TVN Trusts in Lawo Technology For Hurricane Festival
Attracting around 70,000 visitors, Hurricane is one of the most successful music festivals in Germany. Held in Scheeßel, this year’s headliners included Arcade Fire, Volbeat, Seeed, Kraftklub, and Fettes Brot among others. TVN MOBILE PRODUCTION GmbH was in attendance with its Ü3 OB truck (equipped with a Lawo mc²66) and a mobile control room (with a Lawo mc²56) to mix the live broadcast sound from the two main stages and make multitrack recordings for later broadcast.
“The festival was perfect! We got the releases from all the bands for TV broadcasts,” says Stephan Thyssen, Audio Manager at TVN.
TVN first mixed festivals for live broadcast and recording in 2005. Since 2006, the company has also handled the Wacken Open Air event (the largest heavy metal festival in the world), and in 2008 took on the Hurricane festival. While his senior position puts Thyssen in charge of the 23-strong TVN-AUDIO team, he himself handles the mix during these productions. Thyssen joined TVN in 1998 as an experienced live sound engineer, and even then saw the opportunity of opening new markets with the company’s OB vans. In order to ensure high-quality live broadcast mixes, these vehicles were equipped with Lawo consoles and peripherals.
As the trucks are also used for sports and entertainment events, they are reconfigured for festivals. For example, in addition to digital MADI links, there are around 300 analog audio channels at Hurricane that need to be leveled and line-checked to ensure that the setup schedule is met. “A crew with good stage experience can handle the pressure of many parallel tasks, as well as the short-term post-production of the recordings – such as repairs to the live mix for repeats or time-shifted broadcasts,” says Thyssen.
The broadcast sound is fed separately from the stage rather than splitting the FOH mix that goes to the PA, and is mixed in the truck and the mobile control room for live broadcast on 3sat, ARTE, and ZDF or recording. When the recordings require editing, the OB is booked for a week after the festival. “This is important for any band, but especially for those who are promoting songs of a new CD live on stage, as Kraftklub did this year,” says Thyssen.
Routing capabilities were a critical consideration in the choice of consoles for these duties. This and the fact that Lawo consoles are widely used were particular advantages, since many of the freelance sound engineers have already worked on them, and need very little training. “Besides, Lawo’s service is first class – it is available around the clock, with a competent service employee working towards the most effective solution. This level of service starts with sales discussions – the advice is excellent, and only systems that are tailor-made to a required application are offered. The quality of products and solutions is excellent – and if there is a problem, the service is on the spot,” concludes Thyssen.