The highlight of the celebrations was The Flow II, which took place around the River Odra during the evening of 11th June. Featuring 300 performers from several orchestras and musical academies based in Poland, Germany, Israel and the Czech Republic, an audience of over 100,000 enjoyed the specially-commissioned work of five composers with a spectacular son et lumiere.
The audio production for the event was supplied by leading Polish rental company PogoArt. The company purchased 60x STM M28 omnipurpose line array modules specifically for the event, adding to a NEXO inventory that has been built up over 15 years. With PS Series, RS Series, GEO D and GEO S8 in its hire stock, PogoArt was able to design and install a system to service the riverside audience area stretching over 800 metres. The company worked in close collaboration with STM rental partners in Germany to cross-hire rigging elements, and NEXO’s Engineering Support team which supplied some additional STM M28 cabinets and system design advice.
The full system featured 14 PA towers of STM M28 with CD18 subs located next to the main hangs. Other, single RS15/CD18 cabinets were spread across the site to provide smooth LF coverage. Including PS Series speakers for localized fill and those used for monitoring, more than 250x NEXO cabinets were deployed on the show. The system’s NXAMP4x4 amplifiers were all fitted with Dante cards, allowing the entire audio production to be Dante networked. This featured 34 separate feeds, which were managed by a Yamaha MRX7-D matrix processor. This was a vital tool, with its 64×64 channel open-architecture, and some of the processing channels requiring delay times of over 1500ms.
“Sławek Pogorzała from PogoArt shared the designs that he had done on NS-1 (NEXO’s proprietary modelling software),” explained Val Gilbert from the ES team, who also worked closely with Yamaha applications engineer Pawel Zachanowicz. “We had the opportunity to optimise speaker locations and design before arriving on-site. This gave us plenty of time for system time-alignment and tuning, using a rolling Smaart system, tying into power and local network switches at each PA tower location.” Running long XLR cables was impossible as the riverside park was open to the public during the set-up days.
The show was mixed at levels up to 100dBa, to ensure the music was heard against the sound of fireworks and pyrotechnics. The sheer scale of the show and number of performers meant that no less than five Yamaha digital consoles were needed to mix it. Six Rio3224-D i/o units routed audio to a CL5, used to mix of all the strings, brass and woodwind, and a CL3 mixing the orchestral percussion and choir. These submixes were routed as groups to a master CL5, which managed the overall front of house mix.
The audio groups were also routed to a QL5 for stage monitors, while a QL1 was used for communications between the stage and mix positions, as well as announcements and routing audio to additional systems used with video relays outside the main audience area. Several Ro8 audio output units were also used with Nexo PS series infills close to the main PA towers.
“The biggest challenges of the audio production were having such a vast area to cover and the distance between the stage and Front of House mix position,” says Pawel. “Having the whole system on a Dante network meant that we could manage the control and audio routing, while using Nexo speakers on towers meant that the sound would be consistent throughout.
“The show sounded fantastic and was a fitting centrepiece to the 2016 European Capital of Culture celebrations.”
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