New York, NY (March 15, 2023)—This Racket club isn’t about tennis. Racket NYC, which opened in early January is the latest addition to the The Bowery Presents’ string of venues around New York City. The 650-capacity venue is housed in the Chelsea space once occupied by Highline Ballroom, with an audio system comprised of new and repurposed L-Acoustics gear nabbed from other Bowery Presents venues—New York’s Webster Hall, Brooklyn Steel and Terminal 5, and Boston’s Roadrunner.
“The economics of small clubs can be pretty uncertain,” says Scott Raved, Director of Operations at The Bowery Presents. “It’s important for us to grow bands, and we value the smaller venues and their natural intimacy as necessary to accomplish that. We want to give every artist and every venue the best sound possible, so we’ve chosen L-Acoustics for our clubs. Pulling some L-Acoustics elements from various venues allowed us to create a cost-effective sound system for Racket NYC that very much continues The Bowery Presents’ tradition of presenting great sound in every space.”
The Bowery Presents Assistant Sound Designer Alex Kehr worked with the company’s Head Sound Engineer, Lorne Grabe, L-Acoustics’ East Coast Application Engineer, Chris “Sully” Sullivan, and Mark Friedman, Managing Partner of See Factor, The Bowery Presents’ longtime integration partner.
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Installed in December, Racket’s main PA comprises four A15i flown per side, complemented by four legacy 12XT, two 8XT, and two ARCS WiFo hung as various fills and balcony delays, plus three compact 5XT providing fill at house-right. Four SB28 ground subs are spread out under the lip of the stage, while eight 115XT HiQ wedges on the deck, driven by five LA4X amplified controllers, provide monitoring. A combination of one LA12X, one LA2Xi, and four LA4X drive the house system, which is processed via a P1 Milan AVB audio processor sourced through See Factor.
Having a variety of gear at their disposal made finding solutions on the fly possible during the installation. “For instance, I especially love the three five-inch [5XT] boxes we installed to cover a blind spot we discovered at the house-right platform,” Raved says.
Outfitting Racket NYC’s sound was far from typical, but it was indicative of the resourceful company’s ethos. “As usual, we did it our way,” Raved laughs. “It’s difficult to budget for rooms this small in this environment and in this city, but we weren’t going to compromise on sound quality in any of our venues, including Racket, which sounds every bit as good as any of them.”