Society of London Theatre Releases 2014 London Theatre Report

by Jacob Coakley

The Society of London Theatre and the National Theatre released the 2014 London Theatre Report, the first of its kind. The report aims to be a comprehensive review of the state of theatre in London, and includes information about venues, its financial impact and more. It covers theatres from the 30-seat Lord Stanley Pub to the 3,600-seat Hammersmith Apollo in the greater London area, including the City of London and the 32 London boroughs. This inaugural report sets a baseline for further studies of the impact of theatre in London and includes such notable facts as: more than 22 million people attended a London theatre performance in 2012/13; and at any point in time, London theatre employs 3,000 performers, more than 6,500 full-time non-performing staff, 5,000+ part-time staff and 5,000+ freelance staff. More details and a link to download the PDF of the report after the jump.

Solid State Logic Releases Free Offline Setup Application

by Jacob Coakley

Solid State Logic released its Offline Setup software for the SSL Live console as a free download. The SSL Offline Setup Application (SOLSA) allows users to create and edit Live console showfiles on a Mac or PC. Software settings that can be setup include fader tile layers and banks, stagebox and I/O routing, bus routing, VCA assignments and more. While SOLSA is intended to help engineers configure showfiles, it can also be used to learn how to operate a SSL Live console.

Sonny Sonnenfeld to Chair Panel at NATEAC 2012

by Jacob Coakley
Sonny Sonnenfeld will chair a panel about dealing with manufacturers reps at NATEAC 2012.


Sonny Sonnenfeld will chair a panel about dealing with manufacturers reps at NATEAC 2012.

Sonny Sonnenfeld, a lighting legend, will participate in a panel at the 2012 NATEAC conference. He will participate in a panel with ETC's Mark Vassallo, Jonathan Resnick of Barbizon and Bob Lorelli of Robert Lorelli Associates covering the best way to deal with manufacturers reps when outfitting a new performance space.

Sound Designer Richard Brooker Uses Waves Plugins on I Dreamed a Dream

by Jacob Coakley
Sound Designer Richard Brooker used Waves SoundGrid on a DiGiCo SD8 for I Dreamed a Dream.


Sound Designer Richard Brooker used Waves SoundGrid on a DiGiCo SD8 for I Dreamed a Dream.

I like with Richard Brooker has to say about sound design in this release from Waves Audio plugins. Waves Audio makes digital audio processing plugins for various sound editing platforms (like Pro Tools), but they also work on mixing consoles, too. For example, Brooker is using a fully-integrated Waves SoundGrid platform on a DiGiCo SD8 mixing console for the new musical based on Susan Boyle’s life, I Dreamed a Dream. That’s the new, but Brooker has a good comment about using plugins and what it’s like designing sound for musicals now: “In theater, the sound design should support the storyline, the emotional journey of the characters and the score itself. We must draw the audience in during the dialogue, in order that they can commit to the show emotionally. And we have to push them back into their seats and overwhelm them in the big numbers. Traditionally, sound designers have taken a ‘less-is-more’ approach in musical theater. That is still partially the case, but we have seen the role of the sound designer evolve moving into the current era. Audiences today tend to be a bit more demanding of things like a fully-produced sound, a surround-sound layout and special effects. It is a challenge, but Waves tools have helped me make those transitions. As intense as it can be, I love my job and it’s tremendous fun.” More details, and info about which plugins he uses on I Dreamed a Dream and the new musical based on The Bodyguard below.

Soundcraft Vi4 Logical Choice for Absurdist Revival

by Jacob Coakley

David Gotwald, production audio engineer, with the Soundcraft Vi4 at the FOH mixing position
NEW YORK—The recent brief revival of the stage classic Waiting For Godot won widespread critical acclaim and garnered Tony, Drama Desk and Outer Critics Circle nominations for Best Revival of a Play, as well as Tony Award nominations for Best Featured Actor, Best Costume Design, and for three of four of its cast members: two-time Tony Award winner Nathan Lane, Tony Award winner Bill Irwin and Tony Award winner John Glover, who joined Golden Globe winner John Goodman to round out the sparse but powerful production.  The play is intensely intimate and dialogue-driven, making the quality of the audio critical to its success. To ensure every line came through, a 48-input Soundcraft Vi4 digital live mixing console was installed in the Roundabout Theatre Company’s Studio 54 venue.  The latest addition to Soundcraft’s Vi Series of digital live sound consoles, the Vi4’s compact frame offered the processing power and sound quality the designer demanded and, crucial for Godot, quiet operation.




Southern Theater Dismisses Artistic Director

by Breanne George

MINNEAPOLIS – The Southern Theater of Minneapolis has dismissed Artistic Director, Jeff Bartlett, who has been an active part of the theatre for 33 years. According to reports, Bartlett said theatre management gave no rationale for its decision.   

Soweto Theatre in South Africa Opens with ETC Source Four Luminaires

by Jacob Coakley
The Soweto Theatre in Johannesburg, South Africa, uses more than 200 ETC Source Four lighting fixtures. Photo credit: Sarah Rushton-Read

The Soweto Theatre in Johannesburg, South Africa, uses more than 200 ETC Source Four lighting fixtures. Photo credit: Sarah Rushton-Read

The Soweto Theatre in Johannesburg opened on Africa Day, May 25, 2012, with more than 200 ETC Source Four fixtures, including the new Source Four Fresnel. ETC fixtures will be part of the main overhead rigs in the two studio theatres. The Soweto Theatre is one of the final projects of the 2010 World Cup initiative and resembles (intentionally) a giant child’s toy. It brings a purpose-built theatre to an area that was beset with crime in the ‘70s and ‘80s.

Spring Awakening Rises with Shure

by Stage Directions

NEW YORK — Hailed by critics as the most explosive Broadway musical since Rent, Spring Awakening is a tale of passage from youth to adulthood told in a groundbreaking style taking full advantage of the primal force of rock ‘n’ roll. The winner of eight Tony Awards, including Best Musical in 2007, the show also relies on 20 channels of Shure UHF-R wireless.