Katherine Jenkins, the young Welsh soprano, and the fastest selling female opera start since Maria Callas, is currently touring the UK exclusively using the Audio-Technica AEW-T5400 condenser wireless microphone.
Katherine Jenkins chooses AEW-T5400
The tour, with the National Symphony Orchestra, sees the 23 year old former singing teacher, who signed the largest recording deal in classical history, performing a repertoire of arias and popular classics in large theatres and symphony halls across the country until the end of December.
Prior to this tour, Katherine had performed with a number of radio microphones before her sound engineer, Dick Rabel of TourTech, introduced her to the Audio-Technica. Her satisfaction with the sound quality of the wireless version of AE5400 cardioid condenser vocal microphone is such, that she has not only adopted it as her live microphone of first choice, but has also become an Audio-Technica endorsee.
“I used the ATW-7373 wireless condenser with the Lighthouse Family several years ago, and recall being very impressed with the warmth of the low end and the lack of high frequency lobeing,” says Dick. “So when we were trying out various radio mics with Katherine, I looked one out and used it on a concert in Croydon. I was very impressed with the way it performed with Katherine’s voice. The tone was very sweet and required little EQ.” Audio-Technica subsequently supplied the latest AEW-T5400 handheld transmitter from its 5000 Series. Like the ATW-7373 before it, the AEW-T5400 is built around a capsule from the company’s large diaphragm studio microphone range, in this case the top of the range AT-4050.
“The AEW-T5400 capsule is absolutely stunning with the same sweet, clear tonal balance, only better,” Dick continues. “The warmth of a microphone in the low frequencies is particularly important with a female voice, because there is a lot less of it; a lot of mics lose all of the LF when you EQ a small part of it. The AEW-T5400 also has an extremely good signal-to-noise ratio, and it doesn’t seem to compress the signal as much as other radio microphones. I’ve compared it with the wired version and there is remarkably little difference.”
As Dick remarks, it is rare that a classical artist like Katherine develops an allegiance to a particular type of microphone, “She is getting all these reports as to how good it is sounding, that she is now insisting on ‘her microphone’. I am spec’ing them for all her appearances, like the Parkinson television special she has just recorded.”
Support artist on the tour is Icelandic tenor, Garðar Thor Cortes. He has also been performing with an AEW-T5400. “It is performing wonderfully for him as well, which emphasises the versatility of the mic. People forget that these singers are exceptionally powerful, and a lot of otherwise very good microphones just don’t stand up.”
An avid “fan” of Audio-Technica, Dick is also mic’ing the National Symphony Orchestra with a range of Audio-Technica condensers. He has purchased additional ATM350 violin mount mics, AT4041 cardioid and AT4053 hyper-cardioid models, to supplement TourTech’s existing inventory of AT4033s, AT4047s, AT4050s, and AT4055s being used on the orchestra for the tour.
Katherine Jenkins’ current album, Serenade, went straight to the top of the classical chart and number five in the pop chart on release last month. Her three previous albums all remain in the classical chart, with her debut, Première, setting a record for the longest stay the chart.