Ireland’s Production House Uses Riedel RockNet for Derry-Londonderry’s City of Culture Finale

Riedel Communications, provider of pioneering real-time video, audio, data, and communications networks, announced that Production House, Ireland’s leading supplier of professional audio systems, used an extensive RockNet real-time audio network to support the finale of “The Return of Colmcille” — a landmark production of the 2013 City of Culture celebrations in Derry-Londonderry.

RiedelProduced by outdoor arts experts Walk the Plank, “The Return of Colmcille” culminated in a battle between the city’s founder, Saint Colmcille and the legendary Loch Ness Monster on the River Foyle. The Riedel fiber network facilitated audio distribution during the impressive finale.

“We chose Riedel RockNet for this historic event because it offers reliability, flexibility, and ease-of-setup, as well as a redundant ring topology,” said Niall Lewis, director, Production House. “The system worked perfectly, sounded great, gave us all the flexibility we needed, and enabled us to adapt quickly to last-minute production changes.”

Scripted by Frank Cottrell Boyce, writer of the 2012 London Games opening ceremony, the show was the centerpiece of Derry-Londonderry’s time as the UK City of Culture, and the arrival of the monster on the river marked the end of an ambitious 30 hours of performance across the city. Thousands of spectators gathered by the river to watch the battle, which featured flames and fireworks accompanied by original music composed for the special event.

Riedel’s RockNet audio distribution consisted of RockNet output modules at each of the 20 PA stacks along the river and on the city’s Peace Bridge, as well as four analog input boxes and an output box at the control position. With this configuration, the production team was able to deliver an individual signal — time-aligned via GPS to the monster boat as it progressed down the river — to the appropriate PA stack to create a continuous sound experience. For the pre-show event, which drew 20,000 people, Production House was able to reassign PA stack outputs to ensure optimal coverage, simply by redistributing the audio signal to the various RockNet output modules. The intuitive RockWorks software enabled this critical redistribution capability by providing flexible routing options within the RockNet network.

The RockNet system supported communications between the audio engineer, sound designer, and RF technician. Production House also used the RockNet system to distribute four different timecode feeds for the show caller and the pyrotechnicians at various locations, including the main firing site 1.2 km from the beginning of the monster boat’s voyage. Signals were sent to the RF transmission location, and audio and timecode were sent to the monster boat via a 1- watt wireless link.

Riedel Hires Franck Berger as Sales Manager for France and North Africa
Riedel Communications, provider of pioneering real-time video, audio, data, and communications networks, today announced that Franck Berger has joined the company as sales manager responsible for France and the French-speaking regions of North Africa. In this role with Riedel, Berger will hone the company’s focus on target market segments while contributing to continued overall growth of the business across his sales territory.

“Franck has a remarkable track record in building and developing strong, successful relationships,” said Rik Hoerée, head of sales at Riedel Communications. “As we extend our reach in France and other French-language markets, we are confident that his skill in assuring customer satisfaction also will be valuable in retaining existing customers and in extending our customer base. We’re very pleased to welcome him to the company.”

Berger began his career as a sound engineer at Radio France and subsequently moved to a sales role with leading French distributor/integrator Systèmes Audiofréquence Vidéonique (SAV). He next joined service provider Arqiva to look after the company’s new business in TV satellite transmission, headend, and playout services. During his time with Arqiva, Berger engaged not only with the French market, but also with customers in Benelux and Poland.

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