VIENNA, Austria – Andrew
Lloyd Webber was just 21 years old when he and Tim Rice collaborated to pen Jesus
Christ Superstar. Now, more than 40 years later, Laurence Connor's
contemporary take on the production, which features former Spice Girl Mel C and
Australian comedian Tim Minchin, is in the midst of an arena tour of the United
Kingdom. Sixty of HARMAN’s AKG C544L headset mics are deployed for all vocals
during the show, and according to both FOH and monitor engineers, the mic was
ideally suited to this particular application.
Both engineers talked to Redditch-based SSE Audio Group's
director, Yan Stile, whose company provided the audio for the tour, and
requested an organized “shootout” to find out which microphone would be best
suited to the job in hand.
“I arranged for the best current offerings from all the
major microphone manufacturers to be set up and tested through a smaller
version of the show's touring sound system,” Stile explains. “They were looking
for sonic performance, stability during head movement, ease of mounting and
durability; and after a full day's testing, the unanimous choice was the AKG
C544L. We also did a blind test with a number of other experienced engineers,
and the result was the same.”
With the amount of dancing and acrobatics on this
production, the cast mics needed to be in the optimum location at all times,
regardless of head movement. Monitor Engineer, Seamus Fenton, says the C544L
was the perfect choice.
“We did our A-B tests with about 12
different microphone models, and the C544L came out on top – none of us had
ever heard one in action before, but we soon realized what an amazing mic it
is,” he states. “Literally everyone is using one on this show, and the sound it
puts out really suits the production too; it was certainly head and shoulders
above the rest in all departments.”
“It was very much a production decision to go with the AKG
mics,” confirms AEG's Keith Wood, production manager for the show. “Because this
is essentially an arena rock show, we realized we needed a head-worn microphone
that would be more roadworthy and provide a greater output level and better
off-axis rejection than some models currently favored in musical theatre.”
HARMAN Professional’s exclusive United Kingdom and Eire
distributors, Sound Technology Ltd, supplied the AKG microphones.
Jesus Christ Superstar opened on September 21 at
London's O2 Arena and played host to several other sizeable venues including
Wembley Arena and Liverpool's Echo Arena. It closes on October 21 at the
Motorpoint Arena in Sheffield.
For more information about
AKG, please visit http://www.akg.com and http://www.youtube.com/AKGacoustics.
HARMAN (www.harman.com) designs,
manufactures and markets a wide range of audio and infotainment solutions for
the automotive, consumer and professional markets – supported by 15 leading
brands, including AKG, Harman Kardon, Infinity, JBL, Lexicon and Mark Levinson.
The company is admired by audiophiles across multiple generations and supports
leading professional entertainers and the venues where they perform. More than
20 million automobiles on the road today are equipped with HARMAN audio and
infotainment systems. HARMAN has a workforce of about 13,400 people across the
Americas, Europe and Asia, and reported sales of $4.4 billion for the fiscal
year ended June 30, 2012.