Woodstock Der Blasmusik Goes Digital with Allen & Heath

Allen & Heath dLive 5000 at Woodstock Der Blasmusik – KM-photography.

Since its inception in 2011, the Woodstock der Blasmusik festival has been attracting crowds of up to 60,000 brass music fans each June to Ort im Innkreis in Austria. With brass aficionados obliged to stay at home by COVID-19, this year the organisers treated them to an evening of livestreamed performances from the festival site, featuring eight bands and mixed from an Allen & Heath dLive system.

The FOH and broadcast audio rig for this online incarnation of Woodstock Der Blasmusik was supplied and managed by Martin Bröll with Allen & Heath of Greenbee Records Studios, working closely with the festival’s Technical Manager, Mario Schwarz, who oversaw all aspects of the audio, video and streaming.

With eight bands, three stages and over 60 inputs to look after, Bröll chose his DM32 MixRack as the core of a dLive system running the PA sound, broadcast mix and intercoms. Portable DX168 expanders were added for local IO on the main stages, plus a modular DX32 expander for front of house IO and connection of outboard FX and compressors.

The DM32 was fitted with a Waves3 card for integration with a Soundgrid Server One for additional plugins. The performances were mixed on a dLive S5000 Surface, with a secondary mixer taking care of summing mixes, video sound and interview mics. A Dante 128×128 card in the S5000 allowed Martin to capture multitrack recordings of the performances on two laptops running Dante Virtual Soundcard.

“With several bands performing on multiple stages over six hours, the main challenge with this event was managing the channel routing efficiently,” Bröll explained. “I had worked with iLive in the past and upgraded to dLive last September, so I knew it was the right solution. Another really important factor for me is dLive’s easy integration with Waves plugins and Dante.”

Asked what the secret to mixing brass instruments is, Bröll confided: “You have to treat brass instruments like human voices. They have a huge dynamic range and many overtones. You need to be very sparing with equalization and compression. You have to really ride the faders.”

The organisers of Woodstock der Blasmusik are pleased with the success of the livestream and the quality of the audio and are looking forward to welcoming the brass-loving audience once more in 2021.