Andrea Bocelli’s open-air opera tackles audio distribution with Riedel Communications

Acclaimed tenor Andrea Bocelli’s open-air concerts in Central Park, New York and Belo Horizonte, Brazil found audio distribution solutions via a RockNet installation from Riedel Communications.

The two performances each presented major challenges with regards to audio distribution due to the sheer size of the locations. While the Central Park location measured up at almost 600 x 1,000 feet, the Belo Horizonte location was even larger, including a 1,300 feet long avenue next to the stage.

In order to provide optimum audio distribution and a reliable PA system, audio engineer for both shows Andrea Taglia, used six RockNet 100 devices at the events. He commented: “I was really afraid about how we should distribute the signal through the delay lines for the concert of Boelli in Central Park, as the six delay lines needed to be distributed on a field over 180m wide and 310 m deep."

He then explained that the short time frame was another obstacle that made the installation more difficult: "We were only able to install the cables just the day before the show, because we were not allowed to work on-site any earlier. Therefore I was looking for a redundant and fool-proof system and obviously Riedel RockNet came as the solution: we did not run into a single problem and I nearly forgot it existed during the event."

For the event in Belo Horizonte, Brazilian rental and live production company Loudness was responsible for the audio system at the event, which consisted of one Midas LX3 and two Midas XL4 consoles, as well as an L-Acoustics K1 system, while three towers of JBL Vertec 4889 were used as delay towers on the avenue. Taglia also had to deal with similar demands to those in New York. "The other open air event in Belo Horizonte, Brazil was even larger than Central Park", he continued. "This time we faced a 410m long audience standing on a road that had been closed to the traffic just on the morning of the show day itself."

Taglia’s past experiences with RockNet at the New York show, assured him that RockNet would be the best solution: "Riedel RockNet is a very transparent, reliable, full redundant system that allows a quick set-up offering all the confidence that a full broadcast engineered product can provide.”