The theatre principals had long awaited the opportunity to present plays and other programs with the added dimension of an enveloping audio experience. “For a long time, the sound department at Odense Teater wanted to upgrade with a surround installation,” says Bent Lohmann, Odense Teater producer. “In autumn 2011, every ounce of energy was put into establishing the new sound facilities in time for the Christmas show last year.”
Kastrup, Denmark-based integrator Stouenborg was contracted to install the Meyer Sound system with the goal of creating a flexible system that would deliver a coherent and sonorous sonic landscape.
Using the MAPP Online Pro® acoustical prediction program for predicting coverage pattern, frequency and impulse response, and maximum SPL output, Stouenborg Project Manager Anders JÃ¸rgensen created six zones on each of the theatre's three levels: the parquet, the first balcony, and the second balcony. Thirty-eight miniature MM-4XP self-powered loudspeakers add to a center cluster with five MINAâ„¢ line array loudspeakers and three USW-1P subwoofers. Two 48 V, DC-powered UP-4XP loudspeakers provide delay at the sound gallery, retracted under the balcony.
The system also includes the theatre's existing Meyer Sound products, including two USW-1P subwoofers, four UPJ-1P VariOâ„¢ loudspeakers, and nine legacy MPS-355 reinforcement loudspeakers: five as front fills and four for balcony fills.
With the technology upgrade, Rudi Senf, who serves as sound designer at Odense, is keen to attract younger audiences by breaking down the traditional “fourth wall” and transcending the gap between performer and spectator. He is pleased with the outcome. “The expectations were very much honored,” he says. “It is a good-sounding system that is almost invisible.”
With an extremely tight schedule to complete the project in time for the first Christmas performance, Stouenborg had to work around both evening performances and daytime rehearsals. This goal was accomplished according to plan, and the Christmas shows drew positive reviews. “Sound designer Thomas Bolvig must be praised for his surround sound that races 'round the audience,” wrote regional newspaper Fyens Stiftstidende. “It is a blast!”