UK - Dance music magazine DJ Mag yesterday announced the results of its Best of Britain Awards, with first place in the Best Small Club category going to Audio in Brighton, beating venues such as Stealth in Nottingham and Corsica Studios in London to the prize.

Over the course of the summer of 2014 several promoters hired in Traction rigs for events where they required a superior sound to what was already installed, and the manager Robbie Whishaw and then owner John Holland were won over by the high clarity, big bass and high SPLs achieved from very few boxes. Discussions began to have new systems installed on both floors ready for Audio's 10th Anniversary celebrations on 12 September.

Before it was Audio, the venue was called The Escape and ruled Brighton's nightlife for 20 years. It's basement saw names such as The Stone Roses, Carl Cox, Fatboy Slim and Daft Punk grac

USA - Ward Evangelical Presbyterian Church in Northville, Michigan, has a long history in the Detroit metro area and now a recent lighting upgrade to Elation Professional LED fixtures is heightening the worship experience.

In 2013, in an on-going effort to reach out to more people and at different levels, Ward began to offer four different worship styles in three different venues, all on the same campus. When a contemporary service was launched, Bryan Guelzo was brought in as part of a full A/V renovation.

"When the current building was built about 15 years ago, no one had dreamed that Ward would be holding a contemporary service, let alone shoot HD video, Imag and stream services online," stated Bryan, who has worked as Ward's full-time AVL engineer since July of 2014, working alongside Austin Germain (director of production for worship), Billy Petty (director of wo

UK - Central Presentations Ltd (CPL) and Bright Productions collaborated to deliver an elaborate, innovative and fun 'airport' themed festive party environment for 1200 guests in full fancy dress for a leading technology brand.

Hangar B2 at Cotswold Airfield in Kemble, Gloucestershire, UK, a vast space built as a World War II RAF station which also served as a base to the Red Arrows aerobatics team until 1983, it's been largely utilized for storage since then ... was transformed into a gleaming modern airport fantasy world for the event.

Bright developed the design concept and CPL helped realize this by providing the full technical production - rigging, staging, power, video, sound and lighting.

CPL's project manager Lee Gruszeckyj led their crew of 10, working closely with Bright's production manager Andy Oswin.

While the building structure is well engineered and has a de

USA - Masked rockers Slipknot are making headlines with a fifth album release, the addition of new band members, their Knotfest concert series and the launch of the Prepare for Hell tour - and a grandMA2 console is along for the wild ride.

The band just marked the debut of their fifth studio album, .5: The Gray Chapter which was quickly followed by performances at their own Knotfest in San Bernardino, California. They began headlining the Prepare for Hell tour afterwards.

Trevor Ahlstrand, lighting designer/production designer for Slipknot, is using a grandMA2 full-size and amongst others 30 Clay Paky Stormy, obtained from Christie Lights, on the shows. Ahlstrand chose the grandMA2 for the show for "its reliability and worldwide availability".

He says the grandMA2's "speed and precision with individual parameter timing and effects are grea

Belgium - Maverick Belgian superstars Clouseau rocked the first two (of four) spectacular Clouseau Central shows at the Antwerp Sportpalais, complete with stage, set, lighting and visuals designed - to match the profile of the occasion - by Luc Peumans from creative design practice, Painting With Light.

The band last played the Sportpalais four years ago, in a series of landmark multi-date end-of-year shows that had become an annual end of year concert experience. Back in 2014 in some style with a six-month tour, they wanted to end the year with a performance phenomenon that was high-impact and memorable and different.

The initial concept discussions between Luc and lead singer Koen Wauters started nine months in advance. Of all the shows that the band have performed in Belgium's favourite arena ... they enjoyed 2003's in the round presentation the most.

Clouseau have

USA - Featuring competition in 36 different sporting events, the 22nd Central American and Caribbean Games were recently held at the Estadio Luis 'Pirata' Fuente in Veracruz, Mexico. To oversee the lighting design for the opening and closing ceremonies, lighting designer David Grill was brought on board and he brought with him a high-powered rig filled with 126 VL4000 Spot, 150 VL3500 Wash, and 50 VL3500 Wash FX luminaires from Philips Vari-Lite, supplied by Solotech.

"When setting up this type of lighting design you really have to be aware of your position and fixture choices," began Grill. "While the physical set-up of the stadium and the realities of lighting an outdoor event will dictate these choices to some extent, you really have to make sure you choose the right manufacturer's fixture for each position and purpose. I have worked with Vari-Lite luminaires f

USA - The Eli Young Band has hit the road on its North American tour and recently hosted its 2nd Annual Eli Young Band House Party featuring Clay Paky Sharpy and A.leda B-EYE K-20 fixtures playing supporting roles.

An American country music band from Texas, The Eli Young Band released its 10,000 Towns album earlier this year. During its career the band has had three singles reach number one on the Billboard country charts. The band is currently on a North American concert tour and just finished hosting its popular yearly House Party concerts on back-to-back weekends at Globe Life Park in Arlington, Texas and Minute Maid Park in Houston.

"The overall design of the tour is high-impact versatility," says lighting designer David Carr. "We deliver a lot of speed with fast moving lights and design."

Carr uses eight Clay Paky Sharpys as floor lights for t

USA - American jam band moe. ended 2014 in style with a sold out concert at The Palace Theatre in Albany, NY, where their LD Preston Hoffman once again made Robe Pointe moving lights the centrepiece of his rig.

The lighting for this special one-off - which also celebrated the start of moe.'s 25th year - was designed as a larger version of their recent touring system which had featured 12 x Pointes hung on a custom structure and used to create most of the signature looks.

For the New Year's Eve show, the Pointe count was upped to 24 ... plus a few wash lights and strobes. The additional 12 Pointes were flown on the venue's house bars and helped fill in the spaces with additional lighting.

Preston loves the almost endless variations on the beam offered by the Pointes.

"There's so much scope that I can keep a whole show fresh throughout just by using Pointes as the hard-

Ireland - Co-founder and composer for The Cranberries, Noel Hogan described the addition of Audient's 8 Channel Mic Pre & ADC ASP880, and USB Interface iD22 to his mobile and home studio set up, as "perfect for me".

Despite having painstakingly kitted out his studio with a lot of coveted vintage outboard gear, his work involved so much travelling that it was often left unused. "Finding a set up that I can take with me is what I've been working on more recently," he explains. "I wanted it to be clean, reliable and mobile so I went straight for the ASP880 combined with the iD22. The clean sound and separation I get from the units is amazing; that combined with the quick ease of use is perfect for any project studio."

Hogan has always found himself drawn to production - even in the early days. He confesses, "Most of my time in the studio (when n

Germany / Belgium - Belgian-based engineering and automation specialists WIcreations designed the 4m square six-faceted video cube which is the visual centrepiece of the current Record tour by German hip-hop superstars Die Fantastischen Vier.

The striking video feature - which moves on all axes and rotates throughout the show - is at the hub of the spectacular and inventive set, lighting and visuals show created by Gunther Hecker.

In addition to displaying conventional playback video, its different fascias are used as alternative lightsources. In the second half of the show, three large sections of gold mirror surface rise up from ground level around three sides of the stage, and the video takes on yet another dimension with these used to bounce and reflect its ambient light back onto the stage.

The Wicreations team led by project manager Yves Vervloet, was approached by Ste

UK - All Access Staging and Productions Ltd provided onstage risers to Paolo Nutini on his recent arena tour.

Stage manager Nik Rea approached All Access to provide the tour with a riser package. A multi-level riser system was put together with the decks in a diamond configuration which was filled in along the back from our stock triangular decks to produce areas for the band to move around on.

The production also used All Access rolling risers throughout the summer on their festival tour.

The All Access Versa system is designed so you can create the stage you require. Whether it is onstage risers or our proprietary rolling stage system.

(Jim Evans)

Austria - The opera El Juez (the Judge) celebrated its world première in the new Festspielhaus in Erl, Austria.

The Festspielhaus was built by STABAG (the general contractor) and designed by Delugan Meissl Associated Architects, Vienna. It seats over 862 people (there are 732 seats in the galleries and 130 removable seats in the orchestra pit area) and has the largest orchestra pit in the world (160 sq.m / 190 sq.yd.). The building covers no less than 7000 sq.m / 8372 sq.yd. Johannes Laugwitz (CA GmbH) from Königsbrunn was called in as technical lighting manager and grandMA2 operator for El Juez.

During his task, he was able to count on Clay Paky A.leda Wash K10s, A.leda Wash K20s and Alpha Wash 1500s.

Laugwitz faced a real challenge owing to budget and rigging limitations: the lighting technicians, led by Andrea Steiner, Ludwig Sigel and Roger Irman, only ha

Mexico - MIXPRO is one of a number of new rental company clients of Robe's Mexican distributor, Vari Internacional who have invested in Robe products in recent months.

The company, based in the lively, colourful and historically significant Xochimilco district of Mexico City, purchased 20 x Pointes which went straight out on tour with Mexican superstar rock singer Alejandra Guzman, whose lighting is designed by Martin Contreras.

MIXPRO's commercial director Ricardo Dabne had wanted to expand the company's lighting division with a new moving light purchase, and so began asking people what brands and models of lights they would recommend. This included Martin Contreras, who was one of the first LDs in Mexico to use Pointes on a previous tour.

MIXPRO made the decision to purchase based on this research, on Martin's good experiences with the fixtures and also the excellent after

Singapore - Clear-Com reports that Esplanade - Theatres on the Bay, Singapore's national performing arts centre has enhanced their production intercom system with Clear-Com digital solutions. The centre has upgraded its existing partyline intercom system with the HelixNet Digital Partyline system, as well as Eclipse HX Median and Eclipse HX PiCo Digital Matrix Intercom Systems. The project was supported by Clear-Com's local partner, Electronics & Engineering Pte Ltd.

Performance communications is an important element in Esplanade's daily operations, ensuring that all show cues are executed accurately on time and that the performances run smoothly. The existing partyline system was producing constant 'hum' and 'buzz' noises that are inherent in typical analogue systems. The noise was audible and at times, affected the quality of some of the quieter performances, so the decision w

UK - W-DMX by Wireless Solution Sweden AB is now on permanent display at the high end Alibi bar and nightclub in Belfast, Northern Ireland, as part of a new installation of kinetic light structures suspended over the dance floor. The display involves 12 large independently moving triangles, with the sides consisting of 36 Digital Pixel DPPT1000 Pixel Tubes (each tube contains 16 Pixels with 48 channels of control). Lighting Control was carried out by Showcad Artist and eight-way Artnet Device and signal sent via W-DMX.

Lighting designers Dave Charman & William Barrett of Liteworx AV LTD designed the ceiling with all equipment supplied by Liteworx AV LTD. The W-DMX System was specified and supplied by Nick Teryll from UK W-DMX distributor Whitelight.

Charman explains, "The W-DMX system was used solely to transmit data to the moving triangle pixel tubes, while the motor dat

USA - Named after a legendary football coach and home to the Conroe Independent School District's numerous High School athletic teams, Buddy Moorhead Stadium continues a proud tradition of Texas high school football with a modern facility seating over 8,400 fans.

The stadium's artificial turf and competition track were recently upgraded, but for several years, its sound system had been unreliable and fans often complained about intelligibility.

In 2014, the Conroe school district chose TASC A/V to provide a new sound system. TASC designed a system based on Community R6-51 high-output, horn-loaded loudspeaker systems. TASC Project Manager, Anthony DiDonato explained, "Our only real option for locating the loudspeakers was at the scoreboard. So, we needed an extra-long-throw box to cover over 150 yards. Plus, this is Texas football - we needed high SPL at long distance to g

Germany - Robe fixtures played a major role in lighting the massive New Year's Eve celebrations in front of the Brandenburg Gate in Berlin, closing a year that celebrated 25 years since the momentous 'fall' of the Berlin Wall in November, and that looked forward to 2015 with lots of positive energy and great hopes and ambitions.

Lighting designer Lars Murasch of TLT Event AG used nearly 100 Robe moving lights on his rig this year - 64 Pointes, 16 x MMX Spots and 18 x MMX WashBeams. The event featured all-action performances by Tony Christie, Tokio Hotel, Laith Al Deen, star violinist David Garrett and mezzo-soprano Katherine Jenkins, David Hasselhoff, the Hermes House Band and many more who were enjoyed by around a million visitors and broadcast live on Germany's National ZDF channel.

The Pointes - more than on last year's show which was also designed by Lars - were dotted all

Spain - LitecC has announced that Bofill&Asociados S.L. has recently become its new distributor in Spain. "B&A is a well-known company made of highly skilled professionals, specialised in providing advanced technologies in the entertainment sector since 1990. They offer a wide range of high quality products from relevant brands and operate in several markets such as the entertainment, architecture, exhibition, TV and theatre among the many, complying with the current strictest regulations," the company says.

B&A is located in Madrid, with warehouses in the outskirts of the city to keep a stock and support customers efficiently.

"They are recognized as a premier firm with the proven ability to successfully provide flexible and effective solutions at short notice. They truly have solid knowledge and 25-year strong experience of technologies and special needs of cu

USA / UK - The Chroma-Q premium performance lighting brand's North American and UK resellers are showing their support for the industry by making a contribution to highly deserving industry charity, Behind the Scenes, for every Chroma-Q Color One 100 LED Par sold.

The PLASA (formerly ESTA) Foundation's Behind the Scenes charity has been assisting industry members in North America since 2006, providing financial assistance to entertainment technology professionals, or their immediate family, who are seriously ill or injured.

Originally modelled on the UK-based Light Relief charity, Behind the Scenes was recently extended to cover the UK entertainment technology industry as well, and brings Light Relief under its umbrella.

Under the charity's Pledge a Product programme, Chroma-Q North American master distributor, A.C. Lighting Inc., will make a contribution for every Color One

USA - All three ETCP examinations will be held at USITT in Cincinnati, OH on the morning of Saturday, 21 March, 2015. Candidates who wish to take more than one exam should contact ETCP. USITT members and employees receive a $100 discount on examination fees. Interested applicants must submit their application, along with supporting materials and fee, to the ETCP office no later than February 28, 2015. The ETCP office is located at 630 9th Ave, Suite 609, New York, New York, 10036.

Candidate information, including eligibility requirements and applications, is available on the ETCP website (http://etcp.plasa.org/usitt2015.html). Materials can also be mailed by contacting Meredith Moseley-Bennett, ETCP Certification Manager, at 212-244-1505 or etcp@plasa.org.

Those unable to make it to USITT are encouraged to register and take an exam at one of over 190 computer based testing cen

UK - Working with video designer, Andrzej Goulding, XL Video are supplying projection and media control for the Theatre Royal Bath production of Saturday Night Fever, which is currently touring UK theatres.

The show, which is created in association with the Robert Stigwood Organisation, and is based on the classic 70s disco film of the same name, is directed by Ryan McBryde and choreographed by Andrew Wright.

This new production includes a multi-surface set which moves and changes throughout the show creating an ever-changing projection canvas. Andrzej Goulding's design calls for a combination of rear and front projection with content mapped on to both the moving and static elements.

XL's Project Manager, Ed Cooper worked with Goulding to specify the package of projectors and media servers to satisfy the design brief.

For rear-projected billboards, XL Video supplied

USA - From the moment he rose from below the stage on the back of a black pickup truck surrounded by flames, until he closed some two hours later with the provocative hit Country Girl (Shake It For Me), Luke Bryan gave the sellout crowds at his That's My Kind Of Night tour everything they expected from the red-hot country superstar.

There was the non-stop energy, the down-home rapport with the crowd, the dazzling pearly white smile, the exhilarating dance moves, the hard driving music and, to set an appropriately powerful visual tone for it all -- a dynamic lightshow that included 104 ÉPIX Strip 2.0 pixel mapping strips from Chauvet Professional.

Lighting designer Justin Kitchenman of Fadeup Design Group wanted the large collection of pixel mapped EPIX Strips to serve as a kind of electrifying visual link that tied his power-packed multi-dimensional design togeth

UK - Blackburn-based lighting and visuals rental company HSL supplied lighting plus all necessary trussing and rigging for no less than 21 pantomimes across the UK during the 2014/15 festive season for premier panto producer, Qdos.

Project managed for HSL by Lee Farrell, this year's clutch of productions saw HSL working with a host of talented theatre lighting designers, including Nick Richings, Ben Cracknell, Matt Clutterham and others.

Some intense logistics included dispatching 23 trucks from HSL containing approximately 1013 moving lights, 838 generics, 74 standard strobes and over a thousand egg strobes fitted into festoon.

This year HSL purchased 1051 new moving light gobos and 234 new generic gobos to supplement the already massive Qdos gobo stock managed by the company. Over all the 21 shows, HSL fitted in excess of 2000 gobos into moving lights and dispatched over 8

USA - Play Me!, an interactive 3D projection mapping spectacular created by French multimedia artists, Danny Rose for Vivid Sydney, an 18-day festival of music, light and ideas, has won the Judges Choice Award at the DIGI Awards 2015 in New York City.

"The DIGI Awards recognises the service providers who have gone the extra mile to ensure success for their clients, thereby furthering the digital signage industry as a whole. The Judges Choice Award winner impressed the team of experienced judges for its innovative use of technology and mass audience engagement, in a way that went beyond normal 'digital signage'," said David Keene, executive editor at NewBay Media's Digital Signage Magazine, and chairman of the Judges Committee for the DIGI Awards.

Vivid Sydney is an 18-day festival of light, music and ideas - the largest of its kind in the Southern Hemis

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