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Meyer Sound Brings "The King" Back to Vegas in Viva ELVIS™ by Cirque du Soleil®
Viva ELVIS, the seventh resident production by Cirque du Soleil in Las Vegas, revitalizes the mythic rock 'n' roll icon by infusing the raw energy of his best concert performances into lavish Broadway-style production numbers and—of course—exhilarating acrobatic spectacles. The show demands artful blending of disparate audio elements: an eight-piece on-stage band, four female singers, the voice of Elvis, and dynamic sound effects. To support the mix with full impact, sound designer Jonathan Deans engaged a total of 279 self-powered Meyer Sound loudspeakers and the largest all-digital Matrix3 audio show control and CueConsole modular control surface system ever assembled.
"Cirque didn't want to recreate anything they have done before," says Deans. "They wanted to create something new and special for Elvis and for Las Vegas, drawing on the energy of Elvis's live shows performed here."
Viva ELVIS is staged in an 1,800-seat theatre at the ARIA Resort & Casino in the shimmering new CityCenter complex. To fill the house with sound from all directions, Deans started with a main system of 48 MICA line array loudspeakers set in four arrays of 12 loudspeakers each.
"This is the first Cirque production that's centered on an all-out rock concert," comments Assistant Head of Audio Aaron Beck. "We have a big, beefed-up concert-style Meyer system that's very musical but also pushes serious SPL. On 'Jailhouse Rock' and 'Burning Love', for example, it just gets up and goes."
In addition to the MICA, the main system comprises eight 700-HP floor subwoofers plus eight flown M3D-Sub directional subwoofers that thrust stomach-tightening bass into the balcony—but not down on stage. A three-dimensional surround and effects system—sides, rear and overhead—enfolds the audience with sound using 67 Meyer Sound loudspeakers. Models include the M'elodie and M1D-SM line array loudspeakers, MSL-4, UPQ-1P, MTS-4A, CQ-1, and UPJunior VariO loudspeakers.
The vast, 80-foot-wide stage with foldback requires a further complement of 18 loudspeakers, with a pair of highly directional parabolic SB-2 sound beams at either side of the stage thrust. "The SB-2s cover performers on the stage but keep the monitor mix from bleeding into the house," explains Beck.
Audio engineers at both FOH and monitor positions work on nearly identical Meyer Sound Matrix3 setups for mixing and effects playback. Each position has a total of 11 LX-300 primary and expansion processors, plus CueConsole mixing and control surfaces for 200 inputs at FOH and 176 at monitors. All Matrix3 inputs and outputs are via AES digital, with input conversion by the extensive Optocore fiber optic ring and output conversion to loudspeakers by six Galileo 616 processors of the Galileo loudspeaker management system. All Meyer Sound systems were supplied and installed by the Las Vegas division of Montreal-based Solotech.
Viva ELVIS Head of Audio Kevin Owens mixes most shows, with Beck rotating into the FOH position once or twice a week. The primary monitor mixer is Dave Robertson. Jason Rauhoff, Jonathan Deans's associate, handled the system's programming.
Viva ELVIS is produced by Cirque du Soleil in partnership with Elvis Presley Enterprises and CKX Inc. Key creators of the show include Writer and Director Vincent Paterson, Director of Creation Armand Thomas, and Musical Director and Arranger Erich van Tourneau.