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Outdoor AV: Installation at Central Park West, Part 2

Apr 7, 2011 9:58 AM, with Bennett Liles

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Right especially outside where the side just keeps right on going where ever it’s aimed with no acoustic enclosure. When you get the politicians and the people who sign the check out there they may not know why they like the sound but they’ll certainly know if they like it and it sounds like you were successful at impressing them. It’s a different situation entirely though when you have to impress the visiting performers since for the most part they’ll be a little more expert or discerning at least at what they want. So how did you set up the stage monitoring?
The stage itself, the basic system has a couple of monitor mixes on stage but when we do a performance venue we’ll come in with a digital snake. We do have a 16-channel snake box on stage and we do have microphone inputs in the front of the stage, stage left-stage right, some hanging microphones so it is set up pretty much like a standard small production venue. The artist that we did, we did South Side Johnny Asbury Jukes which is a…they’re a New Jersey legend. They’re obviously a band that requires all the professional monitoring that any other band would need but in that case we called upon Boulevard Pro rental division—brought in a PM5D, brought in the new SB snake boxes with an esM7 out front and we did the splits, brought in whatever monitor dejour, backline dejour whatever the artist would want. So what we did is made it rental friendly and actually it works very well with us because we’re a rental and installation company. So…but even if it’s not us it’s still a simple interface. [Timestamp: 8:44]

Right and you mentioned in Part 1 that they didn’t have a lot of in house sound experts available so who normally works this system? What size crew do they have? Does it vary with each show?
Depending on what they’re going to do, if they’re doing a simple high school commencement and again last year they did a few events because the park was wide open. We are expecting this year to do 12 full-blown concert events and then they’ll do their…the high school commencements, the local orchestras, that kind of stuff, and what we’ll do is they have an onsite technician that understands the system and if we have to provide a tech per day we will do that but I suspect by the end of the season this year that their onsite guy will be strong enough to do 60 percent of what has to be done there and 40 percent of it’s going to be full production gigs and you can’t expect a guy to be responsible for that kind of stuff. [Timestamp: 9:4]

So whatever training needs to be done, I guess Boulevard Pro is taking care of that.

Yeah so what do you use for a recording system? I’m sure some of these acts want to have their shows recorded.
Well the LS9 has a built in recording device so you can just put in a stick and record it. So that’s what we have for there, we have CD and iPod playback, again and they’re counting this as a Central Park West and the reason that they’re calling this that is that the Overpeck Park really sits about probably seven or eight miles away from midtown Manhattan and this was just a part of another park across the Overpeck Creek there’s an equestrian center. There is an established park with baseball fields and football fields and soccer fields. So what they’re doing is they’re actually connecting all of these parks together. It’s a pretty impressive thing. I mean really is impressive. [Timestamp: 10:36]

You do a lot of things there from high school graduations right on up to major performers. Were you there for the first event where the system where was used and how did that go?
Well I was there for the first event. We did 4th of July playing the Star Spangled Banner to 15,000 people as loud as we could possible do it and then we set up across, I mean this thing is 150 acres or 148 acres, so on the soccer fields probably half a mile away we set up a portable sound system and we also just simulcast what was happening in the amphitheater to the whole entire park. I don’t know how many people were in the park that day. I would think that there was 25…30,000 people because the parking lots were full—they busing people in. So it was really, really impressive in a very open brand new, beautiful space so when the Star Spangled Banner is going and the rockets’ red glare above you, it’s kind of cool. [Timestamp: 11:35]

Yeah that sounds like the biggest event for this system so far and you were cranking this stuff wide open for that turning it up to 11.
Oh yeah.

All right I’m glad to have had you here with us James, James Cioffi from Boulevard Pro and the amphitheater sound system in Central Park West with all the tricks of outdoor sound with a vastly different size of audience for various events. Thanks for being here with us to give us the low down on how you set all this up.

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