the show. Minutes before midnight, the system will be armed and when the clock strikes, it will take over and - ‘fire in the hole’ - the sky will explode with colour and a million points of sparkling light!”
South Africa - For two days in November, Sandringham Farm was transformed into a village of worshippers as Christian bands from the UK, US, South Africa and elsewhere performed gospel.
Providing an uplifting visual backdrop to this celebration was a dynamic and ebullient lightshow of vivid colour washes and powerful aerial effects created by JP Willson of Unfazed Productions. Key to Willson’s transformative design was his collection of Chauvet Professional Rogue R2 Wash fixtures.
Willson hung 11 of the RGBW LED washes on a mid and rear stage truss, using them to reflect the mood of the music. The Rogue fixtures were used to sweep the stage with colors as well as for backwashing performers and aerial washing. The fixtures’ wide 12° to 49° zoom range allowed Willson to change his coverage area; while the output from their 19 15-watt LEDs provided him with enough output to have his washes far into the audience.
Joining the Rogue units on Willson’s rig were 16 Intimidator Hybrid 140SR fixtures from Chauvet DJ. Powered by a 140-watt discharge lamp, the combination spot, beam and wash effect created an impressive variety of looks during the two-day festival.
“The Intimidator Hybrid is a great value fixture,” said Willson. “Budget is always a concern when buying fixtures for events like this, and I’m always so impressed with the features this gives you for the investment.”
China - TrueColor in Guangzhou City is the flagship venue of a chain of clubs created in 1995, currently owned and managed by Alliance Art Group.
TrueColor Guangzhou City recently sought upgrades to its audio system. After consultation with Mr. Tan who represents dealer Guangzhou EGG Technologies Company, Alliance Art Group called on DMT – Clair Brothers Chinese distributor – to help make the necessary improvements on behalf of TrueColor customers. Right on the heels of a complete upgrade and redesign of the layout and style of the club in June of 2017, the decision to call on Clair Brothers made sense.
TrueColor is a nightclub where music plays constantly, seven days a week with a full house, and permeates the entire establishment, so it has to sound awesome and perform reliably. After the redesign of the interior, the old system just didn’t fit the bill.
Guangzhou EGG Technologies Company, in conjunction with DMT did the design, installation and commissioned the project, supplied the gear and gave technical support to Alliance Art Group throughout the install.
The main system flanking the large feature video wall is three CAT215 per side with CS218 double 18-inch subs under the stage. Additional CS218s are spread through the club, tastefully integrated as cocktail table bases.
The system consists of a range of additional Clair Brothers speakers for distributed coverage including the CAT115, kiTCURVE12, CS18-M, FF2-HX, and kiT12 as bar-fills. Two kiTCURVE12s are used as centre-fill, paired with four kiT12s and two FF2-HXs, which
UK - Just like the fairy-tale glass slipper that glided effortlessly onto Cinderella’s foot uniting her and Prince Charming, lighting designer Andy Webb has designed a colourful and fitting lighting scheme for Cinderella, this season’s pantomime at Blackpool UK’s Grand Theatre, utilising entirely Robe LED products.
It’s the third year that Andy has been asked to light this popular panto for UK Productions. Returning to the same venue has some definite advantages he explains, both in terms of knowing the space and what you can and can’t achieve in it, and also having an ongoing relationship with the local crew and technicians.
As always, the challenge with pantos is having to do a massive amount of programming in a very short time to produce the intense, magical, high-impact visuals characteristic of the genre.
For the last three years, Andy had integrated more and more LED fixtures into his panto rigs and this year was able to reach the goal of lighting the entire show utilising LED sources, apart from 12 Source Four generics.
Two types of Robe fixtures were at the core of the design – the DL4S Profile and the Spiider LED wash beam, of which there were 10 each.
Due to the tight stage and wing space at the Grand Theatre, an original Matcham designed venue opened in 1894 and now Grade II listed, the set - developed by the UK Productions’ creative team – incorporated numerous flown cloths as well as four full stage scenic sets, flown practicals like chandeliers, two star cloths, over 3000 white dimmable Christmas ligh
Serbia - Philips Lighting reports that its newest stage lighting fixtures have helped to deliver a magical environment for the recent concert at Belgrade's Sava Center by leading Bosnian folk music artist, Bozo Vrećo.
To create this enchanted environment in the 4,000-seat Sava Center, Serbia's largest concert venue, lighting designer Nebojsa Milojevic required powerful lighting fixtures. They needed to be capable of delivering bright, crisp projections and striking beams and effects, and with enough presence to register even against the background LED screen. He settled on 60 lighting fixtures from the Philips Entertainment Lighting range, including VL6000 Beams, VLZ Spots and SL Hydrus 350 luminaires.
In bringing his critically-acclaimed show to Belgrade, the artist asked Milojevic to "paint with the lights and connect the eyes of the audience with the songs.". With this brief to guide him, Milojevic was given full creative control over the stage lighting. He says, "My design inspirations I find in nature. The goal for my design was to bring the audience on a magical journey through music, with the use of light and video."
He continues, "Using the beautiful gobos and intensive colours of the VLZ Spots and the SL Hydrus, I was able to create illusions of the forest and leaves against a background of dark, cloudy sky. And with the enormous power of the VL6000 Beams, I created lightning. Together, these fixtures successfully covered the 200 square meters of the stage and huge, black backdrop."
He adds: "I am really happy with the performance of
UK - The Royal Albert Hall rolled out the red carpet for the European premiere of Star Wars: The Last Jedi, and Green Hippo technology was there in force. UK creative Digital Insanity provided content creation and playback solutions for the premiere of the latest in the Star Wars franchise, and the team again relied on Green Hippo to help it create a spectacular.
Having successfully used Hippotizer Media Servers on the European movie premieres of Star Wars: The Force Awakens, and Rogue One: A Star Wars Story, Digital Insanity immediately allocated control duties to its Hippotizer Karst Media Server. In an environment, which was at times harsh – outdoors on the steps of the Royal Albert Hall and with temperatures registering barely above zero – the robust Karst performed its duties to the max.
Digital Insanity used Hippotizer Karst in conjunction with a Datapath FX4, directing a 4K-output split into three HD streams to LED screens with a fourth output giving a clean 16:9 feed to the outside broadcasting truck/mobile LED wall, situated at the opposite end of the red carpet. The lighting presentation on the night wowed the crowds, with the Karst in control of nine LED walls, and happily running eight layers of 5670x1080 content to a 3840x2160 output.
Commenting on the premiere, Richard Bagshaw of Digital Insanity said: “It was Star Wars time again, which also meant it was Green Hippo playback time! We were delighted to work on our third Star Wars European premiere, and the Hippotizer again performed as required, and in
UK - When Craig David brought his TS5 gig to Brixton O2 Academy in November, he called once again on long-standing collaborator Stephen Abbiss to add his own creative touch to the accompanying lighting and set design.
Favouring live lighting control over playback, Abbiss selected Avolites and its Arena console, running the latest Titan V10.1 software, for the TS5 show. Abbiss used the Arena to control his geometric lighting design.
The TS5 show originated as a Sunday afternoon DJ party at the artist's Miami home, and now sees him DJ and MC and sing on stage. Abbiss says: "I based my design for this show on the cover artwork on Craig's new album, The Time is Now. The picture is of him and a large clock face, so I decided to reflect that circular image with my lights and truss."
Abbiss produced a series of three concentric circles of truss, receding into upstage, to frame the artist and bring a sense of depth to the focal point of the performance area. This effect was further enhanced by the beams from the moving head fixtures which lined the circular trusses, extending the 'tunnel' effect out into the audience.
Abbiss selected the Arena console, the newest control surface in the Avolites Titan range, to programme and run the show. "The Arena has lots of extra faders, giving me instant 'grabbing' facility - which is ace when I decide to create responsive lighting looks on the fly during the show," says Abbiss.
In addition, to the Arena's 10 main faders, a further 30 faders are laid out in six groups of five in
USA - Lighting consultant Howard M. Brandston and artist Dan George created a light installation in the City of Syracuse featuring SGM’s i-2 White IP66-rated POI lights.
The permanent installation, part of the larger Connective Corridor project, was initiated to illuminate iconic buildings and public spaces between Columbus Circle and Armory Square.
Brandston explains: “The Jefferson Street project is really an investment in turning a typical motor-oriented roadway into a pedestrian-oriented city street. The installation reflects off people, making the installation essentially invisible until occupied; it takes people to show the light because the people become the light.”
The installation on Jefferson Street is the signature illumination under the larger Connective Corridor project, connecting Syracuse University to Downtown Syracuse.
Brandston adds: “The idea was to separate it from the standard street lighting, so you could look down the road from Columbus Circle to Armory Square and create a more pleasant walkway.
“We chose SGM’s i-2 because of its high intensity and our ability to control the beam. This installation focuses on the people, and with the right colour rendering, people actually look like humans, not orange distortion. By highlighting people’s emotions, we are creating a much nicer environment. In my opinion, this is how you should light a street; focusing on the people. There are many good examples of this around the city, like Bryant Park in New York City, which used to be an unsafe place,
Latvia - The first Eurovision Choir of the Year contest took place in Riga, Latvia. Organised by the European Broadcasting Union (EBU) and the Interkultur Foundation, the inaugural event hosted nine professional choirs, each representing a different European country.
The venue was the Arena Riga, a 14,500-capacity stadium, and Green Hippo technology was on hand to help deliver a live spectacular, in keeping of the EBU’s best known production, the Eurovision Song Contest.
Company NA and Latvian Green Hippo distributor, PRO 1 Stage, worked with Kristaps Skulte (stage design) and Maris Kalve (video content) to deliver the visuals. With two Hippotizer Boreals, and a trio of Hippotizer Karsts, the team had an impressive array of technology to work with. Andrejs Mefodovskis headed the Hippotizer set-up and configuration, with Ivars Vacers handling programming and control – using a grandMA2 console via Art Net – during the show.
The event’s lighting & video programme required content playback on several planes with a high pixel count. Andrejs commented: “Hippotizer’s VideoMapper component saved a lot of time on set up and adjustment. It also gives you the option to have many mixes with different resolutions and layer quantity.” Andrejs was also impressed with Hippotizer’s STRATA drive functionality and the speed that Media Manager synchronising and retrieving media.
Commenting on the show, and the part Hippotizer played in the event, Normunds Blasans, lighting designer, said: “Hippotizer Media Servers are serious instruments tha
Germany - They were the rock idols of the Munich ‘Schickeria’, and in the 80s and 90s were Bavaria’s hottest rock exports throughout the whole of Europe - step forward, Barny Murphy, Günther Sigl and the Spider Murphy Gang. Their recent 40th anniversary concert showed they had lost none of their fire, and Marc Lorenz from CUE Design provided an appropriate lightshow at the Olympiahalle.
The band and lighting designer are long-time companions. "In the mid-'90s, when I was still at the beginning of my career, I worked in Munich for the first time,” Marc recalls. "Later, at the band's 20th anniversary, I had my second engagement as moving light operator, and at the planning stage for the 40th Anniversary came the request for me to take over the lighting design for the Olympiahalle.
“The band is rock 'n' roll - and should always remain so. But of course, there must also be a modern look - sloping truss fingers above the stage, just as it was in the 80s plus the more modern large LED surfaces, moving lights and strobes in the stage background - as you would see it today.”
He said it was important that Barny and Günther were always in focus, but at the same time the other musicians should not remain in the dark. Something further made the design special, since the band does not like wild effects, blackouts or constant scanner beams. "So, it happened that some songs just had a picture. I was then able to set accents through the brightness, which also greatly benefited the camera image, because in addition to the live show, a DVD was also reco
Belgium - De Bijloke in Ghent is home to a number of local cultural institutions including the Ghent City Museum, De Bijloke Ghent Music Centre, the Royal Academy of Fine Arts and the Ghent Conservatory College.
The Music Centre is housed in the building of a medieval hospital, carefully restored to include modern galleries, rehearsal rooms, offices and a lobby. The main concert hall lies within the original 700-year-old construction and seats 960 audience members, primarily but not exclusively, for classical concerts and recitals.
The management at De Bijloke wished to significantly improve upon the lighting provision in the Music Centre. In the past, the stage for classical concerts had been lit by way of 1kW and 2kW spotlights to meet the demand for the musicians to be able to clearly see their scores. Every concert was very labour-intensive and consumed large amounts of energy.
A permanent solution was sought that would provide excellent concert lighting, be discreet enough to fit in within the spectacular surroundings without compromise and reduce energy consumption. The technical team at the venue looked at a number of possibilities before settling on GDS ArcSystem. GDS’s Belgian distributor, FACE, supplied a Dialux simulation which convinced De Bijloke that ArcSystem would be a perfect fit.
De Bijloke AV supplier and FACE customer, City Sounds Rent, delivered 20 x ArcSystem Pro Four-Cell Square 2700K and 5 x ArcSystem Pro Two-Cell 2700K fixtures. The Four-Cell fixtures are arranged in five rows of four above the stage and the Two-Ce
USA - The Bryant Park Winter Village, a five-month winter wonderland located at a 9.6- acre park in Midtown Manhattan, has a lighting display created by Diana Kesselschmidt and featuring a collection of over 130 Chauvet Professional fixtures supplied by PRG.
Kesselschmidt, who is lighting the Bryant Park Winter Village for the first time, used 116 COLORado 2-Quad Zoom IP fixtures and 18 Ovation E-260WW IP ellipsoidals to bring an added level of warmth to the popular attraction. “Coming here is a tradition for many New Yorkers,” she said. “We wanted to use lighting to create an immersive atmosphere that reflected this connection between the people of the city and this spot.”
COLORado 2-Quad Zoom IP fixtures units in Kesselschmidt’s rig wash the 17,000sq.ft ice skating rink, as well as the interiors of its first and second floor pavilions, which house a skate rental centre, lockers and meeting areas. The high-output warm white Ovation ellipsoidal fixtures are positioned on towers that surround the rink, and are used to light the skating area and project evocative gobos.
“A key to selecting both fixtures was their IP rating, since we are up for five months in New York City winters,” said Kesselschmidt. “Both are withstanding the elements very well, but their benefits go far beyond their durability. The zoom range of the COLORados (14° to 44°) has been instrumental in allowing us to create a variety of looks by changing coverage areas, and their natural colours showed up very well on the ice.”
The warm white light of the Ovat
Italy - Italian rental company Agorà supplied an L-Acoustics audio system for Ennio Morricone’s 60 Years of Music world tour.
One of the world’s most celebrated composers and conductors, Morricone has written over 500 film and television scores and is the only film composer to have received the honorary Academy Award for lifetime achievement.
Early in the tour, Morricone’s long time recording and FOH engineer Fabio Venturi and Agora project manager Giulio Rovelli heard about the new L-ISA immersive sound system and visited the L-ISA headquarters in London for a presentation and to test the mixing platform with Fabio’s own recorded material.
“Our normal L‑Acoustics configuration works extremely well. But in places such as arenas, it’s difficult to achieve exactly what we want, and since the very first concert, we’ve been looking at ways to make the performance sound even more natural,” he explains. “When I listened to L-ISA, I felt that it offered a more natural and detailed sound. I discussed the system with the production team, and we decided we wanted to use it.”
The team decided to use the system, designed by Scott Willsallen of Auditoria Pty, working alongside Sherif El Barbari, director of L-ISA Labs, and Fabio for both the Bologna and Milano dates.
At the 8,600-seat Unipol Arena in Bologna, an A/B comparison between a conventional stereo system, which featured 12 K2 per side, and an L‑ISA system featuring five rows of 12 Kara across the stage was conducted. The production team felt that the L-ISA se
USA - Bandit Lites teamed up with the Salvation Army’s Angel Tree programme and Knoxville’s Angel Tree to provide some holiday cheer to the local community.
Bandit has provided the local communities with Angel Tree assistance for many years. Knoxville’s Angel Tree programme has been working to make sure Santa visits every local child, no matter their circumstances since 1975, and the Salvation Army’s Angel Tree Programme delivers gifts to over one million children each year.
In a combined effort by HR coordinator Cori Link, director of philanthropy Allison Burchett and controller Shay Simpson, each Bandit team member across multiple Bandit locations had the opportunity to shop for an underprivileged child. Individual paper angels held children’s wishes, ranging from toys and games to practical needs that so many can take for granted, such as toothbrushes and toothpaste, or even a warm winter coat.
Shop foreman Erich Hudgens in Nashville made multiple trips as the number of Bandits participating grew this year, with dozens of team members headed to local stores to shop for the children before delivering the gifts. In all cities, Bandit provides vans to transport team members, and each team member is providing cash by the company to shop for those in need.
Each person has the opportunity to pick the angle card they like in order to assist a particular child making the experience very personal, as each person is involved from start to finish of the process.
The true spirit of the holidays is one of giving, and it is a spirit that
UK - Adlib supplied full production, including sound, lighting, rigging and large format video projection, for a special one-off event at the SSE Wembley Arena in London, DreamWorks Animation in Concert which was presented by DreamWorks Animation, CineConcerts, and The MJR Group. It featured music and many memorable moments from DreamWorks Animation’s numerous hit films like Shrek, Kung Fu Panda, How to Train Your Dragon and more with music performed live by The Royal Philharmonic Concert Orchestra.
Adlib project managers Dave Eldridge and Richard Nicholson co-ordinated all the technical elements working closely with tour manager Barry Jepson, MJR’s production manager Leanne Powell, technical manager Curtis King and creative director Nathan Stone.
It completes a hattrick of recent noteworthy orchestral works serviced by Adlib including the Harry Potter Film Concert Series and La La Land UK tours.
Video was right at the core of the technical production and a starting point for the entire concept.
Adlib’s Charlie Rushton and John Haggart ensured that this all ran smoothly, starting with the large 40ft wide x 22.5 deep projection screen as specified by the production. Adlib has a number of Stumpfl screens and this one – a 40ft wide Vario 64 – was chosen for its quality and precision as well as the modular construction which ensures a nice rigid surface.
The powerful front projection system consisted of a double-stacked pair of Panasonic DZ21Ks.
The content was fed via the production
UK - The Hazlitt Theatre’s recent investment in ProLights LED fixtures for their studio space has exceeded expectations so much that they have been promoted to the main stage.
Parkwood Theatres, which owns and manages the Hazlitt Theatre, purchased ProLights StudioCOB LED PARs, ProLights Jetspot3 LED spots, and ProLights Diamond19 LED wash luminaires.
The team at the venue in Maidstone, Kent were so impressed with the performance of their new fixtures that they moved many of them into the main house to light their bigger productions – starting with this year's ‘all-star’ Christmas Pantomime, Cinderella.
Sam Ray, the theatre's technical manager and LD forCinderella, commented: "The ProLights fixtures have really exceeded our expectations since arriving in our studio, so I wanted the benefit of using them on our main stage productions too - such as our annual Christmas pantomime.
“The StudioCOBs are delivering an exceptional wash, providing superb colour, and the palette and beams from the Jetspots is greatly enhancing the look of the production. Also, with 67 shows in December, it's important that the fixtures are reliable, and they are performing flawlessly."
To compliment the pantomime, the smaller Exchange Studio is offering a Christmas musical called Christmas Comes But Once a Year, which features ProLights StudioCOB LED PARs plus Diamond19 washlights.
Sam commented: "This is another important show for us, so it's vital that it's also well lit. The light output and wide angle of the StudioCOBs is
South Africa - Technical services and equipment supplier MGG expanded its inventory with the investment of a Hippotizer V4 Boreal. The media server made its first appearance at the EOH Annual Year End celebration hosted at three locations.
At the Johannesburg leg, Gallagher Estate in Midrand ran two shows with 4000 guests attending per night, while 2 000 guests attended the performance hosted at the Cape Town International Convention Centre and a further 700 people attended the wonderful festivities at the Durban ICC.
Johan Botha from MGG has been in the industry for many years, and has experience with media servers, though it was his first time on the Hippotizer V4 Boreal. “An MA command wing controlled the Hippotizer V4. We ran main and back-up which went into a matrix switcher in the unlikely case that anything should go wrong. Honestly though, the Hippo is a reliable piece of kit.”
Having worked with the Hippotizer V3 in the past, Johan has seen a huge improvement. “I felt very comfortable running the Hippotizer V4, the videos didn’t stagger and there were no worries that the server would fall over. I ran big files - the Hap Codec in Quick-Time format – and the system behaved brilliantly. It was a phenomenal experience.”
With a background in lighting, Johan believes that media servers are at their optimum performance when run in conjunction with a lighting console. “It gives the user a lot of versatility and the one thing that I really love about the Hippotizer V4 is the versatility. It allows you to do many things on the fl
USA - Fort Scott High School is home to the Tigers volleyball and basketball teams, both of which figure large in the school's identity and after-school social life. In fact, the school recently completed construction on a second gymnasium so that multiple games and/or practices can happen simultaneously.
The new gym obviously needed a new sound reinforcement system, but the existing gym and a second-floor weight room did as well. Audio/video integration firm Total Electronics Contracting (TEC) designed and installed a combined system that handles all three spaces. Because TEC's Joplin, Missouri headquarters is two-and-a-half hours round trip from Fort Scott, TEC AV project manager Nate Pugh called on the 24/7 reliability of Ashly Audio nX-Series multi-mode amplifiers to minimize the need for service calls.
"The existing gym had four ancient-looking loudspeakers in metal cages positioned in each corner of the room," explained Pugh. "They all aimed at centre court, and an equally-ancient powered mixer drove them all. It probably wasn't ideal when it went in, and all the time between then and now certainly didn't help. Volleyball and basketball are huge at Fort Scott, and they regularly bring 750 people in for games. There's a regional tournament coming up in a few weeks that's expected to draw 2,000 people."
To keep runs short, Pugh located each of three Ashly amps in three separate closets, each close to the loudspeakers it drives. A two-channel Ashly nX4002 delivers 400 watts per channel to 70V Community CS-Series distributed ceiling speakers in t
USA - McAllen is part of the fifth-largest metropolitan area in the state of Texas and is located in the Rio Grande valley, just north of Mexico. The McAllen Independent School District operates the public elementary, middle, and high schools for the children of its 130,000 residents.
After struggling for years with low-intelligibility, low-impact sound reinforcement systems in the auditoriums of its three high schools - McAllen, Rowe, and Memorial, the McAllen ISD hired the A/V integration team at local Hermes Music to rectify the situation. Ed Zamorano, director of educational/ governmental sales at Hermes Music, designed a Danley loudspeaker/subwoofer/amp/DSP system for the larger McAllen High School auditorium (1,500 seats) that was so successful, district officials asked Hermes Music to install identical systems in the smaller auditoriums (each approximately 400 seats) of the other two high schools.
“These auditoriums are used for a range of events,” explained Zamorano. “Many of those events involve spoken word, such as meetings, plays, and presentations, and the old systems were imprecise and hard to understand. McAllen is also big on music and the high schools used the auditoriums for choir, orchestra, band, and, especially, mariachi.
“McAllen High School is well-known for its mariachi ensemble; these kids are better than a lot of pros! So, they really wanted a new sound reinforcement system that would give them intelligibility and musical impact. Danley Sound Labs is my go-to for that kind of thing.”
Hermes Music permanentl
UK - Rugby Theatre in Warwickshire is an amateur company which produces 10 shows annually. Staffed and run entirely by volunteers, their own productions include drama, farce, musicals and theatrical classics while visiting performers and productions feature brass bands, children’s dance, opera and celebrity speakers.
Autograph Sales & Installations were approached by the theatre to determine why the vocal clarity and intelligibility in their venue was not always up to the high standards achieved by the other elements of their productions. After extensive acoustic testing and A/B comparisons, the theatre commissioned Autograph to supply and install a completely new sound system based on EM Acoustics loudspeakers as well as a new digital console and a selection of microphones.
At the core of the new sound system is a suite of loudspeakers from EM Acoustics’ EMS Series, comprising a pair of EMS-126 2-way passive full range speakers which cover the stalls, three compact EMS-81s for the Circle and two ultra-compact EMS-51s as front fills. Low frequencies are reproduced by a pair of EMS-115C subwoofers and the entire system is powered and digitally processed by just two Lab Gruppen D-Series amplifiers, a 40:4L and an 80:4L respectively.
The theatre’s former AV Group Leader Simon Smith was closely involved in the tender process and remarked, “As an entirely voluntarily run amateur theatre, with no professional staff, Autograph's knowledge and experience was key to helping us to address significant issues that we were having, particularly around
Australia - Melbourne-based audio specialist Full Throttle Entertainment has invested in a Vero sound system from Funktion-One. According to company founder, Adam Ward, the addition of the vertically arrayed loudspeaker system equips them to do bigger shows and answers the requirements of a wider range of clients.
Ward said: “Full Throttle Entertainment has been deploying the Resolution Series with much success for a number of years. We were consistently being approached by our clients to do bigger and bigger shows. Vero is the answer in addressing these large format requirements, as well as bringing what is, in my opinion, a new benchmark to live touring.
“Vero opens up a lot of different markets for us. Many clients need to see speakers look a particular way and irrespective of how amazing Vero sounds, it has the look many corporate and live clients want to see. We previously couldn’t get our foot in the door but now there is a whole new client base interested in talking to us.”
Vero is the brainchild of Funktion-One founder and pro audio industry pioneer, Tony Andrews. It is a complete system - featuring loudspeakers, amplification, rigging and software - that combines outstanding sonic performance with ease of use. It is arrayable, meaning it can be deployed quickly, yet its audio quality and efficiency are uncompromised.
Ward continues: “From the beginning, we were excited to see what Tony would do next with loudspeaker design, and with Vero we were not disappointed. The product really raises the bar in terms of sound quality, w
UK - In venues the length and breadth of the UK, Christmas concerts and the grand tradition of pantomime are getting thousands of people into the festive spirit. Yamaha mixing consoles are at the heart of many, with no less than six hard at work in Perth, Scotland.
Opened in 2005, Perth Concert Hall is a truly modern, multipurpose venue. Amongst many innovations, the main Gannochy Auditorium features movable seating, stage and thrust stage to transform the space for a wide variety of productions. The technical specification is similarly state-of-the-art, with Yamaha CL5, PM5D, LS9-32, O1V96 digital mixing consoles and R-series i/o boxes, all on a Dante network.
The venue is owned and managed by Horsecross Arts, which also runs the adjacent Perth Theatre. Having reopened in November 2017 after a four year, £16.6m refurbishment, Yamaha QL5 and QL1 digital consoles were installed in Perth Theatre and put straight to work on twice-daily performances of pantomime Aladdin.
Meanwhile, in the Concert Hall, the festive entertainment includes annual Christmas concerts by the Royal Scottish National Orchestra, Scottish folk musician Phil Cunningham and independent schools Kilgraston and the Dollar Academy. Add in slapstick children’s entertainers Funbox, a range of non-Christmas themed productions and the need for mixing consoles that are as versatile, reliable and easy to use as Yamaha becomes clear.
“We opened with the PM5D, adding the CL5 later as the Gannochy Auditorium’s main mixer,” says Perth Concert Hall head of sound Andy Kidd. “The f
Switzerland - The Basel Tattoo celebrated its 12th anniversary by once again using TiMax object-based spatial audio and showcontrol to maintain localisation and musical timing between the marching players and the distributed spatial reinforcement sound system.
An import of the legendary Edinburgh Military Tattoo, which also uses TiMax, the Basel production is staged outdoors in front of the 18th century Kaserne Hof barracks on the Rhine. A dozen or so acts of marching bands, dancers and sometimes animals perform across a 70m x 25m parade arena surrounded by audience seating on three sides.
Award-winning Swiss sound designer, Thomas Strebel, specified a TiMax SoundHub-S48 spatial processor which received, via MADI, 10 arena, ambient, mic feeds plus five groups from a DiGiCo SD7 console, comprising submixes of performer radio mics plus Ableton music playback for various dance troupes. This year also featured an immersive spatial sound effect of a helicopter, rendered and played back by TiMax under remote MIDI control, which flew across the arena and landed for an abseiling Swiss Army band act.
Out Board’s Dave Haydon provided on-site TiMax setup and programming support to Strebel’s audiopool GmbH crew, with Roman Huber running the DiGiCo at front-of-house and Jeroen Van Vulpen in charge of TiMax.
This year saw a new approach to live mixing the 10 ambient mics being controlled by TiMax Groups. Previously a bespoke TiMax Portal iPad page was used to allow the TiMax operater to crossfade the ambient mics live as band sections marched under th