Resurrection House Audio Comes Alive — AV.technology
Resurrection House is a Catholic primary school located in Essendon, Melbourne. The property has a rich history. Originally built as an orphanage for Polish children affected by World War II, it turned into a primary school but still retains its Polish charm with notable architecture and beautifully manicured garden beds.
Weekly Sunday mass is a big part of the Resurrection House community. The ornate church has sliding doors across the rear which open up into a much larger parish hall opposite. Churchgoers spend time in this area after mass, often enjoying music played by the school students from the parish hall stage.
Theatre productions have become a larger part of the school’s annual schedule as students showed more interest. These are also held in the parish hall which had an outdated PA system and console.
Resurrection House decided it was time to up the ante. In searching for a new PA, the school’s volunteer technical manager Joseph Gofron stressed the importance of intelligibility in the vocal range.
“Vocal intelligibility is important for us because our audience is often elderly and a lot of them suffer from high frequency hearing loss,” notes Gofron. “When we started doing musicals with young kids’ high-pitched voices, intelligibility was an issue. We wanted to have clarity. The narrators and actors telling the story need to be understood.”
Joe Sofo from Concert AV — who managed the installation for Resurrection House — was familiar with d&b audiotechnik products from the concert and festival scene. Joe suggested a point source front of house system comprised of two d&b 24S loudspeakers and a single d&b 21S-SUB subwoofer placed under the front edge of the stage. Bek Varcoe from the NAS Projects Team used d&b ArrayCalc software to guide the best placement for the loudspeakers. The wide stage puts a large gap between the two 24S speakers, so a d&b Y7P was mounted horizontally above centre stage to fill the front area. All loudspeakers are powered by a single d&b 30D four-channel amplifier.
CUE THE M32
Apart from the loudspeakers, the school also upgraded its mixing console to a Midas M32 digital mixing console with accompanying DL32 stage box. The M32’s ability to store and recall snapshots was quickly utilised in the school’s productions to simplify playback cues and microphone switching — a much easier workflow than riding faders and popping mutes. What’s more, the M32 accepts cue signals via MIDI, allowing an entire show’s lighting and audio playback to be controlled by a single operator using LSC’s Clarity system.
“The Midas M32 is great,” says Joe Gofron. “Although I can run a show with one operator my preference is to have more operators because a lot of the audiovisual stuff is run by ex students. They enjoy using the mixer and lighting system; it gives them a sense of ownership.”
Prior to the PA’s official commissioning by NAS, Joe Sofo had already received compliments from the school stating how big an improvement the d&b loudspeakers had made.
Joe Gofron said, “The speakers are a big plus over what we had. The clarity and intelligibility in the vocal range is the most noticeable difference. They’re doing a marvellous job. I think we made the right choice.”