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View of the “Congo Square Stage� at the New Orleans Jazz & Heritage Festival

Valencia, Spain – July 2011… Founded by a group of jazz legends—including Mahalia Jackson and Duke Ellington—in 1970, the New Orleans Jazz and Heritage Festival has grown and evolved over the years to become a tribute to different musical genres, with a special emphasis on jazz. The varied musical and cultural showcase is held over two consecutive weekends on 12 different stages set up at the New Orleans racetrack grounds.

Widely known as simply the “Jazz Fest�, the festival embodies the culmination of years of effort on the part of local leaders, whose aim was to create an event that would properly highlight the heritage of New Orleans as the birthplace of jazz. This year´s line-up, a perfect reflection of the event’s cultural significance and popular appeal, included world renowned artists like Tom Jones, Bon Jovi, John Legend, Maceo Parker, Cyndi Lauper, Kenny G. and Alejandro Sanz, among many others.

One of the main stages, called the “Congo Square Stage,� was the site of the Alejandro Sanz performance, as well as those of other prestigious artists. Chicago-based company Sound of Authority, responsible for providing the personnel and carrying out the sound installation for this stage, chose D.A.S. Aero Series 2 Line Array systems to play the starring role. Technicians opted to install a powerful main system of 20 D.A.S. Aero 50 large-format line array modules to match the considerable size of the esplanade.

Two linear formations of 10 Aero 50 units each were set up on opposite sides of the stage, and 12 high-performance D.A.S. LX-218 passive subwoofers were piled in front of the stage in a cardioid configuration for low frequency support. The resulting system response was extraordinary, reaching the perfect balance between the mid-high range systems and the bass units. The system was processed by a D.A.S. DSP-4080 digital signal processor and amplified by Powersoft K6.

Engineer Fernando Díaz manned the mixing station, and at the end of the concert he commented on the system: “We are already familiar with D.A.S. Aero systems and had used them recently in Spain, so they were extremely easy to operate. Their response is amazing and I felt very comfortable with them�.

Carlos Henao, from D.A.S. Audio of America, Inc. travelled from Miami specifically for the event, and supervised the equipment installation, assembly and configuration in close collaboration with the Sound of Authority technical team. This team of professionals was able to affirm, yet again, the ease of assembly, mounting and configuration of the D.A.S. Aero Series 2 line array systems. The systems have a proven track record as a highly efficient tool for providing top sound for large-scale events, and their performance at the Alejandro Sanz concert at the New Orleans Jazz and Heritage Festival was no exception.