The Auditorium Opens With Peavey Versarray

The Auditorium Opens With Peavey Versarray

JACKSON, Miss. — The Auditorium is a new performance hall and restaurant located in the historic Fondren neighborhood of Jackson, Miss., an area that is experiencing a new-urbanism rebirth with shops, entertainment, cafés and living spaces.

Situated in the actual auditorium of the former Duling School—original construction circa 1927—The Auditorium is the centerpiece of Fondren's renaissance, a crossroads where the South's best food, music and culture intersect. Following a two-year renovation process, The Auditorium opened in May with an intelligent pro-audio system from Peavey that transforms this casual-dining commons into a world-class live performance hall.

The Peavey Stage is the focal point of the 3,200-square-foot venue, showcasing a Peavey Versarray line-array sound system comprised of eight VR112 line-array enclosures and four VR218 subwoofers powered by Peavey CS amplifiers. A pair of CS 4080HZ amps drives the four subs using one channel per unit, while seven CS 4000 amps power the 12' midrange loudspeakers and three CS 3000 amps power the ribbon drivers. An additional four VR112 enclosures and two specially designed 2x12 subwoofers are flown halfway back on either side.

'The Auditorium is a restaurant first and a live-music venue second, so we had to compromise the location of the four fill VR112 enclosures to fit the aesthetics,' said Kent Morris of Cornerstone Media in Atlanta, who specified and completed the audio installation. 'That put our Versarray loudspeakers right against a side wall.

'Luckily, the Versarray doesn't radiate sound beyond the end of its horizontal coverage, so we were able to align the enclosures in a way that cuts off the sound right at the wall. If you put your head on the wall, you can't hear it—but a few inches away, it's crystal clear. There is no reflection at all.'

Morris specified a pair of Crest Audio HPW 28 mixing consoles to manage the audio at the FOH and monitor positions.

'Crest Audio included a fader-flip function on its HPW Series consoles that makes it very easy to run monitors,' Morris said. 'We have ten auxes available, so we can drive any monitor scenario. We have it set up so that on a small show they can run monitors from FOH—the last seven channels on the HPW at the monitor position are set up to receive signal from FOH and distribute to the QW stage monitors.'

The Peavey Stage itself is also wired with an assortment of Peavey pro audio products. Eleven Peavey QW ML and MR floor monitors provide monitoring for the performers, powered by two CS 2000 amps for the 15' woofers and two CS 800x4 amps for the drivers. Four ID-1G direct boxes are available to pass signal from the stage to the HPW at front of house.

Two Peavey Architectural Acoustics Digitool 8x8 programmable digital processors and a Peavey VSX 48 make it easy to store the audio presets that create The Auditorium's signature ambience and convert the building from a restaurant to a performance hall.

Morris created presets for multiple audio zones that can send program audio to a set of four Architectural Acoustics ISM 5T outdoor loudspeakers, or to the mains through a special preset for background music that dampens the midrange frequencies so the music doesn't interfere with dinner conversations. During live-music performances on the Peavey Stage, one Digitool configures the mains and the second runs the monitors. A third processor, the VSX 48 loudspeaker management system, handles routing to the four delay speakers as well as a special audio feed preconfigured for podcasting on the venue's web site.

Adjacent from the bar in the rear of the room, an auxiliary stage is used for smaller, more intimate performances—typically one or two musicians with guitars and microphones. Morris flew two Peavey PR 10D loudspeakers above the stage, which are fed signal from a Peavey XR 8600 powered mixer. At the customer's request, his team wired a feed from this mixer's record output to the VSX 48 that allows them to podcast from this stage, as well.

An extensive processing suite at FOH includes four Peavey Feedback Ferret that use automatic, very narrow digital notch filters to eliminate feedback, as well as two Peavey Dual DeltaFex multi-effects processors, ten Peavey QF131 graphic EQs, two CEL2a compressor/expander/limiter units and one PV 23XO crossover.