ADLIB Audio and Lighting have completed the latest John Barrowman tour, working closely with FOH engineer Walter Jaquiss and lighting designer Neil Trenell.
Says Jaquiss, "ADLIB is always my first choice of audio company .They were able to come up with an excellent package for both lighting and sound and Neil was very happy to work with ADLIB Lighting".
The UK tour was preceded by 2 days rehearsals at Shepperton Studios, where Jaquiss put up " a reasonably over-the-top set of nearfields in the form of 2 x VerTec 4889's and 1 x VerTec sub a side approximately 8 ft away from the FOH desk!”
The standard 12 VerTec 4889 a side (left and right) system utilised on the tour was doubled up for the arena shows at Cardiff International Centre and for London's Royal Albert Hall. They also used 12 VerTec subs. The system configuration varied slightly according to the different venues, and was optimised each day by ADLIB systems tech, Richie Nicholson.
They used two Soundcraft Vi6 consoles, ran in 96ch V3 mode, which Jaquiss effortlessly filled with around 80 inputs, 56 of which were stage alone - including guest vocals and assorted media - substantial for what was essentially a 'theatre' tour. "The Vi6 is a brilliant desk, great sounding and with a very tidy footprint for this style of tour," he comments.
He made use of all its onboard effects and processing, adding a BSS 901 multi-band dynamic EQ as the only outboard - for Barrowman's vocal. "He has a very powerful and dynamic voice," Jaquiss explains, "So to maintain intelligibility at low levels, I need to control some of the brasher frequencies, for which the 901 is perfect".
Jaquiss' biggest challenge with Barrowman's sound is mixing a show that veers from very loud to exceptionally quiet, maintaining the level control during the more delicate moments and essentially controlling the overall vibrancy and many contrasts.
ADLIB supplied one of their standard Dolby Lake processing systems with wireless tablet remote, which was networked with additional processors for the RAH show.
In addition to Nicholson, ADLIB's Hassane Es Siahi and Kenny Perrin completed the audio team, together with monitor engineer James Neale.
The monitor setup was mainly all in-ears - Barrowman, band, crew & guests - for which Adlib supplied a large Sennheiser G2 system for the radio IEMs and a number of Shure packs for the hard-wired mixes. There was also between 4 and 6 MP3 wedges which were provided along the front of the stage for the dancers.
Barrowman uses a Shure KSM9 "It has good rejection and clarity and you can keep it high in the mix even when John was stood directly under the main hangs or walked out in front of the front fills." says Jaquiss. ADLIB also supplied a full complement of assorted mics as spec'd by Neale and Jaquiss.
Jaquiss has worked with ADLIB for the last 15 years and concludes, "Fabulous people, very experienced, knowledgeable, on the ball ..... and they appreciate the qualities of good teamwork".
It was LD Neil Trenell's second tour with Barrowman and ADLIB Lighting also supplied the last one.
He designed a 3 truss rig, with an 'H' truss in the centre to fill the void, and a large starcloth at the back with a white gauze downstage of this for projections.
He used a Hippotizer media server for all the video projection content, triggered by his grandMA2 full size console which was running in grandMA Series 1 mode. The projectors were a pair of Christie 10K Roadsters.
The moving lights were 20 Martin Professional MAC 700 Profiles and 16 MAC 700 Washes. On the front truss, he placed Source Fours with 10 degree lenses for key lighting, and a string of 2 cell Moles were also on the front truss. Thirty JTE PixelPAR 90s provided very efficient up-lighting and top lighting for the cyc.
In contrast to last year's show which was more classically theatrical in look and feel, this year's was "Extrovert and energetic" says Trenell, who was left to his own creative instincts to make the lighting capture the vibe.
Dave Hill was involved from the start as overall show designer. Trenell worked with him during pre-production, where they started programming the show using MA Lighting's new MA3D visualiser. He was joined on the tour by ADLIB's crew of Stuart Gray and Andy Rowe.
The tour was highly successful, critically acclaimed and a complete sell out ... and another addition to ADLIB's steady flow of quality work for the early Summer.
Paul Crockford John Barrowman's Tour Director said “The service from ADLIB for both sound & lights was first class. All of the crew were efficient but more importantly for me, they told great jokes! I wouldn't hesitate in using ADLIB again, and I look forward to more shows with their happy smiling Scouse faces!”