Downtown Nashville’s Historic Woolworth Theatre Comes to Life With EAW
ADAPTive Array Module Delivers the Ultimate in Flexibility and Complete Coverage for Music City’s First-of-its-kind Theatre Experience
NASHVILLE, TN, APRIL 25, 2023 – Once a historic downtown Nashville building, the Woolworth Theatre brings a first-of-its-kind, Vegas-inspired experience to Music City. Transformed and envisioned by country music artist Chris Wicks, the theater hosts musical groups, acrobatic performances and comedy acts to entertain all of Nashville. The unenviable task of designing a new state-of-the-art sound system for the beautiful yet acoustically challenged venue was given to S&L Integrated Systems Account Executive, Nathan Tomberlin.
When Tomberlin walked into the theatre for the first time, he immediately knew designing the sound for this room was not going to be straightforward. “From a sound design perspective, the room is very challenging,” he says. “It has a very low and shallow balcony — from the stage to the back wall it’s only about 40 feet deep. Rather than a traditional theater that’s long and narrow, this is the complete opposite. We also had the presence of glass in the balcony, which we could not touch due to the building’s historical status. We knew we were going to have to throw back the audio and needed a system that could keep all our anticipated reflection issues to a minimum. I immediately knew the solution would be the Anna ADAPTive system from Eastern Acoustic Works (EAW®).”
Tomberlin and his team designed a system featuring EAW’s Anna ADAPTive Series loudspeakers. “With Anna, we could design the sound to be directed away from the balcony face,” Tomberlin explains. “We would still have audio coming towards the stage, but it provided a big enough dip or contrast to absolve the reflections that would cause a problem. In addition, since the room was being used for various other concerts and events, we needed to design a system that could not just cater to vocal performance, but also operate at up to 105 dB with a country band in the room. It’s a very good feeling when the design and the actual measurements are spot on, as was the case for this project. We needed a pro rig and the Anna’s provided that.”
The new EAW PA system installed at the theatre features six Anna boxes, with three speakers discreetly placed behind cutouts on each side of the stage. Also included in the new system were JF60Zs for front fills, four SBX218s for subs under the stage, MKD1064s for side fill, MKD1026s for the outer balcony with RSX12M floor monitors and UXA4410 DSP amplifiers driving the fronts and the out fills. The audio is run over Dante through a DiGiCo SD12 digital console.
Although this project marked the first time using EAW’s ADAPTive PA, Tomberlin was familiar with the brand. “I had heard EAW’s ADAPTive products before and I knew that no one manages audio coverage like they do. EAW is really the only one that does it on a large scale and does it well. What made it even easier is that John Mills, whom I had worked with in the past, was now working at EAW. Also, HWPco, (a trusted AV manufacturer’s sales representative that I have worked with), had picked up EAW as an AV systems partner in the area. All the pieces fell into place perfectly and the decision to go with EAW was a no brainer.”