The Pony Express Pavilion will never be the same after Friday night's concert by Chris LeDoux. The roof may still be there, but the audience will have heard music as never before -- at least never before in there.
Guests will be able to hear LeDoux's every note in the open-sided structure. Carson residents who remember past concerts in the pavilion may find that hard to believe. But promoter John Procaccini of the Upstage Center Theatre vows that every guest of the 2,000 expected will have a "niche" engineered by a 21st-century sound system hitting on every section of the structure.
"We'll have speakers throughout the pavilion, focusing on audience sections. So instead of blasting sound out of up-front speakers, we'll be tailoring the sound to each part of the audience," he said.
Sound baffles have been hung horizontally below the pavilion ceiling. "3,600 square feet of plastic. They will block the music from the metal roof to help keep it from bouncing back into the audience," said Procaccini.
The concrete roof pillars will also be wrapped in sound-absorbing plastic in five colors.
On Tuesday, a crew was hanging the plastic sheets by working from a portable crane. The men were also hanging supports for the sound system itself. Procaccini was busily supervising the work but took time out to explain some of the features the audience will find Friday night.
"We will bring in a special state-of-the-art stage to go in front of the fixed concrete one," he said. The Row A seating will start back from that stage."
Comfortable seats are being imported for the bulk of the audience.
In the back, or east, section of the pavilion will be a beer hall, surrounded on each side by bleachers. On the sides will be two bars and concession stands.
Along the north side of the pavilion, VIP chalets for sponsors will be erected and 16 large trees will create a natural ambiance in the pavilion, courtesy of Greenhouse Garden Center.
LeDoux's show is the first of a series of concerts at the pavilion and Carson Community Center this summer.
"We've chosen artists who are famous for creating exciting, quality musical experiences. From country music, to classic '70s hits, to contemporary jazz, we'll have great concerts that appeal to everyone. We want our audiences to enjoy festive summer evenings of music, dancing and fine food," said Procaccini.
"It's truly a community effort, " said Joe McCarthy, Carson City economic
The program begins at 4 p.m. Friday with giveaways and food and craft concessions outside the pavilion.
Appearing with LeDoux will be Rick Hays and American Steel and The Buckin' Band.
Ticket are $30, $25, $18. As of Tuesday afternoon 1,200 tickets had been sold out of the 2,000 available. For tickets and information visit www.carsoncitymusic.com, call toll free (800) 216-0891 or 887-3688.