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Masque Sound Custom Audio Package Resonates With Audiences at U.S. Premiere of New Musical, The Hunchback Of Notre Dame

1-Ciara Renée (center) & the cast of La Jolla Playhouse's US premiere production of THE HUNCHBACK OF NOTRE DAME - Photo by Kevin BerneNEW YORK, NY, DECEMBER 2, 2014 — When five-time Tony® and Laurence Olivier winning/nominated sound designer Gareth Owen was presented with the task of ringing up a spectacular and captivating sonic landscape for the U.S. premiere of Disney’s The Hunchback of Notre Dame at La Jolla Playhouse, he turned to Masque Sound, a leading theatrical sound reinforcement, installation and design company, for his audio equipment needs.

Based on the Victor Hugo novel and featuring the Oscar-nominated score from the 1996 Disney classic film, The Hunchback of Notre Dame is the only stage collaboration from two masters of the American musical theatre, composer Alan Menken and lyricist Stephen Schwartz. In this brand new production, an emotionally rich score highlights the music’s orchestral power in an intimate retelling of the famous love story of the bell-ringer Quasimodo, the gypsy Esmeralda and the gallant Captain Phoebus.

2-Michael Arden (center) & the cast of La Jolla Playhouse's US premiere production of THE HUNCHBACK OF NOTRE DAME-Photo by Kevin Berne“My primary objective in designing the sound is always making sure that the audience can hear all of the words to the story,” says Owen. “It seems obvious, but I cannot tell you the number of shows that I see and can’t clearly hear what the performers are saying. Masque Sound was able to provide me with the equipment I was looking for to attain this sonic clarity and, as a result, allowed us to achieve our goal.”

Another goal of Owen’s was to try to make the show sound as exciting as possible, from a musical standpoint. “I will often go to a show and see a massive orchestra in the pit, but they might as well not be there,” he says. “You can hardly hear them. They are tucked away and the audience is not getting any excitement from them. I consider my sound designs very cinematic in nature and want them to be exciting and enveloping. Once I’ve made sure the audience can hear all the words, I make a concerted effort to try and make the music as dynamic and involving as possible, as is the case with The Hunchback of Notre Dame.”

In order to bring that level of excitement to the design, Owen finds close collaboration with the show’s music department and cast to be essential. “To a sound designer, the music department can be your best ally,” adds Owen. “I like to work with the various musical department heads to learn what it is that they want to hear and do my best to deliver it. Additionally, I find that if I can give the cast exactly what they need in order to perform to the best of their abilities, and give an energetic, accurate performance, the end result is a great sounding show, even if technically tricky to accomplish.”

3-Patrick Page (center) and the cast of La Jolla Playhouse's US premiere production of THE HUNCHBACK OF NOTRE DAME-Photo by Kevin BerneOne of Owen’s biggest challenges in designing the sound for The Hunchback of Notre Dame was found in the acoustics of La Jolla Playhouse. “The one tricky thing about the theatre is that it has very hard walls with lots of reflective surfaces,” says Owen. “With all of that sound bouncing around, speaker choice was critical and that’s where the audiotechnik d&b speaker system that Masque Sound supplied really came into its own. I’ve been a huge advocate of d&b for years and find that, when it comes to constant directivity of wave forms and frequency response, d&b speakers are so much more cohesive and accurate. They were a huge help in cutting down on reflections and induced noise from the walls.”

The large audiotechnik d&b speaker system that Masque Sound provided included 24 T-Series boxes for stage left and stage right, a T-Series center cluster, as well as Q-Series loudspeakers and B2 subwoofers. The front fills featured E5 loudspeakers, while the out fills were E8 loudspeakers, and E0 loudspeakers comprised the surround sound system. On stage, there was a mixture of E3s, E4s and E5 loudspeakers. Owen chose an Avid VENUE Profile System for the front of house console and utilized another for his monitors. In addition, Owen relied on several Yamaha 01V96 digital mixers to sub-mix various aspects of the show, including the 32-piece choir that is present on stage for the duration of the show.

“Gareth’s design for this musical was impeccable,” says Scott Kalata of Masque Sound. “Even at the show’s first preview, which I attended, the clarity of the dialog along with the show’s dynamic range perfectly matched what I was seeing onstage.”

In addition, as part of its custom audio equipment package, Masque Sound also provided an extensive microphone package that included DPA, Shure and Audix microphones, as well as 36 channels of wireless featuring Sennheiser EM 3532s and SK 5212 belt packs.

“Masque Sound delivered, supplying everything needed to create this soundscape,” concludes Owen. “Scott Kalata really looked after us and Gary Stocker was once again amazing to work with. He was onsite to solve any problems and ensured that everything was working properly. This was a great collaboration, and my team, including Joanna Lynne Staub, associate sound designer; Dave Horowitz, head of sound; and Zoe Blackford, assistant sound designer, all did a wonderful job and worked tirelessly to ensure the show’s success. I have a philosophy that I like to stand in the theatre on opening night, look at the sound system and know that there is nothing in the theatre that doesn’t need to be there. I consider that a sense of professional pride, and I am proud to say that held true on this production.”

The Hunchback of Notre Dame is scheduled to run through Sunday, December 14 at La Jolla Playhouse’s Mandell Weiss Theatre. The next stop for the production is New Jersey, where it will play at the Paper Mill Playhouse in March 2015. For more information, please visit www.lajollaplayhouse.org.

About Masque Sound
Founded in 1936 by a trio of Broadway stagehands, Masque Sound evolved into one of NYC’s most successful theatrical sound reinforcement, installation and design companies specializing in theatrical, house of worship, sporting, corporate, TV broadcast and live concert events. Celebrating more than 75 years in the industry, the company is led by Geoff Shearing, the firm’s 3rd generation owner, and Vice President and General Manager Stephanie Hansen. The company also operates Florida-based Professional Wireless Systems, a leader in the development and implementation of wireless technology. Credits range from major Broadway shows and tours including “Phantom of the Opera,” “Mamma Mia!,” “Lion King,” “Jersey Boys,” “Memphis,” “The Book of Mormon,” “Newsies,” “Once” and “Kinky Boots” to yearly Super Bowl broadcasts and installations of varying sizes, including New York’s New Victory Theater and historic St. Bartholomew’s Church. Masque Sound’s 70,000 sq. ft. corporate headquarters and main assembly facility is located at 21 East Union Ave., East Rutherford, NJ, 20 minutes from midtown Manhattan. For more information, call (201) 939-8666 or visit www.MasqueSound.com.

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Professional Wireless Systems Says Adios to Signal Interference at NBA Global Games Mexico City 2014

MEXICO CITY, NOVEMBER 24, 2014 — As the Houston Rockets and Minnesota Timberwolves tipped off at the Mexico City Arena on November 12, as part of NBA Global Games Mexico City 2014, Professional Wireless Systems (PWS) was courtside to manage all wireless frequencies throughout the game.

PWS’s overall goal was to provide frequency coordination for all wireless communications, enabling multiple wireless frequencies to be used in conjunction with one another without interference. PWS’ presence reaffirmed that the NBA would have clear communications throughout the event, without worry of dropped signals or unwanted interference during the live show. In all, the PWS team coordinated approximately 110 frequencies.

Two challenges that the PWS team faced in managing frequencies while on-site centered on combating potential signal interference from several active TVBDs in the area and successfully coordinating frequencies with the influx of international media. “There were many more frequencies in use in the area than initially anticipated, which meant that our team had to be prepared and on-guard for unexpected challenges and potential interference during the game,” says John Garrido, PWS’ main RF coordinator for the event.

PWS utilized a selection of equipment, including multiple Telex BTR-800s with wireless intercom beltpacks for extended coverage and range, the Shure UHF-R wireless system, and an assortment of Shure handheld microphones and Lectrosonics IFB kits. In addition, PWS set up a main intercom master station for the game’s courtside lead director, which enabled her to utilize multiple channels at one time and effectively coordinate the game entertainment with all parties involved. For this event, PWS also supplied all the hardware for the hard-wired communications using a Telex RTS-BP325 for all technical positions, which amounted to 25 drops.

“The intercoms proved essential during the event and kept the production running smoothly, allowing crew members to seamlessly coordinate the timing of all talent acts,” adds Garrido. “At one point, one of the team mascots acted out physically eating the game floor host! It seems a crazy act in and of itself, but it is one that was only possible because she was working with wireless equipment.”

In addition, PWS used several of its own proprietary equipment. This includes two Domed Helical Antenna kits, one PWS GX-4 combiner and one PWS DB-IC Custom Intercom Antenna Distribution System.

“We have enjoyed a long relationship with the NBA and were very excited to be a part of the NBA’s Global Games initiative in Mexico City,” says Jim Van Winkle, general manager, PWS. “It is difficult to know what to expect when working an event outside of the United States, especially a live one, but our extensive experience and expert team once again did a great job and the broadcast went off without any issues.”

Along with the on-court action, NBA Global Games 2014-15 will feature a variety of off-the-court activities, including NBA Cares community programs and interactive fan events in each city. The games will also be supported by a variety of marketing and merchandising partners, and fans will be able to receive real-time updates through the NBA Game Time App, on NBA.com, and NBA social media channels, as well as watch globally on television and digital media, including NBA LEAGUE PASS International.

For more information about Professional Wireless Systems, visit http://www.professionalwireless.com.

About Masque Sound
Founded in 1936 by a trio of Broadway stagehands, Masque Sound evolved into one of NYC’s most successful theatrical sound reinforcement, installation and design companies specializing in theatrical, house of worship, sporting, corporate, TV broadcast and live concert events. Celebrating more than 75 years in the industry, the company is lead by Geoff Shearing, the firm’s 3rd generation owner, and Vice President and General Manager Stephanie Hansen. The company also operates Florida-based Professional Wireless Systems, a leader in the development and implementation of wireless technology. Credits range from major Broadway shows and tours including “Phantom of the Opera,” “Mamma Mia!,” “Lion King,” “Jersey Boys,” “Memphis,” “The Book of Mormon,” “Newsies,” “Once” and “Kinky Boots” to yearly Super Bowl broadcasts and installations of varying sizes, including New York’s New Victory Theater and historic St. Bartholomew’s Church. Masque Sound’s 70,000 sq. ft. corporate headquarters and main assembly facility is located at 21 East Union Ave., East Rutherford, NJ, 20 minutes from midtown Manhattan. For more information, call (201) 939-8666 or visit www.MasqueSound.com.

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Outline GTO C-12 Line Source Sound System Rocks the House at Summit Music Hall

System Provides Power, Clarity and Headroom for 1,100-Seat Venue

DENVER, NOVEMBER 24, 2014 — An Outline GTO C-12-based line source sound system, recently installed in the Summit Music Hall by DSI Event Group (formerly Dowlen Sound), rocks the house for such high-power musical groups as Anberlin, Andrew McMahon and GWAR, to name a few. The 1,100-seat venue, purchased by Soda Jerk Presents in 2010, needed the sonic adrenaline provided by the Outline GTO C-12 system to bring it to the next level. While this system could easily handle a larger outdoor audience of several thousand attendees, the GTO C-12 fit the bill perfectly for this venue, providing the clarity and power necessary for the performances without exceeding the flying-rig weight limits of the building’s ceiling. Outline C-12 at Summit Music Hall small more

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SSL Matrix and Sigma Deliver EDM Heat For Las Vegas Studios

“There is a creative trust in knowing you’re working on an SSL”

LAS VEGAS Luca Pretolesi and partner Ronnie Lee of mixing, mastering and studio design company Studio DMI (Study of Digital Music Innovation), rely on a Solid State Logic Matrix Console/Controller to deliver EDM heat for the company’s development project at Wynn Studio. The luxury hotel complex is home to a literal who’s who of A-list DJs performing in its suite of world class clubs and the location of Wynn Studio, an EDM production/recording studio designed and built by Pretolesi. With the hotel’s world-renowned clubs featuring the talents of artists such as Avicii, David Guetta, Afrojack, Deadmau5, Zedd, R3hab, Diplo, Dillon Francis and Jermaine Dupri, building a private space for these artists to use for tweaking current projects and creating the next generation EDM tracks became obvious. Employing an SSL Matrix was equally obvious for Pretolesi as was his choice of the Sigma Remote Controlled Summing Engine, which he uses at Studio DMI’s own workspace.

Luca Pretolesi with SSL Matrix2“In the beginning we looked at different options to find a compact console because Wynn Studio has great acoustics, but lives in a small space,” says Pretolesi. “The idea was to create a studio that was multifunctional and could service the needs of EDM/Dance DJs and the way they like to work. What led us to Matrix was the incredible amount of powerful features packed into a small frame. Total Recall™ was a must for us because we needed to be fast and able to jump from one session to another within a few minutes. The analogue summing side was essential because I was looking for a proper analogue mixer. The added bonus with Matrix is that it also has excellent DAW controller capabilities. The full integration of these items was the selling point of the Matrix.”

Pretolesi is the founder/engineer of Studio DMI also located in Las Vegas, and a Grammy-nominated EDM mixing/mastering engineer who has worked with the likes of Tiësto, Skrillex, Diplo, Lil Jon, Major Lazer, Bruno Mars, Iggy Azalea, Morgan Page, Calvin Harris, Pharrell Williams, 2 Chainz, Macklemore and Imagine Dragons, to name but a few. It is this pedigree that landed the job of designing and installing Wynn Studio. Pretolesi is known for his artistic touch and fresh approach to bring the highest level of quality to each project. For Studio DMI’s location, Pretolesi has added an SSL Sigma, which provides 32 channels of remote controllable SSL summing to his mixing/mastering rig.

“The Sigma at Studio DMI’s location gives me the same summing amplifiers that are found in Matrix,” continues Pretolesi. “We deal with an avalanche of in-your-face-types of sounds with EDM, so having the capability to hear the full range of what is there to make accurate, informed sonic decisions is critical for both facilities. The SSL sound is very transparent but has depth and character, and is capable of handling our extreme transients. This is essential for producing EDM. For Wynn, Matrix is also easy to use. Many times we will offer an assistant engineer for routing and patching support, and then let the clients do their thing. Sometimes different artists might collaborate and handle a session themselves without help. Once they are familiar with Matrix, these sessions progress nicely. When the artists come into the room they like seeing the Solid State Logic name. There is a creative trust in knowing you’re working on an SSL.”

Pretolesi and Lee, CEO of European Music Market, the parent company of Studio DMI and an entertainment service company providing management, business, studio, publishing and marketing services in the music industry, also offer experienced engineers an extended workshop in the subtleties of creating compelling EDM productions. These presentations are based on the over 25-years of experience Pretolesi has gained creating various techniques for mixing EDM.

Solid State Logic is the world’s leading manufacturer of analogue and digital audio consoles and provider of creative tools for music, broadcast, live and post production professionals. For more information about our award-winning products, please visit: www.solidstatelogic.com.

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RTW and IRT Announce New Partnership

RTW Expands its Product Portfolio with IRT’s Continuous Loudness Controller Technology

COLOGNE, 20 NOVEMBER 2014RTW, the market leader in visual audio meters and monitoring devices, and the Institut für Rundfunktechnik (IRT), the main research and development center of Germany, Austria, and Switzerland’s governmental broadcasters, are proud to announce today at Tonmeistertagung 2014, that RTW will implement the IRT’s newly patented Continuous Loudness Controller into its future broadcast-focused audio equipment. This new endeavor will enable RTW to expand the company’s line of products, further supporting the changing industry needs of the state of loudness control.

Over the last few years, the IRT has developed and patented the Continuous Loudness Controller, a new technology that allows users to continuously readjust the level of audio material they are working on, against a given program-loudness value, as well as a definable loudness range in real-time with minimal artefacts. This next-generation technology is in accordance with EBU-R128 and other worldwide loudness standard specifications.

“We look forward to our collaboration with the IRT,” says Andreas Tweitmann, Managing Director, RTW. “With both partner developments and designs, IRT and RTW have focused on the highest quality of audio in radio and TV decades. The new technique developed by the IRT is groundbreaking and will have a tremendous benefit to our customers. We are very happy to implement the Continuous Loudness Controller in our products.”

About the Institut für Rundfunktechnik GmbH
Based in Munich, the IRT supports broadcasting on a national and international scale with a wide range of services. IRT associates include the ARD, ZDF, DRadio, ORF, and SRG/SSR broadcasting services. In addition, the IRT cooperates with numerous clients from the broadcasting, media, communications, and IT industries as well as with a number of research centers and universities. Established in 1956, the IRT has always been committed to preserving broadcasting and to supporting the adaptation of broadcasting concepts to constantly changing market environments and demands.
Visit www.irt.de for more information.

About RTW
RTW, from Cologne, is a leading vendor of highly innovative first-class meters for audio monitoring and quality control. For almost 50 years, RTW has designed, produced, and marketed pioneering systems for professional recording studios. Today, RTW runs an international sales and service network. Visit www.rtw.com or www.facebook.com/rtw.de for more information.

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Great Audio Around the House: Cerwin-Vega! Cultivates Creativity with its XLS, SL and XD SERIES at CES 2015

Cerwin-Vega_SL Series FamilyCerwin-Vega, is set to deliver a stunning sonic experience, showcasing its SL Series Home Audio System, XLS Home Theater Audio System and its XD Desktop Speaker Series at CES 2015 (Gibson Tent, CP1/Central Plaza). As a leading manufacturer in loudspeaker design, Cerwin-Vega is known for its ground shaking bass and next-level performance, delivering high quality sound within any form factor.
Whether listening to a catchy tune, watching a blockbuster hit, or following the big game on the screen, the quality of a listener’s experience is defined by the sound. With a choice of six speakers and one subwoofer, the SL Series can be customized to fit any application, from a personal listening environment to larger-scale home cinema systems.

Similarly, there’s never a need to compromise on sound quality when designing the dream sound system for the home with Cerwin-Vega’s XLS Series. Packed with Cerwin-Vega’s legendary drivers, the XLS Series consists of six full range speakers, two subs and one center channel product. With its striking design, red surrounds built onto every driver and horn loaded midrange and tweeter design, the speakers set the tone of power, with a hard emphasis on bass and power handling.

Cerwin-Vega_XD Series FamilyAlternatively, for those looking for all the power and punch of a home theater system in a portable, compact unit, Cerwin-Vega’s XD Series is made to maximize media entertainment. Unlike plastic multimedia speakers, XD Desktop Speakers feature wooden cabinets to ensure tight bass, which is essential for accurate media creation. Gamers will get goose bumps as they listen to the XDs bring the roaring engines and exploding bombs of their fiction fantasies to life on the screen, while EDM fanatics listen to the latest dance track and feel the music pulse through their veins with help from the XD Series’ engaging Vega-Bass enhanced EQ feature. If you want to go deeper in frequency, you can combine any XD speaker with the XD8S Subwoofer, which features a slick desktop remote control. The XD Speakers, fit for any budget or footprint, feature mature sound and multiple input connections to ensure easy setup.

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Sound Devices Announces Expanded List of Approved Media

Comprehensive Testing Process Determines if Media Meets Requirements for Mission-Critical Production Applications

REEDSBURG, WI, NOVEMBER 18, 2014Sound Devices, specialists in audio and video products, announces an expanded Approved Media List designed to identify media fully compatible with and meeting the high-quality standards of the Sound Devices and Video Devices mission-critical production recorders. Since a recording is only as good as the medium in which it is stored, identifying and using approved media ensures that the company’s products will operate with the utmost reliability in the field. Approved Media. more

Sound Devices Brings Complete Range of Rack-Mounted Video and Audio Recorders into Focus at CCW 2014

Video Devices PIX 270i and PIX 250i and Sound Devices 970 Address the Multiple-Source Audio/Video Needs of Today’s Large-Scale Productions

NEW YORK – Sound Devices, along with its new video-products brand Video Devices, will showcase its full complement of rack-mounted production decks, including the Video Devices PIX 270i and PIX 250i video recorders and Sound Devices 970 audio recorder, at CCW 2014 (Booth 1240). Video Devices PIX 270i.jpg 1a

Seamlessly replacing tape- and disc-based video decks, the PIX line of IP-connected video decks with FileSafeTM and PowerSafeTM are a complete offering addressing a range of multiple-source video productions, including fast-paced, mission-critical studio applications, live events and mobile truck production. In addition, at CCW, Sound Devices will feature its first-ever dedicated, audio-only rack-mounted solution, the 970, which boasts an impressive 64 channels of Dante and MADI. The half-rack, 2U device simplifies any application requiring high-quality, high-track-count audio recording.

Video Devices’ PIX 270i and PIX 250i recorders offer significant advantages and time-savings for production workflows, providing tapeless, file-based recording and playback with the ability to access and transfer high-quality files over gigabit Ethernet. The units record edit-ready Apple ProRes (up to ProRes4444) or Avid DNxHD files, and allow simultaneous multiple-drive recording, giving production staff the peace of mind of rock-solid redundancy and backup capabilities (four drives for PIX 270i and two drives for 250i). Their extensive audio capabilities, including 64 channels of both MADI audio and Dante audio-over-Ethernet for PIX 270i, and PIX 250i’s 16 tracks of audio, make each unit a comprehensive, cost-effective replacement for complex video servers, and an effective tool for high-performance video production.

Both PIX products feature extensive network connectivity, and can be connected over Ethernet for simultaneous, frame-accurate grouped recording and playback, delivering a cost-effective, scalable solution addressing the multiple-camera recording and multiple screen playback needs of today’s productions. Any number of units can be grouped, controlled and configured as a single system from either the hardware or the built-in Web browser-based control panel, PIXNet.

Video Devices’ PIX 270i and PIX 250i and Sound Devices’ 970 all feature the company’s proprietary PowerSafe technology. PowerSafe circuitry has a built-in 10-second power reserve. In the event of power loss, the unit continues to operate for up to 10 seconds, then stops any file operation and shuts down. This ensures that a complete power loss has no effect on the recording. In addition, these newest rack-mounted products feature FileSafe, which automatically detects and repairs corrupted file headers when drives are mounted. If a drive is inadvertently removed during recording, the user can simply reinsert it to repair the files automatically.

The PIX 270i and PIX 250i include high-performance hardware scalers and frame-rate converters allowing recording of up-, down- or cross-converted 3G-SDI or HDMI signal at the same or a different frame rate. Hardware-based 3:2 pull-down removal is also available. With its built-in Ambient Clockit time-code generator/reader with genlock output, the PIX line is designed for multiple-camera and double-system sound applications. In addition to generating ultra-stable time-code, time-code can be read from the SDI stream, the HDMI stream or external sources. Its convenient 1/2-rack, 2U chassis dimension allows it to be easily integrated into any existing environment. It is powered by 10-27 VDC through a four-pin XLR connector. The PIX 270i offers a secondary DC input for power supply redundancy.

A powerful tool for professionals requiring a significant number of audio channels, Sound Devices’ 970 records 64 channels of monophonic or polyphonic 24-bit WAV files from any of its 144 available inputs. These inputs include 64 channels of Ethernet-based Dante, 64 channels of optical or coaxial MADI, eight channels of line-level analog and eight channels of AES digital. Any input can be assigned to any track. In addition, 32-track recording at 96 kHz is supported. The 970 records to any of four attached drives, which include two front-panel drive bays and two rear-panel e-SATA connected drives. Material can be recorded to multiple drives simultaneously or sequentially. This eliminates time-consuming post-record copying and allows for continuous long-form, high-track-count recordings.

With its built-in, rock-steady Ambient Recording Lockit time-code technology, the 970 is ideal for operation as a master clock. It can also slave or be jammed to any other time-code source. All common production time-code rates and modes are supported. The 970 also supports word-clock synchronization from external word clock, video sync, MADI or AES. To simplify the connection of multiple digital inputs, SRCs are available for all MADI, Dante or AES inputs.

The Sound Devices 970 also features an embedded Web-based control panel for machine transport and setup control over Ethernet-based networks, as well as file transfer over the data network with SMB. File metadata editing of scene name, take name, notes, track names, and reel folders can be done during, before and after recording across all drives. In addition to RS-422 and GPIO control, the unit also allows for format conversion between analog, AES digital, MADI and Dante.

Sound Devices, LLC designs and manufactures portable audio mixers, digital audio recorders and related equipment for feature film, episodic television, documentary, news-gathering, live event and acoustical test and measurement applications. Video Devices, a brand of Sound Devices, produces digital video recorders and related products that address a range of multiple-source video productions, including fast-paced, mission-critical studio applications, live sports, live events and mobile production.

Founded in 1998, the company designs and manufactures both brands from their Reedsburg, Wisconsin headquarters with additional offices in Madison, WI. For more information, visit the Sound Devices and Video Devices websites, www.sounddevices.com; www.videodevices.com.

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Masque Sound Custom Equipment Package Provides Intimate Audioscape for Lincoln Center Theater’s Newest Play, The Oldest Boy

NEW YORK, NY – When visionary playwright Sarah Ruhl’s newest play, The Oldest Boy, made its debut at Lincoln Center Theater’s Mitzi E. Newhouse Theater on Monday, November 3, Sound Designer Darron L West once again turned to Masque Sound, a leading theatrical sound reinforcement, installation and design company, to supply a custom audio equipment package for the much-anticipated production. Main Pic The Oldest Boy LCT - 3

In this moving and delightful exploration of motherhood, love and letting go, The Oldest Boy tells the story of Tenzin, the toddler son of an American woman and a Tibetan man who is recognized as the reincarnation of a high Buddhist teacher. Differing cultures contend with competing ideas of faith and love when two monks seek permission to take Tenzin to a monastery in India to begin his training as a spiritual master. His parents must decide whether to send their young son away or keep him home.

Designing the sound system for The Oldest Boy posed its own unique set of challenges; the first of which was the design of the stage itself. “The stage is a really beautiful, wooden formal circle in the middle of the theater, and in designing the sound I wanted to be able to create layers from the center out,” says West. “We placed an enormous amount of speakers in the theatre to accomplish this, which gave us the added ability of being able to move the majority of the sounds around the room with ease. It was all about radiating the sound from the center out, and the system Masque Sound provided allowed us to achieve our goal.”

For West, his associate, Charles Coes, and Beth Lake, his assistant, however, the biggest challenge in designing the sound was dealing with the delicate nature of the music. Since the musical numbers are all composed on Tibetan instruments, such as bowls and tone bells, with a single, live musician performing onstage, the sound designers had to find a way to integrate all of these understated instruments to work inside the system’s surround.

“We designed the system in rings,” adds West. “There is a center system that only outlines the edge of the round stage, which means that the musician can be performing in the middle of the stage and get a lot of gain before feedback on his microphone. Most of the music in this show is multi-channel, so the audience is almost sitting in a bowl with all of these layers going on behind them that are creating a whirlwind of surround soundscapes. The show features beautiful scenic changes and the sound layers help shape the story for our audience, not only in terms of where it is going, but where it is ultimately headed.”

In order to create the sound he was looking for, Masque Sound provided West with a large Meyer Sound speaker package, including UPA-1P loudspeakers for the mains, a variety of UPMs for fills, UPJ-1Ps for the center ring and USW-1P subwoofers. “It’s about the clarity at the top end,” says West. “With musicians loudly playing these pure tone bells and bowls to fill up the room, it is important to rely on a fast speaker that boasts a lot of top end. To get the dynamic range we needed in the show, the Meyer rig was the only way to go for us. There was no question as to what we wanted to use, and we were very happy that Masque Sound was able to provide it.”

In terms of consoles, West was looking for an efficient board with as much flexibility as possible, which he found in the Yamaha DM1k. The DM1k allowed West to use MADI to send out the multiple outputs, between 26-32, in each with separate QLab channels allowing for the detailed soundscape. For microphones, West employed a selection DPA 4021s and 4022s, as well as a DPA 4061, which is worn on the head of the musician playing the traditional Tibetan nylon stringed instrument.

“We have such a long relationship with Masque Sound, and I know that I am in such good hands when I am working with them and never have to worry about anything,” concludes West. “With this show in particular, there were massive amounts of changes. It’s a brand new, world premiere with a lot of different levels and moving parts. To not have to worry about the implementation of the sound system was just fantastic. Masque Sound also provided its frequency coordination services, which is another item I can check off my list and not even have to worry about. In addition, our mixer at Lincoln Center, Stephen Bettridge, did an amazing job in helping this all come together.”

Directed by Rebecca Taichman, The Oldest Boy is scheduled to run through December 28 at the Lincoln Center Theater’s Mitzi E. Newhouse Theater, located on 150 West 65th Street in Manhattan. For more information, including where to purchase tickets, please visit www.lct.org.

About Masque Sound
Founded in 1936 by a trio of Broadway stagehands, Masque Sound evolved into one of NYC’s most successful theatrical sound reinforcement, installation and design companies specializing in theatrical, house of worship, sporting, corporate, TV broadcast and live concert events. Celebrating more than 75 years in the industry, the company is lead by Geoff Shearing, the firm’s 3rd generation owner, and Vice President and General Manager Stephanie Hansen. The company also operates Florida-based Professional Wireless Systems, a leader in the development and implementation of wireless technology. Credits range from major Broadway shows and tours including “Phantom of the Opera,” “Mamma Mia!,” “Lion King,” “Jersey Boys,” “Memphis,” “The Book of Mormon,” “Newsies,” “Once” and “Kinky Boots” to yearly Super Bowl broadcasts and installations of varying sizes, including New York’s New Victory Theater and historic St. Bartholomew’s Church. Masque Sound’s 70,000 sq. ft. corporate headquarters and main assembly facility is located at 21 East Union Ave., East Rutherford, NJ, 20 minutes from midtown Manhattan. For more information, call (201) 939-8666 or visit www.MasqueSound.com.

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SSL AWS The Natural Selection For Unique ‘AudioArena’ Studio Located In A Football Stadium

“We consider SSL a true icon of the global audio market”

SÃO PAULO – As the first high-end, commercial recording studio built in one of the largest football stadiums in the world, the Morumbi in Brazil, AudioArena offers the space, incredible view of the playing field and the sound quality necessary to attract the biggest recording groups and corporate events. At the center of the audio setup within this innovative facility is a Solid State Logic AWS Hybrid Console/Controller, supplied by Music Company, which brings the world-class sound and operational capabilities of SSL to this unique venue.

SSL_AWS_AudioArena_live roomAlong with offering a collection of the industry’s best analogue and digital gear, the studio, created by renowned studio designer Carlos Duttweller of ProStudios Design, also doubles as an exclusive, catered 132-person viewing box during São Paulo Futebol Clube (SPFC) football games. This unique combination has already started to attract the attention of some of the country’s top artists and broadcasters. “We literally just opened the doors when we were chosen to record the soundtrack for the latest drama series on TV Globo, Dual Identity, with the Brazilian metal band Sepultura, a group that has sold over 30 million records world-wide over the years,” says Luiz Fernando Vieira, co-owner of AudioArena with Daniel Chalfon. “Both the band and TV Globo were thrilled with the results.” The TV Globo production was created by producer/composer/musician Andreas Kisser, along with the AudioArena team of Fernando Quesada, Conrado Ruther and Luiz Fernando Vieira.

According to Vieira, innovation was the word that inspired the idea behind AudioArena, in an effort to bring together two of the greatest passions of mankind: music and football. “The SSL AWS 948 is a key part of this story’s beginning,” Vieira continues. “Whether the studio sessions are for an international release, to record a live concert in the stadium or to supply the audio backbone for a corporate event, we know the AWS will deliver. We consider SSL a true icon of the global audio market and would not work with anything less than a console from Solid State Logic.”

SSL AWS at AudioArenaAudioArena boasts a who’s who of enviable outboard gear, used to cater to any musical taste. The AWS 948, however, brings it all together. “We chose AWS for two reasons: the first is the absolute quality of SSL products,” states Vieira. “The level of sound quality that SSL reaches really makes a difference in the final mix of any studio. The second was an enlightening experience we previously had with an SSL Matrix console/controller combined with SSL’s XLogic SuperAnalogue™ X-Racks. We were very happy with the resulting recordings, so moving into the more integrated AWS platform made sense for AudioArena.”

With the intent of becoming one of the best studios in Brazil, the AWS presents the power and flexibility for AudioArena to handle any production situation. “We can say that the AWS easily assumed that vital center position in AudioArena’s equipment universe,” Vieira relates. “It is the absolute heart of our studio/venue. We worked with Carlos Duttweller to create the very highest level acoustics and integrate the very best support electronics. The AWS completely covers our needs and the results are simply state-of-the-art, unique and amazing!”

Solid State Logic is the world’s leading manufacturer of analogue and digital audio consoles and provider of creative tools for music, broadcast, live and post production professionals. For more information about our award-winning products, please visit: www.solidstatelogic.com.

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