Part of a 33,000-square-foot entertainment center in the south suburbs of Pittsburgh, the Crafthouse Stage and Grill is part of a complex that includes the Legacy Lanes bowling alley, IQ Escape rooms, Cigar Bar and more.

The popular restaurant pub has been a local entertainment mecca featuring regular weekday events including Dueling Pianos and Karaoke Royale battles. Weekends have been reserved for popular local bands.

Recently, ownership recognized the house PA had sufficed for local bands, but to get to the next level of talent, an upgrade of the facility system was necessary. With that, “we decided to move into the national arena,” says owner Charlie Stage. And they called on Rob Thomas of R/T Audio to design a system to accomplish that task.

Thomas is certainly no stranger to the needs of national touring acts. Currently front-of-house engineer with Third Eye Blind, Thomas has worked with the likes of Train, Sister Hazel, Vertical Horizon, Insane Clown Posse, among others. “Everybody in Pittsburgh knows Rob,” says Stage. “He’s a friend and an advocate of what we’re doing.”

Thomas knew putting in a system from RCF would meet the rider specifications needed to reach that level and configured eight RCF HDL20-A active two-way line array cabinets, positioned in four box hangs on either side of stage, complemented by four RCF SUB8006-AS dual 18” subwoofers.

“We needed the line array configuration as the room is very long and narrow,” comments Entertainment Manager Chris Murphy. “We needed something to reach the dance floor, and then past the bar to the back end of the room.”

“And we needed the output the national’s demand,” noted Stage. The result, “it’s great, it’s perfect,” he says.

Capacity is 500, with restaurant-style seating for 200. “Even with larger shows, we try to maintain the intimate setting of the club environment,” notes Stage.

Adding the RCF system certainly changed the dynamics of the venue. “It’s made a huge difference,” comments Murphy. “Among the local and regional community there’s a buzz as we’ve upped our game. And it’s helped with the connection point for national acts and takes us to the next level.”

Sponge was first national act to play on May 1. Lead singer Vin Dombroski said, “had a great time! The staff at the club was top notch and treated us like kings.” He goes on to say, “The FOH system was top notch as well and made for a great night for the band and the audience. We are a loud rock band and the PA totally kept up with us…What a great venue. And again what a great time!”Schedule is firming up with other national acts scheduled to hit the stage to include The Wailers and Powerman 5000.  

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