For the past five years I've had the joy of working on the Thursford Christmas Spectacular, the largest Christmas show in Europe, where I am the show's sound designer. This extraordinary event has to be seen to be believed.
Held in a barn in a tiny village in North Norfolk, it attracts over 120,000 visitors from all corners of the UK each November and December to a show that is as feel good as it gets. The scale of it is amazing: 58 singers, 22 dancers and 33 musicians perform on a 40m wide stage twice daily to a capacity audience of 1,400. There's a Wurlitzer organ with 1,339 pipes that rises out of the ground. There are something like 5 million fairy lights on site!
To make all this sound as good as it looks requires a world-class sound system and a world-class team. We use a DiGiCo Quantum SD7T at front of house, and an SD10 backstage for monitors. On the SD7T we use over 230 input channels. There are over 70 channels of Shure radio mics and IEMs, with a huge number of mic swaps during a show. In the 2022 season, my brilliant colleagues backstage successfully changed microphones 33,000 times without a single mistake. Show control is handled by the industry standard QLab, and RF monitoring with Wavetool.
Below are the promotional trailers for the 2021 and 2022 shows, that will give a small flavour of the huge variety within each three-hour show.