SAN ANTONIO, TEXAS – NOVEMBER 2017: The State Mariachi Festival is an opportunity for high school mariachis from around the Lone Star State to meet up, exchange ideas, and test their skills against the judgment of the world-class mariachi players who serve as judges. Those judges also give each group a clinic to bring their weakest skills in line with their strongest skills. Of course, sound quality at the State Mariachi Festival is important, not just to the mariachi members who play their hearts out, but also to the hundreds of spectators who enjoy the event. Thus, the organization that runs the event – the University Interscholastic League (UIL) – hired the live sound experts at Hermes Music of Pharr, Texas, to make the event spectacular. They brought Danley Sound Labs loudspeakers, subwoofers, and amplification/DSP to deliver on that request.
“The State Mariachi Festival is still in the pilot phase of what UIL hopes to grow into a bigger event, with officially-sanctioned awards to the winning schools,” explained Ed Zamorano, director of educational/governmental sales at Hermes Music. “We’ve worked with the UIL on other projects in the past, and they have always been more than happy with the quality of our service. In a nutshell, we make events look and sound great, with zero hassle for our clients. At the State Mariachi Festival, we provided sound for seventy mariachi groups in two days of competition at Southwest High School in San Antonio. All told, there were over 1,500 people in attendance over the duration.”
Hermes Music brought a killer Danley system to the event, which provided clear, musical output for both the traditional and the “experimental” performances. A simple, stereo hang of Danley SM-80 full-range loudspeakers and Danley TH-118 subwoofers provided perfect coverage of the spectator and judge’s areas. A single four-channel, 20,000-Watt Danley DNA 20k4 Pro amplifier powered the system. Zamorano used the amp’s onboard DSP and custom Danley presets to provide the final tweaks. A Midas M32 console completed the system.
“Everyone, and perhaps most importantly, the organizer of the event for UIL, was thrilled with the way the festival sounded,” Zamorano said. “I’ll take some credit, but I also think the Danley gear served as the excellent starting point. Danley’s point-source sound quality is honest and musical. Mariachi has naturally-great sounding instrumentation, so mixing on the Danleys was a lot like mixing on big studio monitors. I had a lot of fun, and the students appreciated the professionalism of the event!”
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