Ever After Music Festival spends $30K on new tech to thwart noise complaints

New speaker technology will be key to turning down the volume at the Ever After Music Festival in June, according to organizers.

Specialized line array costs between $30,000 and $50,000

Ticky Ty and Miz Megs perform at Ever After Music Fest, 2017. (NDK Images/Facebook)

New speaker technology will be key to turning down the volume at the Ever After Music Festival in June, according to its organizers. 

The electronic dance music festival is in its third year at Bingeman's. Last year, the City of Kitchener bylaw department received more than 100 noise complaints and ordered organizers not to exceed 55db in the surrounding neighbourhood. 


Gabriel Mattacchione, organizer of the Ever After music festival and president of Beyond Oz Productions, said they're bringing in a new speaker system, also known as a line array, that can be adjusted in real time from front of house by remote control. 

 The Trinity line array is a PK Sound product, supplied by Sound Box, which is based in Hamilton.

"Think about a butterfly's wings, how they open and close. The same thing is how the trinity system works. You can narrow and widen that throw of sound to whatever is best suited for the venue," said Mattacchione. 

We're willing to invest and do it the proper way- Gabriel Mattacchione, Ever After music festival

Technicians visit the venue in advance of the event and will do sound checks to see how the sound responds in that location. Adjustments are made accordingly.

During the festival, PK Sound and Sound Box will have technicians on site, who will work with the City of Kitchener to tweak the sound if and when complaints come in.
"Bylaw [officers] can go direct to them, say, 'This is what's happening. How can we fix it?' PK will pull up a map, see where the complaint is coming from, adjust on site, and then bylaw can go do another reading," said Mattacchione.
The Ever After Music Festival drew approximately 20,000 people to Bingeman's in 2017. According to economic impact analysis done by Ever After, the economic impact was over $15 million. (EverAfterMusicFest/Facebook)

Success at Ottawa's EDM festival in 2017

The same speaker system was used  last year in Ottawa, at the EDM festival Escapade. 

"They were in need of a location last minute," explained Benoit Osborne, portfolio manager for Landsdowne Park with the City of Ottawa, to CBC K-W.

"We didn't want that event here [at Landsdowne Park] and they promised that they would bring technology, and they would show us that it could be doable." 

"It was a success, and we told them to always use the same type of equipment," said Osborne.

The technology is double the rental cost of a typical line array, said Mattacchione, in the range of $30,000 to $50,000. 

The Trinity speakers will be used on the main stage at Ever After. If available from the supplier, the smaller drum and bass stage will also be equipped.

The City of Kitchener has said if the festival can't deal with the sound bleed, it will be fined $10,000. Mattacchione said the extra expense for the speakers is worth it.

"If providing tech like this can ease the region in the noise complaints and still supply that live entertainment sector ... then we're willing to invest and do it the proper way," said Mattacchione on The Morning Edition Monday.


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