After an extensive renovation that took five years to complete, the historic Himeji Castle’s grand reopening ceremony was an event not to be missed.
The renovation of what is considered Japan’s most spectacular castle, which is frequently known as Hakuro-jō (White Egret Castle) or Shirasagi-jō (White Heron Castle) because of its brilliant white exterior, began in October 2009. It involved returning the walls to ‘the white egret’ while repairing the kawara-tiled roof, and recreating the symbolic Shachihoko (Japanese mythological animal) decorating its ridge.
The opening ceremony, held before an invited audience of 1000 people (including government officials and politicians), saw Martin Audio’s MLA Compact Multi-cellular Loudspeaker Array brought into play alongside the Japan Air Self Defense Force’s aerobatic demonstration team, The Blue Impulse.
Kobe International Stage Service (KISS) was in charge of providing audio, and they immediately chose the award-winning MLA system to reinforce this prestigious event.
There have been many shows produced in this park over the years, but it has been extremely difficult to deliver even coverage to more than 350 feet in depth using conventional point source systems. “But after using MLA Compact, I never felt any stress on the system whatsoever,” stated FOH sound engineer, Mr. Tsudawho.
Six MLA Compact enclosures per side were rigged in the tower, with two DSX ground-stacked subwoofers.
“The layout was designed to suit the efficiency of the staging although it was not ideal for sound engineers,” the system tech, Mr. Katanami, explained.
“I changed the coverage area of the system using different optimizations and adopted the infill system for the relevant areas. I also zoned the system to give me greater control of the downfill cabinet.” He confirmed that the following week there was to be another stage at the same venue; and he had no hesitation in once again fielding the MLA Compact system. “Not only the intelligibility, but also the controllability of any sound leakage is remarkable,” he said.
And even when the brass band played directly in front of the PA system, the unique software control of MLA proved equal to the challenge.
The Himeji Castle site is surrounded by a zoo and many residential properties, so careful management of the noise pollution problem was essential. KISS reports that as a result of this event, the Himeji government is now fully aware of MLA’s unique control properties.
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About Martin Audio®
Founded by audio engineer David Martin in 1971, Martin Audio pioneered the use of all-horn-loaded bass designs in world-class touring loudspeaker systems for groups such as Pink Floyd, ELP and Supertramp. Located outside of London, Martin Audio now embodies a sophisticated mix of acoustic design, research, mathematical modeling and software engineering for a wide range of products in the installation, cinema and touring sound markets.