As it is getting towards the end of the school year and time for your dramatic society to put on a suitable farewell show, you might want to take everything to the next level this time and install a full audiovisual system. To do this effectively, you will need to consider the configuration of the room, talk with relevant experts, work out the best approach and purchase everything you need while staying within your budget. But where should you start?
Dealing with the Space
If your school hall is housed in an older building, it might not have been designed with acoustics in mind. After all, many of these halls have a hard floor that doubles as a sports facility. Often, the hall will have particularly high ceilings without any form of reflectivity. These design choices may make it more difficult for you to achieve the perfect sound, but since you're probably aiming for a vast improvement on previous events, where you may have had to rely on a single microphone and a basic speaker.
Thankfully, however, technology has advanced very rapidly in this area during recent years and there are now many different solutions available that will typically come within your budget.
To begin with, choose an array of speakers and try to place them at approximately ear level in relation to your expected audience. If your hall is particularly large, you may need a second bank of speakers midway down the room and you can connect all of the speakers to a mixing deck. To give your performance some added depth, think about hiring a bass bin as well.
Much will depend on the nature of the performance and whether it is theatrical or not, but you should consider adding a bank of lights in any case. You can probably get away with an array of par cans so long as they are correctly positioned but you should talk this through with your event A/V specialist.
If your school hall tends to be more like an echo chamber than anything else, think about placing some strategic acoustic panels along the side and rear walls. This will help to improve the overall sound significantly and will be especially effective when the room is full of an attentive audience.
When it comes to audiovisual needs there is generally no such thing as "one size fits all." Consequently, you should consider full A/V hire to have a specialist help you meet your goals.