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Archive of the Microphones Category

DPA Microphones Help Cats On Trees Deliver A Great Live Sound

Cats On Trees 2

Live sound engineer Verlaine Levis used to think that DPA microphones were only suited to classical music and never imagined that they were also great for pop rock tours. But since using a selection of DPA mics on the current Cats On Trees tour, Levis is the first to admit that his initial perception was entirely wrong.

“When DPA’s French distributor Audio² gave me the opportunity to try the company’s microphones with Cats On Trees, I was happy to accept the challenge,” Levis says. “It didn’t take long to dicover that these great microphones have beefy pickups and are perfectly suited to rock and pop acts. We’re now using three d:facto™ Vocal Microphones, as well as a d:dicate™ ST2011C Stereo Pair with 2011C Compact Cardioids and a number of d:vote™ 4099 Instrument Microphones for drums and violins.”

Levis, who began his career with French sound company Audio-Lum, started working as a live sound engineer in 2001 and has toured with the likes of Sidilarsen, Claude Sicre, Bombs 2 Bal, Zebda, Magyd Cherfi and Mouss and Hakim. He is also building a strong reputation as a recording engineer, having been asked by a number of artists to assist with studio sessions.

Cats On Trees, a French musical duo consisting of Nina Goern and Yohan Hennequin, specialise in ambient indie pop and have released one self-titled album and a number of singles including Sirens Call, which reached No. 3 in the French charts in 2013. The band is now half way through a European tour that will see them play nearly 200 dates in various countries including France, Germany, England and Spain.
“The tour is awesome and they are playing to virtually full houses every time,” Levis says. “Since September they have been performing with a string quartet, but because we have such a busy touring schedule there hasn’t been much time for residency work or to prepare the mix. Therefore the show is being built as we go along.”

Levis runs the Front of House sound, the mix for the In Ear Monitors and the shipment of sequences since he mixes upstream.

“With the help of our lighting person, we have set up a network between sound, light and stage,” he explains. “Yohan controls the lights and video via a MIDI controller, but I am the master of the Mac, which manages the sequences and the network. Feeling comfortable is of ultimate importance to the artist so I try hard to achieve that, but with this duo it is very difficult to create a show that is the same every time because they are constantly changing things.”

The progressive evolution of the show was a key reason why Levis decided to switch to DPA microphones. He had previously used DPA omnidirectional microphones to record voice ensembles and orchestras in churches, therefore he knew of their ability to faithfully recreate the acoustics of a venue. After speaking to Audio², he was able to try out various combinations until he found the microphones that worked for him.

“I had a very clear idea of how each instrument should sound,” he explains. “I wanted to bring a lot of omnidirectional microphones on tour so that I could capture the natural colour of the instruments, but given the on-stage proximity of the drums and piano, this was not possible. As it stands, only the ambient microphones are omnidirectional.”

Levis eventually opted for DPA d:vote 4099 Instrument Microphones for the drum kit and was immediately impressed by the sound, which he describes as ‘very powerful and very natural’.
“These microphones really pick up extreme levels – they are great,” he says. “We now have DPA d:vote 4099s on the bass drum, snare, toms and violin. I even had them as under-cymbals this summer. I am most impressed with the way they capture the sound of the bass drum. I position the mic at the entrance of the drum and slightly inside it. Although the capsule is very small, it still delivers the most amazingly deep, accurate bass.”

Levis is also using DPA d:facto Vocal Microphones, which have solved the feedback issues he was having with other mics. The band has three on stage – one for Yohan on drums and two for Nina as she sings in two different locations.

“For Yohan, the issue was his drum kit,” Levis says. “I was afraid his vocal mic would pick up a lot of extraneous sounds but in fact what I achieved with d:facto was a clarity to his voice that no other mic would have given me. I just had to think carefully about the positioning of his microphone to avoid rear rejection. Furthermore, the d:faco has a very high gain and its gain before feedback is incomparable.”

“As for Nina, well to be honest it was Nina who chose d:facto – not me. We’d tried a number of different mics but it was d:facto that she really liked. I never impose a microphone on a singer and I even made her do a blind test because I wanted to be sure she was 100% comfortable with the way her voice sounded. She immediately noticed the difference and now doesn’t want to sing with any other microphone.”

The fact that DPA microphones deliver a very precise sound has given Levis’ mixes more accuracy and finesse. They have also made everyone more demanding when it comes to sound quality, especially when it comes to tuning drum kits.

“For me, the DPA microphones can be summarized in two words: natural and punchy,” Levis says. “What’s more they are very rugged. I’ve broken three microphones so far on this tour, but not a single one of them has been a DPA.”

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About DPA
DPA Microphones is the leading Danish Professional Audio manufacturer of high quality condenser microphone solutions for professional applications. DPA’s ultimate goal is to provide you – whether you’re in live sound, recording, theater or broadcast – with the absolute finest possible microphone solutions for your tasks. DPA takes no shortcuts in the design processes nor makes any compromises in manufacturing, which is all done at the DPA factory in Denmark. As a result, DPA’s products are globally praised for their exceptional clarity and transparency, unparalleled specifications, supreme reliability, and above all, pure, uncolored and undistorted sound.
For more information, please visit www.dpamicrophones.com

DPA Microphones Go On The Road With Bombay Bicycle Club

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Earlier this month indie rock luminaries Bombay Bicycle Club became the very last band to play London’s legendary Earl’s Court venue, which is soon to be demolished. The band took to the stage as part of an epic world tour, which not only highlighted the success of their So Long, See You Tomorrow album but also allowed them to use DPA microphones extensively on the road for the first time.

And if delivering the last ever gig at Earl’s Court wasn’t enough, Bombay Bicycle Club also happily accepted a special guest when Pink Floyd’s Dave Gilmour joined them on stage. Gilmour first played steel lap guitar on the band’s song Rinse Me Down, before giving an emotional rendition of Wish You Were Here, backed by Bombay Bicycle Club. As with all of the performances that night – and during the entire tour – DPA microphones were on hand to ensure exception audio quality.
Dave Gilmour

Tour Manager Steven Down has been working with the band for five years. He says: “Jon Burton, the previous FoH engineer, brought the DPA d:facto™ Vocal Microphone to our attention while he was reviewing equipment for one of the pro audio magazines. Jack Steadman (lead vocals) gave it a go during the warm up tour we did at the start of this campaign and he was very impressed with the clarity compared to the dynamic mics we had been using previously. Shortly afterwards we obtained a capsule to use on our Sennhesier wireless system for Liz Lawrence who does a lot of backing vocals in the show. More recently we have started using d:dicate™ 2011C Twin Diaphragm Cardioid units on the kick and snare and some d:vote™ 4099 Instrument Microphones on the toms with great results.”

Downs adds that the Bombay Bicycle Club show moves from songs with loud distorted guitars and heavy drums to quiet and intimate piano and vocal solos. “I think the dynamic range and the frequency response of the d:facto really allows Jack to perform with confidence in all situations,” he says.

Steadman himself is certainly a fan of the d:facto Vocal Microphone.

“The wonderfully clear, bright sound of the mic means I don’t have to mess around endlessly with EQ to get the results I want,” he says.

Also happily not messing around with EQ too much is Simon Lutkin, freelance sound engineer and production manager who first took over monitors for the band during their Different Kind Of Fix tour in 2012.

“We have drums, bass, guitars, keys, percussion, backing vocals and a brass section onstage during the show — it can get pretty busy!” he says of the current set-up. “Currently the show is around 40 channels but both Tom Wiggans (FoH) and myself try to keep the channel count down as much as we can. A lot of the shows we do are festivals and rolling in with too much can be a problem for broadcast and patch.”

Everyone has in-ear mics, but Lutkin also uses wedges on the downstage edge and side-fills to add feeling. Add to that up to nine people at any one time and the stage can get pretty full.

“With that many on stage, any help I can get through technology is great,” Lutkin says. “I use scenes for each song to make small changes automatically through the show so I can keep my eye on the band. The d:facto Vocal Microphone really helps control the ambience for the main singers. Compared to other mics, as well as having a pretty tight pickup pattern, the overall tone of the spill is much nicer to listen to. In a live scenario you are always up against bleed from other sources, but with this set of mics the spill is much more pleasant sounding and therefore can be a help rather than a hindrance.”

All of the band’s DPA mics were supplied by the company’s UK distributor Sound Network. Alongside the d:facto, the tour configuration sees Lutkin use d:dicate 2011C mics on both kick and snare because they are small enough to be deployed exactly where he wants them and light enough to stay in place without putting any pressure on the stand or clamp. d:vote 4099 Instrument Microphones are also in use for rack, floor, crash, ride and the brass section.

To maintain consistency the group carries all the mics and IEMs with them internationally, simply hiring in consoles locally (a DiGico SD7 for FoH and Midas Pro2c for monitors), thus ensuring that the signal path from source to output is the same each day.
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“In a live scenario you can’t always place mics exactly where you want for a variety of reasons, so having a set of mics that work well wherever you put them is a real positive,” concludes Lutkin. “All the DPA mics we use on Bombay, like all the ones I have used in the past, never fail to impress day after day. Since populating the stage with DPA microphones it has really made a difference to the quality of the overall sound of the show.”
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About DPA
DPA Microphones is the leading Danish Professional Audio manufacturer of high quality condenser microphone solutions for professional applications. DPA’s ultimate goal is to provide you – whether you’re in live sound, recording, theater or broadcast – with the absolute finest possible microphone solutions for your tasks. DPA takes no shortcuts in the design processes nor makes any compromises in manufacturing, which is all done at the DPA factory in Denmark. As a result, DPA’s products are globally praised for their exceptional clarity and transparency, unparalleled specifications, supreme reliability, and above all, pure, uncolored and undistorted sound.
For more information, please visit www.dpamicrophones.com

YULE LIKE THIS TRANSAUDIO GROUP HOLIDAY OFFER – ATC SCM20 MONITORS AND SELECT BOCK MICROPHONES

ATC_SCM20_MonitorLAS VEGAS, NEVADA – DECEMBER 2014: For lovers of great audio gear, the Black Friday hubbub and the month of frenzied holiday shopping that follows it are tinged with sadness: so much money spent on electronics that could have been spent on gear! To ease your pain, the team at TransAudio Group, distributor of some of the finest recording equipment on the planet, is offering ATC’s reference monitors – the passive ATC SCM20PSL and the active ATC SCM20ASL MkII – at a discounted price. And that’s not all! Select Bock microphones will ship with a free Pauly windscreen – the best windscreen ($250.00) on the planet. But act fast – these offers end on December 31st.

ATC reference monitors are prized for their unflinchingly faithful representation of audio. They make imperfections obvious and allow you to correct those imperfections so that your recordings translate everywhere. For the month of December, the passive ATC SCM20PSL, normally $3995 a pair, will sell for just $3149 a pair. The active ATC SCM20ASL MkII, normally $6695 a pair, will sell for just $5339 a pair.

TAG_Holiday_BockIndustry insiders know that David Bock is the man to turn to when a cherished vintage microphone needs repairs, and Bock has leveraged his decades of experience servicing the world’s best microphones to creating the world’s best microphones… with vastly better reliability and consistency than vintage units. For the month of December, the Bock 241, Bock 251, and Bock 407 will ship with a free Pauly PR120-T30m windscreen – the most effective, and yet transparent, windscreen available. That’s a $250 savings and a lifetime of perfect vocals!

ABOUT TRANSAUDIO GROUP TransAudio Group, founded by industry veteran Brad Lunde, has quickly become the premier U.S. importer/distributor and/or U.S. sales and marketing representative for high-end audio. Success hinges on TransAudio providing dealers and end users with a higher standard of product expertise and support far beyond the norm.

www.transaudiogroup.com

DPA Microphones Get a ‘Royal’ Seal of Approval

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Mercury Prize nominees Royal Blood, one of the breakthrough bands of the year, have been using a range of DPA microphones on their recent UK tour.

“We use DPA’s d:facto™ Vocal Microphone on vocals and d:vote™ 4099 Instrument Microphones on snare bottoms and toms,” says Front of House engineer Phil Jones from Output Audio. “I was never a fan of snare bottom and now literally can’t imagine not using one.”

Jones adds that he is now a confirmed fan of the quality that DPA microphones deliver.

“They just sound great. The d:facto Vocal Microphone is genius. Even in a small club I can get it as loud as most dynamic mics without hideous feedback, but the sound quality and ‘intelligibility’ is still there. Both the d:facto and the d:vote 4099s sound very natural without having to use any obvious big cuts and boosts. It makes for a far better starting point EQ and processing-wise, as long as your source is good.”

Brighton-based Royal Blood consist of bassist & vocalist Mike Kerr and drummer Ben Thatcher. Jones started off playing the drums himself and so has a fine appreciation of the amount of spirited abuse Thatcher gives his kit.

“Honestly, I didn’t think the d:vote 4099s would survive with the way Ben plays drums,” Jones says. “A couple of times in the summer he pushed the whole drum kit over and I was mildly terrified what I would find when the risers got pushed round. But, fingers crossed, no problems so far. The d:vote 4099s are so small and discreet they just stay out of the way, which is extremely important. They sound very natural; they sound like the drums! I do very minimal EQ work and that’s what we like — natural sound.”

Working with a duo, even one as energetic and sonically bombastic as Royal Blood, brings a certain degree of precision to Jones’ work. “With only 17 channels to work with, it has to be perfect,” he says. “You’re not going to get away with losing the third keyboard or second backing vocal in a mix. If something is slightly off, you’re in big trouble; there’s nowhere for anything to hide. I’m constantly on my toes, but it does leave quite a bit of room for interesting FX and creativity.”

As part of that creative experimentation Jones has been using a DPA d:discreet™ 4091 Omni-Directional Miniature Microphone on Thatcher’s kick for a couple of months now and says that it has been an eye-opening experience.
“I come from more of a jazz background and for that, it would be amazing,” he says. “Outdoors, with lots of sub, and control of the sub especially, it’s brilliant. I get some extra bottom end that I can’t put my finger on and I love it.”

Royal Blood’s autumn tour and subsequent clutch of European dates were thrown into disarray when Kerr went down with tonsillitis. However, dates are being rescheduled, and it’s almost easier to find places where they aren’t playing in 2015 than where they are, with a support slot on a North American tour with the Foo Fighters being one of the highlights.

And where Royal Blood goes, from Europe to North America, Australia and beyond, Jones and his DPA mics go too.

“All of our DPA microphones were supplied by the company’s UK distributor Sound Network,” Jones says. “We now fly the mics round the world and use them for everything. We have some very expensive mics, but the results are fantastic and consistency is key. That’s especially true for broadcast when we can’t have total control, but we just turn up, turn it all up, and basically it sounds great.”

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About DPA
DPA Microphones is the leading Danish Professional Audio manufacturer of high quality condenser microphone solutions for professional applications. DPA’s ultimate goal is to provide you – whether you’re in live sound, recording, theater or broadcast – with the absolute finest possible microphone solutions for your tasks. DPA takes no shortcuts in the design processes nor makes any compromises in manufacturing, which is all done at the DPA factory in Denmark. As a result, DPA’s products are globally praised for their exceptional clarity and transparency, unparalleled specifications, supreme reliability, and above all, pure, uncolored and undistorted sound.
For more information, please visit www.dpamicrophones.com

DPA Appoints New Distributors In South East Asia and Taiwan

AV-United, Ken Kimura & Chin Foo Heng

DPA Microphones has reorganised its distribution channels in South East Asia by appointing new distributors in Malaysia, Thailand, Vietnam, Indonesia and Taiwan.

Ken Kimura, DPA’s general manager for the APAC region, says the appointments reflect the company’s ongoing commitment to develop new business channels and support DPA’s influential customer base.

“Sales in virtually every APAC country are showing growth as the market recognises the quality and breadth of DPA’s product range,” he says.

Francis Lai, DPA’s Regional Sales Manager, continues: “With our new distribution channels in place, we are now better able to promote DPA microphones and increase brand awareness in many industry areas including broadcast, film, theatre, installation, conferencing and security.”

The new appointments include AV United in Malaysia (www.av-united.com); Vision One Co. Ltd in Thailand (www.visionone.co.th); Pro AVL in Vietnam (www.proavl-group.com); Promedia in Indonesia (www.promediasolution.com) and Shin Lee Sheng Music Corp. (SLS) in Taiwan.

Chin Foo Heng, Managing Director of AV United says: “We are very proud to be appointed as DPA distributor in Malaysia as this not only enhances our company status but also enables AV-United to deliver unique high quality microphones and thereby lead the industry to a higher standard. DPA Microphones is a reference, a standard, a MUST-HAVE item in the audio solution.”

Tanapat Mongkolkosol, Managing Director of Vison One, Thailand, adds: “We guide our customers by identifying which equipment is the best solution for them. DPA is one of these solutions because it offers high quality microphones that are easy to use, with great sonic results fit for recording and live sound productions.”

For more information please contact Ken Kimura at kek@dpamicrophones.com.
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About DPA
DPA Microphones is the leading Danish Professional Audio manufacturer of high quality condenser microphone solutions for professional applications. DPA’s ultimate goal is to provide you – whether you’re in live sound, recording, theater or broadcast – with the absolute finest possible microphone solutions for your tasks. DPA takes no shortcuts in the design processes nor makes any compromises in manufacturing, which is all done at the DPA factory in Denmark. As a result, DPA’s products are globally praised for their exceptional clarity and transparency, unparalleled specifications, supreme reliability, and above all, pure, uncolored and undistorted sound.
For more information, please visit www.dpamicrophones.com

Revolabs to Facilitate Distribution of Yamaha YVC-1000 UC Microphone and Speaker System in North America and Europe

SUDBURY, Mass. — Dec. 4, 2014 — Revolabs(R) today announced that the Yamaha YVC-1000 unified communications (UC) microphone and speaker system will be available through all of its certified sales channels in North America and Europe beginning January 2015. The UC solution is Yamaha’s first since the company’s acquisition of Revolabs earlier this year. more

Hawthorn Names DPA As Its Microphone Brand of Choice

Ben McAlonan and Jon Curnew

Hawthorn, the UK’s largest independent supplier of technical production services, has named DPA as its primary microphone brand.

Established in 1987, Hawthorn employs over 120 staff from offices around the UK and handles over 1,000 events every year, including gala dinners, product launches, conferences and parties. The company’s product portfolio has seen a 4.4 EUR investment over the last two years and now includes state of the art lighting, sound, AV, rigging, staging and drapes.

Among this phenomenal inventory are a wide range of DPA microphones including d:fine™ Headset Microphones, d:screet™ 4060 lavalier microphones and d:vote™ 4099 Instrument Microphones.

Audio quality is very important to Hawthorn, which bases its reputation on delivering exceptionally high standards. It was this desire to use the best that initially brought DPA to the company’s attention.

“It all started a few years ago when we were looking for headset microphones to replace the brand we had previously been using,” says Jon Curnew, Hawthorn’s Head of Sound. “We discovered the DPA d:fine Headset Microphone range and were immediately taken with the fact that they came with single and dual ear attachments. That really appealed to us because it made them so versatile. We now have a stock of about 35 d:fine microphones and we use them all the time. They are much easier to position than any other headset mic we have tried and our customers love them.”

Although Hawthorn also offers DPA d:screet™ 4060 lavalier microphones, most of its customers prefer headsets because they don’t have to worry about accidentally knocking them – or forgetting to take them off when they go off stage.

“Headsets are also better at picking up weaker voices because the microphone is positioned so close to the mouth and doesn’t have to compete with background noise,” Curnew says. “Once they are in place, they tend to stay in place – we even had a guy wearing one while he was doing aerobics and it managed to survive that.”

For musicians, Hawthorn stocks DPA d:vote 4099 Instrument Microphones and now has 17 in its microphone cupboard.

“We use them with a variety of clips and they are great because they deliver such a clean, transparent sound,” Curnew says.

Hawthorn recently added six DPA d:facto™ Vocal Microphones toits stock, which it bought from DPA’s UK distributor Sound Network.

“We saw the d:facto Vocal Microphones at PLASA two years ago but we needed the right event to inspire us to buy some,” Curnew says. “This turned out to be SunWalk in London’s Battersea Park – a charity event raising money for breast cancer research, for which we delivered full technical production.”

Four wired and two wireless d:facto’s were immediately put to use on the SunWalk live music stage.

“Everyone loved them,” Curnew says. “They sounded amazing and we had no issues with feedback or rejection – they worked well across a range of artists and really brought out the subtlety in the vocalists’ voices. We have since used them on other events including an opera. It’s interesting to note how often they are cropping up on artist’s riders – that’s another reason why we felt the time was right to invest in some.”

Although most of Hawthorn’s DPA microphones are used for in-house productions, they are also available for dry hire and Curnew says the DPA d:facto Vocal Microphones, in particular, are already making a name for themselves amongst dry hire customers.

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About DPA
DPA Microphones is the leading Danish Professional Audio manufacturer of high quality condenser microphone solutions for professional applications. DPA’s ultimate goal is to provide you – whether you’re in live sound, recording, theater or broadcast – with the absolute finest possible microphone solutions for your tasks. DPA takes no shortcuts in the design processes nor makes any compromises in manufacturing, which is all done at the DPA factory in Denmark. As a result, DPA’s products are globally praised for their exceptional clarity and transparency, unparalleled specifications, supreme reliability, and above all, pure, uncolored and undistorted sound.
For more information, please visit www.dpamicrophones.com

Empire PRO To Host QSC, Shure, and Yamaha Commercial Audio Training Day

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LOS ANGELES—On Thursday, December 4th, QSC, Shure, and Yamaha Commercial Audio Systems, Inc., will present a powerful day of live-sound training at Empire PRO, 5675 Mansfield Way, Bell, CA. A professional production of the training will also be streamed live at http://www.mldistrict.com/empirepro, courtesy of DataVideo. Empire PRO is a leading national Pro Audio, Video & Lighting distribution partner.

The training, appropriately titled “Modern Technology For Today’s Production” will cover line arrays, digital consoles, monitors, amps, wireless and digital microphones, and in-ear monitors along with how they optimally work together for applications from small to mid-size production. Presenters will focus on system design, networking, Dante and RF landscape, coordination, and antenna setup as well as best practices, special tools, and tips.

“Our goal is to provide the Pro AV community with support and resources that empower them to grow their business, states Edmond Khanian, VP Sales at Empire PRO. We are more than a great place to get the products you need, when you need them, and at the prices you expect; we are a partner whose top priority is the success of our dealers’ business. We are proud and grateful to have strong relationships with industry leaders like QSC, Shure, and Yamaha Commercial Audio, who share and support our vision.”

Empire PRO continues to prove its commitment to be the most supportive Pro Audio, Video and Lighting wholesale distribution partner for AV Professionals through training and educational opportunities like this.

Presentation Schedule

• 9:40-10am: Introduction
• 10-11:15am: Shure – RF (spectrum update/incentive auction)
• 11:15-12:30pm Shure – RF coordination using Shure gear (highlighting BLX, QLXD, ULXD, AXT600 and WWB6) and how to choose the right antenna
• 12:30-1:30pm QSC – Line Array (specification and deployment) / Amp Technology
• 1:30-2:30pm LUNCH
• 2:30-3:30pm QSC – Touchmix (for production)
• 3:30-4:45pm Yamaha – CL Consoles (who, what, where, when, why and how)
• 4:45-6pm Yamaha – QL Consoles (who, what, where, when, why and how)

Don’t miss this opportunity to develop your Pro Audio knowledge. Space is limited, so RSVP now at http://www.empirepro.com/qsc-yamaha-shuretraining.php, or tune into the live streaming at http://www.mldistrict.com/empirepro. For information on how to become an Empire PRO dealer, call Omer Saar at 213.748.5200 x 112 or via email at omer@empirepro.com.

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About Empire PRO:
Empire PRO is among the largest distributors of Professional Audio, Video and Lighting equipment nationwide and highly regarded worldwide. We take pride in providing our clients with a reliable, supportive and efficient source of optimal full-system solutions by distributing leading audio, video and lighting brands, stocking deep inventory in-house, and being centrally located in the heart of Los Angeles for prompt delivery.

Our goal is to provide you with the most valuable support services and full-system-solutions to help you close deals and provide your clients with an experience that exceeds their expectations. Our Sales Executives are experts in helping you define and design optimal system-solutions for your clients. Our service is personal & professional and we offer full technical and sales support to insure satisfaction.

Masque Sound Struts its Stuff for National Tour of Six-Time Tony Award®-Winning Musical, Kinky Boots

Kinky Boots Tour - Photo by Matthew Murphy

Kinky Boots Tour – Photo by Matthew Murphy

Kinky Boots, winner of six Tony Awards® including Best Musical, sings and dances its way across the United States for its year-long national tour with the help of Masque Sound, a leading theatrical sound reinforcement, installation and design company. Tony Award®-winning Sound Designer John Shivers, along with his long-time associate and collaborator, David Patridge, relied on Masque Sound to provide the custom audio equipment package for the tour.

In Kinky Boots, Charlie Price has reluctantly inherited his father’s shoe factory, which is on the verge of bankruptcy. Trying to live up to his father’s legacy and save his family business, Charlie finds inspiration in the form of Lola. A fabulous entertainer in need of some sturdy stilettos, Lola turns out to be the one person who can help Charlie become the man he’s meant to be. As they work to turn the factory around, this unlikely pair finds that they have more in common than they ever dreamed possible… and discovers that when you change your mind about someone, you can change your whole world.

Kinky Boots, directed and choreographed by the Tony Award-winning Jerry Mitchell, is brought to life by music and lyrics from Grammy® Award-winner and Tony Award-winner Cyndi Lauper and a book by Tony Award-winner Harvey Fierstein.

Shivers’ and Patridge’s goal of recreating and delivering the incredible sound that Broadway audiences are accustomed to, due in part to the custom audio equipment package that Masque Sound also supplied for the Broadway show, proved a daunting task. “When designing the audio we had to plan ahead for venues of vastly different sizes and shapes, as is typical when touring Broadway shows,” says Patridge. “One week, the production may run in a large civic auditorium with five levels of seating; the next week, it may be in a house more akin to a Broadway theatre with 1500 to 1800 seats. This tour really runs the full gamut as far as venues, including outdoor theaters and even hockey arenas.”

d&b audiotechnik V-Series line arrays in the speaker towers comprise the main sound system. “We first auditioned the V-Series when we worked on Holler If You Hear Me on Broadway, and we really liked the fact that the speaker was capable of clear, intelligible sound with a lot of impact, despite the compact size of the box,” adds Patridge. “We had a lot of assistance from Gary Stocker at Masque Sound, who created custom speaker tower designs for the tour. He was able to incorporate the V-Series into the towers, which is something that Masque Sound has never done before. Stocker took our ideas and turned them into reality, which saved us a lot of additional engineering, time and work.”

For the console, Masque Sound provided a DiGiCo SD7T, the same live digital console that is used on Kinky Boots’ Broadway production, as the designer wanted to keep the programming intact matching the Broadway show. “The SD7T’s channel count allows our engineers to incorporate all of the monitor inputs into the same console as front of house,” says Patridge. “The SD7T is the only console that would provide the 128 channels that were needed to handle our requirements along with the features that we were looking for. We are very happy that the Masque Sound crew was willing to go the extra mile to accommodate our requests.”

Masque Sound also supplied d&b audiotechnik D80 amplifiers. The amplifiers fit four channels of amplification into two rack spaces, which is an important space-saving feature for a touring production. In addition, the cast utilized a selection of DPA 4061 microphones, along with Sennheiser SK 5212 wireless packs and EM 3732-II receivers for the roughly 40 channels of wireless used on the show.

“As always, Masque Sound was able to provide us with everything that we needed for the tour,” concludes Patridge. “The challenge, with any tour, is making sure that the sound crew is able to translate the sound design that we envision. A lot of it is very subjective, with the team, at the end of the day, relying on the mixers to make the show work across all of the different venues. In this regard, Head Audio Mixer Ben Madden and Assistant Audio Mixer Brian Kallaher are the people who make this production happen from city-to-city and to them we are very grateful.”

Kinky Boots kicked off its national tour on September 4 at The Smith Center for the Performing Arts in Las Vegas. The tour is scheduled to play through most of 2015 and will make stops in 32 cities, including Portland, Seattle, Denver, Los Angeles, San Francisco, Detroit, Nashville, Houston, Dallas, St. Louis, Philadelphia, Chicago, Minneapolis and Boston.

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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DPA Microphones Capture the Sound of The Girl From Nagasaki

Burhan Ocal in Girl From Nagasaki

One of the highlights of this year’s Sundance Film Festival was The Girl from Nagasaki, a feature-length directorial debut by celebrated photographer Michel Comte. This dazzling retelling of Madame Butterfly reframes the familiar haunting story of romance and loss through the lens of a Nagasaki survivor married to an American astronaut.

It’s a bravura debut which, as you would expect from Comte, has won plaudits for its visually sumptuous style and structure. But equally impressive is the superb audio work throughout the title from sound designer Maurizio Argentieri and a battalion of DPA microphones.

DPA’s d:dicate™ 4041-SP Large Diaphragm, 4011 Cardiod and 4006 Omnidirectional Recording Microphones were all used in the sound production of the film. Argentieri also used a DPA d:screet™ 4091 Omnidirectional Microphone and a d:dicate™ 5006-11 Matched Microphone Kit with an S5 surround mount. He was so impressed by the performance of the latter that he decided to invest in one for his own microphone collection.

“All of the DPA microphones I used sounded amazingly good,” he says with disarming simplicity. “I need a microphone capable of handling high SPL but one that still delivers a fantastic sound: this is why I chose DPA.”

The project itself, however, was anything but simple and pushed both his skills and the capabilities of the DPA microphones to the limit. Maurizio was first briefed by Michel at his home in Los Angeles where it was decided that there would be no ADR.

“There was not a word in the movie that was to be replaced, so all the actors’ performances in the movie are real and original,” says Argentieri. “There were a lot of challenging situations. We had a band with a singer performing a couple of songs live while the actors were speaking; a long dialogue scene filmed on the top of Stromboli, an active volcano in Sicily with a very strong wind and real eruptions going off in the background; dialogue under real rain and the sound of the cockpit of a jet fighter while it was flying. This last scene we filmed for real: I put a couple of d:dicate 4006 Omnidirectional Recording Microphones in the jet and hit the record button. The rest is in the movie.”

After initially training in classical guitar, Argentieri started his career as a sound engineer in the music industry. After a couple of years though he realised that being shut away in a studio was no longer for him and, with the aid of a friend who was working as an assistant film editor at the time, they began to pull images out of the trash can and put them together on a Moviola with the music they loved.

“Sometimes we would stay long into the night at the studio, just him and me; we were like kids at home without parents. He was mostly working on documentaries at that time and we had plenty of huge nature shots and beautiful images. For me it was like an illumination: I realised the power and the magic of sound to change the meaning of an image simply by changing the music.”

Argentieri quit his job in the recording studio and became a sound mixer for documentaries. Several years of projects followed, including work for Greenpeace, before he got his break on movies. And he’s certainly made the most of it since, working with the likes of Mario Monicelli, Marco Bellocchio, Bernardo Bertolucci, Giuseppe Bertolucci, Woody Allen, Mel Gibson, Spike Lee, Ridley Scott, and now Michel Comte.

The Girl From Nagasaki was shot in Los Angeles, Berlin, Rome, Stromboli, and Japan.

“As sound designer I’ve had different roles: production sound mixer, sound editor, and re-recording mixer,” he explains. “I recorded the production sound always using a stereo couple or a surround rig to bring home the ambience, then I had a second moment all by myself going around just with the surround kit recording all the necessary ambient sound to put in the movie. And then we had all the recording of the music to do.”

Argentieri adds that the DPA surround kit was really useful when he and the film crew were tackling a scene in Sofia that involved recording an orchestra.

“We placed the kit right in the middle of the orchestra to have a different point of view,” he explains. “From the very beginning Michel wanted to give the audience an extraordinary aural experience, so everything was recorded in a way that allowed the microphones to be surrounded by music and sound. Of course we had to do a lot of sound editing and mixing to achieve that.”

The DPA microphones were also used extensively in recording the dialogue of the film. Argentieri used two boom operators mounting DPA d:dicate 4017 Shotgun Microphones that fed into a Manley dual microphone Tube preamplifier.

“If you want to get an idea of the quality of these microphones you only have to listen to the long dialogue scene at the beginning of the movie between Sir Christopher Lee and the older Gheisha,” he says. “Hearing that, you will be absolutely astonished.”

The DPA microphones even have a starring role in one of the key opening scenes, where Burhan Öcal is playing Japanese percussion.

“This scene is visually like a beautiful art installation and again Michel wanted to give the audience the sensation of being seated close to the percussionist himself, so I had to record his performance live while we were filming,” Argentieri says. “That meant the microphones needed to be part of the installation and the elegance and sobriety of the DPA microphones allowed them to be completely integral to the scene.”

Commenting on his decision to invest in his own DPA d:dicate™ 5006-11 Matched Microphone Kit with S5 surround mount, Argentieri says: “DPA’s surround kit is perfect for modern sound design. In this kit you have three beautiful omnis and two beautiful pure cardioids that you can use together or as singles in other situations. Given the quality of these microphones, why would you want to send them back?”

-ends-

About DPA
DPA Microphones is the leading Danish Professional Audio manufacturer of high quality condenser microphone solutions for professional applications. DPA’s ultimate goal is to provide you – whether you’re in live sound, recording, theater or broadcast – with the absolute finest possible microphone solutions for your tasks. DPA takes no shortcuts in the design processes nor makes any compromises in manufacturing, which is all done at the DPA factory in Denmark. As a result, DPA’s products are globally praised for their exceptional clarity and transparency, unparalleled specifications, supreme reliability, and above all, pure, uncolored and undistorted sound.
For more information, please visit www.dpamicrophones.com

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