Fisht Stadium in Sochi was the venue for the Opening and Closing Ceremonies. The venue had additional structures at either end to accommodate the requirements for the ceremonies, as well as a complete roof structure. The end result was a venue with a 6-second reverb time, not ideal for an entertainment event.
Two loudspeaker system designs were developed, one for the Olympics Ceremonies that split the coverage of upper and lower bowls between flown and stacked arrays, and the second design with the whole system flown for the Paralympic Ceremonies which required the field of play to be clear of equipment for athletes seating.
In total the L-Acoustics loudspeaker system consisted of 230 K2 elements, 98 SB28 subwoofers, 16 ARCS II, 24 dVDOSC, 20 12XT, 72 8XT, 30 5XT and 14 108P. Head to the downloads for a detailed case study of the audio system and the design process.
FOH Audio Control System
Our design is 100% dual-redundant using main and backup DiGiCo SD7 consoles for FOH, monitors and broadcast. The two FOH SD7's were packaged with a few key outboard devices such as TC M6000, Cedar Audio DNS-8D, Drawmer S3, Empirical Labs Distressor. Our mix engineer was Richard Sharratt.
Broadcast Audio Control System
The broadcast facility consisted of a pair of DiGiCo SD7B for the main mix and a pair of DiGiCo SD9B for audience and effects mics. 40 channels of audience mics were deployed with shotgun mics for the upper bowl and various mic types for the lower bowl. Our broadcast mix engineer was Andy Rose with assistance from Griff Hewis.
Patch, signal transport systems and RF
The audio control system was based on our design for the London 2012 Ceremonies with some modifications to suit particular needs of this project. The signal transport network was based on an Optocore main network and an analog backup network. The Optocore system connects to the main consoles via MADI with DiGiCo SD racks connecting to the backup consoles, also via MADI, allowing the main and backup pairs of consoles to be mirrored. Our senior systems engineer was Justin Arthur.
Audio Replay System
The digital audio replay system for Sochi 2014 consisted of a pair of Fairlight systems each with a pair of HP Z840 workstations and Fairlight Crystal Core processors. This gives sufficient processing power for 256 channels per PC. The system is configured in an A/B arrangement with a complete 100% backup. The system was operated by Steve Logan and Luis Miranda.
The people and companies that made it happen.
Thanks to our friends from the Ceremonies Staging Agency, FiveCurrents and BWS for getting us involved in the project. Congratulations to the creative team for developing such a great set of ceremonies and to the technical team led by James Lee and Nick Eltis for making it happen.
Scott Willsallen designed the systems and led the team consisting of Richard Sharratt and Bobby Aitken on FOH, Steve Logan and Luis Miranda on Replay, Justin Arthur looking after systems and Andy Rose and Griff Hewis on Broadcast.
Congratulations to Giulio Rovelli and the whole team at Agora for preparing, shipping and installing a world-class system with world class crew. This was the first large deployment of L-Acoustics K2 and the whole process was very efficient.