NMK, GCC | Clear Com Keeps Operations Connected At Maraya Concert Hall

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Clear-Com keeps operations connected at Maraya Concert Hall

on April 28, 2023 | Marketing Team

SAUDI ARABIA: When the Maraya Concert Hall opened in 2020, it set a new standard for what could be achieved under unexpected circumstances. While most venues of this kind spend countless hours striving to find a suitable location with good access that will assist in attracting guests through its doors, Maraya has bucked the trend completely by setting its roots down in the middle of the Saudi desert of Al-Ula.

At one point, simple two-way Motorola radios were the communication solution for staging events, but management knew they needed something better. They turned to Dubai-based Spectrum Entertainment Services LLC seeking a new intercom solution to better cater to inter-team communication. Having assessed the venue’s needs, which mirrored workflows used by the likes of Dubai Opera and the Oman Royal Opera, Spectrum suggested the same solution used by those entities: a FreeSpeak II digital wireless intercom from Clear-Com. In less than an hour – during their on-site client demo – they had a full wireless FreeSpeak II system providing fast, seamless, and crystal-clear communication.

Claiming the accolade of the largest mirrored building in the world, the venue saw hundreds of people working around the clock to erect its 100m x 100m x 26m cuboid steel frame and clad it with the 9,740m2 of mirrors that cover its exterior. The idea is that by being fully mirrored, the building reflects light back in all directions, making it an extension of the surrounding environment, ensuring that the natural setting of what is a UNESCO World Heritage Site won’t be overshadowed by the construction.

Inside, the main auditorium houses 500 seats, along with five boxes with space for up to 60 more guests. Behind the stage, an 800m2 retractable window can be opened to reveal craggy rock formations, which are illuminated at night and produce colourful reflections. Other facilities include a roof terrace, a conference centre, exhibition space (including an “infinity room” installation by Yayoi Kusama) and a restaurant. Overall, the venue is a mini exhibition complex in and of itself. During its inaugural season, the 500-seat space hosted leading international artists, including Egyptian musician Omar Khairat and Italian opera singer Andrea Bocelli.

Distributed and supplied by NMK Electronics, the Clear-Com system comprises of two FSII-Base-II base units and 35 full-duplex FSII- BP19-X4-EU 1.9GHz beltpacks. These can be paired with one of the 35 supplied CC-300-X4 single-ear headsets. Not only do these provide full-duplex, wireless convenience, but also increased security and privacy.

To extend coverage throughout the large space, 10 FSII-TCVR-19-EU active transceiver antenna work with three FSII-SPL antenna splitters. A separate Encore MS-702 two-channel main station was provided for few locations, together with five Encore RS-702 two-channel dual monaural beltpacks and a further five CC-300-X4 single ear headsets. Seven AC60 battery chargers were also provided for the beltpacks. Best of all, the system can be scaled in the future as needs grow, with the addition of more bases, transceivers, and beltpacks to accommodate even the largest, most elaborate events.

“Spectrum approached us in search of a new solution to support the Maraya operations team during events,” commented NMK’s Clear-Com brand manager. “The FreeSpeak II system was perfect for their needs, operating on the license-free 1.9GHz band and easily able to provide full coverage where needed. Crucially, the system is rock-solid. As always, Clear-Com technologies gave confidence and peace of mind knowing there would be no communication issues on-site. Furthermore, these systems seamlessly integrate with the digital wireless equipment of other suppliers and their transmission functionality ensures freedom from interference.”

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