Meet Lucy Williams: Sound Number 2 on the London Production of Phantom of the Opera.
In an interview with the official Phantom website, Lucy explains the role of a Sound Engineer or deputy:
“My typical day will consist of coming in and checking which actors are playing certain characters that day, checking the sound system which involves playing music through every speaker and making sure they’re all working. I then do a microphone check to make sure they are all working for the actors and then fitting the microphones to each actor. Once this is all done, I come out here and mix the sound for the duration of the show.”
One of the most important things for any crew member on a big show to do is to learn the show inside out. Learning the script is particularly important for the sound team. How did Lucy go about doing this?
“It becomes easier with experience but I sat with a script for maybe a week and just watched Laurie (Sound Number 1) mix it and looked at his techniques. Next I learnt the show line for line, so when it actually came to sitting in front of the sound desk I knew who was saying what and when and once the show was live I could then work out what sound level to put the actors at, what dynamics and what the orchestra are doing. It just all comes in time and eventually you just lose the script and it all flows beautifully – well, in theory anyway!
Showbusinessinsights imagines it would take longer than week to learn the placing of all the dials and buttons on that sound desk!
Photo credits – Original interview / Phantom