How Durkan Hospitality Carpet Solved Acoustical Issues for Carrie Underwood Event

When multiplatinum-selling global superstar Carrie Underwood needed flooring for an exclusive event to promote her new album, Cry Pretty, her team turned directly to Durkan.

Carrie Underwood's Team Specifies Durkan Definity In-Stock for Nashville Listening Event

photo c/o Chris Hollo and UMG Nashville

Before an album makes its way to the airwaves, it needs a formal introduction. So when multi-platinum country artist Carrie Underwood was ready to release her latest album, the acclaimed Cry Pretty, her team decided to hold an exclusive listening event in Nashville.

An exact, full-scale replica of its namesake in ancient Greece, The Parthenon in Nashville’s Centennial Park was the perfect setting to make a statement. With its stone and concrete walls and tremendously high ceilings, however, it was sonically challenged – an improbable site for a major music debut given the acoustics problems.

Underwood and her team at Universal Music Group Nashville pulled off the event with the help of hospitality flooring by Durkan.

Durkan Definity In-Stock Carpet Solves Acoustics Issues for Event Venue

Underwood and UMG Nashville wanted a luxurious, high-end flooring that enhanced the event’s beautiful design theme, that could deliver a large amount of product in a short period of time and that would offer a solution to the acoustics issue.

“We reached out to Durkan for a creative way to solve the acoustics problem,” said Gary Keffer, director of strategic marketing, UMG Nashville. “The Durkan brand had the elegance in design that we needed and the quality we required for this particular environment and for a high-profile, exclusive event. Finding a product that worked acoustically and with the aesthetics of the building was critically important for us, and we couldn’t be happier with the outcome.”

Carrie Underwood's Team Specifies Durkan Definity In-Stock for Nashville Listening Event
photo c/o Chris Hollo

The Cry Pretty listening event held great significance for Underwood, as it showcased her talents as singer, songwriter and, for the first time, producer. She weighed in on all decisions, including the carpet.

Altogether the project used 567 square yards of bound area rugs in Structure Revival, a Durkan Definity pattern that balances strong modern design and a softly blended palette of blue, gray and black accented with shimmers of silver and blue opal.

It looked stunning. But did it work?

The answer is yes. The carpet reduced the reverb in the building by three seconds, which meant that the nearly 200 people in attendance were able to listen to Underwood’s music as it was truly intended to be heard—with clean sound and crisp vocals.

“We wanted to create, for lack of a better term, the reverence of a church service in this event space,” said Keffer. “We took a huge stone room with bad audio and found a way to overcome that, and we did it in style.”

Cry Pretty went on to make music history, making Underwood the first woman to have four country albums reach No. 1 on the all-genre Billboard 200 chart – but it wasn’t the only groundbreaking moment of the night.

To the knowledge of John Tumminello, vice president of the Conservancy for the Parthenon and Centennial Park, no one has carpeted the Parthenon to this extent. The result, he says, was worth it, “The Parthenon was transformed,” he explained.

The carpet gave a beautiful foundation to the rest of the night’s décor – the Parthenon’s massive columns were draped in pink and gold fabric and balloons and the exterior of the Parthenon was strikingly illuminated in fuchsia.

Carrie Underwood's Team Specifies Durkan Definity In-Stock for Nashville Listening Event
photo c/o Chris Hollo

Definity In-Stock Delivers Superior Hospitality Rugs Fast

Acoustics and style weren’t the only reason Underwood’s team turned to Durkan. Our new Definity In-Stock program meant that the Structure Revival design was available to be delivered in a tight timeframe.

“Timing was critical,” said Keffer. “If we didn’t address the flooring, we couldn’t address the sound, and if we couldn’t address the sound, we couldn’t have the event.”

Durkan’s Definity In-Stock program offers a select group of award-winning, elegantly designed, hospitality-style and grade rugs available for quick delivery through a program offered by parent brand Mohawk Group.

“When UMG Nashville reached out to us, it was a perfect pairing,” said David Duncan, Durkan’s senior vice president of sales. “Definity In-Stock allowed us to meet their tight timeframe while providing a luxurious carpet that made a design statement and also served an important purpose. The project showed how beautifully our product can transform a space in no time.”

All told, we provided five area rugs, two of which were seamed together on-site to cover the main event space called the Naos. A square rug was used in the large Treasury Room, which served as the reception area, and matching runners were made for the long outer walkways, which gave the event a cohesive feel throughout the large space.

Carrie Underwood's Team Specifies Durkan Definity In-Stock for Nashville Listening Event
photo c/o Chris Hollo

Event Carpet Gets a New Life with Mohawk’s ReCover

After the event, the carpet that had been installed in a day for only one night’s use had to be removed. Both Underwood and UMG Nashville were adamant that the carpet be disposed of responsibly.

Luckily, our company-wide commitment to sustainability meant that we were able to leverage ReCover, the carpet recycling program of our parent company Mohawk Industries, to give the broadloom from the Cry Pretty event a whole new life.

Smaller bound area rugs were made from the large carpets and auctioned off at a special event to raise funds for the Lifecycle Building Center (LBC) in Atlanta. Founded in 2011, LBC is a nonprofit that converts discarded building materials into a resource for communities and empowers energy-saving, sustainable solutions.

We were thrilled to contribute to the event’s success, and to see the carpet, which was used for such a special occasion, get a new life in a sustainable way.

Learn more about how the Definity In-Stock program can serve the needs of your space here.