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Sennheiser brings iTunes Festival to life

A pair of Sennheiser’s MKH 416 microphones was deployed to help capture the atmosphere of the live recordings at this year’s iTunes Festival at Camden’s Roundhouse, writes Paul Watson.

The 2011 iTunes Festival saw 70 live acts perform throughout July at London’s Roundhouse in Camden. A key element to the festival is that most acts have their sets recorded and released – at least in part – on iTunes; and this year, Sennheiser’s MKH 416 was the microphone of choice to do the job. Engineer Dan Frampton (pictured) was in charge of mixing all the festival’s performances for commercial release, and Adlib Audio provided the PA system. He also mixes Irish trio The Script’s recordings. Because Paul ‘Mini’ Moore, the Script’s monitor engineer, has been using a pair of 416s flown from the truss for the band’s in-ear monitors, Frampton was happy to deploy a pair of the shot gun mics in the festival’s lighting truss. “On the occasions when the shows have been recorded, I have these mics sent to a Pro Tools rig, and they sound fantastic,” Frampton says. “We point them at the screamers down the front and I find that their isolation from the PA is particularly good. So when it came to rigging for the iTunes festival this year, I requested we put a pair of them on the truss in the same way.” Frampton mixed 64 acts over 31 days, and The Script’s performance at the festival on July 12th saw a host of Sennheiser gear on stage including a full set of wired mics for the drum kit and backline; and ew 300 G3 IEMs. “From my point of view, it was important to have a direct link with Sennheiser at this show, just in case we encountered any problems,” says Richy Nicholson, The Script’s FOH engineer. “We’ve had very few issues with our gear so far this year, but with the show being such a high profile one-off, we needed to make sure we could come up with any problem fixes quickly. We had great support, and therefore a problem-free gig.”