Orlando, FL - March 2017… Musical Designer / Director / Keyboardist, and Producer Kevin Antunes has achieved a level of success that easily ranks him as one of the top people in his field. He performed with musical icon Madonna on her record breaking Rebel Heart world tour, her Sticky & Sweet world tour, which is the top selling solo-artist tour of all time, and also appeared on stage with her during the 2012 Super Bowl halftime show. Equally notable, the Michael Jackson Estate enlisted him as the Musical Designer for Michael Jackson ONE, which is one of Cirque du Soleil's hottest shows in Las Vegas. Similarly, he has worked for Rihanna, Justin Timberlake, Janet Jackson, Alicia Keys, Taylor Swift, and Pharrell Williams to name but a few. With credits like these, Antunes can use any gear he chooses. To ensure the best audio quality for everything he does, he uses the RME Fireface UCX, MADIface USB, and MADIface XT interfaces—distributed by Synthax.
Antunes started using RME’s Fireface UCX audio interface in 2011. Since that time, he’s expanded his arsenal to include the MADIface USB (2013) and then in 2015, he purchased two MADIface XT interfaces. He uses his three interfaces with MOTU’s Digital Performer and Native Instruments’ Komplete Kontrol software packages running on an Apple MacBook Pro. He discussed how he uses each interface.
“The Fireface UCX serves as my main audio interface in recording studios, on stage, and at television performances,” Antunes explained. “The converters provide me with the highest audio fidelity and offer me six analog outputs for working in 5.1 directly from my laptop—keeping my setup both highly portable and powerful. I used my MADIface USB interface while building and arranging the music for Michael Jackson ONE. Besides using it in the studio, I needed to sit in multiple locations throughout the theatre to ensure that the immersive listening environment could be experienced at every zone in the room. From my laptop, I could control 32 channels of 48 kHz/24-bit MADI audio and audition the mix as well as edit arrangements. The LoopBack function in RME’s TotalMix software became my best friend during this session.”
“I actually have two MADIface XTs for my Madonna on-stage tour setup—connected to two separate MacBook Pros,” he continued. “In rehearsal mode, I edit/arrange/mix and rehearse using Digital Performer to create all versions of the show ideas directly from my rig. Think of my system being similar to a DJ’s, except that my A rig and B rig are 32 MADI multi-track beasts! In performance show mode, I run MADI audio from my Komplete Kontrol rig through the MADIface XTs. I also take a feed from the stereo out that I run into my own personal 2.1 sound system that’s built under my riser.”
When queried about those attributes that make the RME interfaces so appealing, Antunes offered the following comments. “My RME equipment delivers the goods in several very important areas,” he said. “This includes a combination of high quality audio converters, portability, ease of use, and connectivity. Equally important is RME’s TotalMix software, which has amazing internal/external audio routing capabilities! For my work, I needed a compact interface I could use in recording studios that would maintain the integrity of my source audio with a very simple and quick set up procedure. In this regard, RME delivers.”
Antunes described one unique scenario where his MADIface USB helped address a very challenging situation. “In the Michael Jackson ONE Theatre at Mandalay Bay, my audio routing in Digital Performer for both on-stage productions and studio sessions is a combination of submix group faders (drums, drum FX, bass, synths, orchestral) that are routed to MADI outputs in addition to having multiple individual sends on each sub group—and sometimes certain individual tracks—that are also routed discretely to speaker clusters and specific zones throughout the theatre. With all my automated audio sessions running via MADI and using the LoopBack function of TotalMix through the hundreds of speakers, this enabled me to create a sonic environment that is both epic and intimate while being technically transparent.”
Before turning his attention to the business of the day, Antunes offered these final thoughts regarding his experience with RME’s audio interfaces, “My RME experience has been incredible. All the software and hardware is smartly designed and made with high quality components. Further, the gear is intuitive and easy to use. I’ve had a lot of people come up and investigate my Madonna performance tour rig because it’s unique physical and sonic design are inspiring beyond measure.”
To learn more about Kevin Antunes, check out his profile at www.imdb.com/name/nm1158310/.
About Synthax, Incorporated
Synthax Inc. is the exclusive USA distributor for RME digital audio solutions, Ferrofish advanced audio applications, myMix audio products, and ALVA cableware. We supply a nationwide network of dealers with these products for professional audio, broadcast, music industry, commercial audio, theater, military and government applications. For additional information, visit the company online at www.synthax.com.