Central London-based Orbital Sound is currently in pre-production for the Royal Shakespeare Company’s musical adaptation of The Lion, the Witch and the Wardrobe, which will make its London debut at Sadler’s Wells this Christmas.
In order to accommodate the complexities of this acclaimed production of Lion, Orbital worked closely with sound designer Scott Myers at all levels to help augment his initial sound design, first created three years ago for the show’s original run at the RSC.
Orbital has invested in the revolutionary new Yamaha PM1D as a world first to operate as the FOH theatre desk. The potential of this desk as part of Orbital’s extensive inventory is set to dramatically change sound design in theatre for both complex sound effects plays and larger musicals.
As Scott Myers explained: "The facilities on the PM1D will enable me to do complex operations simultaneously such as various changes in orchestra colours, quickly yet subtly, difficult changes in foldback mixes, and multi-dimensional sound effect placement. This should allow me to give the audience a first-rate theatrical experience."
From the show’s inception, Myers and Orbital’s head of production, Andy Robinson, have engineered detailed CAD schematics and produced a new systems design, breaking new ground by way of the use of the PM1D. Orbital’s in-house editing suite has proved especially useful on Lion. Working closely with Pro-Tools expert Sebastian Frost, Scott Myers found that the company’s vast library of sound effects has enabled him
After a number of years at the Royal Lancaster Hotel, where the spiralling success of the event has seen more and more people literally squeezed into the hotel's Westbourne Suite, the 2001 Live! Awards dinner will be held in the Great Hall of Alexandra Palace. The change of venue offers the twin benefits of easily accommodating the large numbers who now wish toattend the Awards, while allowing much easier access to exhibitors and visitors to the Live! Show. The Live! Awards dinner takes place on the evening of Wednesday 7th February 2001, the first day of the Live! Show. In addition, this year, for the first time, you can register online for the Live! Show at the web address below, which also features comprehensive Show information.
Belgian audio and lighting rental company Flashlight/APR has signed up as the fifth member of the expanding Synco Europe Network of PA companies, while two existing Synco Network members have announced substantial new equipment investments. Flashlight/APR, of Houthalen, Belgium, joins DEE Sound and Light (Belgium), PAS Audio (Holland), Ampco Pro Rent (Holland) and Puro Audio (Portugal) in the network. The latest move means that Belgium now has a full complement of Synco members. Flashlight’s current work is in broadcast (including video production houses and commercial and state-owned TV channels), corporate events, theatre musicals and touring.Flashlight/APR underlined its commitment to Synco with the purchase of 30kW of Renkus-Heinz Synco Touring System (RH-STS) PA, amplifier and drive racks with Crest amplification, a full RH-STS rigging system and multicores, as well as Midas Heritage 2000 and 3000 consoles. It also includes eight 15” and eight 12” Synco stage monitors and matching Synco amplifier racks.Flashlight/APR is run by joint managing directors Walter van den Langenberg and Erwin Franck. The company also has a large stock of lighting equipment through its relationship with Flashlight Holland. Meanwhile, DEE Sound & Light has invested in an additional 6 RH-STS SUB 18/RR cabinets, while Ampco Pro Rent has purchased another 24 RH-STS SUB 18/RRs. APR also invested in 24 of the compact, full-range Renkus-Heinz SR5 cabinets and Crest amplifiers for their growing theatre work along with another Midas Heritage 1000 - bringing the total number of Herita
Stage Accompany has introduced the latest addition to the Entertainer Series - the E27. Specifically designed as a compact, medium-power full-range loudspeaker, the E27 is usable as a sound reinforcement system without the need for additional bass cabinets.
The Series has a frequency range of 55Hz - 30,000Hz, and a continuous power of 400W and is capable of producing high definition, distortion-free sound at both low and high SPLs, up to 127dB. The speakers feature Ribbon Compact Drivers, SA’s exclusive transducer for mid and high frequencies. Because of the directivity of the driver, no compression horn is needed, which eliminates sound colouring.
AEI Music have announced that its latest hard-disc music storage system will be launched on February 1st 2001. The new system, says AEI, combines the benefits of hard-disc storage with the 'Human Touch' of experienced music programmers, without relying on computer modelling to choose the music, thereby ensuring that repetition is avoided, and tracks 'sound good together'. ProFusion is a closed format system that can be scheduled up to the minute, hour, day, month and year, allowing for promotional items and messages to be stored alongside the music.
At the NAMM Show (Anaheim, California, 18-21 January 2001) Sennheiser will be launching the RS30, 40, 60 and 80 wireless headphones. As the showcase model in the series, the RS60 uses SRS Labs' headphone enhancement technology to include switchable surround sound, delivering a realistic and spacious listening experience through stereo headphones. SRS processing is based on the same psycho-acoustic principles which allow us to hear sounds in three dimensions, and is unique because it achieves without the use of special recording techniques. Frequency response is a full 20Hz to 20kHz, with up to 100dB of sound output.
UK pro audio rental company Dreamhire has extended its influence in Europe by entering into a joint venture with Funky Junk in Sweden and Italy. Funky Junk's branches in Stockholm and Milan now carry a range of Dreamhire rental equipment from manufacturers such as Neve, Neumann and Urei, as well as acting as a point of reference to anyone wanting to access Dreamhire's entire equipment list.
PLASA has announced that Neil Darracott (pictured right), design engineer at Total Fabrications Ltd, has been elected to the Executive Committee of the Association following the elections which closed on 1 st December. The elections attracted 123 membership votes in total, compared with 104 last year. Mick Hannaford (Light Processor), the serving PLASA chairman, has been re-elected for his second three-year term, while PLASA Treasurer Sammy DeHavilland of Dare Pro Audio/Deco Leisure, has been re-elected for a three-year term. Newcomer Neil Darracott fills the other three-year term, while Paul Hinkly of LMC Audio, who was co-opted onto the PLASA committee last year, was elected for a further one-year term.Peter Walker of NSR, who was not re-elected, has served on the PLASA Committee for the past six years, and was for much of that time involved with membership issues, particularly related to new applications to the Association. At the December meeting of the executive committee, chairman Mick Hannaford thanked Peter for his time and hard work over the years he has served with PLASA.The remaining members of the committee are Paul Adams (PAI Group), Paul De Ville (Lightfactor Sales), Nikki Scott (Stage Technologies), David Hopkins OBE (Audio Design Services) and Diane Grant (DHA Lighting).
Mackie Designs has announced that its chief operating officer, Jamie Engen, has been appointed chief executive officer and president by the company’s board of directors. Engen has also been appointed to the company’s board of directors. Greg Mackie, the company’s founder and chairman commented: "The Mackie board of directors strongly supports the effort and progress that Jamie has made on behalf of our company as our chief operating officer over the last year. As COO, Jamie has proved himself capable of managing the day to day activities of the growing Mackie organization, at the same time proving himself capable of providing the leadership and strategic guidance that we require of a CEO." Mackie has also appointed Ivan Schwartz as director of corporate communications for all of the Mackie companies. Schwartz comes to Mackie from his previous position as director of marketing at Eastern Acoustic Works (EAW), which was acquired by Mackie Designs in April 2000. Prior to EAW, Schwartz was with Mark IV Audio for nine years, where as general manager, he oversaw the US sales, service, marketing and distribution for Midas, Klark Teknik and DDA products, and the sales and marketing of Electro-Voice concert sound products to the touring industry.
London-based AV company, Montage Presentation Services, has recently purchased four Nexo PS-8¹s, an LS-400 sub bass and the PS-8 TD controller to add to its inventory of Nexo loudspeakers. The first outing for the PS-8 system was for two private presentations given by Nelson Mandela on behalf of BP, including the inaugural BP Annual Lecture at the new BP Lecture Theatre at the British Museum. Under the general theme of ‘World Civilisation’, the lecture will be given each year by an internationally renowned figure. Sir David Attenborough introduced the series’ very first speaker, Nelson Mandela.The other presentation took place in the atrium at BP's Finsbury Circus headquarters. Rising through seven storeys of glass and marble, the atrium presented a significant acoustic challenge. As Louis Backer, MD of Montage explains: "Despite the cavernous proportions of the venue, our most pressing concern was space, as indeed with the British Museum. Our watchwords are neat and discreet - we go to great lengths to make our installations as invisible as possible, yet without compromising sonic quality. Generally, the only element of the installation that is visible are the loudspeakers themselves, and then only if we haven't managed to hide them somewhere!"
The government of Tahiti, at the behest of their president Gaston Flosse, has invested in a $1.5m state-of-the-art modular sound system for all state functions, parades and cultural events, including concerts in the island’s 5000-capacity To’ata Stadium. Based on a 40-box EAW KF750 rig, the package also includes no less than 24 special 25th anniversary edition Klark Teknik DN360 graphic equalisers. APEX Audio of Huntingdon Beach, California, designed and specified the system, in conjunction with Tahiti-based audio speciailist Karl Brinckfieldt.
Dimension Audio has recently completed the sound production for a Woolworth’s Christmas Party. When the staff of Woolworth’s decided to hold an early celebration at Manchester GMEX, production company Cataclysm enlisted Dimension Audio to supply appropriate types of audio reinforcement. Dimension supplied Trantec S5000 lavalier and handheld radio mics, whilst reinforcement was provided by a combination of d&b audiotechnik 902s and 602s, with L-Acoustics ARCS subs. The sound was mixed on a 48-channel Allen & Heath ML5000 board and the EQ settings were stored and routed via three BSS 9088 Soundweb digital matrix devices. With Martin Pilton designing the sound set-up and Mark Boden project managing for Dimension, the corporate party was a huge success.
General Motors is incorporating NXT's patented flat panel speaker technology in its latest concept car, the Buick Bengal. The Bengal, which is a front-wheel drive, V6 four-seater convertible will be featured at the 2001 Detroit Motor Show in January. The vehicle is fitted with voice-activated controls and a four-position joystick on the steering wheel, which eliminates the need for gauges and knobs and allows the entire dashboard to become a large NXT flat-panel speaker. The audio system comprises five NXT speakers, which envelop the interior in audiophile-quality sound.
The Big Sound Corporation (BigSound) is a recently launched PA company which has been established in South Wales to offer live sound services to both touring bands and corporate clients. Based in Swansea where it is ideally placed to service both local and national clients, BigSound can now offer a comprehensive stock of high-end PA equipment which includes Allen & Heath’s flagship console the ML5000, in addition to an Allen & Heath MixWizard, a number of BSS FCS966 OPAL graphics, Drawmer DS201s, Behringer Multigate Pros and a selection of Shure and AKG mics - all purchased from LMC Audio Systems. The new company is headed by sound engineer and qualified acoustician Duncan Wild, who has more than 10 years experience in the live sound business in both the UK and Europe. Since its formation, it has worked on a number of events, including the BBC's Music Live event in Cardiff where it provided the PA for over 30 bands over the four-day event.
PLASA Publishing has learnt of the death of Peter Barnett at the age of 56. Peter, who had a heart problem and had undergone a major bypass operation some 10 years ago, had a heart attack yesterday whilst at the wheel of his car. Peter was a partner in the firm AMS Acoustics, having practised as a consultant for over 30 years. He was involved in most aspects of acoustics, electroacoustics and PA design. During his career he had been involved in some major installations and was respected throughout the industry for his audio consultancy work. He has published over 100 papers and articles on many aspects of acoustics and has been an active member of various professional associations.
Shuttlesound, the distributor for Klark Teknik products in the UK, has announced a significant change to the way in which KT products are to be sold in the UK. Shuttlesound will no longer sell direct to customers and end-users; instead, products can now be sourced via a network of nominated re-sellers throughout the country. Shuttlesound MD Paul Barretta explained the decision: "I am a great believer in letting people do what they’re good at doing, and in this case, rather than continue to deal direct ourselves, we have carefully selected five re-sellers across seven locations in the country who are perfectly set up to showcase the Klark Teknik product range to its best advantage in the professional audio market. Of course, Shuttlesound is still here to talk to anyone who wishes to have a Klark Teknik conversation, but all KT sales and after-sales service will be through our re-sellers. Our support is 100% behind the re-seller group."Shuttlesound says that under the terms of the scheme, each retailer is contractually obliged to perform a minimum of one KT demonstration per site, per week. This means that there will be a minimum of seven KT demos going on up and down the country. The dedicated KT resellers are: LMC Audio Systems (London, Birmingham and Leeds), Marquee Audio (Shepperton), Raper & Wayman (London), Northern Light (Glasgow) and Sound & Communications (Dublin).
Autograph Sound Recording is playing host to Jeffrey Yue from 'Esplanade - Theatre on the Bay' Singapore, while he completes a four-year educational exploration of the UK. During his stay at Autograph, he will learn the intricacies and technicalities of theatrical sound design, equipment rental and installation. Yue has so far completed three years at the Guildhall School of Music attaining a Degree in Technical Theatre Studies. He is now finishing off his final year in the UK, by gaining essential work experience with Autograph, before joining the sound department of a UK arts venue. He returns to Singapore's 'Esplanade - Theatre on the Bay' next summer, to take up his post as one of three technical officers.
ADSworldwide has been so successful with the sale of its range of amplifiers that the criminal fraternity has taken more than a passing interest. In an early morning raid on the company’s Stockport premises, BT lines were cut in a main street junction box to allow thieves to take a supply of Jeil, Paso and the new ADS amplifiers. If anyone is offered the above branded amplifiers from an unofficial source, please contact either the Stockport CID or ADS direct on 0161-666 6363.
QSC Audio has appointed Jim (Ski) Skiathitis to the position of Systems Specialist for the QSC Pro Touring division. Skiathitis’ responsibilities include product training and demonstration, along with technical support. He will also be actively involved in the design and integration aspects of professional touring systems. An industry veteran with over 20 years of experience in the touring sound and recording industries, Ski has worked as a sound engineer for a variety of acts from Smokey Robinson to Joe Cocker as well as a freelance recording engineer. Prior to joining QSC, Ski served as manager for Sonics Pro Audio and as technical supervisor with Foxwoods Resort Casino in their entertainment division.
Raper & Wayman Pro-Audio published its first catalogue in late 1988. Now, after eight paper editions it has launched its web-based version - R&W Online. Constantly growing and much more up to date than a paper catalogue could ever be, R&W Online includes literally thousands of pro-audio products for recording and broadcast, as well as for live presentation. Visitors can browse and select the kit they need, request online e-quotes via R&W Online's unique 'Quote Me' system, and then buy either online or in person as required.
Sony Broadcast & Professional Europe (BPE) recently held its first Professional Audio Dealer Convention at the new Sony Center in Berlin. The two day convention was attended by 50 dealers from 14 European countries. A welcome evening was followed by a day of presentations and discussions, during which details of new CDR and Mini Disc recorder products were revealed, along with the latest software developments and support products for the DMX-R100 digital recording console and DRE-S777 sampling reverb. Details were also given of Sony BPE Prime Support, a new package aimed at DMX-R100 owners, which provides on-site repair and servicing of consoles, as well as other support services, via the Sony BPE dealer network.
FX Group has appointed Pascale Giovetto, who has joined the FX Copyroom as an engineer. Formerly with Heathman’s Mastering (Tape to Tape), where she was responsible for the company’s copying facilities, Giovetto has extensive experience of the pro audio business and will work alongside FX Copyroom’s manager, Kevin Vanbergen, handling format transfers.
The full range of HHB Advanced Media Products professional recording media can now be purchased from a new online media store at www.hhb.co.uk. Following a secure and intuitive process, customers can order and pay for HHB media products at the site, with quantity discounts where applicable. Orders placed before 3.00pm, Monday to Friday, are delivered on the next working day - with a guaranteed pre-10.00am delivery also available at an additional cost. The HHB media range is widely acknowledged for delivering exceptional levels of performance and archival security, and currently comprises of 27 products covering CD-R, DAT, MD, MD Data, ADAT, DTRS, MO and DVD RAM formats. At present, the HHB online media store in only available to UK customers.
Tannoy Professional has launched the TMA120 mixer/amplifier for use in a wide range of audio installations. A 6-input mixer and 120W power amplifier have been integrated into one easy-to-use 2U box to supply high quality sound for background and foreground music and speech systems in venues such as retail outlets, houses of worship, factories and offices. The six balanced inputs are suitable for either microphone or line level signals, and one of these inputs can interface with a telephone switchboard, making this a truly flexible solution. Each channel can be set to automatically or manually mute, assigning priority to, for example, a security microphone, and overall volume levels can be set remotely using a simple potentiometer. Other features include tone controls, a built-in compressor and extensive output patching capabilities. Finally, the power amplifier is able to supply 120W into either a low impedance or line voltage distributed speaker system.