Current Issue

George Petersen, Editor of FOH Magazine
George Petersen, Editor of FOH Magazine

Happy Birthday...Sorta

Frank Hammel
Editor's Note

No, it’s not my birthday, but exactly five years ago this month, I got an unexpected phone call from FRONT of HOUSE publisher Terry Lowe. It went something like this. “Hey George… Terry Lowe here. Do you want to run FRONT of HOUSE magazine?” My reply was “Sure.” That probably amounted to one of the shortest job interviews of all time.

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The audio crew, from left - Dave Shatto, system engineer;  Cameron Whaley, audio crew chief;  Matt Garrett, P.A. tech;  Brad Galvin, monitor engineer;  Marc Estrin, P.A. tech and FOH engineer/system designer Josh Osmond. Photo by Andrew Kelly.
The audio crew, from left - Dave Shatto, system engineer; Cameron Whaley, audio crew chief; Matt Garrett, P.A. tech; Brad Galvin, monitor engineer; Marc Estrin, P.A. tech and FOH engineer/system designer Josh Osmond. Photo by Andrew Kelly.

The Lumineers 'Cleopatra' Tour

Kevin M. Mitchell
Production Profile

Keeping That Open Mic Night Vibe in Arena Shows

During the course of The Lumineers’ Cleopatra Tour, the box count has tripled. “This tour started on a smaller scale on purpose, because they weren’t sure how people would respond to the new album,” says FOH engineer and system designer Josh Osmond. So in the early Spring of 2016, they went off to play the club circuit and a few 3,000-plus venues before heading to Europe, just as the album exploded worldwide. Signs of what was to come could not be ignored as that month-long European tour sold out in a single day. Fortunately, Osmond was prepared, having already worked out on a spreadsheet exactly which system he’d need from supplier Sound Image at each step on the tour.

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Smart Financial Centre, Sugar Land, TX
Smart Financial Centre, Sugar Land, TX

Inside Six Recent Theater/Performing Arts Center Projects

Thomas S. Friedman
Installations

A longstanding tradition in show business — at least harkening back to circus performers in the 1800’s — is that “the show must go on.” Today, despite competition from multiplex cinema complexes, home theaters and every conceivable form of sporting events, there is still considerable interest in watching humans in live onstage performance, whether in drama, musicals, concerts, dance, opera — the list is nearly endless. At the same time, while stadium shows are less common these days, venues in the 1,000 to 4,000 capacity range seem to be doing well, especially as music artists once strictly relegated to arenas are now turning to these smaller, more “intimate” venues.

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Tablet-Controlled Rack-Mount Digital Mixers
Tablet-Controlled Rack-Mount Digital Mixers

Tablet-Controlled Rack-Mount Digital Mixers

George Petersen
Buyer's Guide

A couple years ago, this category didn’t exist at all. However, the notion of a rack-mount unit that’s remotely controlled via Wi-Fi (iOS and/or Android) makes a lot of sense in many applications, ranging from portable P.A. to church installations, live theater, corporate/industrial presentations — anywhere where a low-profile “invisible” console is just the ticket. Other advantages include eliminating the need for a house snake, with the mixer located near the stage and the FOH position being anywhere within Wi-Fi range. I spoke to one church sound tech who said the freedom of wireless mixing allowed him to sit with his family in the church — for the first time in years. We checked out a number of current models and found a variety of products to meet anyone’s needs and budget.

To download a PDF of the March 2017 Buyers Guide, CLICK HERE.

The entire kit comes in a tough Pelican case.
The entire kit comes in a tough Pelican case.

DPA VO4099-DKIT2 Drum Mic Kit

Vince Lepore
Road Tests

Recently, DPA Microphones has introduced several new lines, some of which are re-engineered updates to classic, timeless mics such as the 4011, and others that are entirely new product categories, such as the d:vote series of affordable instrument mics. I checked out its newest offering, the VO4099-DKIT2 collection of seven models for drum miking applications.

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Ultimate Ears Pro UE 18+ Pro (shown with silver cable)
Ultimate Ears Pro UE 18+ Pro (shown with silver cable)

Ultimate Ears Pro UE 18+ Pro IEM

George Petersen
Road Tests

Ultimate Ears has long been a major player in the in-ear market, having produced more than 100,000 high-end earpieces in the past 22 years. The company was founded by Jerry Harvey in 1995. Harvey left to go off on his own in 2007, and a year later, Ultimate Ears was acquired by Logitech, where UE remains an independent subsidiary to this day, creating handcrafted earpieces in its USA facilities.

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'Rent' photo by Carol Rosegg. Pictured here, the cast of the 20th Anniversary production.
'Rent' photo by Carol Rosegg. Pictured here, the cast of the 20th Anniversary production.

'Rent' Rocks the Country for its 20th Anniversary Tour

Thomas S. Friedman
Theater Sound

In 1996, an original rock musical by a little-known composer opened on Broadway, where it ran for 5,123 performances and forever changed the landscape of American theater. A re-imagining of Puccini’s La Bohème, Rent follows an unforgettable year in the lives of seven artists struggling to follow their dreams without selling out.

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Twenty-six of The Little Mermaid’s 30 cast members were on Lectrosonics wireless mics. Photo by Kathy Sandham
Twenty-six of The Little Mermaid’s 30 cast members were on Lectrosonics wireless mics. Photo by Kathy Sandham

Breaking Out of the 'Community Theater' Model

George Petersen
Theater Sound

Audio Production for The Little Mermaid and other shows staged at The Beck Center in Lakewood, OH

In this biz, the mere mention of the phrase “community theater” more often than not brings up mental images of bedsheet curtains, cardboard sets, box batten lighting (occasionally upgraded with a few PAR cans) and… sound? Well, if you’re lucky, you might find a couple of musty Shure VocalMaster columns nailed on either side of the proscenium.

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The Jones Beach Music Theater in Wantagh, NY is among many venues around the world with a quirky sounding FOH position. Photo by David Morgan
The Jones Beach Music Theater in Wantagh, NY is among many venues around the world with a quirky sounding FOH position. Photo by David Morgan

Dealing with the FOH Mix Position

David Morgan
On the Digital Edge

All FOH mixers have their own preferences for the location and layout of the mix position. In the years since I moved onto digital mixing platforms, my layout preferences have become decidedly minimalist. I am down to a total of five cases for my setup. The DiGiCo SD5 console sits on a two-by-10-space rack that houses the system control hardware. To my right is an empty case that becomes a table for the two tablet computers running the Lake software. To my left is a second 12-space rack containing a 64-input Pro Tools HD recording system.

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