Celebrating Shrovetide with Fohhn
In February, Veitshöchheim’s “Fastnacht in Franken” (a Franconian Shrovetide festival) celebrated its 30th Anniversary. The 3.5 hour carnival session, broadcast by Bayerische Rundfunk (BR), is regarded as an annual “ratings hit”. This year’s event was actually Germany’s most successful live “Shrovetide” broadcast – and BR’s most successful programme since 1991:
A national audience of 4.47 million watched the broadcast, in Bavaria viewer ratings reached 52.6 %. The same large banqueting hall had previously played host to a state reception given by the Minister President of Bavaria, Horst Seehofer.
The same sound reinforcement was used for both events: Helmut Meier, project leader and sound engineer at Petri Konferenztechnik GmbH, from middle Franconian Roßtal/Buschwabach, based his sound reinforcement concept around Fohhn loudspeaker systems. Because of the room’s low ceiling, he decided against using line arrays, opting instead for a decentralized sound coverage with different “zones” (delays and fills). This would ensure that all the loudspeaker systems could be positioned as unobtrusively as possible amid the elaborate décor – and for TV purposes would appear virtually invisible.
This concept also facilitated the use of 40 wireless, clip-on microphones: For the 600 spectators, this would guarantee completely consistent sound levels and best possible speech intelligibility throughout the entire room. Each of the loudspeaker systems would be driven by one amplifier channel, thus enabling level and delay settings to be optimally adjusted.
In addition to the clip-on microphones, other microphones were used for a live band and a big band. Feeds were also brought into the sound reinforcement system from the OB van, from announcements and from various summed signals in adjacent areas in the foyer. All input signals were split then sent to the OB van, monitor- and FOH positions. The whole sound reinforcement system involved various X-Series loudspeakers: An XT-4 high performance full range system was deployed on each side of the stage as the main PA. Four additional XT-4s were used for the first and second delay lines, with two further XT-4 systems acting as side fills / monitor speakers at the sides of the stage. Two active XS-4 subwoofers were added for powerful reproduction in the low frequency range. 18 compact XT-10 systems were also used in total: Five for coverage of the boxes and entrance areas, two as monitor speakers for the “Kingdom of Fools” council, four as monitors along the front edge of the stage, five as monitors for the big band, and one each as a control speaker for the monitor- and front-of-house engineers. In addition, two Linea Series LX-150 line source systems were used for a third delay line, with two LX-100s serving as nearfield speakers. The loudspeaker systems were driven by several DSP-controlled, digital, 4+2 channel D-4.750 amplifiers.
Congratulations to Petri Konferenztechnik on this highly successful event!