The annual Summer In The City festival in Bendorf, Germany is currently running this year under social distancing guidelines, with sound reinforcement for the main stage handled by a Martin Audio WPC system provided by rental company Event & Veranstaltungstechnik Enchelmaier (EVE).
The event is restricted to 300 seated and socially distanced seated guests, part of a maximum capacity of 350 (including artists, technical crews and staff). “We actually stopped promoting this festival in 2018 due to work pressure, but Covid-19 has brought us all back together with the goal of promoting this extra-long festival to show that culture and music is still possible in these times,” explains EVE owner Michael Enchelmaier, who’s also the president of Working Group Bendorf Rockfestival, which stages the event.
As to how they gained permission, he adds. “We received a detailed hygiene concept from the government, and the local regulatory office gave permission to go ahead providing we managed to implement it.” The festival is slated to run through the end of August this year.
The festival, held in the Kirchplatz, a square in the center of town, has two churches as a backdrop, fronted by a 32- x 16-foot plateau that was constructed on Enchelmaier’s advice in 2007, so that a stage can easily be erected on top of it. At the same time a multicore system was installed underground, providing analog and digital (BNC and Cat-5e) feeds.
EVE is fielding eight-element WPC hangs per side at the stage, with a broadside cardioid array of 10 WS218X subwoofers and a pair of W8LM cabinets for front. The mains are being driven in 2-box resolution using four Martin Audio iK42 amplifiers, and a further pair for the subs and front fills. The quantity of subs will reduce (or vanish entirely) for the acoustic and theatre shows.
EVE system tech Tim Gruber programmed and optimized the system, using the “Hard Avoid” function to help cut off the sound output at the next building that’s situated 88 feet away, while the broadside cardioid set-up helps reduce SPL emission at the rear.
Enchelmaier reports that sonic quality has met expectations: “Everybody, including the audience, thoroughly enjoyed it. The sound pressure at any volume level was excellent, with smooth hi-fidelity highs.
None of which comes as any surprise to the EVE proprietor. “This is one of the best systems I’ve ever used, and it is requested by a lot of my customers. Although it’s still quite new, it’s already starting to get listed on artist technical riders.”