K-array owner and designer Alex Tatini returned to the city that never sleeps to catch up with Pro Audio Maestro Lou Mannarino from L&M Sound who approached K-array to create a unique sound for the celebrated ‘Pixar in Concert’ show by the Lincoln Centre’s New York Philharmonic.
Pixar Studios has brought an astonishing portfolio to the entertainment world since it’s first full length feature film ‘Toy Story’ arrived in cinemas in 1995 and firmly established themselves as leaders and pioneers in the field of animation. Arts and culture maestros have always liked to juxtapose various arts to create new moments and in May this year the New York Philharmonic celebrated the music of these classic masterpieces in the ‘Pixar in Concert’, a show illustrating Pixar’s mastery of film scoring to underscore its celebrated storytelling. Clips from all 14 Pixar films released to date were played on a large screen accompanied by the live orchestra led by veteran film composer David Newman.
Lou Mannarino (NY Philharmonic’s live sound engineer and CEO of L&M Sound & Light) created the audio design for the concert using a variety of K-array gear including the Redline series, the KAN 200+ Anakonda’s, KR102 and KR402 systems. The biggest challenge for Lou and his team was synchronising the sound with the video, displaying the Pixar animations and accomplishing this with an 130 piece orchestra was no easy feet.
“Our biggest concern was controlling the delay, we needed loudspeakers that were forgiving and compact to give the orchestra room to move as well as see.” Lou and the team set up Anakonda’s under the seats of the musicians, where their flexible designs could hide out of sight, yet not only provide monitoring but allow the musicians to feel the music too. The team also set up KR102 systems for monitoring. “In order to achieve the optimum sound performance, our goal was to have a natural balance from the microphones to the monitoring and then to the audience timing each section with absolute accuracy. The beauty of the K-array system is it makes this process easy, simple and enjoyable to set up. The K-array systems are forgiving and best of all they provide a softness of sound which is most appealing for everyone’s ears”
For the audience, KR402s were positioned at the front on either side of the orchestra and KAN200s were hung from the ceiling, out of sight providing a sound from above and covering the interior of the venue. “You can’t really achieve surround sound for live performances however, with the KAN200s situated around the room and carefully arranged we can create something on par with the optimum surround sound. All of this was made easy with the line source and 2 amp channels available with the K-array hardware.” he continued “I feel in control with K-array, it gives me the freedom to be creative, making me look good at the same time.”
Jasmine Dotiwola reviewed the show for the Huffington Post and commented “If I told you we were going to watch movies and a live orchestra simultaneously, you’d probably think that a little strange, but the way the show was set up was absolutely perfect and the audience were able to experience both, to form a brand new genre of animated music.”
Lou commented recently in his journal online. “K-array is very special, they are my first choice of loudspeaker and together we have accomplished many successful concerts and events using them. I was very honoured Alex came to spend time with us.”