The Blue Hour – A Far Cry

This was a recording session for Boston-based chamber orchestra A Far Cry’s live concert at Jordan Hall of New England Conservatory. Jordan Hall is great not only because of the beautiful aesthetics but also the acoustics.

“The Blue Hour features Grammy-winning singer Luciana Souza in a song cycle written by a collaborative of five leading composers – Rachel Grimes, Angélica Negrón, Shara Nova, Caroline Shaw, and Sarah Kirkland Snider. The text that serves as the libretto is by 2017 Windham-Campbell Prize winner Carolyn Forché. The excerpted poem, “On Earth,” is from Forché’s 2003 collection Blue Hour. The remarkable poem takes the form of an abecedarium: a listing of images, thousands of them, in alphabetical order, like a flurry of memories from a life coming to its end.”

Here is a link to their website. It also has information about this concert (http://afarcry.org/the-blue-hour). They are self-conducted 18-piece chamber orchestra, and calls themselves the Criers.

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“In a time when we are seeing masses of people dehumanized – by war, displacement, poverty – we are looking here at a single life, the beautiful detail of one human existence. There is something precious in that; that through our sense of empathy with this one individual, we are given a lens through which to see our own world with greater clarity.”

– A Far Cry-

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This was the setup sheet for this session. LCR array as the main with 4006s. BLMs on the stage corner.

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Reverb time was around 3.5 – 4 seconds.

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The ceiling was about 20 feet high.

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Hanging microphones with the servoreeler. Used various fishing gears to connect the hangers and position them.

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Neumann KMS 105 for the main vocal mic.

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We used Merging Technologies’ Horus for pre-amp. Very clean and transparent.

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TLM149. Similar to M149 but transformerless (no tube) and single cardioid pattern.

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This was a small control room made for engineers to monitor at the Jordan Hall. We ran Pyramix with Masscore system as main, and Pro Tools for backup.

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For the mix, I ended up not using many of the mics except the main LCR, ambience mics, and vocal mics. I added slightly more artificial reverberation and adjusted the balance.

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