The Phantom of the Opera Returns with DiGiCo
The Phantom of the Opera has been seen by over 100 million people globally and with the show taking more than $5 billion at the box office; it's considered by many as the most successful theatre show of all time.
Love Never Dies, the dazzling sequel to the Phantom of the Opera, has hit the Australian scene and it's had some mighty shoes to fill. Melbourne's Regent Theatre was home to the Australian debut of Love Never Dies in May and the show has been running and tugging at the heart strings of audience members ever since its premiere. Theatre specialists System Sound were handed the audio reigns due to their extensive experience in professional theatre. The team at System Sound decided to use their brand new DiGiCo SD7T console complete with an EX-007 expansion console, 5 x DiGi-Racks and an SD8 on monitors for good measure.
Above: Melbourne's Regent Theatre
The SD7T and EX-007 expansion were used as the front of house system connected together via Ethernet. For Love Never Dies, the EX-007 was utilised as a side car unit providing an additional 24 faders to the existing 52 on the SD7T (The EX-007 can also be configured as a remote control unit of the main console).
At Front of House, local IO as well as a DiGiCo Mini-Rack were configured with 4 AES Bi-directional cards. This rack handled all playback from automated SFX units as well as Outboard FX.
Behind the stage, three full sized DiGi-Racks were also commissioned. The first rack was dedicated to handling all radio mics (with most people on stage carrying a redundant mic pack as backup). The SD7T was configured so that it could easily switch over to the input of the second mic in the event of unforseen microphone issues during performance. The second rack was configured for the orchestra and the third was used for all system feeds. A fourth rack was also put to use (this time a Mini-Rack) for additional orchestra inputs. All four racks were connected to the SD7T via a redundant optical loop and the first two racks were connected via MADI to the SD8 which handled monitors.
The on-board VNL video screen on the SD7T was connected to two cameras at Front of House covering the Conductor and Pianist. This was utilised as a visual aid for communications between the operator, Conductor and Pianist. The show has been running sold out shows non-stop and DiGiCo has been handling the sound perfectly (as is expected!).
Special mention goes out to the elaborate sound crew for Love Never Dies:
- Sound Designer: Mick Potter
- Associate Sound Designer: Paul Gatehouse
- Sound Supervisor: Shelly Lee
- Deputy Supervisor/System Engineer: David Greasley
- Head of Sound: Camden Young
- Deputy Head of Sound: Evan Drill
- Radio Mic Technician: Que Nguyen
- Radio Mic Swing: Jess Frost
- Radio mic Consultant: Alix Campbell
Pictured: David Greasley setting up the SD7T and Camden Young behind the SD7T.