Back when I first started writing this column, the very first conference I ever covered was an Audiophile convention called T.H.E. Show. I was totally new to this whole writing thing, and had no idea what to expect, but a nicer bunch of people I couldn’t have stumbled upon for my first try at interviewing. That first trip found me going from exhibit room, to exhibit room, listening to some of the highest end Audio systems I had ever encountered. Everyone was willing to answers questions, and hang out with this, then, newbie. It was an experience to remember. Sadly, a couple of years later, I received an e-mail announcing the passing of the head of this organization, Richard Beers.
“T.H.E. Show Newport 2016 is dedicated to Mr. Richard Beers in Memoriam.” T.H.E. Show Newport firstname.lastname@example.org Mon 3/14/2016, 1:30 PM
There was, at the time, a question as to how T.H.E. Show would go on, which seems to have ultimately found the membership choosing to split the organization into two. Some stayed with the new leadership, and continued attending and exhibiting at T.H.E. Show, while others ventured forth and formed a new Convention, going by the name LA Audio Show (LAAS for short). Periodically I would hear from both set of show organizers, letting me and others know about their upcoming events, and which various exhibitors would be there.
However, all of this seems to have ultimately culminated with the demise of the LAAS. Earlier in the month I received this notice:
“Wednesday, May 2, 2018
An Open Letter to the Industry. LAAS Cancelled.
Dear Industry Friends,
It is with sadness and regrets that I announce the cancellation of the 2018 LA Audio Show — Orange County. Refunds will start to be issued immediately to those exhibitors who have already paid deposits and/or full remittances for space and other services. These refunds will be in the form of checks and will arrive by USPS Mail to the address provided on contracts. Attendee tickets will be refunded through the system they were purchased.
Once more, I remind you that as Robert Evans stated, “There are 3 sides to every story: Your side, my side, and the truth. And no one is lying. Memories shared serve each differently,” but he also stated that “any man who thinks he knows the mind of a woman is a man who knows nothing,” so please allow me to touch briefly on what has changed since my last note.
There have been a series of events — much like “Murphy’s Law” or even “God’s Plan” both on the professional and personal level — that has overtaken my ability to perform at the level I expect of myself and the industry deserves. I put in the maximum efforts I could to absorb the chaos and protect the community, but I have run out of fuel in every sense of the word. My shoulders can no longer bear this weight.
It has been an honor and privilege to carry on the legacy of my mentor, Richard Beers. I have sought to do right by him by keeping his traditions and adding innovations I believed to be vital to the future of our industry. It was always my hope that Richard’s divided inheritance would be unified again in the end, and for me, it has been evident that this year presented multiple opportunities to end the separation and I could no longer ignore the dangerous reality of our circumstances. It is my sincere belief that while the lessons and blessings earned were worth everything and part of His plan, I must also admit this LAAS should never have been created, to begin with. We should have collectively worked harder to stay unified in our efforts, and I hope that is how you are able to collectively move forward at this time.
With that said, I urge all those who can, to make arrangements to support The Home Entertainment Show, June 1-3, 2018 at the Marriott Irvine Spectrum Hotel. I am truly apologetic for any inconveniences this may cause the industry……..
I am truly grateful for all of you, for all the lessons and blessings, and I look forward to perhaps meeting and working with you again in a different capacity. I wish much success to T.H.E. Show Newport and its patrons and truly hope that Richard’s legacy will be honored for years to come.
It has been an honor serving you. “May the God of hope fill you with all joy and peace as you trust in him, so that you may overflow with hope by the power of the Holy Spirit.” Romans 15:13 (NIV)”
So, for anyone who had been planning to attend LAAS, fear not, there is still a way for you to get your Audiophile groove on. You’ll just have to make a day-trip into the O.C. to do it. For anyone still looking to obtain tickets to T.H.E. Show, you can find all the information at the official website.