Live Events

A staggering d&b system supports World Youth Day 2016

Thu, 20 Oct 2016 12:16

Over 600 d&b loudspeakers, nearly 150 D80 amplifiers, and twenty nine delay towers for one stage; this was an event on an almost unprecedented scale. Blonia Park, near Poland’s ancient city of Kraków, was the venue for the thirteenth World Youth Day. Since the inaugural gathering in Rome in 1986, the Catholic Church has invited young people of all faiths and persuasions to congregate at events held globally, from Toronto to Sydney to Denver, to Manila in the Philippines. World Youth Day 2016 presented an opportunity for Pope Francis to engage with hundreds of thousands of young people who were also treated to a music festival on a massive scale: bands of all different backgrounds and genres, and a large number of soloists. All of which represented a herculean task for GMB pro sound, the audio company responsible for providing sound reinforcement across the forty eight hectare site.

With such a vast amount of d&b onsite GMB’s Remigiusz Kasztelnik called in support from d&b Application Support; Janko Ramuscak describes the collaboration: “Credit has to go to GMB for the success of this event. Remigiusz Kasztelnik, Janusz Klimowicz, Pawe? Adamowicz and Kamil Zajdel made the design and chose to go with more than 430 J-Series speakers in order to provide enough full range potential throughout the area. There was a main PA system made of two long J- Series arrays left and right, infills comprising V-Series and two pairs of outfills, realized with hangs of J-Series and V-Series respectively. The rest of the J-Series cabinets were used on twenty nine delay towers. The number and placement of the towers was specified by a consultant working for the church; each of these arrays contained between eight and sixteen boxes. There were also nearly fifty B22-SUBs placed near the stage, and over thirty J-SUBs hung on the first ring of delay towers.”

The whole system was controlled through the d&b R1 Remote control network, from a central control container located behind FoH. The audio and network distribution was realized via Optocore, with a d&b DS10 Audio network bridge in every tower, serving as a switch and multicast filter. Audio-wise, there were several consoles at FoH to submix the symphonic orchestra, choir, band, and of course the main altar. Their signals were, in turn, routed through another master console in the control container that served as the master audio hub and visualized the signals coming in via the various submixes. “Obviously, there were several redundancies built into that system,” adds Ramuscak, “to make sure any fault in one component wouldn’t compromise the whole system. But as those things go, the careful planning resulted in them not being needed during the show - everything just worked.