A Grade II* listed former railway engine repair shed in Chalk Farm, London, The Roundhouse is a legendary cultural venue dedicated to nurturing creative young talent, and presenting a diverse line up of the biggest names in live music, theatre, circus and new media. Known for hosting musical giants such as David Bowie and the Rolling Stones, The Roundhouse played a major role in the birth of Punk, survived temporary closure in the 1980s, was the site of illegal raves in the 90s, and was reborn at the end of the 20th century with an 11-month residency with Argentinian theatre company, De La Guardia. In the mid noughties it reopened once again, quickly establishing itself as one of the capital’s leading arts venues, hosting a plethora of productions and musical artists. Audio specialist DeltaLive has supplied and installed two DiGiCo SD12s as permanent house consoles for the venue’s front of house and monitor positions.
Following a tender process, DeltaLive, was contracted in 2019 as the in-house sound supplier and tasked with delivering the consoles ahead of events that were booked at the venue in April that year.
“It was quite a whirlwind at the time, as we just had a three-week’s notice to support the events that were already booked at The Roundhouse,” recalled DeltaLive’s Account Manager, Cara Smith. “We were planning to purchase two desks to go in there, but because of the time constraints, we had to take the majority of equipment from our hire stock.”
The team used DiGiCo’s SD5 consoles for the first couple of months. “It was really useful getting the DiGiCo consoles in there so quickly, as we could get an understanding of what bands and corporates wanted – as well as how much power and how many channels are needed. The SD5s were great for some events, but for most they were more powerful than was needed. Also, because a lot of artists tour their own desks, it became apparent that a smaller footprint console would be an advantage.”
Offering optimum performance in live touring, corporate, install, house of worship, theatre and broadcast environments, DeltaLive’s team had their eye on DiGiCo’s SD12 multi-application console due to its compact size and extensive feature set. “Based on our experience with the SD5, we knew SD12 would be perfect as the footprint is smaller, but the capabilities would cover every single event that came through,” continues Smith.
However, with pandemic closures, the installation of the venue’s permanent system was delayed until January 2020, when DeltaLive supplied and installed two SD12 consoles, one at FOH and another at monitors.
With The Roundhouse now back up and running with around 25 events each month, the DeltaLive team is offering continuous support to the venue with two engineers, Daniel Lund and James Pearce, permanently based at the venue. “When we started working with The Roundhouse, we were pulling in freelancers. It was a good temporary solution but long-term we knew they needed dedicated support. Having the engineers there to provide consistency and a real knowledge of the venue and how things work if the setup changes is a massive advantage and makes the workflow so much more effective,” Smith adds.
Whilst DiGiCo’s SD12 consoles suit about 95 percent of The Roundhouse’s events, for larger events DeltaLive can add a DiGiCo SD5 or Quantum 7, “and because of how things link up. It’s really flexible and easy!” exclaimed Smith.
“The SD12s mean we are fully ready for the new season,” she concluded. “The schedule looks really interesting, with a great combination of live performances and private events. The SD12 consoles have been very well received and are extremely versatile and rider friendly. We are really excited about 2023 and the new opportunities it will bring!”