Although the future of this year's festival is still up in the air (pun intended), KV2 Audio has revealed that sound reinforcement for the last Walled City Tattoo in Londonderry, Northern Ireland, was provided by its VHD, ES and EX 'true point-source' loudspeakers.
Taking place, as the name suggests, in Londonderry's historic walled city, The Walled City Tattoo showcases the best of local and international talent in a production based on "the rich tapestry of cultural expression compiled from the diverse people within the city". Featuring traditional bands like the Massed Pipes and Drums and Highland and Irish Dancers, the 2014 Tattoo was a fast-paced show also featuring world-famous motorcycle display team The Imps and rhythmic comedy from Swiss group Starbugs.
While the 2013 festival featured an "industry leading" line-array system, organisers say the switch to a KV2 set-up – supplied by Just Lite – for last year's event "significantly improved the experience" for the 15,000-strong audience. Evin Doyle, Just Lite’s head of audio, integrated the audio system, which, in addition to the KV2 equipment, included 30 band inputs, eight rifle microphones, four choir channels, five actors' headsets, radio microphones and 12 individual monitor mixes (again reproduced by KV2, courtesy of 12 ESM 12s).
The main front of house system saw one VHD 2.0 flown stage left and right at a height of 5m. Doyle employed a significant down angle to focus the system on the first half of the left and right grandstands and the performance area.
A total of six ES 1.0s were used on 3m poles and angled using KV2’s bespoke vertical flying frames to cover the second half of the left and right grandstands, as well as the rear grandstand, while a single pair of active EX 10s were installed as spot fill for the main VHD system, with a combination of 14 VHD 4.18, ES 1.8, ES 2.5 and ES 2.6 subs housed beneath seating at each mid/hi location.
“For me, at the planning stages, this was the most challenging and difficult show I have ever designed for or mixed," says Doyle. "The audio results we achieved were also some of the finest of my career. The mixing was a dream. I could lift any source to where it needed to be in the mix.
“We mixed the audio through a matrix, individually retaining a stereo image with less going in to the nearest speaker mix. For this show, no time delay of the system was used as the stereo image had to be retained. The focus and clarity of KV2’s speakers helped to eliminate any discernible arrival time issues from the 10 audio sources.”
Paul Smith, Just Lite's MD, adds: “What a huge difference the KV2 Audio system made.”