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KV2 Audio Succesful at Major Theatrical Installations


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Theatre Productions across the globe demand audio systems that can handle a diverse range of source material with massive dynamic range. They need to be unobtrusive and provide dispersion characteristics that ensure clear detailed audio is delivered to every seat in the house. Vocal intelligibility is an absolute must. KV2 Audio has achieved all of these parameters and more in the design of their speaker systems. Theatre owners and sound designers around the world are starting to embrace the brand and its point source philosophies resulting in a growing number of KV2 installations into some of the worlds leading theatres.

Beginning in the UK, Sound Designer Richard Brooker specified KV2 Audio products for his Paul Michael Glaser tour of Fiddler on the Roof in 2013 and there soon followed a string of theatrical successes including a West End London Production and several tours.

As word began to spread about KV2 installations in the theatre market and the outstanding results being achieved, Andreas Hammerich and Michel Weber, Theatrical Sound coordinators for large German Production Company Stage Entertainment, were very impressed by the KV2 demos they heard at the Pro Light and Sound tradeshow in Frankfurt. Andreas and Michel immediately began discussions with renowned UK Theatre Sound designer Rick Clarke and award wining US Sound designers, John Shivers and David Patridge, about the possibility of implementing KV2 Audio products into their forthcoming shows.

SI Centrum Palladium, Stuttgart, Germany

Nestled firmly in the modern SI Centrum complex, the Palladium, an 1800 plus seat venue, sits opposite the equally grand Apollo Theatre. The brief was to design a new sound system that could take this production to a new level by delivering clear and concise dialogue, combined with dynamic orchestration.  Andreas and Michel had been really astounded by the ability of KV2 products to capture and deliver the stage presence, atmosphere and mood of the show directly into the auditorium. Andy Austin-Brown, KV2 Audio’s technical projects director, helped them to design a system that would achieve exactly that.

Utilizing KV2 Audio’s ESR215 full range theatre solution, enhanced by ES2.6 subwoofers and EX12 center and stage infills, Andy also implemented multiple EX6 enclosures for stage monitoring and front fills.

“The results of our cooperation are impressive”, says Andreas Hammerich. “We have been receiving just positive feedback from the official opening night and I’d like to thank all concerned”.

System setup:

  • 4x ESR215
  • 1x EX2.5Mkii
  • 1x ES2.6
  • 4x EX12
  • 5x ESD6
  • 3x ESR3000

Stage Theater an der Elbe, Hamburg, Germany

A multi-million investment, this theatre was specifically designed and built for future Stage Entertainment productions and initially showcased an exciting new show about Germany winning the 1954 World cup, called ‘Das Musical WUNDER von BERN’.

Being relatively new to KV2 Audio, multi-award winning sound designers, John Shivers and David Patridge requested a visit to KV2 Audio’s Czech Republic facility, where they could conduct a full evaluation of the system being proposed. This included an outdoor demo where they also invited a famous German loudspeaker brand to pitch their own products against KV2. The results were very clear and following discussions and assistance from Andy Austin Brown, John Shivers and David Patridge committed to an imaginative KV2 Audio system built around a wide dispersion Point Source 5-way SL system. Andy had the following to say about the installation.

“I soon realised through my discussions with John and David that this show required a very bold, dynamic and big sounding system. Once again this needed to deliver atmosphere, image and depth along with a true natural focus on the performers throughout the venue at all levels. The main front of house system utilised ‘column effect placement’ of combined KV2 Audio SL412 and SL215 system enclosures, accompanied by very low frequency VHD2.21 subwoofers. Complemented with a centre SL412, multiple ESD6 and ESD12 infills and monitors, the system has proved itself to present a vivid realistic performance, whilst creating full coverage and extremely high definition sound throughout the venue”.

“It’s an outstanding success to have such consistent performance of both systems, in totally different environments with different demands”, explained Michel and Andreas, completely validating their decision to apply and use a KV2 Audio point source solution with the technical merits and attributes that such a system brings. On the back of this success a forthcoming third KV2 Audio system is now being specified by Stage Entertainment for a further new show in an established Berlin Theatre over the coming months.

System setup:

  • 6x SL412
  • 8x SL215  
  • 4x VHD2.21
  • 2x EX12
  • 22x ESD6
  • 12x EX6
  • 4x ESD12
  • 3x SL3000
  • 6x VHD3200
  • 7x ESP2000
  • 2x JK1

The Ricardo Montalbán Theatre, Holywood, CA

Grand old theatre from the late 20’s, owned at one stage by the famous and eccentric billionaire, Howard Hughes. It was saved from demolition and decline in the late 90’s by debonair and svelte actor, Ricardo Montalbán well known for Fantasy Island, Wrath of Khan, and numerous other roles that filled both our film and television screens.  Knowing the struggle that most non-American and multi-national actors face in launching their careers in the US, he had the foresight and vision to build a foundation for up and coming performers and artistes. Through the theatre he provided them the opportunity to showcase their talents in Hollywood, gaining access to a vast arts community that exists there.

During the development of this cause, Mr. Montalbán’s son-in-law, Gilbert Smith, became involved to head up and lead the foundation. To this day, Gilbert continues to lead the foundation and drive the theatre passionately maintaining the legacy and vision of Ricardo. When The Montalbán decided to invest in a new audio system management wanted one that would satisfy the highest expectations of the most critical audiences. 

The Montalbán is used for a very wide range of productions, from spoken word, plays, conferences, film festivals, film shoots, photo shoots to full blown music concerts. The need for a robust, powerful system that could be utilized for such a diverse range of applications was a key requirement in the specification. They looked towards KV2 Audio due to the number of recommendations he received about the brand when searching for a high quality and affordable system. Theatre Manager, Gilbert Smith said,

‘The decision to invest in KV2 Audio was based around the comments, word of mouth and growing respect for the brand that I continue to see and hear, first hand from engineers, performers and listeners alike’, said Gilbert.

The Montalbán system consists of four ESR215 full range column speakers and eight ES2.6 Subwoofers, four mounted centrally close to the ceiling just in front of the stage and two on the floor on each side of the stage. ESD36s were utilized for under balcony infill, and ESD15s for the upper balcony coverage. ESM12s and ESM26s were also utilized for stage monitoring.  All control, alignment and amplification was done via KV2 Audio SAC2 controllers, SDD3 delay lines, Compex dynamic control and ESR3000, VHD3200 and ESP2000 amplifiers.

System setup:

  • 4x ESR215
  • 8x ES2.6
  • 6x ESD36
  • 2x ESD15
  • 4x ESM12
  • 4x ESM26
  • 2x SAC2
  • 2x SDD3
  • 2x ESR3000  
  • 3x VHD3200
  • 2x ESP2000 

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