40 years of Glastonbury all over TV and radio23 June 2010
The Glastonbury Festival marks its 40th anniversary this year, with the live music and celebrations carried across BBC radio and television, writes Kevin Hilton. Broadcasts get underway on Thursday 24th June on BBC 6Music, with coverage also on Radio 1 and then BBC TV from Friday night, ready for replacement headliners Gorillaz on the Pyramid Stage on BBC2. Making its Glastonbury debut this year is BBC Radio Resources’ new Sound 2 truck, which went on the road towards the beginning of May and has already been used on Radio 1’s Big Weekend. Equipped with an SSL C200 HD digital console the mobile is handling the sound mix for the Pyramid stage, working along side SIS LIVE’s Unit 10 scanner for the video production. Audio for The Other Stage is being mixed in Sound 1, equipped with an SSL 9000 J Series desk, with pictures produced in Arena Television’s OB9 truck. SIS LIVE’s OB2 is covering the John Peel and West Holts stages. Sound will be mixed in this vehicle using a Calrec Audio Alpha console on a Hydra network. BBC Radio Resources’ Sound 6, featuring a Stagetec Aurus, is working on the BBC Introducing Stage, alongside Arena’s OB12. With the number of channels taking coverage from Worthy Farm several presentation units. Radio Resources’ Sound 4 mobile studio, with a Studer Vista console, is providing facilities for 6Music, while Arena is supplying OB7 for main coverage, OB8 for BBC3 and its new HD video truck, VT7, for BBC4 and Red Button feeds. Outgoing circuits are uplinked to satellite through SIS LIVE’s Link 21 and W17 units, with a terrestrial back-up circuit provided by BBC Bristol. All radio and main TV audio is in stereo. Surround sound stems are being recorded on to hard disk – either SADiE or REAPER – for 5.1 on the BBC HD channel and any later DVD releases or subsequent broadcasts. Dave Broomfield, OB engineering manager for radio OBs within BBC Radio Resources, Audio and Music, comments that this has been the method for the past three years, although there is was no prescribed way of doing 5.1 for Glastonbury to begin with. Logistics is a consideration, with only a small proportion of material being broadcast live and a large amount of editing to produce packages. "If it was just live we could do 5.1," says Broomfield, "but there is editing so we’re sticking with stereo for live transmission." BBC Radio Resources is providing clean music feeds for compliance purposes, just in case any naughty monkeys get a little fruity with the language.