Celebrating its 34th year, World of Music, Arts and Dance (WOMAD) is an annual eclectic world-music festival of “artists whom we might not get to hear anywhere else” and the largest and most prestigious event of its kind. As with WOMADs of the past, Britannia Row Productions Ltd. once again provided sound services for the festival. But this year had a new team member – SSL Live consoles at FOH for two stages: the main Open Air Stage and at WOMAD’s new Society of Sound marquee.
Having worked as front of house and system engineer in WOMAD’s Siam Tent last year, New Zealander Johnny Keirle returned to mix FOH at the Open Air Stage. An SSL Live console was used by Keirle to mix acts travelling without a FOH engineer.
The collection of acts that Keirle mixed included the eight-piece traditional Cuban ensemble Septeto Santiagero, Italian folk traditionalist Anna Cinzia Cillani and her Macuran Orchestra, and Ethiopian jazz master Mulatu Astatke, who performed just before founding WOMAD headliner and Senegalese icon Yousou N’Dour. Over on the Society of Sound stage Live was coupled with the unique Bowers & Wilkins ‘Sound System’ to deliver pristine high fidelity audio to a discerning audience who enjoyed an impressively diverse collection of experimental artists including: Radiophonic Workshop, Beardyman, 9Bach, Justin Adams, and Iarla Ó Lionárd.
The loudspeaker system at the Open Air Stage consisted of one dozen L-Acoustics K1s per side, supplemented with 16 SB28 subs and a dozen KARA front-fills.