TiMax2 provides soundfield for Eton’s Macbeth

TiMax2 SoundHub audio showcontrol system has been used for the Eton College's school play for a second year.

As the Players gathered to present Eton College’s School Play: Macbeth, they colluded with a technical infrastructure that would have been at home in a professional West End theatre, including not only Out Boards’ TiMax2 SoundHub audio showcontrol system for a second year, but also the addition of a new Digico SD9 console which helped deliver improved sonic detail in the house system.

Sound designer Rick Sarson envisioned and produced the immersive sound environment and programmed the TiMax2 SoundHub show in rehearsals for the student technical team to operate during the performances.

Act One’s battle scene was a furious and terrifying event belying the scant army actually present on the stage. TiMax made use of the distributed loudspeaker system to paint a multi-layered soundscape that absorbed the audience into the action amidst the sounds of modern warfare crackling  from all directions. This effect was then swept into smaller speakers hidden upstage, with the help of the animated source-oriented reinforcement localisation that is a speciality of TiMax2 SoundHub’s dynamic delay-matrix. The next lines delivered by a young actor were hence not overwhelmed as the dialogue continued indoors whilst the battle still raged far away in the distance outside.

TiMax delivered other notable moments throughout the production, not least during the entrances of Banquo’s ghost. Twice each show the audience jumped in their seats as the high-impact soundscape jolted their awareness with loud ‘bang-screech’ sounds at the entrance of Macbeth’s foil.

Eton’s Director of Drama, Hailz-Emily Osborne, was delighted with the effects:

“The soundscape for Eton’s production of Macbeth was simply stunning. Not only boys and parents commented on the thrilling effects that filled the auditorium, but hardened industry professionals have also written to say that the sound was a powerfully expressive part of the production’s undoubted success.

"The way the TiMax is able to link together the speakers so that a complete sound-field is created through which sound seems to fly is fantastic. The chilling whispering that became inescapable in the auditorium, the sickening shock of the arrival of Banquo’s ghost, and the terrifying sense of being immersed in modern battle were palpable. I cannot believe that such a sophisticated soundscape could be operated so simply by the boy crew – just a click of the mouse and the sounds moved and transmuted, bloomed and waned, and gave a profound sense of total immersion in the evil atmosphere of the play.”

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