Acoustics help needed to maximize sound in venue with little reverb
Date: October 18, 2013
Today my community choirs rehearsed in a performance venue for the first time - the actual performance is in one week. We have never used this venue before and had no idea that we were in for a bit of a shock. It is a magnificently redesigned church in the round - a great cavernous room with high wood ceilings. However the four level stage and entire auditorium is carpeted with thick, wool carpet.
The carpeted stage is large and the singers stood slightly wider apart than they are used to. The sound made by 25 singers (we will have 35+ on the day) sounded muted. We could not believe how little reverb there was, and of course once the venue has people in it, there will be even less. The music we are singing is particularly vivacious yet none of this came across the airwaves. It just felt as if the carpet was sucking all the exuberance out of the singing.
We do not have access to a sound shell, and nor would it be permitted in this space. We are not using amplification, which of course, would probably solve our crisis (budget reasons).
With only a week to go I am asking for help on possible solutions to maximise the singers' sound. In a place with little reverb and a carpeted floor, do I clump the singers together rather than space them apart? Do I re-position them from 4 levels of singers to 2 levels, closer to the audience? Do we sing in the middle of this great cavern and have the audience on the stage?
Any suggestions greatly appreciated.
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