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Big Sound for 38,000 in the center of Big Easy

The Evangelical Lutheran Youth of America Gathering was attended by 38,000 teenagers from all over the world. Music acts included Skillet, Group 1 Crew, the Katinas, rapper Agape, and Peter Mayer from the Jimmy Buffet Band. Sunday morning featured a musical mass with Lutheran Bishop Mark Hanson including communion for 37,000.
The event utilized the largest Nexo GEO T tangent array system ever flown in North America, beating the previous record set by Gand at the Atlanta Dome for Elton John. The rig consisted of 60x GEO T plus 24x GEO S, 8x CD12s, all flown, and 24x CD18s on the ground. Amplifiers included Yamaha PC9501Ns with NX242 processors. Audio consoles included a Yamaha PM5D, MC7L, and LS9. Over one hundred channels were utilized for live performance, video playback, spoken word, DJ and theatrical production. The event used three main stages plus two outboard stages in the audience, designed by Steve Bass. Over 7000' of cable was used.
“We bought the first GEO T system in the USA for this event in 2003 and have increased our inventory every year to keep up with the growing demand,” states Gary Gand, President of Gand Concert Sound. “This is our third and biggest ELCA event. The ELCA likes what we do and the Nexo gear has worked flawlessly.”
FOH engineer Adam Rosenthal said, “no other system has the cardioid ability that Nexo provides. I can have it cranking in the house and the band can still hear each other on stage. It’s shocking how good this rig can sound in some of the largest venues in the country, which can be acoustic nightmares.”
The ELCA chose New Orleans Superdome as the site for this year’s event for a number of reasons including the seating capacity and a ceiling height tall enough to fit a 150' tall cross and 200' wide stage. During daytime rehearsals, the teens were bussed out to devastated areas to perform community service including building and painting houses, replanting the Bayou, and assembling school packages for underprivileged students. They distributed 180,000 books and raised $130,000 in coinage from their "Change for Change" project. Mayor Ray Nagin thanked the youth in person for working to rebuild over 200 public sites, claiming they ‘did 98 years of work in one week.’ President Barack Obama sent a letter that was read to the audience.
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