We found ways to use the space to reflect the sound in the most effective ways. For instance, we placed one speaker in the amphitheatre, playing a neutral loop, and because of the acoustics in the amphitheatre, this one speaker filled in the silence of an area of about 300 ft of pathway. Most centrally, we had an alcove that played a 27 minute long loop of unearthly ambience; within the alcove, we placed 2 Ramsa A-80s – one in a corner, facing the opposite wall, and the other in the center facing towards the mouth of the ‘cave.’ Pointing a speaker towards a wall!?! In this case, the reflections and natural reverberations within the cement alcove were exactly what we needed to create the ominous and cavernous sound we were aiming for.
We also placed a RH speaker in a tunnel, which we called Hell’s mouth. This loop was triggered as the spirits began to emerge from the underworld and continued to reverberate throughout the space until the end of the show.
Hell's Mouth Ambience track embedded here:
Of course we couldn’t keep all our equipment laying out every night, so we had to strike after every rehearsal and performance. Vinnie let us keep all of our equipment in his office, along with all the props and set dressings. The entire team’s Tetris skills finally paid off!
Overall this project was a fun challenge and very rewarding. Audience members called it “delicious and disturbing” and “a unique interactive experience.” As this project (and backstory) continue to grow, we are all hoping to see future productions of Elysian Roux. But remember… don’t break the circle.
Karli and Matt