Staged at London’s O2 Arena, saw Britannia Row Productions use DiGiCo consoles for the entire production of the 2019 BRIT Awards. ‘It was also the first time we’ve ever used 32-bit cards across the whole range of consoles on a live production,’ says Britannia Row Sales Director, Lez Dwight.

‘Britannia Row has worked with DiGiCo for a very long time, as has our worldwide network within Clair Global. It’s the console that the majority of engineers are very happy to use, which is important for a multi-act show like this. The live sound this year was truly exceptional.’

With The Carters, Drake and Ed Sheeran among the winners, the evening’s live mixes, were broadcast live on TV, including appearances by Hugh Jackman, George Ezra, Jess Glynne and The 1975. ‘The 1975 requested to bring their own monitor desk in, and as their preferred console is an SD5, it worked with the production perfectly,’ Dwight reports. P!nk’s pre-recorded section was handled via her own SD12 by FOH engineer Dave Bracey – a long-time DiGiCo user.

‘The BRIT Awards is always a tricky show; being able to balance artists’ needs with simplicity and continuity throughout is hard to achieve,’ states Colin Pink, The BRITs longstanding Live Sound Supervisor. ‘This year, every sound desk was a DiGiCo, which allowed the production to feel much more elegant than in the past.’

Britannia Row Productions has been The BRITs’ audio supplier for more than 20 years, and placed two SD7s at FOH with an SD7 Quantum surface, two SD12s at FOH for the presenters, hosts and acceptance speeches, and two further SD7s in monitor world flip-flopping between live performances.

‘The advances that the Quantum Engine bring to the flagship SD7 allow so much more flexibility and simplicity to these multi-band gigs,’ Pink continues. ‘It’s a great asset to the DiGiCo brand.’

‘This year’s BRITs really benefitted from a unique and brilliant production design from Misty Buckley,’ says Dwight. ‘Her set was very favourable for an emphasis on quality live audio. The show went very well, with no technical issues whatsoever, in no small part due to DiGiCo’s expert presence. DiGiCo Artist Liaison Manager, Mark Saunders, and Product Specialist Dave Bigg, provided instant, on-site support.’

The BRITS: The Mics

The Awards were again supported by Sennheiser, with mics and IEMs delivering on the UK’s biggest live music awards show for the 22nd year.

P!nkAs well as the show’s presenters, the evening also saw performances using a combination of Sennheiser products, including those from Hugh Jackman, Ms Banks and P!nk.

‘On a show of this size, ease and continuity are very important,’ says Colin Pink. ‘For all the presenters and award winners, we used the Sennheiser 6000 Series Handhelds with ME 9005 capsules, the perfect choice when clarity and low handling noise are extremely important.’

P!nk’s Outstanding Contribution to Music award was accompanied by a closing set that lasted more than 11 minutes. The production saw the US singer’s incredible vocal range transmit from backstage through the arena’s thick, concrete walls, descend from the venue’s roof in a gymnastic gag, sound out through pyrotechnics and hit perfect notes during rainfall.

‘P!nk sang seamlessly in the rain using her 6000 Series transmitter with 9235 capsule – a true testament to the quality of both the design and manufacturing standards at Sennheiser,’ Colin Piink says.

‘The 9235 capsule on the 9000 or 6000 Series is more than just my ‘go to’ vocal mic, it has proven itself repeatedly with Cher, Adele and P!nk since the launch of digital transmission systems,’ says P!nk’s FOH engineer, Dave Bracey. ‘Whether used with in-ears or on a loud stage, how the microphone deals with the inevitable spill is very important to me - a mic has to sound natural off-axis and the 9235 simply does. When I first started mixing, such excellent vocal detail was only achievable from high-end condenser mics for live events, so it’s nice to have a dynamic mic that delivers exactly what I need.’

BRIT Awards‘We were back at The BRITs with two of our favourites; P!nk as a vocalist and the 9235 Sennheiser as a vocal mic. A quality match indeed,’ adds monitor engineer, Jon Lewis. ‘Having to achieve a difficult RF task that day, it was great to have Sennheiser’s support at the ready to make us feel secure at critical moments. From her dressing room to high above the stage, we didn’t experience a single drop-out on her mic or her in-ears. As well as covering the distance, her 11-minute performance involved fire and, not only herself, but her mic and in-ears being drenched as well.’

The BRITs’ two monitor systems comprised 15 ways of 2000 Series IEM with over 80 packs. Sennheiser also supported an industry newcomer, when rapper, Ms Banks, was a guest with Little Mix. Using an SKM 5200 with an MD 5235 capsule and 2000 Series IEMs, Ms Banks performed as part of the girl group’s ‘Woman Like Me’ routine, making her own debut.

Her engineer, Raphael Williams, says: ‘We decided to use the Sennheiser 5200 mic with the 5235 head as it has great clarity and good rejection from the crowd. Both Ms Banks and her management team were impressed. It was her first time on a stage of that size, and her first time at The BRITs, so having a good mic made her really comfortable. It all worked perfectly, but I know I had Sennheiser and Britannia Row’s support if needed.’

Other artists to use Sennheiser mics and IEMs included Dua Lipa, Sam Smith and Jess Glynne. ‘There’s a lot of pressure and expectation because it’s both a live show in the traditional sense and going out live on TV. You’re dealing with various artists with different production designs happening straight after the other, and Sennheiser is a brand we know can handle that,’ says Dwight

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