L-Acoustics powers “world’s largest music festival”

More than 340 L-Acoustics loudspeakers were used for this year’s Summerfest – recognised by Guinness World Records as the world’s largest music festival.

Serving up over 700 acts performing on 11 stages, this year’s gathering at Henry W. Maier Festival Park in Milwukee, Wisconsin attracted more than 840,000 visitors.

To handle audio production duties for the 2013 event, Milwaukee World Festival, the non-profit organisation that runs the event, once again turned to local provider Clearwing Productions.

According to Bryan Baumgardner, Clearwing audio operations/logistics manager, eight of Summerfest’s nine largest stages, including the 25,000-capacity Marcus Amphitheater, featured L-Acoustics gear. Five of those stages utilised K1 systems for the primary house arrays. Additionally, the system for the Johnson Controls World Sound Stage was built around the firm’s KARA line, while Uline Warehouse featured a V-DOSC set-up.

A new addition to Summerfest’s gear list this year was L-Acoustics; ARCS WIFO enclosures. At Jo Jo’s Martini Lounge, Clearwing vertically flew one ARCS FOCUS over two ARCS WIDE per side, which replaced two six-enclosure KIVA arrays used in previous years.

ARCS WIDE systems were also used on half of the stages for both front-fill and side-fill. "We previously used standard ARCS boxes, but ARCS WIDE has a larger dispersion pattern that makes it particularly ideal for side-fill," said Baumgardner. "Plus the power rating is better suited for front-fill applications."

Clearwing has been providing audio for the festival since 1995 and first began deploying V-DOSC there back in 2000, shortly after acquiring its first rig. Since then, L-Acoustics has been on the equipment spec every year.

"We’ve been using these systems at Summerfest for a long time now and they consistently prove themselves to be the right choice year after year," Baumgardner added. "It’s what the festival wants as well as what the artists want. We don’t have to convince anyone to use it."

Over Labor Day weekend this year, Clearwing will be back at the Summerfest grounds, providing concert sound systems for Harley-Davidson’s 110th anniversary, featuring performances from Toby Keith, Aerosmith, Kid Rock, ZZ Top, Dropkick Murphys, Lupe Fiasco, Common, Brantley Gilbert, Doobie Brothers, Buckcherry, Joan Jett & the Blackhearts, Gaslight Anthem and Sublime, among others.

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