Solotech deploys K1/K2 for Hillsong United
Monday, 4 November 2019
hillsongHillsong UNITED has consistently toured with an L-Acoustics K1 system
USA - With an estimated 50m people singing from its catalogue of songs every Sunday and over 1.5 billion minutes garnered from YouTube viewers, Australia’s Hillsong Church is one of the primary architects of modern worship music.
Although the Sydney-based organisation has several performing collectives that tour worldwide, Hillsong United is likely the best known, thanks to songs like Oceans, Touch the Sky and So Will I. According to Billboard, the group’s 14th and most recent album, People, made its late-April debut this year as the week’s top-selling album across all US charts.
Since the release of its 2011 record, Aftermath, Hillsong United has consistently toured with an L-Acoustics K1 system, after transitioning over from V-DOSC. So when the group headed out earlier this year to support People with its first North American trek in three years, Hillsong called upon Solotech’s Nashville shop to carry a K1/K2 rig for the run.
Systems engineer Arica Rust notes that the tour’s base arena configuration consisted of 12 K1 with four K2 down on the main left and right hangs, four K1 on top of eight K2 for the side hangs, and six K1 with six Kara down for the 270° arrays. The crew also deployed two-dozen SB28 subs on the ground in a symmetrical cardioid configuration in three clusters of four on either side of the downstage thrust, spaced four feet apart.
Sixteen Kiva II delivered front-fill. Depending on the venue, these were usually stacked three high on the middle sub cluster for the inside-fill, and then either two or three stacked on the outside sub cluster. Because there was VIP standing room on the side of the stage, the last two or three Kiva II were used as an upstage out-fill to cover that area and provide additional coverage to the first couple of rows of seats under the 270° hang.
For the largest shows, such as Toronto’s Scotiabank Arena and New York’s Madison Square Garden, Solotech deployed an additional two K1 on each main hang for a total of 18 enclosures, and swapped out the side hangs for all K2. Forty-eight LA8 amplified controllers drove the entire PA via AES over Riedel RockNet.
James Rudder, FOH engineer with Hillsong, comments: “Arica would always get the system to a really great cohesive point day-to-day, at which stage we would always walk the entire room together and discuss ways to provide the best sound for the end listener. I really enjoy that collaboration and part of the process! Then, Network Manager really gives you all the tools you need to make the tweaks confidently in different areas.
“The challenge I have had in the past when mixing United on one-off systems is the distraction and subsequent adjustments that have to be made when negotiating the hugely varied content the band delivers in its vastly diverse catalogue, one song to the next. K1 and K2 have always streamlined that for me.”
(Jim Evans)

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