Italy - Optocore and its partner company BroaMan have appointed Parma-based Audiolink as its sole distributor for the Italian market.
Stefano Cantadori, Audiolink general manager, comments: “The reason we chose Optocore was simple. Today’s integrations require a massive chunk of fibre optic data, and Optocore, together with BroaMan, allows all the different signals to be managed on a single fibre ring with 100% redundancy. Total redundancy means avoiding any type of problem - unforeseen circumstances that can lead to a lot of expense for the installer and the customer.”
Tine Helmle, Optocore MD of BroaMan and director of sales & marketing, adds: “We are very happy to have found a strong partner in Italy that will best represent our two brands. Stefano and his team are very competent people, with whom we can’t wait to start this collaboration.”
She also highlighted the synergy Optocore has with DiGiCo - a brand that has been successfully distributed by Audiolink for many years - as an advantage.
“We particularly appreciate the ability of Audiolink to cover our main markets - both in the installation sector as well as in live audio,” she concludes.
UK - Stage Electrics has announced three seminars to take place during its January 2020 showcase event, to be held at the SS Great Britain in Bristol on Wednesday, 29 January 2020.
The programme features Artistic Licence’s Wayne Howell on lighting control and future of data in your venue, Sennheiser’s Kevin Gwyther-Brown talking about “is your venue is ready for the 700MHz band radio mics spectrum clearance” and Stage Electrics’ Dan Ryan guiding you through making sure that electrical / mechanical infrastructure and equipment used within your venue have an appropriate maintenance regime and schedule in compliance with relevant your legal obligations.
Le Maitre will also be returning to Bristol to host a harbour-side pyrotechnic demonstration from 5pm.
UK - Long-time DiGiCo user Stage Sound Services was one of the first companies to invest in the British console manufacturer’s latest Quantum 7 engine for its seven SD7s, stating that their belief in DiGiCo’s ability to continually upgrade its product made its most powerful engine to date a must have for the Cardiff-based rental company.
“As well as the SD7s, we have a large stock of SD10s,” says Stage Sound Services' Phil Hurley. “When it was time to add more consoles to our inventory, we wanted to invest in the very latest technology and having seen the capabilities of the Quantum 7 it was an obvious choice. We knew that as soon as our customers saw Quantum 7 was available, they’d want to use its new features and capability to enhance their sound designs.”
Two of the Quantum 7s were put to immediate use on the UK theatre tour of Dr Doolittle and the London production of Fiddler on the Roof at the Playhouse Theatre, additional consoles are being put to use on two versions of the Blue Man Group world tours and Matilda International tour.
“We’ve been using DiGiCo for at least 10 years and we’ve been very happy with how they continually update them, without making the product obsolete,” says Hurley. “The recent upgrade for the SD10s helped our decision as it underlines DiGiCo’s ethos of ensuring longevity for its products and a good return on investment.
“As a rental company, when we’re considering a big purchase, we need to know what a manufacturer is planning. DiGiCo demonstrates a solid commitme
Europe - Coordinating with Stefan Mehnert of Rammstein’s management and production director Nicolai Sabottka as well as the production’s design teams, Solotech and SSE Audio provided the audio and video gear and services for the German industrial metal band’s 2019 stadium tour.
Solotech’s Holger Schader, senior consultant, concert touring and special events for the Live Productions division oversaw the account for Solotech and SSE Audio.
The sold-out European stadium tour supported the release of the band’s seventh album, which is the first Rammstein studio album in a decade.
The tour’s audio spec, put together by Rammstein´s longtime FOH engineer Olsen Involtini and systems engineer Andreas Vater, called for L-Acoustics speakers and Avid Venue control.
Assisting Vater was SSE audio crew Chief Nick Pain, and audio technician Nils Knecht, who oversaw the L-Acoustics’ Soundvision system and system alignment.
The control system for FOH consisted of two Avid Venue S6L systems including two S6L-32D control surfaces; two Avid Venue E6L-192 Engine for S6L; two Waves SoundGrid Server Extreme; and two Avid Venue Stage 64 stage boxes.
For the monitor system SSE Audio provided two S6L systems with matching components, which was similar to the FOH setup. To accommodate the different sized stadiums, the audio rig could be expanded. In the bigger cities production used up to four delay towers, and up to eight positions for roof delays with 12 L-Acoustics’ K2s to get rid of unwanted reflections.
The audio package’s full
Poland - The award-winning TurboRay fixture from High End Systems recently made its latest TV appearance on the 17th edition of the Junior Eurovision Song Contest (JESC, broadcast live from Arena Gliwice in Poland.
JESC is designed to draw people together from all over Europe and Australia through light entertainment and healthy competition. It’s an increasingly spectacular and technically complex event, transmitted live to millions of viewers. This year, 19 participants aged between 9 and 14 years old took to the stage to battle it out for the trophy.
The stage, designed by Giorgos Stylianou-Matsis, comprised a design featuring an eye-catching LED ribbon element symbolising floating kites. The ribbon gave the stage a spacious, light and simple design form. To complement the impressive stage design, a series of 26 TurboRay fixtures were positioned on stage and used in a variety of ways throughout the show.
With its radial diffusers bringing a distinctive appearance, and powerful LED system with multiple types of colour control, TurboRay offers a multitude of tools that make it ideal for events like this. “I needed a lighting fixture that would accentuate the decor on the stage,” says lighting crew head, Adam Tyska from TVP SA. “For this production and the short stature of the artists we have to operate cameras differently, and for wide shots we needed to fill a pretty large space. TurboRay units were a perfect fit for this, because in addition to their technical capabilities they look attractive in themselves.”
“It was great to ha
UK - Laserworld, manufacturer and distributor of show laser systems, is holding a general laser training day in the West Midlands.
Taking place on 14 January 2020 in Solihull from 10am, the training is conceived as a workshop, considering not only laser safety aspects but providing a general overview of how show and event laser light systems are used. There will be technical background information as well as hands-on training with different laser systems. Laser safety will be one aspect included.
This workshop is primarily designed for DJs, smaller production companies and lighting designers. Attendees receive a certificate of participation from the Laserworld Academy that states the contents of the training.
Topics include: Laser Safety - legal aspects, basic physics, technical safety aspects, safe laser operation in public, safe laser control; Setting up a Laser - mounting options, wiring, different setups; Laser Control - different possibilities, programming basics, pros and cons of different control methods; Different perspectives to show laser light systems - learn about different ways of using lasers.
Prior booking is required. The day’s training cots £200 with lunch included. Reservations can be made on www.laserworld-academy.com.
UK - A.C. Entertainment Technologies (AC-ET) recently supplied tour and production management company Patchwork London with a Shure PSM 1000 wireless IEM system to provide monitor duties for the >25th Anniversary UK tour of Skunk Anansie.
Patchwork managing director, Steve White got in touch with Steve Eaton, sales executive in AC-ET’s Audio sales division after he was getting an increasing number of client requests for the Shure in-ear-monitoring system.
He comments: “We've had an increased number of enquiries for the PSM 1000, so when a three-month tour hire with Skunk Anansie came in, it seemed like a good time to expand our Shure stock. Prior to this, we had tried out wireless mic systems and Shure’s Axient system was the one which best suited our needs, so we decided to go with Shure across the board.”
The UK tour coincided with the release of a new live album marking the band’s 25th anniversary, and saw them perform sold-out shows in London, Manchester and Bristol, as well as several festival headline appearances. Extra dates were added in Brighton, Bournemouth, Cambridge, Leeds, Glasgow, Newcastle, Nottingham and Cardiff due to the high demand.
White adds: “It’s very important that our clients have access to high quality equipment in our hire stock, and which can be packaged for ease of transporting. Investments like the PSM 1000 means we are at the forefront of technology on stage, and being small enough to be racked in our Peli case system makes it extremely portable for any scale of tour.”
Norway - DJ and record producer, Alan Walker is currently out on his latest Aviation tour across China, India and Norway, along with an Allen & Heath dLive Wings system handling both FOH and monitor duties.
One of Norway’s biggest EDM music exports, Walker performs with various third-party software, as well as a live band and requires a complex setup. The engineers needed a small and lightweight system to fly around the world, which could also handle a high I/O count via several protocols, such as Waves SoundGrid, Dante and MADI in order to interface with third-party systems.
Supplied by audio production company, Sonic City AS, the FOH setup includes a dLive C1500 fitted with a Waves card for virtual sound check and multi-track recording, paired with a DM0 MixRack, which is equipped with a fibreACE card for the digital split and a Dante card to facilitate external plug-in processing through a DAW. A DX012 expander is also utilized for additional outputs at the FOH position, providing feeds to the light designer, VJ and laser operator.
FOH engineer (and Sonic City partner), Sondre Rosseland Sandhaug, comments, “We chose the dLive C1500 package as we needed a fly-rig with a really high channel count for this tour and the choice was ultimately, really simple. dLive provides everything we need; flexible routing, the Tie Lines feature, high-quality sound, reliability and an excellent range of I/O options.”
“The dLive system has worked very well on this tour and we’ve really pushed the system to its full potential, particularly in term
USA - Broadcasting globally in more than 150 countries and territories, World Poker Tour (WPT) has ignited the worldwide poker industry. WPT also hosts a number of high-profile corporate and VIP events throughout the year. Needing a design element that could accentuate the visual experience at each tournament and event, WPT global events manager Steve De Santis invested in reFLEXion LED video systems from Nashville-based PixelFLEX.
“WPT features a lot of professional and recreational players we see often who look for comfortability and reliability with tournament structures they trust from people they recognise and know,” says De Santis. “We have a footprint on six continents and our players love the quality and consistency of our events.”
Knowing the level of trust and commitment shown by the players, De Santis wanted to ensure that each event provided the most engaging gaming experience. Having previously relied upon standard graphic displays to help create the ideal environment, he now wanted to heighten the creative potential of the visual displays to match the excitement around each tournament.
“As part of our event presentation and playing environment, we had been using older graphic kiosks for quite some time which really was the impetus for our search,” continues De Santis. “As an innovator in the game of poker, WPT wanted something that was a bit more impactful and most importantly to our tour management personnel, portable. We needed a technology solution easy to transport and able to deliver a unique visual impact.”
USA - OSA has announced Mark Fetto as vice-president of lighting. Fetto will oversee the company’s new lighting division, which will be based in OSA’s Las Vegas and Nashville offices.
Fetto started working as a lighting technician in 1978. Working his way through the ranks at the Obie Company and Vari-Lite, he then became a lighting designer and senior programmer. In 1989 Fetto opened Vari-Lite’s satellite office in Las Vegas. He went on to become general manager of Vari-Lite’s corporate events division and later general manager of their North American operations.
Following a 16-year career at Vari-Lite, Fetto joined Stage Rigging as the national sales manager before moving to his most recent position of 14 years at Morpheus Lights. As chief operating officer at Morpheus Lights, Fetto oversaw touring systems, new inventory, infrastructure, and operational strategies in both production and manufacturing.
“Making the move to OSA has been very invigorating for me. I am looking forward to the opportunity to build OSA’s new lighting division with the same high level of quality and service that OSA’s audio and video divisions are known for. OSA has always been highly regarded in the corporate and special events markets, and I am thrilled to open the door for my clients to get the best of lighting, audio, video and production services from one great company,” says Fetto.
OSA President & CEO Mario Educate shares: “I am excited to have Mark on board. His extensive experience working in the touring sector, partnering with leading
UK - Specialist hire and events company SLX has made a number of new stock announcements, including a £250,000.00 spend on SGM fixtures. The investment places SLX as a major stockist in the South West of the SGM IP rated LED fixtures used for professional stage lighting, broadcast lighting and architectural installations.
Chief executive and owner of SLX, Alastair Currie, says: “The new roster of SGM fixtures now on the shelves of our warehouse or already out on hire include the P-6 Flood, Q-7 Strobe, G-7 Spot and even the brand new much anticipated G7 BeaSt. That’s a spotlight we’re sure will very rarely be sat on our warehouse shelves, as lighting designers and production managers around the country seem very keen to utilise it.
“We’re delighted to become the biggest stockist in the region of SGM fixtures. The SGM fixtures we already had, including the P-6 Flood, always performed well for us commercially so we’re confident the new ones will too. They’re a highly respected brand, innovative and leading the way in LED light technology. We want our clients to have access to the absolute best and we’re confident with our range of lights, including a strong selection from other manufacturers, we can compete with major players in the hire and events sector.”
SGM UK managing director, Ian Kirby, says: “SLX is a business that is really going places, so we’re delighted to see them choosing SGM as a partner. They have invested in both G-7 and G-7 BeaSt products. The G-7 is our most robust go anywhere, work anywhere spot and the G-7
USA - Bandit Lites provided the lighting for Dave Koz’ Christmas tour, featuring Jonathan Butler, Melissa Manchester, Michael Lington and Chris Walker. Koz’s tour and newest album, Gifts of the Season, features a smorgasbord of styles, ranging from an electronic rendition of Winter Wonderland, a whimsical It’s Beginning to Look a Lot Like Christmas as well as an emotional Mary Did You Know and powerful original song from Koz, A Prayer for Peace.
“As we sat down to begin concepting the production design, we knew that it needed to be versatile in creating moments for each of the emotions that the band is creating audibly,” explains lighting designer Erik Parker of Chris Lisle Lighting Design.
To create the moments, Parker knew the rig would need to be outfitted with well-rounded fixtures that would also integrate with the video elements as they would all share a truss. Coupled with that flexibility would be the need to fit the entire production into a single truck and bus trailer.
Parker crafted an expansive look utilising just three fixtures: The GLP X4S on the upstage and downstage edge lighting the backdrop, the band and some extra flash, Martin MAC Auras on the side to light the band and the main workhorse of the rig, the Elation Smarty Hybrid.
“The band is some of the best musicians, the artists were incredible, and I think we were able to truly bring the music to life,” Parker says. “We programmed as a team; I programmed a few songs along with Chris Lisle, Terese Fensler and Landon Blo
UK - A.C. Entertainment Technologies (AC-ET), in conjunction with Luminex, has hosted a number of sell-out network training events specifically for lighting, video and audio professionals.
Held at AC-ET's training facilities in High Wycombe and Leeds, industry experts have been teaching the fundamentals of networking, plus the specifics of networking and data distribution for professional lighting, audio and video applications.
The courses provided the chance to learn more about Luminex products - including the new LumiNode next generation Ethernet to DMX processor and the Araneo software tool that provides a complete graphical overview of a Luminex Gigacore Network.
Application specialists from Luminex led the courses; one focusing on networking for lighting & video and the other on audio applications. Both saw a massive demand throughout the year, with each date selling out within days and generating a long waiting list.
Jack Thompson, technical director at Manchester International Festival, comments: “The course content was very good, with an excellent instructor who knew all about his product and how it works in the real world. He was able to work with people at different levels of competence all at the same time.”
Ian O'Donoghue, head theatre technician at the University of Warwick, comments: “The course was really useful and was set at the right level. I felt very welcome and we were looked after well.”
“We are very happy to be able to work together with Luminex to provide these training courses,” commented N
Germany - The RTI PIKO RGB 28 has been released by Ray Technologies as the first product with the latest RTI laser module generation. “This new laser module technology really changes the way professional laser systems are built. The compact form factor and the great visibility combined with the quality of the beam profile make those new laser systems stand out even more,” states Jordi Luque, head of R&D at Ray Technologies.
The new RTI diode modules are designed in a way to keep both spot size, as well as divergence equal on both x- and y-axis.
The beam specifications of the new RTI PIKO RGB 28 are given with only 4mm diameter and less than 0.9mrad divergence - which applies to both axis, so it’s an actual value not an average and provides higher quality results than specifications with mixed calculations. The extremely small beam diameter allows for the use of very small 4mm mirrors, which results in reduced inertia and thus very good scanning performance, says the company.
UK - West Midlands-based event technical production specialist CPL has invested in 40 new Robe LEDBeam 150 moving lights, the company’s first Robe purchase.
These will extend the lighting department’s rental stock and will help service CPL’s busy schedule. In addition to a diverse range of corporate and industrial clients, the company provides design services plus lighting, video, sound, rigging and staging to a selection of music and arts festivals and shows including Arcadia Spectacular. Elrow Town, The Hay Festival, Boomtown and Camper Calling.
Getting the LEDBeam 150s onboard was a decision taken by the whole lighting and visuals team at CPL, all of whom had an input.
“We needed a good, fast, reliable, versatile and small moving light and all roads led to the LEDBeam 150 which fills a gap in our stock of small moving lights,” commented events director Lee Gruszeckyj.
They were particularly taken with the fact that the LEDBeam 150, thanks to its 3.8 - 60° zoom, can produce a decent wash as well as nice beams.
Robe UK supplied the fixtures, and their Bill Jones comments: “I have been talking to Max (CPL CEO Matthew Boyce) for at least eight years about an investment in the brand - so I am super happy CPL has made this first move towards Robe. I am positive it won’t be their last.”
Lee explained how CPL is poised to expand their lighting department steadily. When the company first started, they were primarily a video and audio supplier, however, the demand for lights, and now all other production elements togethe
Mexico - A crowd of over 7,000 waited eagerly for Ana Torroja to appear at the esplanade of the Chihuahua Desert Museum of Delicias. They immediately erupted into wild cheering when the former singer from Mecano stepped on the stage dressed in a striking blue outfit and surrounded by her four bandmates, all in white.
As soon as the first notes were struck, the star and her backups were engulfed in a sea of intense back and side light that moved from white to blue. It was the beginning of a combination of music and light at this free concert sponsored by the state government as part of the XV edition of the International Festival Chihuahua.
Contributing to the immersive visuals was a collection of 64 Chauvet Professional fixtures, which, like the rest of the rig were supplied by Chihuahua-based Pro Audio Soluciones S.A. de C.V.
Making this civic stop as part of her successful Back tour, Torroja engaged the crowd with sing-alongs and personal recollections of her storied life and career. She had an extensive music catalogue to draw from during her show. As a member of Mecano, she was part of one of the most successful Spanish groups of all time. (To date, they have sold in excess of 25m albums.)
The rig featured 16 Maverick MK3 Wash fixtures and 24 Rogue R2 Wash units. The 40 wash fixtures were flown on mid-stage truss in addition to being floor mounted and hung on side-stage truss. From these positions, they bathed the stage in colour from every direction, creating a sense of depth and texture that endowed the star’s performance with extra
The Netherlands - ADJ lighting and effects equipment was used exclusively to create the party atmosphere in the Tiroler tent at this summer’s vast Zwarte Cross festival in the Netherlands. Vizi CMY300 moving heads, 12P HEX IP pars and Encore FR150Z Frenels were all part of the package that illuminated the line-up of live acts performing in the tent across the four-day event.
The Zwarte Cross Festival, which takes place each year in the Dutch town of Lichtenvoorde, is the largest paid festival in the Netherlands. This event combines live music, theatre and stunt spectaculars with the biggest motocross event in the world. This year, it attracted 220,000 visitors and featured more than 150 bands and 1000 theatre artists performing across a variety of themed stages and tents. A popular regular fixture of the festival is the Tiroler tent, which is an Oktoberfest-themed area that features traditional folk musicians from across the Netherlands, Germany and Austria.
Ruud Pellemans, owner of Dutch production company TEC Audio, has worked on the Tiroler tent for a number of years. However, for the 2019 edition of the festival, his company took care of all the area’s technical requirements for the first time. Working on behalf of the festival’s overall technical supplier, Purple Group, TEC Audio were responsible for supplying, as well as operating, all of the audio and lighting equipment. ADJ fixtures were used exclusively for illumination, with over 50 units deployed to provide both a concert lightshow on the stage and atmospheric lighting throughout the tent
UK - Stage Electrics has supplied, installed and commissioned new LED lighting to replace the existing house lighting at Kings Place, London.
Originally opened in 2008, Kings Place is a multi-purpose venue including a concert hall as well as the home to The Guardian and The Observer newspapers. Stage Electrics were contracted by Paul Russell, technical project manager for Kings Place, to replace the lighting in Hall 1 which is the main concert hall, a system originally installed by sister company Northern Light.
The new feature Lighting in addition to general auditorium lighting provides illumination, with full colour mixing, of the acoustic void around the upper walls of the auditorium as well as the stage and seating areas. This additional feature allows the venue to offer corporate clients the ability to customise the room in their corporate colours something the venue wanted to offer to its increasing number of corporate customers as well as update their existing offering to performing artists. The final installation included fixtures from dLED Technologies and Chauvet with control and power distribution provided by ETC.
“As with any existing building, access to existing containment systems was difficult. However, to facilitate the new LED lighting specifically for the acoustic void, we had to discreetly install additional control wiring for 56 new fixtures,” says Michael Percy. “This is made more difficult because the auditorium structure at Kings place is entirely independent of the rest of the building so it’s effectivi
UK - AV and entertainment technology company Anna Valley has announced that operations director, Peter Jones, has been promoted to the position of MD with immediate effect. The move follows an extensive hand-over period with exiting MD, Steve Jones who has led the company for 13 years.
Peter Jones worked for 10 years as a sound and video technician before joining Anna Valley in 2010 as a senior project manager. After working his way up through the ranks, Peter was appointed as Anna Valley’s operations director following a management buyout in 2015. Since then he has played an integral role in the company’s expansion, the purchase of Matrix UK Solutions and Anna Valley’s move to new premises earlier this year.
“As operations director, I’ve been as involved in the financial and business aspects of the company as I have in the process and procedure of service delivery,” explains Peter. “While our focus has remained on delighting our audiences through the innovative use of technology, we’re taking a data-driven approach to ensure that our investments reflect our customers’ needs.”
Steve Jones’ shares in the business have been bought out by the remaining board of directors who are equal owners of the group. He will continue to mentor and advise the board on a consultancy basis.
Europe - Area Four Industry is inviting clients to join professional rigging advisor Eric Porter in a back-to-basics video that focuses on the roundsling.
In his latest video on A4.tv, Eric visits the polyester roundsling and how this versatile, gentle and lower pressure contact sling should be used - and not be used! He also covers labels found on roundslings, as well as how pyrotechnics and narrow beam stage lamps have an adverse affect on them.
Click here to watch the video and get up to speed on roundslings.
Spain - Singer Aitana first gained recognition in 2017 as runner-up of the Spanish reality TV music talent competition Operación Triunfo and she has enjoyed popularity and a number of hits ever since.
This past summer, the 20-year old singer released her debut album, Spoiler, which topped the Spanish charts, then launched her much-anticipated Play tour with lighting design by SomosLuz, a Barcelona-based design studio who worked with Brutal Events on the creative process. SomosLuz turned to the Elation Rayzor 760 LED moving head to create a special design element for the show - four upstage Play buttons used for dynamic beams, eye candy looks and other special effects.
Describing the show’s visual look, the design studio states: “The central element of the design is an inverted pyramidal LED screen with a staircase, which is used as a podium for choreography and spectacular entrances of the artist. It is surrounded by four totems with Rayzor 760s mounted in the shape of the digital Play button.”
Used to form the tour’s signature Play button symbol, the Rayzor 760s create a number of interesting backlight scenes. The SomosLuz studio states: “We originally thought of using another LED luminaire but rental company Ilusovi showed us the Rayzor 760, which we liked for its size and versatility. We thought it would work well to illuminate the stage to create effects like pulsating play buttons, chase effects, or splayed beam looks. Its zoom range and the possibility to pixel map were very important and we also use the fixtu