The Awakening in St Michael’s Cave on the Rock of Gibraltar

A spectacular mixed-media installation inside St Michael’s Cave on the Rock of Gibraltar, The Awakening charts the formation of the rock itself using TiMax SoundHub-controlled spatial audio to accompany intricate projection-mapped visuals. Once believed to be bottomless, the cave also provides the backdrop – and the unique acoustic – for live music.

Viewing the current project before the attraction’s June opening, Christian Wright – Director of WrightTech Media, the local digital marketing solutions company that commissioned the project – underlined the dimension audio adds to the visuals: ‘The lighting is amazing, the projection is incredible, but the audio takes it to another level,’ he says. ‘There has never been anything like this in Gibraltar.’

The Awakening in St Michael’s Cave on the Rock of Gibraltar

Roncoroni credited Zelig’s Matthew Wilcock and Connor Duin, as a huge asset to the project: ‘They very quickly adapted to creating content for a TiMax installation and coped superbly with the challenging acoustical environment the cave presented,’ he says.

Audio content was zoned to highlight and focus on individual features of the cave, such as a huge area of stalactites that resemble an angel with stretched out wings. ‘I needed a spatial audio processor that could treat these zones independently while also allowing content to flow through them all on a cue-by-cue basis, which singled out TiMax as uniquely capable of this,’ Roncoroni explains.

TiMax outputs via Dante to a total of 35 EM Acoustics loudspeakers throughout the five zones of the attraction. Zone one hosts 16 EM Acoustics EMS61s and three S12 sub bass units with the four smaller zones each featuring one S12 sub and EMS41s. EM Acoustics provided bespoke weatherproof versions of their standard loudspeakers to ensure they would last in the challenging space the cave presented.

The system is fully Dante-based with Linea Research installation amplifiers in the rack room and Powersoft’s half-rack sized Mezzo amplifiers located within the waterproof projector enclosures in the field. Supplementary inputs to the TiMax are provided by the disguise media server, also via Dante.

A Medialon show controller converses with TiMax, alerting it to each cue trigger. Extra TiMax inputs have been provisioned for events to be held at the venue, with programming accessible via a Medialon-controlled screen that allows the projectors and lighting to be switched to an ambient beauty state and TiMax to background music mode.

‘It was a tricky design, but TiMax simplified the process and the sound design really works in there,’ Roncoroni says.

More: www.outboard.co.uk

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