Ian and David from Sound Intermedia were asked to handle the live audio for the Royal Opera House’s production of Luca Francesconi’s Quartett at the Linbury. They brought us in to provide the infrastructure for the production which involved three complete audio systems. The remarkable set bisected the auditorium, with musicians located in a pit under a bridge upon which the action took place.
We had to provide a full surround system for both audience seating areas as well as a system flown near the roof of the space to provide a distant image for some of the effects. Ian mixed the show live on a Yamaha CL5 whilst David took sub mixes from the console, processed them and sent the result spinning round the room on cue.
The get in had to be carefully timed as so much equipment, including a lot of the set, had to be flown before the performance space and seating could be constructed underneath. Martin Adams and his team at the Linbury managed to juggle all the competing demands whilst making us feel welcolm and supported.
BBC radio 3 took two of the performances – a process made much easier by our ability to convert DANTE to MADI through our Focusrite systems. New to us last November they have proved to be something of a learning curve but the results have been much faster set up times and much happier recording engineers. This meant the entire feed could be send through the ROH’s internal fibre network to the main sound control room where Paul Waton mixed on the in house Vista console.
A very big thankyou to Dan, Ian & David at Sound Intermedia and Mark at ROH sound for making our Quartett recording run so smoothly. Richard, for your excellent infrastructure which connected so successfully with the ROH Vista and of course for a lovely selection of microphones too!
Together with my BBC colleagues, Phil & Drew, I managed to get my head around quite a complex score in short 2 days and hope have captured a recording which realistically represents what went on in the Linbury!
Phil & I next work together on some lovely 'fluffy' Donizetti - a total contrast!
Paul Waton BBC
Photo by Stephen Cummiskey
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