OVERCOMING BUILT-IN OBSTACLES AT AN OUTDOOR AMPHIT
RMB Comes Up With Another Way To Fly Martin Audio W8LC Line Arrays
At Kingswood Amphitheatre During Alternative Christian Rock Festival––
Doswell, Virginia––King's Fest, a three-day festival of alternative Christian Rock at King's Dominion, Virginia, took place in a 7500-seat outdoor venue built in 1982 originally called The Showplace, now known as Kingswood Amphitheatre.
All of which was fine, except for the fact that, as Raleigh Music Brokerage's owner/president Cooper Cannady points out, 'we wanted to upgrade the level of speaker coverage and audio by flying Martin Audio W8LC line arrays, but the amphitheatre has no fly bays. There's a wooden roof with no load-bearing fly points in it, so that presented a problem for us.'
The need for concert-quality line arrays was implicit in the fact that some of the best known Christian acts such as best-selling Australian pop band Newsboys, popular singer and guitarist Jeremy Camp, and Grammy and Dove Award-winning soft rockers Casting Crowns were on the bill and the audio needed to be leading-edge from start to finish.
So how do you rig line arrays when you can't hang them from the roof? Cannady came up with a typically practical solution: 'Turns out we only had so much of an aperture for the stage,' he explains. 'Something like 26 feet between the load beam and the roof and we already a Tomcat lighting truss on stage. So what we did was bring in Bill-Jack scaffold towers with a 12x12x10 super truss at the top of the tower to take the load.
'Then we hung 11 W8LC's a side on the scaffold tower that was wedged into the roof with reinforcement to bear the load,' Cannady continues. 'As it turns out, 11 per side was about as many as we could hang, but the 8LC's are so powerful it actually worked out great. We also had eight W8S per side for subs.'
For Front of House, RMB used Midas Heritage 2000 analog and Yamaha M7CL digital consoles, along with Lab Gruppen and Chevin amplification, along with processing from Klark Teknik, BSS, Drawmer, T.C. Electronic and Yamaha.
The Monitor system included the Soundcraft SM20 and Yamaha M7CL consoles, Chevin Research A3000 power amps, Ashly EQ's, BSS minidrives, Drawmer gates and compressors and Yamaha SPX 990 reverbs, with Martin Audio LE700 biamped wedges were used as monitor speakers plus double W8/W8S for sidefills.
With a crew of two for FOH and four for stage monitoring, 'everything ran like clockwork' according to Cannady. 'All of the band's engineers really appreciated the coverage and audio quality provided by the Martin Audio speakers, and the client said they were able to hear the concert loud and some 400 feet back in the parking lot.'