The Centre for All Canadians

“Did You Hear, Did You Hear?” – Sound Design and Harpist Add New Sonic Depth to AnneTM

(Charlottetown, P.E.I.) – While Anne of Green Gables-The MusicalTM is enjoying the first of a three-year revival in the Homburg Theatre, many changes are happening behind the scenes. Following the addition of new leads, sets, and costumes, a sweeping new sound design has been introduced and the harp has been returned to the orchestra for the first time in years.

When asked to instill a new life into the musical’s score, Festival Music Director Bob Foster went right to the harp, bringing in Janice Lindskoog for a total of 14 orchestra members. “In many ways, the harp is the musical heart of the sound and is a most beautifully written part,” he says. “Just adding it back in has made a huge difference to the sound in the pit and on stage.”

For her part, Lindskoog is thrilled to return, having played with the Festival from 2005-11, including a tour to Toronto. “Every harpist will bring their own personality and interpretation to the score, which is charming and timeless,” she offers. “I play the imaginative orchestrations by John Fenwick, which contribute special colours and allow for musical expression in the accompaniment of the voice.”

The musical world has changed a lot since AnneTM first premiered, and so has the listener’s ear. With advanced systems in every home now, a certain quality has become normalized, and a theatre can no longer rely only on its acoustic sound. Foster and Director Adam Brazier brought in Peter McBoyle, a sound design expert of great renown to help with this industry shift.

“Alongside Kevin MacLean, Head of Audio, and the new advanced equipment at the Centre, we are on our way to bringing the sound of this musical up to date, ” says Foster. “I also give great thanks to the fine musicians in the pit who have helped breathe new life into this national treasure.”

McBoyle desired to present the score in a richer way and bring out the nuances in the strings and the woodwinds. He also wanted to clarify the actors’ mics, so that every lyric would be heard crisply. “I wanted to achieve all of this in a way that sounds natural and that doesn’t call attention to itself,” explains the designer. “Ideally the audience would never know that the sound they are hearing is coming from speakers.”

One challenge was the large number of hats worn this year. “This can make it tricky to get a good mic position and good sound from the performer,” says McBoyle. “The sound reflects off the hat and makes a great mic sound not as sharp as it could be. Theatre is always a combination of collaboration and compromise though and we found ways to work things out.”

“Sonically, the funeral procession in Act 2 is something I am most proud of,” he reflects. “The orchestration is really something special and the addition of a little bit of rain and a distant thunder makes it beautiful, sad, and thoughtful all at once.”

“Of course, adding the live harp back in to the pit was a great decision for a variety of reasons and I’ve developed a mic technique that really makes the harp sound full and dynamic and so, given that it was an important part of the reinvention of this show, I am very happy with how it sounds in the mix.”

Patrons can hear and see AnneTM in the Homburg Theatre until September 23, 2017. Special thanks are extended to the Government of Canada for their support of Confederation Centre; and The Charlottetown Festival title sponsor, CIBC and production sponsor RE/MAX Charlottetown. Appreciation is extended to media sponsors Ocean 100, Hot 105.5, CTV, and The Guardian.

-30-

Photo cutline (L-R, photo#1): Sound Designer Peter McBoyle, Head of Audio Kevin MacLean, and Festival Musical Director Bob Foster. (Photo#2): Harpist Janice Lindskoog (Marsha Gallant photos).

Media contact
Fraser McCallum, Communications Manager | Gérant des communications
Confederation Centre of the Arts | Le Centre des arts de la Confédération
902.628.6135 (office | bureau) | fmccallum@confederationcentre.com
facebook.com/charlottetownfestival | Twitter/Instagram: @confedcentre  | confederationcentre.com

Newsletter Signup


First Name:

Last Name:

Email Address:

HOURS OF OPERATION

Building Hours

Monday, Friday, Saturday, Sunday – 8:00 AM – 6:00 PM
Tuesday, Wednesday, Thursday – 8:00 AM – 8:30 PM

Art Gallery

Daily 10:00 AM – 5:00 PM

Box Office

Monday to Saturday 12:00 – 5:00 PM, Closed Sunday
Please call 1-800-565-0278 or 902-566-1267 for information.

The Story of Confederation

September
Mon-Sat: 10am-3pm


Toutes nos excuses. La version française de notre site Web est présentement en construction.

HOURS OF OPERATION

Building Hours

8am – 6pm, Monday – Sunday

Art Gallery

10 a.m. – 5 p.m. Daily

Box Office

12 – 5 p.m. Monday – Saturday
Please call 1-800-565-0278 or 902-566-1267 for information.

The Story of Confederation 

September
Mon-Sat: 10am-3pm


What are Relaxed Performances?

 

Sometimes referred to as sensory-friendly experiences, Relaxed Performances give the opportunity for those with various sensitivities towards sensory stimuli to experience and enjoy live theatre.

These performances will be designed in a way to be more comfortable for audience members who may experience anxiety or are not comfortable with some aspects of a traditional theatre setting. This can include people on the Autism Spectrum and their families; those with sensory and communicative disorders or learning disabilities; people with Tourette’s syndrome; someone who might need to move often due to chronic pain or to use the facilities; or even parents with toddlers.

 

Relaxed Performances offered during the 2021 Charlottetown Festival:
  • I agree to receive further communications from Confederation Centre of the Arts for upcoming events, promotions and market research purposes.