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Review: Women Of Faith "Celebrate What Matters"

UPDATE: Have you ever stood in an arena with 8000 women all worshipping God together?  In September, I attended Celebrate What Matters 2012, the Women of Faith conference held in Rochester, NY, and it was an amazing experience.

Having attended several Women of Faith conferences previously, by comparison, this year’s presentation was by far the most inspiring.  The set has been completely redesigned so that the presenters can move around a tiered-stage allowing them greater intimacy with the audience. A live worship band was added to back-up the worship singers and other performers making it much more of a live concert instead of listening to the performers sing karaoke style.  Amy Grant, Mandisa and Sandi Patty sounded magnificent with the live musicians backing them up.

The sound, brilliant lighting and video production were on par with major touring acts.  No matter where you were seated in the arena, you could see and hear everything. Women of Faith also added a performing arts program called Ballet Magnificat to the schedule.  The new tiered-stage design along with the sound and lighting effects made the ballet performance enhance the praise and worship music throughout the event.  What an extraordinary event this was, and I’m looking forward to attending next year — Barbara Lindquist


More about the Women Of Faith Tour


The cross-country tour highlights some never-before-seen elements including a live worship band, a new state-of-the art stage, and live ballet. The four-month, 23-city North American “Celebrate What Matters” tour launched on August 3rd in Columbus, Ohio with a diverse line up of 27 well-known speakers, authors, musicians, and performers including inspirational speakers Ann Voskamp, Jennie Allen, Pat Smith, and Liz Curtis Higgs. Multi-award winning musical guest CeCe Winans returned for the tour again this year along with Mandisa, Amy Grant, Selah. Sheila Walsh, Patsy Clairmont, Sandi Patty, Brenda Warner, Marilyn Meberg, Andy Andrews, Ken Davis, and Lisa Harper.

CTS Audio (Nashville), who has supported Women of Faith for over 12 years, is providing two of the new Yamaha CL5 Digital Consoles for front of house and monitors and two RIO 3224 boxes for the east coast with a similar set up for the west coast dates.

In July, CTS Audio provided Yamaha CL consoles for the Covenant High In Christ Youth Conference (CHIC), a tri-annual event, with performances by Chris Tomlin, Skillet, La Crae, Michael Gungor, Willow Creek Worship Team, and over 6,000 high school students in attendance.  “The set up for this event was unique in that we daisy chained all the equipment together to form one large network for openings and worship acts,” says Taylor. “We did this so that inputs/outputs could be called into any surface we wanted for maximum flexibility. With the new platform, we were able to run one network and have 128 inputs and 64 outputs available. This was important since we needed all of them for our house band from Willow Creek as well as the guest bands.”

The goal of the CHIC Conference is to help high school age students in their walk with Christ, something that matches up perfectly with the core of CTS Audio’s beliefs.  “Being part of such a moving event is something that is near to my heart,” states FOH engineer Jon Schwarz.

CTS Audio staff was on site for guest engineers who required CL training, if necessary. However, Taylor said the engineers found it easy to step up and get to work because the console is laid out in a simple-to-follow-through process. “We were also able to load engineer files from other Yamaha products seamlessly. Everyone left talking about how fantastic the desk sounded.”

About the author

Tim Hemingway

I want to be a rockstar when I grow up, at least that is what I have been putting down as my career goal ever since I was first introduced to the Beatles at 11 or 12 years old. Shortly after my introduction to the Fab Four, I picked up an old classical guitar and started learning every Beatles song I could. It was right around that time that the nickname "GuitarGuy" Tim originated. While I don't remember the exact origin, it was basically how kids at school differentiated me from the other 4 or 5 Tims in our class. Starting in Jr. High, with an arsenal of Weezer and Green Day covers, my friends and I began "performing". Over the next 10 years I played guitar or bass in various alternative, punk and acoustic bands. Somewhere mid-way through college I realized that although I had the desire to be a rockstar, maybe I didn't have the songwriting abilities, so I moved my passion for music behind the console. I then spent several years working in a studio by day, and at night running everything from local concerts to community musicals. Without all of the boring details, my studio work eventually led me into advertising and marketing which is what I now do during the day. But when I come home at night, I still pull out my guitar and put on concerts for my kiddos (I’m raising up the next generation of Guitar Gods). I met up with the Rev while I was in grad school and was working on my thesis: Turn it up to Eleven: A Study of Guitar Hero and Rockband gamers. Why they play and how marketers can use this information. Yes, it is true. I have several academic publications about Guitar Hero. At that time in my life I had decided to pursue a career in marketing within the music industry, but the Rev had a better idea. He gave me a shot at reviewing gear, and ever since then I have been a regular here as part of the Live2playNetwork dysfunctional-family. When it comes to music, I'm a jack of all trades. While I'm not an expert at anything, in a pinch I can play guitar, bass, drums, sing, or I can mic up the drum kit, edit in Pro Tools, or solder up a new patch cable.

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