The world-famous Minack open-air theatre in Cornwall has recently upgraded to a Soundcraft Si Impact digital console, supplied by dealers, Stage Electrics.
The Minack Theatre is one of the world’s most famous outdoor theatres, carved into the cliff face in the small village of Porthcurno, dramatically overlooking the Atlantic Ocean. The theatre was, incredibly, originally created by one lady, Rowena Cade, with the help of her gardener Billy Rawlings, over the winter of 1931-1932 to enable a local theatre group to perform Shakespeare’s The Tempest. Moving granite boulders and earth they created the stage and lower terraces in the same place they are seen today.
Today the venue offers a full programme of drama, musicals and opera together with music, comedy and story-telling. These performances are seen by around 80,000 people per year, whilst over 150,000 come to visit simply for the stunning views and to learn its history.
For the 2017 season, Theatre Manager Phil Jackson and Technical Manager Simon Hutchings, decided it was time to make the switch from analogue to digital for the in-house audio console.
Simon confirmed that the move to the digital platform had been triggered by the affordability of the desk. “We had been considering it for a while but at first but the costs seemed excessive for our needs and we were concerned about the longevity of a desk working in our challenging environment.”
But all that changed when they reviewed the Si Impact Digital Mixing Console, Soundcraft's latest Si Series console which features renowned sound quality, unique FaderGlow™ system, 32 built-in mic inputs with a total capability of 80-inputs to mix, and iPad control.
“The overall quality feel of the desk, the fader layout and ease of customisation were all major plus points, along with the full DSP processing on each channel, and the fact there was also GEQ across all 31 output channels,” he said.
The benefits this has brought to the venue’s board operators are immeasurable. “Notably,” says Simon, “it’s the ability to recall a show from memory, so we can run our storytelling shows with ease under a main show.”
He predicts that increasingly incoming productions will start to use the new house desk rather than carry their own consoles. “Now the desk has 80 channels to mix, and with the planned addition of a 32-channel stage box, the Si Impact will be used for bigger and bigger shows as time goes on.”
For more information regarding the Minack please visit minack.com
Soundcraft consoles are distributed as part of the HARMAN Professional portfolio by Sound Technology Ltd in the UK and Ireland.