Sounding out Wembley: Summit Steel helps check out the stadium23 April 2007
Two SmarTmast 4s were used to suspend speaker arrays that mimicked the height and positioning of PA wing hangs on a typical concert stage set up in the end-on position. The masts were picked for their 15-metre height, quick construction and neat footprint.
The main object of the exercise was to integrate a show PA system with Wembley’s house PA to provide full audio coverage throughout the stadium. They also took the opportunity to ensure that Emergency announcements could be heard in all locations around the venue.
Summit’s Jon Bray was contacted by Brit Row’s Bryan Grant to supply the necessary support structures for the tests. Bray and a team of three riggers erected a total of five masts, which stayed up for a two day period while the tests were completed.
The two SmarTmast 4s carried the stage wing elements of a would-be show PA system, made up in this case from EV X-line elements, each weighing just under two Tonnes.
Further down the field of play, three SmarTmast 1s were used for recreating the delay positions, which, audio-wise, were made up from Outline Butterfly speakers.
The sound system was actually reproduced using only half of the stadium and required PA, the results of which were digitally mirrored to produce accurate calculations. The tests were engineered by Sherif el Bashari.
The biggest challenge according to Summit’s Jay Call was, “Taking care of the grass … We had to be exceedingly careful of the new – and hallowed – turf.” They laid trackway around the edges of the pitch during the build of the stage wing towers and generally made sure that they had minimal impact on the environment.