Downton Abbey Live

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The Requirement

A special concert dedicated to the music of the TV series “Downton Abbey” was celebrated a Highclere Castle, the original location where the story happens. The concert was performed by The Chamber Orchestra of London conducted by Alastair King, with John Lunn at the Piano.

Working for promoter, Cuffe & Taylor Adlib supplied a full production system including audio, lighting, and video systems.

The Solution

By bringing together all aspects of technical production in one package, all aspects including logistics, crewing, and trucking were coordinated centrally giving the organisers one point of contact and reducing the overall cost through logistics efficiencies.

Adlib supplied two 5m x 3m IMAG screens and a 12m x 6m upstage screen (all Unilumen UPADIIIHO5 LED panels), 2 x cameras with box lenses at FOH, and a 2M/E Ross Carbonite PPU for control.

The lighting design comprised a two truss package incorporating 10 x Martin MAC Viper Performance fixtures, 14 x Martin MAC Aura fixtures, and 2 x followspots.

On the audio side, Adlib worked closely with Chris Beddall (FOH Engineer) to ensure that all requirements were met for him and the 50-piece orchestra performing on stage. This included a DiGiCo SD10 at FOH, 2 x SD Racks and a Nano Rack. Playback was input locally at FOH. D&B M4 Monitors were used where required around the orchestra with Shure Axient RF Systems for the orchestra’s vocalist Eurielle and host Jim Carter.

Adlib deployed a CODA Audio FOH system to ensure speech clarity and even coverage throughout the audience. The system comprised 12 x AiRAY with 4 x ViRAY downfills in each of the main hangs, 6 x ground stacked ViRAY per side as outfills, along with 8 x SCP-F and 6 x SC2 Subs. HOPS8 & APS were used for lip fills and infills.

Downton Abbey Live Stage

The Result

Adlib’s Oli Adams said: “We’ve been working with Cuffe & Taylor for quite a while and we’ve developed a great relationship with them. There’s a mutual trust and we know how each other work. We spent time with them before the event including inviting to Adlib where we spent time going through the plans for the event and arranged a demo of the screens we were proposing.”

Tommy Pearson, the events producer said: “The whole team, across all parts of the production, really pulled together and I know how hard everyone worked to get the show on the stage. Thank you to every single person involved.

I hope department/company heads will pass on to their teams my sincere thanks, not just for their skill and dedication but also for their friendliness and helpfulness throughout the day.

Nothing was too much trouble and it was hugely appreciated. Same for the Adlib audio team, especially James, Leah - the whole team - who met a challenging set-up with great patience, skill and humour.

The tech side of the concert was so smooth (not ONE mic issue that I can remember - which must be a record!) that I basically stopped thinking about it during the show - totally reliable and superb.

Thanks too to the video team that did a terrific job; I thought all the live shots of the orchestra came across really well on screen - and the quality of the image (and the screens themselves) was amazing.

Thanks Tom (Wearing) and Rob (Bickerstaff) and your team for putting up with my various and variable calls and for reacting to anything that was thrown at you. All round it was a great looking show on the screens. And props to Dave (Smith) and his lighting team on a challenging night for them, given there was, against all the odds, a huge round light source in the sky for most of it!”

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