Dubbed "a musical theatre floating on air," Tokyu Theatre Orb is nestled inside a stunning glass atrium that sits wedged between the 11th and 16th floors of a new multi-use tower in Tokyo. It is the largest venue of its type in Japan, with a maximum seating capacity of 1,972, and it also boasts a reinforcement system based on Meyer Sound M'elodie line array loudspeakers.
The system was designed to allow maximum flexibility. Array components can be configured as a complete system for local productions or special events, or they can be used to augment systems carried by touring productions. The LCR system offers a fixed center cluster comprising 10 flown M'elodie loudspeakers under a 600-HP subwoofer; the base L and R arrays (flown or ground-stacked) are six-each M'elodie loudspeakers plus a 600-HP subwoofer, with rigging to accommodate additional M'elodie loudspeakers available for rental. The in-house inventory also includes eight UPA-1P and four UPJunior VariO loudspeakers, which can be utilized as needed for monitors, effects, and fills. A Galileo loudspeaker management system provides system drive and processing, while the RMS remote monitoring system allows the audio team to maintain system performance in real time.
The decision to invest in a M'elodie system followed a special demonstration arranged by the project's principal sound system designer, Tetushi Hirai of Yamaha Sound Systems, Inc., for Mansanori Ijuin of Tokyu Bunkamura, Inc., the venue management group responsible for operation of the theatre. The final decision was further supported by favorable past experiences with Meyer Sound systems at two other theatres also managed by Tokyu Bunkamura, Theatre Cocoon and Orchard Hall.
Meyer Sound's Japanese distributor, ATL, Inc., assisted Hirai in the specifics of array configuration using the MAPP Online Pro acoustical prediction program. Yamaha Sound Systems, Inc. was responsible for system integration and installation.
"From many successful experiences with other Meyer Sound systems, including M'elodie, we can expect excellent performance from the new system at Theatre Orb," comments Yashuhito Terada, the venue's audio director.
The in-house system was used for an opening event at the theatre this summer. The first full production in Theatre Orb was the Broadway classic, West Side Story. The next major touring production on the schedule is a trans-Pacific detour for the national tour of Million Dollar Quartet, an energetic fifties rock'n'roll extravaganza which has packed houses across North America using its own Meyer Sound system.
Theatre Orb is—literally—the centerpiece of Shibuya Hikarie, a high-rise retail, entertainment and commercial project developed by the Tokyu Corporation. It is located in the Shibuya municipality of Tokyo, an area known as a thriving center for fashion, entertainment, and nightlife.