UK - To celebrate five years since the formation of The Aloud Charity - www.thealoudcharity.com - which comprises Only Men Aloud, Only Boys Aloud, and Only Kids Aloud, a one-off concert - Aloud @ 5 - was staged at the Wales Millennium Centre in late 2015.

The charity offers free choral tuition and membership for young people from deprived backgrounds, and the chance to perform in some of the world's largest productions. These have included Britain's Got Talent, The X Factor, and the Queen's Jubilee Concert.

With a total cast of around 350 singers, the sold-out show was recorded by Orchard Entertainment for broadcast on Welsh language channel S4C on Christmas Day.

Founder of the Aloud choirs is artistic and musical director Tim Rhys Evans, and together with Bro

UK - RH Consulting has launched a major new edition to their guide to voice alarm systems. Originally released six years ago, the e-publication has been comprehensively updated to become the definitive guide to all types of emergency audio system for consultants, manufacturers, installers and venue owners.

Running to 200 pages, it covers all applications where VA systems are likely to be installed, from stadia to public buildings to nightclubs, theatres, transport hubs, shopping centres and much more. It is packed with tables, diagrams and animations to help people comprehend this often misunderstood subject. The guide covers standards worldwide, including Europe, Australia and the USA as well as delivering comprehensive information on the industry-changing topic of EN54.

"We wrote the book on two levels' says RH Consulting founder, Roland Hemming. "For those new t

UK - Straightpoint has appointed Dave Mullard as business development manager. Mullard, a force measurement, load monitoring and suspended weighing load cell professional completed his move from a fellow lifting equipment manufacturer this week, joining the Hampshire, UK-based Straightpoint on 18 January. He is keen to further advance a blossoming career in the below-the-hook sector, while spearheading his new company's continued growth in Europe, Africa and Russia.

Mullard comments: "I have enjoyed the challenges presented by the lifting industry in relation to weighing technologies and have spent the last three years in particular developing a thorough understanding of the marketplace. Straightpoint continued to emerge as the market leader and I am grateful for the opportunity to align my goals with such an innovative, dynamic business."

Straightpoint director Da

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ETC Ministar

ETC introduces the High End Systems Ministar, a game-changer in our automated lighting product line. Ministar brings exceptional versatility and performance at an affordable price point; with a compact footprint, punchy output, and a professional feature set, Ministar fits the spec and budget for small to medium-sized venues.

USA - Eastern Acoustic Works (EAW) has announced the retirement of Kenton Forsythe, EVP of strategic engineering. Forsythe, one of the original founders of EAW, has spent his career advancing loudspeaker technology and design. In 2011 he received a Parnelli Award for audio innovation as further testament to his contributions to the professional audio industry.

"I have had the profound honour of working closely with Kenton for over 21 years," states EAW president Jeff Rocha. "It is remarkable that Kenton had already revolutionized the industry and established himself as an icon before my EAW career began all those years ago. The fundamental principles that drove Kenton to create EAW remain the core values that drive our company to this very day."

Forsythe first entered the pro audio industry in 1975 with the introduction of the Forsythe Audio SR215 dua

USA - Symetrix has announced the launch and immediate availability of its Prism digital signal processing platform. Joining the manufacturer's line of Dante-enabled DSPs, Symetrix Prism has been developed to deliver cost-efficient, high-powered networked audio processing for a wide range of installed sound applications.

Symetrix Prism is comprised of four products, varying only in I/O count and form factor. Prism 4x4 features four inputs and four outputs, power over Ethernet (PoE+), and a compact ½ rack format. Prism 8x8 (eight in, eight out), 12x12 (12 in, 12 out) and 16x16 (16 in, 16 out) utilize an external power supply along with a 1U form factor.

DSP, analogue audio, and converter technologies are identical in all four products. Prism features the same digital signal processing power, mic preamps and AD/DA converters as Symetrix' award-winning Radius and Edge products,

USA - Audio-Technica debuts a new range of professional in-ear monitor (IEM) headphones at NAMM 2016 this week. Bringing the critically-acclaimed sonic signature of the M-Series to an in-ear design, the three models have been designed to fully answer the needs of demanding sound professionals and musicians from the studio, to the stage, to the DJ booth, says the company.

The headphones are compatible with Audio-Technica's popular M3 in-ear monitor wireless systems - together offering a comprehensive in-ear monitoring solution from Audio-Technica. They offer a solution for use in any application requiring the use of in-ear monitoring.

The ATH-E70 is the flagship in-ear monitor of the new range. Its accuracy and detail allow precise balancing of the mix, making it a suitable choice for monitoring on stage and ENG mixing in the studio.

The ATH-E50 features "excellent is

USA - Clair Global listened to their clients and is now offering their new flagship system: The Cohesion Series. The philosophy that inspired The Cohesion is centred on creating the highest quality and most efficient speaker system. The Cohesion's design allows for exceptionally smooth horizontal pattern control throughout its' entire range in a very compact package. The series consists of five speaker enclosures that provide high output reference-quality sound within a smaller footprint in both truck space and in the air.

"The Cohesion combines the best possible sound quality, highest maximum SPL capability, and incredible efficiency. We reduced the weight and size of the PA considerably, while improving virtually all aspects of its acoustic behaviour," said Jim Bowersox, Clair Global design engineer.

"The new Cohesion Series is going to give other manufactur

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Iberia - In January and February, audio engineers in Spain, Portugal and the Canary Islands can take advantage of advanced tuition on Yamaha's CL and QL series digital mixing consoles and Dante networking, as the company runs a series of free, day-long seminars.

Taking place in Madrid (27 January), Santiago de Compostela (2 February), Barcelona (10 February), Lisbon (1 March), Porto (3 March) and Tenerife (9 March), the training is part of the Yamaha Commercial Audio Training Seminar (YCATS) programme, which provides free, advanced training for sound engineers who already have a good working knowledge of digital audio mixing.

The major topics of each day will be: General overview of the Yamaha CL and QL consoles; System Configuration; Using two consoles (FOH and Monitors); Working with Gain Compensation; Live multitrack recording with Nuendo Live; Advanced Memory Management

UK - Following last year's successful launch of White Light's audio department, the company will continue building its audio expertise and equipment catalogue all throughout 2016. With a commitment to offering the very latest technology within the audio industry, this has seen a host of prolific clients use the company solely for its audio services. The company's reputation as a leading audio supplier has now been further enhanced by its latest investment in the highly-acclaimed DPA d:screet 4080 and DPA d:vote 4099 microphones.

WL has already invested in the DPA range, with its existing hire stock including DPA d:fine headsets, DPA d:screet 4060s along with the Podium microphones. This latest investment includes a large quantity of DPA d:screet 4080s and DPA d:vote 4099s; all of which will be available for hire.

Marcus Wadland, WL's audio project manager, comments, "It

UK - Over 65 years after its first production, the popularity of musical Guys and Dolls is as great as ever. The success of the 2014/15 Chichester Festival Theatre production has seen it transfer to the West End, with a tour to follow. Stage Electrics has worked closely with lighting designer Tim Mitchell to help make the transition.

Produced by Runaway Entertainment, the show has just started an eight week run at London's Savoy Theatre, after which it tours 18 UK and Irish cities through to the end of July. As an associate artist at Chichester Festival Theatre, Tim designed the lighting for the original run. Yet, unusually, you won't hear him say the word 'compromise' regarding the tour.

"Budget and time are obviously the two main creative constraints for a tour and we had to massively modify the rig. But I think we've actually improved it. It looks a lot sharpe

Taiwan - In Taibao City, Taiwan, a southern branch of the National Palace Museum has opened, driving cultural, educational, social and economical development to both northern and southern regions of Taiwan. To commemorate its inauguration, Aurora Lighting was called in to overview the design, and local distributor Jackson Yu of DLHG, to offer project support to the job.

A total of 61 fixtures were used, including 20x Fine Art 230 BEAM, 16x Fine Art 1500 Spot, 20x Studio Due City Colour and five PASP 4K SKYBEAM luminaires. Controlling these automated fixtures was an MA2 Full-size and 4x W-DMX™ BLACKBOX F-1 units.

To enhance the important landscape surrounding the building, the lighting display for the opening ceremony took place by the lake side, which created a barrier between control and lighting rig. "We got worried about DMX runs until we realised DLHG were W-DM

USA - At the 2016 Winter NAMM Show in Anaheim, Shure unveiled the KSM8 Dualdyne Cardioid Dynamic Vocal Microphone. The KSM8 is billed as the world's first dual-diaphragm dynamic handheld microphone for revolutionary vocal reproduction and accurate sound-reinforcement and control. The KSM8 extends the company's wired microphone line - which includes numerous products of significance and enduring legacy - such as the Unidyne 55 and the SM58 Microphone.

Designed for live sound performances where vocal clarity and sound quality are absolutely critical, the KSM8 not only meets the most discerning quality and reliability standards, it also has the versatility to adapt to changing environments without impacting performance.

"It's a hit!" stated Chris Pollard, FOH Mumford & Sons. "Marcus really enjoyed the KSM8 on his first gig with it last night at Rock in Roma. As d

Spain - Clay Paky Sharpys have one again played an integral role in an epic stunt by trailblazing light artists Marshmallow Laser Feast (MLF) and lighting designer Matthew Button, who have combined their creative genius to pull off a sensory spectacular for Lexus Europe and singer will.i.am.

The technological feat, which is part of Lexus's campaign for the Lexus NX SUV, sees will.i.am create a choreographed laser light show in time to his hit #thatPOWER, using a trio of Lexus NXs on a disused Spanish runway lined with 350 motion-sensitive lasers and Sharpys. The number-one artist was challenged with directing the three cars to hit the beams at the right cadence to synchronise with his track.

"The fantastic beam quality was the driving force behind the choosing the Sharpy," explains Button. "Having used them previously on a project for Castrol where they

USA - Avid and Focusrite have a history of industry-shaping collaborations, from the world's first plug-ins to feature a fully skeuomorphic GUI (D2 and D3), to the original Focusrite-designed Mbox interface that brought Avid Pro Tools software to the masses, and Control|24TM, Avid's first mid-format console. Twenty-one years after that first collaboration, Avid and Focusrite are "in deep discussions once more, the results of which they look forward to announcing soon".

Dave Froker, CEO of Focusrite PLC, comments, "We want to make the experience of using Focusrite hardware and Pro Tools software together the best possible experience for all our customers. Avid recognises Focusrite as an ideal companion to Pro Tools and Focusrite recognise Pro Tools as the most mature professional recording platform for new Focusrite customers to adopt.

"Focusrite are the l

The Netherlands - Daktronics will showcase its Ultra High Definition (UHD) LED product series at Integrated Systems Europe (ISE) 2016 taking place February 9-12 in Amsterdam. Currently available in two offerings, 1.9mm and 2.7mm line spacing, these new products are designed for "applications that require pristine image quality from an arm's length away".

Using the latest innovations in display system design, the Daktronics UHD solution is designed to effortlessly manage one of the largest influencers in display performance: heat. The result is a reliability advantage that offers superior performance and long display life, as well as greater colour depth, vibrancy and uniformity for the life of the product.

Daktronics product manager Lane Munson explains, "We have found in our 47 years in this industry that managing heat in an LED display is paramount. Heat is

UK - Lex Products, has expanded its EverGrip line of cable assemblies to bring breakthrough technology and innovation to CEE extensions.

To help resolve the long-time industry problems of loosened screw terminals, damaged housings and ineffective cable strain reliefs, Lex Products has developed the new EverGrip Moulded CEE Extension, the first-ever over-moulded CEE cable extension.

The Evergrip Moulded CEE extensions feature a UV stabilized mould material to prevent degradation of housing when used outdoors, ergonomic hand grip to provide a firm gripping surface for easy connector mating and un-mating and integrated tie loop hole for ease of storage or rigging.

Available in single phase 16 amp and single/three phase 32 Amp PCE plugs and sockets with Titanex HO7 cable, the extensions are offered under a three year limited warranty. Personalised company logos moulded into t

Dubai - Protec, the one of Dubai's largest event rental companies used its BlackTrax real-time motion tracking system and its d3 Technologies' 4x4pro media servers to deliver some complex projection mapping for the grand opening ceremony for the World Air Games 2015 held at Sky Dive Dubai.

Sheikh Mansour bin Mohammed bin Rashid Al Maktoum, President of Dubai International Marine Club (DIMC) ushered in the 4th FAI World Air Games (WAG) at an impressive and colourful opening ceremony on December 3, 2015 in front of an appreciative audience of nearly 5,000 spectators, which included officials and contestants from over 50 countries.

"It was great," said Polish microlight team member Kajetan Ruks. "I've never seen anything like it before. And now, I want to see it again." Joao Franciso, who came from Portugal to compete in the air navigation race said, "O

USA - Electro-Voice announced the global launch of the ND Series of wired vocal and instrument microphones at NAMM 2016. The successor to the N/Dym Series, the new ND Series expands the previous product offering with four vocal and four instrument models for live performance and studio applications.

Each ND Series model is equipped with features that are unique to both its price point and its particular application - all designed to offer superior sound quality, acoustic control and robustness. At the heart of the new dynamic models is a new large-diaphragm capsule design which takes the technology of the original N/Dym capsule to new levels of sonic performance.

Vocalists can select a specific ND Series model to provide optimal results according to venue size and/or stage volume. Sound engineers and musicians will benefit from an easy set-up due to innovative mechanical sol

USA - Pure Groove Sound Systems has announced it has joined forces with Danley Sound Labs to produce a series of professional audio systems, specifically catered to the nightclub and dance music festival markets

Designed by Tom Danley, known for his patented work on loudspeaker designs in world-class facilities globally, the Pure Groove by Danley PGD series was created as "an unrivalled alternative to the industry standard sound systems currently used by large venues and music festivals".

The PG-J94 and the PG-96 are the first models in a new series exclusively designed and developed by Danley Sound Labs for Pure Groove Sound Systems. Danley's patented point source technology enables the new PGD series to provide an immersive musical experience that is pure, more powerful and better defined than their bulky counterpoints, says the company. Additional models will be

UK - This year saw the live TV ceremony, hosted by Dermot O'Leary, award EastEnders Best Serial Drama, Suranne Jones scooped Drama Performance, Best Newcomer went to Shayne Ward and Ant & Dec won Best Presenter for a 15th year running.

Arena Seating co-sponsored the 21st year of the star-studded event to supply 678 fully upholstered flat tip-up Diplomat seats with arms, which were installed in the front stalls section of London's O2 Arena, reserved for the VIP TV personality nominees and winners

Martin Clark, Arena Seating project manager and his 12-strong team, took just one day to install the prime view seats close to the stage, as well as the indoor and outdoor glittering red carpet. The build was completed in two halves, first the red carpet under the VIP seating was laid followed by the seat installation, then finally completed once the outdoor VIP red carpet had

USA - The Los Angeles Theatre on Broadway and Sixth Street in downtown Los Angeles is especially hot, sweaty and crowded. Today this sumptuous art deco palace built by Charlie Chaplin in 1931 is the location for an episode of TV show Scandal and rehearsals for the camp musical Carrie - The Killer Musical Experience. Chaplin, whose photograph with Albert Einstein adorns the gilded lobby, would be proud that, despite the lack of air conditioning and the crumbling plaster walls, his dream is still alive.

A week before opening night, lighting designer Brian Gale is on stage setting trim heights and focusing lights. He works with the confidence and calm that comes with a CV that would leave anyone slack-jawed. While officially 'retired' after 24 years as a fulltime designer with the Walt Disney Company, he is currently engaged as a consultant on six Disney projects, in

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