There was a large crowd for the traditional concert held in front of Milan cathedral to welcome the New Year, animated by singer/songwriter and multi-instrumentalist Francesco Gabbani and his band, the energy of the Bluebeaters, with their infectious ska and rocksteady rhythms, RDS radio personality Paolo Piva, comedian Dario Vergassola and a DJ set.
The big challenge to be faced this year was ensuring acoustic coverage for 20,000 spectators without the use of delay systems, as explains Sacha Bozzo, head of Show Technologies from Recco (Genoa), the event’s rental company: “It was of fundamental importance for us to ensure everybody a great show, and at the same time meet all the security regulations an event of this type involves, so we decided to approach the project without taking delay systems into consideration, as they would have probably ended up blocking sightlines and escape routes.
“Our system engineer, Giancarlo “Jerry” Paladini, and Giulio Gandini (Outline Tech Support) did a great job on this and, thanks to Outline’s OpenArray3D modelling software, we were able to preview several simulations and transform the best on paper into reality.”
Paladini explains in detail: “For the main Outline rig, as well as 12 GTO C-12 and two GTO-DF per side, for spectators at each side of the (14m-wide) stage, there were 12 Butterfly plus three Mantas. 24 DBS 18-2 subs were installed two-up on the ground, with six Mantas as front-fill speakers.
“This set-up was powered by 12 Powersoft X8 amplifiers and an Outline Newton 16+8 was used as a matrix managing the two DiGiCo consoles and as a FOH processor. On stage, there were two side-fill systems made up of three Mantas and a Subtech 218 each, powered by Outline T5 amplifiers.
“The monitor set-up was also Outline, with ten 10 Vegas 12 CX and a V15 system on drum-fill duty, as well as four Vegas 24 for comms between the FOH and monitor desks.”
Marco Dal Lago, a freelance sound engineer with 15 years’ experience on tours, helmed the FOH console, and his experience also includes studio work as both sound engineer and producer.
Dal Lago had already worked with GTO systems on various occasions, “I’ve been able to use both the twin 12-inch and twin 18-inch systems, the latter with (top female Italian rocker) Gianna Nannini in Brescia and Prato. Through the years, I’ve also used other Outline systems – from Butterfly, when it came on the market, through those that followed, I had the possibility of using them all with various artistes and on numerous festivals.”
The engineer concludes: “It’s a pleasure to see – and hear – an Italian product that is definitely to be included among the most best and most enjoyable I’ve heard, and, along with a few other foreign brands, certainly the benchmark at international level from which to take tips for beautiful sound and general characteristics.”
Bozzo adds: “I’m very satisfied with the result achieved, the square was totally covered, as far as both the area closest to the stage was concerned (7,600 spectators in 3,800sq.m), and the outer area (12,200 people in 6,100sq.m).”