Quantum 225 for AfriForum Teater - DiGiCo
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04April 2024

Quantum 225 for AfriForum Teater

The AfriForum Teater is a 370-seater theatre that opened its door in March 2021 in what was formerly the Brooklyn Theatre in Menlyn Park, Pretoria. This establishment recently made a significant addition to its technical setup by acquiring a DiGiCo Quantum 225 from DWR Distribution.

  • Quantum 225 for AfriForum Teater
  • Quantum 225 for AfriForum Teater
  • Quantum 225 for AfriForum Teater
  • Quantum 225 for AfriForum Teater
  • Quantum 225 for AfriForum Teater
  • Quantum 225 for AfriForum Teater
  • Quantum 225 for AfriForum Teater

Heading the technical operations at the theatre is Pieter-Louis van Twisk, a seasoned professional in the live events industry and the recipient of the prestigious 2023 Naledi Theatre award for best sound design. Pieter-Louis’ immersion in the world of theatre was almost predestined given his upbringing –  his mother was a producer for theatrical musicals and memories of being at the sound console, with well-known industry names like Chris Serfontein, are ingrained in his childhood.

Having previously worked as an audio engineer at the Performer Theatre, Pieter-Louis’ familiarity with the space caught AfriForum’s attention, leading to his employment at the new venue. AfriForum Teater was established during the COVID-19 pandemic with the hope of providing a platform for performers and something special for the community during this challenging time.

Pieter-Louis recalls that at the outset, their stage setup consisted of basic lighting fixtures passed down from the Brooklyn Theatre—namely, 22 parcans and two dimmers. However, the aspiration was to transform the venue into a top-tier facility equipped with modern gear. Soon enough, Pieter-Louis was tasked with evaluating the acoustics and upgrading the PA system, a responsibility he approached with meticulous care.

It took nearly a year to thoroughly explore all the available options and raise the necessary funds! He approached various suppliers, including Darren Durbach from DWR Distribution, who connected him with Kyle Robson from the same company, and boy did he have many questions. “Kyle had all the answers,” he adds, saying that the DiGiCo Quantum 225 ticked all the boxes. “It’s exactly what I wanted and I’m very happy with the decision. The big win is having the support from DWR knowing I can phone someone at 2 am, who will assist me with any issue I may have and getting the right answer! The console has different workflow to what I’m used to, but it brings excitement to a new way of thinking when tackling a mix. It sounds great and is packed with features that I just haven’t had access to in the past. Having the DANTE backbone with the three DiGiCo 168D DANTE stage racks really makes the network flexible and easy to use.”

AfriForum’s commitment to Afrikaans culture is evident, even in the signage at their front desk, which translates, “We do everything in Afrikaans, even kissing.” There’s an emphasis on culture and language and the theatre prioritizes welcoming schools and local community groups to utilize their space, offering them a chance to learn and work on a professional stage, instead of the school hall or marquee.

“A great part of the year goes into musicals with four to six large productions per year,” he says. In between there are smaller music shows and bands. With the added benefit of the DiGiCo Quantum 225, the theatre is available as a fully equipped package. Pieter-Louis is always available to lend a guiding hand and particularly enjoys sharing his knowledge with schoolgoers and anyone eager to learn. “The people are loving it, including having the technical available to them and doing everything the way it is supposed to be done. Everybody wins and that’s fantastic.”

Kyle Robson expresses, “I’m impressed with how Pieter-Louis has jumped on the platform and taken the time to understand the workflow with minimal questions,” he says with a smile. “It makes me feel quite reassured. I believe we set up the console quite effectively from the start. Pieter-Louis asked all the right questions which helped both of us to design a great foundation on the console that everyone would be happy with.”

The Quantum 225 is a marvel of modern sound technology. It is not just an upgrade to the current audio equipment, it is a step towards future-proofing the theatre’s technical capabilities. Featuring a maximum of 72 input channels with 36 buses and a 12 x 12 matrix, all equipped with full channel processing capabilities, the Quantum 225 expands the accessibility of Quantum technology to a broader user base. Standard features include Mustard Processing channel strips, Spice Rack plugin-style native FPGA processing options, Nodal Processing, and True Solo functionality.

Photo caption: DWR’s Kyle Robson with Pieter-Louis van Twisk who heads the technical operations at AfriForum Teater.

It's exactly what I wanted and I’m very happy with the decision

Pieter-Louis van Twisk, Technical Operations at AfriForum Teater

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