A recipient of two 2012 TONY nominations for best original score and best performance by an actress, Bonnie & Clydewas a musical based on the infamous Depression-era folk heroes. The show ran at New York's Gerald Schoenfeld Theatre and featured a large complement of Meyer Sound equipment, including the new MINA line array loudspeaker.
MINA, the newest and smallest member of the MILO family of line array loudspeakers, was critical to the successful system design and installation at the Schoenfeld. "We're always up against the wall, literally and figuratively, in trying to get these things in without impeding sightlines," says sound designer John Shivers. "MINA loudspeakers are quite powerful in a very compact package, which makes them ideal for theatrical applications."
Weight was also a factor in the loudspeaker specification for Bonnie & Clyde. "We had limited structure in the theatre to support the speaker system, so we couldn't have an inordinate amount of weight," says associate sound designer David Patridge. "We're happy Meyer released something in the size and profile of the MINA; it's a musical-sounding speaker with a smooth frequency response."
New York–based Masque Sound provided Meyer Sound equipment comprised of eight MINA and 22 M'elodie line array loudspeakers, six UPM-1P loudspeakers, two UPJunior VariO loudspeakers, four 500-HP and two 700-HP subwoofers, and a Galileo loudspeaker management system with three Galileo 616 processors. Masque also provided a DiGiCo SD7T console and microphone and wireless equipment from Shure, Sennheiser, and DPA.
Shivers and Patridge specified their first Meyer Sound MINA system for Hugh Jackman, Back on Broadway at the Broadhurst Theatre. "The theatres are both very challenging in their architecture in terms of hanging a PA that would efficiently give us the coverage we needed while keeping sightline reduction to a minimum," Shivers says.
What catalyzed MINA's use in Bonnie & Clyde was a production last summer at San Francisco's American Conservatory Theater (A.C.T.). Shivers and Patridge employed a 10-box MINA system for A.C.T.'s production of Tales of the City, which enabled a thorough evaluation.
"I had heard MINA in a demo and thought that they were quite interesting," Shivers recalls. "But to hear something in a demo and then use it in a real-world application doesn't always translate, so we thought that was an ideal opportunity. We were very pleased, and it was instrumental in us specifying them for these two shows."
Shivers is satisfied with the installation at Schoenfeld. "Everybody's been complimentary about the system," he says. "For me, MINA is an excellent product and something I will be considering whenever appropriate."