NILES, Ill., May 17, 2012—A veteran of concerts, conventions, and everything in between, the Shure UHF-R® wireless system has earned a reputation as the warhorse of wireless systems. Having shared the spotlight with mega-stars and mega-ministers, it’s no surprise that UHF-R was chosen to support two classic productions presented by two classic theater companies in two distinctly different venues in Chicago, each of which posed unique challenges. Audio support for both shows was provided by local wireless experts TC Furlong Incorporated, based in Lake Forest, Illinois.
At the Chicago Shakespeare Theater’s production of Sondheim Follies at Navy Pier,
20 channels of UHF-R wireless system were used, with a mix of standard and micro-bodypack transmitters. “One challenge was coordinating with existing wireless mic and intercom systems at the venue,” said Jeff Cech, General Manager at TC Furlong. Cech used Shure Wireless Workbench® software to help make this task simpler. After the frequencies of the existing systems were entered, Wireless Workbench calculated compatible frequencies for the UHF-R systems quickly.
The Lyric Opera of Chicago’s production of Showboat at the Civic Opera House presented a different challenge: finding enough clear frequencies in the congested RF environment of downtown Chicago. “Available spectrum at the venue was scattered throughout the TV broadcast band, so we used UHF-R systems in three different frequency ranges,” said Cech.
A total of 18 channels of UHF-R wireless systems were fed by a single pair of directional antennas connected to two UA845 wideband antenna distribution units, which fed RF signal to all of the receivers.
These two productions are evidence that a versatile wireless system in the hands of experienced technicians can adapt to almost any type of show or venue.