Adlib Goes to Wembley Stadium for Capital FM Summertime Ball
Adlib's audio division again supplied a complete L-Acoustics sound system and crew to Production North for the 2012 Capital FM Summertime Ball staged at Wembley Stadium, London, on Saturday, June 9.
This year's star-studded line up included Coldplay, Justin Bieber, Usher, Katy Perry, Jessie J, Ed Sheeran, The Wanted, Flo Rida, and many more, kick starting the Summer with an action packed day of pop music and vibes.
Adlib's crew of 17 was chiefed by Marc Peers. Key people included systems tech, Tony Szabo; RF co-ordinator, Dave Kay; presenter console operator, Ian Nelson; and patch by Michael Bernard Flaherty.
Peers worked closely with Production North's sound supervisor Ant Carr and their event production manager Sarah Hollis on the advance logistics and requirements of the acts.
"We have an extremely harmonious relationship with Production North on these shows," comments Peers. "A vast amount of detailed ground-work in the months leading up to the event is needed in order for things to run smoothly on the day."
The precise schedule, kicked off at 4:03pm and ran until 10:30pm, with the average changeover between bands being two minutes and the shortest just 30 seconds. A flip flop desk setup and two days of sound checks enabled all bands to be catered for.
Everyone was mic'd up separately, so it involved a lot of equipment. A revolving stage was utilized so upcoming bands could be set up and the backline be rotated around and ready for their performance. A large upstage LED screen also flew in and out for stage entrances and exits.
The sound system was L-Acoustics K1, with two 16-speaker arrays for the main hangs, with side hangs of 15 x V-DOSC speakers left-and-right, and an upstage hang of five V-DOSC a-side. Two sets of delays -- with another 10 x K1s in each -- were located just behind the front-of-house mixer position. To cover the top tiers of seating, Adlib integrated the venue's house system speakers into theirs.
The subs were 16 x L-Acoustics SB28s per side ground stacked, and the entire system was processed through the standard Adlib Lake set up with the audio transported back to the amp racks via a Dante optical backbone.
Three Avid Profile consoles were provided for the front-of-house mix, two were used for the live acts and one for the video play-ins, which featured heavily throughout the show. This console was also used for all the presenter mics.
For monitors, Adlib supplied two Yamaha PM5D consoles and 24 of their new MP4 low profile wedges, which feature upgraded drivers from the original MP3 wedge. The stage was approximately 60' wide, 100' including wings, and the side fills comprised 3 x L-Acoustics ARCs and 2 x SB28s a-side. The entire monitor system was powered by Lab Gruppen PLM 10000s, for which the wireless remote was invaluable for tuning.
Many of the bands performing brought their own mics and stage cabling, all of which had to be integrated into Adlib's line system with over 65 channels of mainly Sennheiser and additional Shure wireless to meet the band's specs.
Sennheiser also provided additional support on the day, "Thanks to Mark Saunders and Tim Sherratt, we always have Sennheiser's invaluable support on these shows," confirms Peers.
The schedule was intense. Peers says, "Each and every one of our crew were complete superstars on this, all playing their integral roles in ensuring a seamless audio performance under very high pressure -- a real team effort in every sense of the word."
Account manager, Phil Kielty added "Working with Steve Levitt, Ant Carr, and all of the Production North team is always a complete pleasure. People have no idea (thankfully!) what a huge military-style operation goes on behind the scenes but no one gets flustered and everyone pulls together with a great stage crew to make it all look so effortless and smooth!" Kielty continued: "The K1 system was so well received and I can't think of many pop festivals that can pull off the staging of performances by such an amazing array of superstars."