Business News

Genlyte Thomas Acquires Rosco Entertainment Technology
Sunday, 9 September 2001

Genlyte Thomas Group LLC (GTG) has reached an agreement to acquire the assets of Rosco Entertainment Technology, a subsidiary of Rosco Laboratories (Rosco) of Stamford CT, a privately held corporation. Rosco Entertainment Technology is a manufacturer of entertainment lighting equipment and controls, including the Intelligent Power System (IPS) line of theatrical dimming equipment, and the family of Horizon lighting controls. GTG plans to operate the business under the name Entertainment Technology, reverting to a name familiar to the theatrical lighting industry. Larry Powers, president and chief executive officer of Genlyte Thomas, commented: "We are pleased with the potential for this acquisition to enhance our commercial lighting products package. We intend to focus Entertainment Technology (ET) on providing innovative products into the educational, hospitality, theatrical, and theme park markets. Although the expected sales during 2002 will be less than $5 million, there is potential for the ET product package to increase our market penetration and product offering into existing GTG markets. The technically innovative and leading edge IPS dimming products of ET have a place not only in the theatrical and entertainment markets, but also in architectural markets where we are already successful."

Rosco is entering into an agreement with GTG to represent select ET products. Stan Miller, president of Rosco Laboratories, commented: "We will benefit in several ways with this melding of GTG’s manufacturing strengths and ET’s products. We, too, are v

Chorion Adds to Portfolio
Sunday, 9 September 2001

Leisure operator Chorion has picked up three of the West End’s most high-profile nightclubs. In a move that makes them the largest nightclub operator in the West End, the group has acquired Sugar Reef and Red Cube close to Leicester Square, and the Chocolate Bar in Berkeley Square, for around £7.5 million.

The hat-trick of deals follows Chorion’s earlier purchase of the 700-capacity 10 Room in Covent Garden for £2.75 million. These will all now join the stable which includes Tiger, Tiger and On Anon.

The move has left property entrepreneur Mark Fuller, who sold his Red Cube and Sugar Reef interests to Chorion in June, free to buy Legends in Mayfair - one of London’s longest-running nightclubs. Backed by a consortium of investors, he has paid a £1million premium for the lease on the property to Perthshire Leisure, the group that owns Abigail’s Party on Brewer Street.

Roger Sanchez With Pioneer
Sunday, 9 September 2001

DJ equipment manufacturer Pioneer caused a stir on the show floor today, when they presented their special guest, top DJ Roger Sanchez. As you can see from our pictures, the presence of Sanchez did not go unnoticed by one or two of the show’s DJ visitors . . .

Pioneer were busy highlighting the introduction of new products including the CMX-3000 next generation twin-CD player and the CDJ-1000 digital deck.

Stakeholder Pensions
Saturday, 8 September 2001

Employers in the industry will be aware that the Stakeholder Pension scheme is about to kick in. Although it isn’t relevant to every business, those of you who have five or more employees may soon have no choice in the matter - the arrival of stakeholder pensions on 8 October 2001 means that there isn’t much time left to act.

Stakeholder pensions - the new type of pension available since 6 April this year - offer a simple, low-cost, flexible pension option for your staff. From October, many employers will be obliged to offer their staff access to a stakeholder pension scheme (unless they already have a pension scheme in place for their employees). Those who don’t bother could wind up with a fine of up to £50,000.

Providing access to a stakeholder pension - and that is literally all you have to do - doesn’t need to cost you anything. You don’t have to run the pension scheme - you don’t even have to set the thing up - all you have to do is choose a scheme provider after consulting your staff and allow your staff to contribute directly through the payroll if they choose. You don’t have to contribute to your employees’ stakeholder pensions - but you can if you wish.

To find out if you are exempt, use the ‘decision tree’ on OPRA’s (Occupational Pensions Regulatory Authority) Stakeholder website at: Alternatively, take a look at the government’s booklet ‘Stakeholder pensions - an employer’s guide’. You can get a free copy from the Inland Reve

Soundcraft Going Live!
Saturday, 8 September 2001

"I thought that after eight years it was time I turned up and had a look," and this from a man who hardly needs instruction in the use of consoles. Graham Blyth, along with Phil Dudderidge, is the creator of all things Soundcraft, having founded the company 28 years ago.

Nevertheless he was there, attended all sessions, and was indeed attentive. While Blyth might not need the ministrations of Andy Dockerty, Chrys Lindop, Dave Kay and Andy May, he was not alone; there were four engineers from the British Forces Broadcasting Service (BFBS), and plenty of others with more than a passing knowledge of what all those thousands of knobs are for.

‘Going Live’ is in its ninth year - Blyth was just slightly off - and continues to be heavily subscribed. "We’ve always been over-subscribed," said Elizabeth Gates. "There’s over 100 this year. We’ve had to turn people away."

For a two or three-day packaged event (depending on your level of knowledge) it is very, very affordable, which is surely why I found so many freelancers here who’d paid their own way. "There’s nothing else like it around," said one. Chrys Lindop, as the inventor of in-ear monitoring and the founder of Garwood, arguably need never work again, yet he’s here giving his time and knowledge - why? "It’s important. Where else can people go to get this type of information?"

Now you don’t come out of this course with a qualification, there’s no testing, but does that make it invalid? For those of you ba

All the Queen’s Horses
Saturday, 8 September 2001

‘All The Queen’s Horses’ - a live equestrian spectacular with a cast of 3,000, including over 1,000 horses, is to be staged at the Royal Windsor Horse Show in 2002, as part of the tribute to The Queen in her Golden Jubilee Year.

One of a number of national events marking The Queen’s accession to the throne 50 years ago, ‘All The Queen’s Horses’ will be set against the backdrop of the floodlit Windsor Castle during three days of the annual Royal Windsor Horse Show, and will tell the story of her 50-year reign.

A purpose-built stage will be erected to house the orchestra, choir and dancers, together with an all-weather arena, to accommodate the 2,000 participants and over 1,000 horses that will perform in the show, which will be produced by Major Sir Michael Parker and directed by Simon Brooks-Ward. Parker, of course, has been the producer for most of the ‘Royal Spectaculars’ both here and abroad for the past 30 years.

The finale of the show will recreate the 1952 coronation procession with the inclusion of the Gold State Coach with its eight grey horses in harness, a sight that has not been seen since the 1977 Jubilee.

The event that will be more ‘Broadway’ than ‘Horse Show’, according to Brooks-Ward, and if previous Parker/Brooks-Ward collaborations are anything to go by, should feature some serious quantities of lighting, audio, staging and screen technology. It runs on the 16th, 17th and 18th May 2002.

Get Yourself to the PLASA Show
Friday, 7 September 2001

PLASA is now just two days away and it looks like this year’s event will be the best ever. PLASA is where you get to find out what over 400 of the industry’s leading players have been doing in the past few months. It’s got to be better than leafing through hundreds of product brochures or trawling the internet for information. Aside from the exhibition, there are plenty of things to catch the eye, including the DJ Competition on the Sunday, the newly-introduced iDJ Talk Zone offering advice to DJs, a comprehensive seminar and workshop programme, the PLASA Awards for Product Excellence, the various Feature Areas, and the many events, press launches and on-stand receptions organized by exhibitors. If you still haven’t registered for the event, don’t worry, you can register on the day. All you need to do is turn up at Earls Court 1 and register on the door. See you there.

Fourth Phase at the Edinburgh Film FestivalFourth Phase at the Edinburgh Film Festival
Friday, 7 September 2001

The Edinburgh International Film Festival, sponsored by FilmFour, ran from 12-26 August, 2001. To promote the Festival, FilmFour devised a projection of iconic film images and stars onto the rocks beneath Edinburgh Castle. To facilitate the project, leading lighting distributor Fourth Phase London was commissioned by Alan Ramsey at Fisher Productions to ensure the images would be clearly visible along Edinburgh's Princes Street. The high profile exercise presented huge challenges from the outset - projecting images from 125m onto a rocky surface, as opposed to a screen, meant that Fourth Phase technicians had to think carefully about the equipment they would use to complete the brief to its full potential. The rock's rough surface absorbed rather than reflected projected light, requiring pre-distorted imagery combined with a powerful 12,000W Pani projector. Additionally, Fourth Phase London specified a BP12 HMI projector, a highly powerful piece of equipment ideal for projection onto objects that are not standard projection surfaces.

Working closely with Wyatt Enever at DHA Lighting, Fourth Phase London was able to manipulate the digital artwork and output the images onto heat-resistant slides suitable for such projection. Plus, regular contact with Film Four enabled Fourth Phase technicians to use their experience to ensure the best possible end result. Having developed and prepared a number of slides with some of the most striking images from a number of box-office hit films and some of the biggest names in film including Sean Connery, Billy Connolly, Ewan McGregor and

Color Kinetics at PLASA
Friday, 7 September 2001

at PLASA 2001 with exciting new developments in full spectrum digital lighting technology:

C-Splash, the newest fixture in the C-Series line of full spectrum digital lighting products. C-Splash brings beautiful coloured light and colour-changing effects to underwater locations such as fountains and landscape ponds. Fully enclosed in a switch-free brass housing, C-Splash is easily programmed through Color Kinetics’ new external, handheld Zapi controller, and is powered by the brand-new sMOPS power supply.

iColor Cove LT is the newest cove light fixture in the popular iColor Series of digital lighting products. iColor Cove LT significantly extends the types of applications in which digital cove lighting is used. Specifically designed for installations requiring lower intensity light output and a lower cost, iColor Cove LT offers all the intelligent control capabilities and benefits of Color Kinetics’ patented, digital LED-based Chromacore technology.

iColor Fresco, the world’s first digital cove light for indoor/outdoor installations. iColor Fresco provides dynamic coluor-changing lighting effects via Color Kinetics’ patented LED-based Chromacore intelligent lighting technology. iColor Fresco is housed in stylishly rugged aluminum, and is available in 4ft, 2ft and 1ft lengths.

iPlayer 2, the next generation of Color Kinetics’ compact iPlayer show storage and playback device. iPlayer 2 offers eight times the original show storage capacity and multi-show storage. Users may easily select one of eight custom light shows at the push of a butto

Sound Advance in Mean Fiddler’s New Venture
Friday, 7 September 2001

Continuing their long relationship with the Mean Fiddler Group, sound specialists Encore were asked to specify an audio playback system for the leisure group’s latest Central London development, eponymously dedicated to the Irish celebrity chef, Conrad Gallagher. Owned by Vince Power’s company, the luxurious 170-seat Conrad Gallagher restaurant opened last month at 179 Shaftesbury Avenue in London’s West End, serving modern Irish food, with a bar/lounge situated above. It is open seven days a week. Some 30 Sound Advance CT10 recessed ceiling speakers, purchased from their exclusive UK distributors, Sound Department, have been fitted on each floor, including the toilets and the private dining room.

Encore’s Mick Martin explained: "We have worked extensively for the Mean Fiddler Group over the years - and we have also fitted CT10s into a number of other high profile restaurants, including Oliver Peyton’s Mash. The requirements at Conrad Gallagher were to deliver an evenly-distributed sound system across the entire restaurant, and we chose Sound Advance firstly because architects and designers love the fact that they can be painted to complement the decor (in this case blue), secondly because we can gain an even 180° dispersion, and thirdly because they sound good."

The CT10s are also ideal when ceiling height is restricted, as was the case here. This provides the reinforcement end of a system which has been split into four sound zones, each with their own independent sound sources, which are fed from five-disk CD players racked in

The Nintendo Show 2001
Friday, 7 September 2001

On Saturday 1 September, Nintendo hosted its 2001 Conference & Exhibition at the Methodist Church Hall Westminster in London, utilizing the main church hall and a further eight rooms. The church was transformed into a main conference hall, two central gaming areas, break-off gaming areas and press/Q&A rooms. Stage Electrics was contracted to design the event's lighting using WYSIWYG visualization software and the new HOG PC from Flying Pig Systems. Stage Electrics’ production team also provided lighting, rigging and mains distribution. PSL provided the five Barco projection system with Concise’s powerful Stealth graphics system for the main hall. Rigging was supported by Outback Rigging.

Creative director Andy McDonald of Cake Media explained that the event had been staged to reveal the launch of the new Nintendo Game Cube and to communicate sales and marketing results. The enormous task of creating atmospheres was down to set designer Patrick Donohue with scenery by Scena. Stage Electrics' lighting designer David Stewart utilised 42 Martin Professional MAC moving lights including 12 MAC 2000s, 12 MAC 300s, 84 generics including 60 Source Four Pars, a Wholehog II for the main conference and an Avolites Pearl for the gaming areas. The main hall had a basic box truss to provide rigging points for the large projection screen and Nintendo sign. The Organ was part of the backdrop and was uplit with six MAC 600s and 11 Raylight Pars, and front lit with four MAC 500s from the truss. Optikinetics GoboPro projectors provided extra branding with custom glass gobos by Pr

West End Show Tickets
Friday, 7 September 2001

If you’re looking for ways to entertain clients during the forthcoming PLASA Show then why not consider taking them to see some of the hottest shows in London. On the Monday evening we have tickets for the hugely popular Mamma Mia at the Prince Edward Theatre. The show starts at 7.30 and we have excellent seats in the stalls for £32.50.

We also have tickets for Stravinsky: The Rite of Spring which is part of the Proms Season at the Royal Albert Hall. These are for Wednesday 12th September with the performance commencing at 7.30pm. Again we have the best seats in the stalls for £35.00 each.

If you’re staying on in London after PLASA, we also have a number of tickets for the Divas at the Donmar show featuring Sian Phillips which takes place on Thursday 13th September at 7.30pm. Tickets £24.00. To take advantage of these offers simply visit the PLASA Stand (K19).

We’ve also been contacted by the Really Useful Group who have arranged a special ticket deal for visitors to PLASA for the Pet Shop Boys’ musical Closer to Heaven, which we reviewed in the August issue of L&SI. The offer applies to any Monday-Friday performance 10th September-28th September 2001 and gives visitors £10 discount on tickets that are usually £28.50 or £30.00. Call the Box Office on 020 7836 3334 and quote "PLASA Offer" or take your PLASA visitor badge to the Box Office.

RSC Technical Staff to Strike
Friday, 7 September 2001

Members of the Royal Shakespeare Company’s technical teams in Stratford-upon-Avon will go on strike on 15 September in protest over planned redundancies. Almost 90% of 200 members of the Broadcasting, Entertainment, Cinematograph and Theatre Union (BECTU) have agreed to the action. BECTU had previously attempted to negotiate on behalf of its members, but without success. BECTU assistant general secretary Gerry Morrissey said performances would be affected from 15 September because of the walkout by lighting staff, stage crews, wardrobe employees and technical workers.

A production of Julius Caesar is listed for that night in the midst of a season which includes performances of Twelfth Night and Hamlet. BECTU has also said that industrial action will continue after 15 September. The union says about two-thirds of technical staff at the company could lose their jobs if plans to abandon the fixed Shakespeare season at Stratford-upon-Avon go ahead. Chris Foy, managing director of the RSC, is reported by the BBC as saying: "Industrial action by BECTU members in Stratford is extremely regrettable. "Our priority is not to disappoint audiences and to continue performing in Stratford. If shows are affected, we will tell ticketholders as soon as possible." Foy said voluntary redundancy had meant it had been able to reduce the number of people affected by cuts by more than half. "We want the RSC to remain fresh and relevant to a new generation of theatre-goers," he said. The RSC plans to concentrate on its Stratford base and on tou

Stanton Enjoy Record Summer
Thursday, 6 September 2001

Stanton has enjoyed a record dance season this summer - courtesy of UK distributors, Lamba plc. Its extensive range has provided the cartridges of choice at all the major UK summer festivals, including V2001, Creamfields and the Reading Festival, while the Ministry of Sound requested a selection of MP4s and Trackmasters for their European tours and the Knebworth House extravaganza in August.

Determined not to miss out, London’s leading superclub, Fabric, has also been utilizing Trackmasters, i-Tracks and 500 AL cartridges at the request of their DJs. Lamba marketing manager, Paul Bierton, told PLASA Media: "Dance venues are going Stanton crazy, and when people like Alan Green, Cream’s technical manager, request 21 605SK cartridges for use at Creamfields, it can be difficult to keep up with demand." Even individual DJs such as Paul Oakenfold specifically requested a Stanton DJF-1 filter for use in his Channel 4-televised show on Clapham Common, to mark the end of the Ashes cricket test series.

Delta Wins Legal Case Against Federal
Thursday, 6 September 2001

After over two years protracted legal action, and at a cost in legal fees alone of over £250,000, Chris Kenyon, founder of Delta Sound, has succeeded in his claim against Bob Long and Federal Signal for breach of contract and misrepresentation in the agreement for the sale of Delta's business in 1999. Damages of over £300,000 with interest, plus costs, were awarded against Federal. In addition, the judge awarded punitive indemnity costs against Federal. The case arose as a result of the terms of the sale which valued Delta at £500,000, to be paid for on the basis of commission payments over three years. Federal denied that such an arrangement had ever been agreed.

Full story in the October issue of L&SI.

New LightJockey at PLASA 2001
Thursday, 6 September 2001

PLASA 2001 will see the official release of LightJockey 2.0, an upgraded version of Martin’s popular Windows- based lighting controller. LightJockey 2 incorporates a host of useful upgrades including a new PCI card for increased PC interface capabilities (also USB and PCMCIA interface options.

Windows 2000 compatible, other new features include a Solid Beam Virtual Visualizer, a high quality visualization simulator capable of creating realistic, solid, 3D beams. Visually accurate and easy to understand, the simulator allows you to create virtual visualizations off-site. For more flexible music capabilities, LightJockey 2.0 interfaces with Winamp to play a multitude of digital audio files including MP3. LightJockey 2.0 includes audio CD ROM capability as well. It also supports SMPTE and MIDI timecode with suitable interface. And a new show-saver backup feature ensures that shows won’t be lost.

Martin can be found on Stand E54/E56

Screenco Enlists Volunteers at Edinburgh FestivalScreenco Enlists Volunteers at Edinburgh Festival
Thursday, 6 September 2001

One of the community highlights for visitors to the recent Edinburgh Festival was the opportunity to attend a free festival in the beautifully-raked 2,000-seat bowl in Princes Street Gardens. The event, which ran daily through to 9pm, gave appearing Festival fringe acts the chance to preview their work in a series of short showcase ‘tasters’ on the main stage. This was interspersed with Worldart Media’s own productions and concerts. The 22-day event was manned by volunteer students looking to learn all aspects of staging a show, under the auspices of event producer, Richard Hamer, and event stage manager, Claire Palmer.

In the case of Screenco, who lent its support for the fourth consecutive year with a 4 x 4 Saco 15mm pixel pitch display, it gave its screen and camera engineer, Jon Baverstock, the chance to give hands-on experience to would-be technicians - many of them photographers looking to progress beyond the ‘stills’ domain.

The initiative was directed by Ian Murray, whose company Festival Revue 2001 Ltd, rent the bandstand from Edinburgh Council. With support from major sponsors, Telewest and BT Broadcast Services, this is now the largest arts broadcast in the world, and next year will feature on the net and broadband TV (as well as Telewest). In addition to the i-mag display, Screenco provided a four-camera PPU (broadcast-quality, industry-standard DW-30s) with widescreen capability, and additional feeds were provided by three video players - and a camera mounted on a balloon. BBC Radio 3 and the local Radio Forth also took feeds.

New JBL Speakers for West Bromwich AlbionNew JBL Speakers for West Bromwich Albion
Thursday, 6 September 2001

Blackburn-based Romers Electronics has specified and installed a custom-designed sound system for the new and existing stands at West Bromwich Albion Football Club. With safety issues and life-safety systems in football grounds and sports arenas top of the agenda, the need for high-level quality, reliable sound has never been greater. Audio systems are also being utilized for the increasingly popular phenomenon of pre and mid-match entertainments.

The requirement for a high quality entertainment system in addition to the safety requirements resulted in the design and construction of two new customised speakers by Arbiter - the AF1 and AF2 JBL-loaded boxes - which were built for Arbiter by Ad Lib Audio in Liverpool. Romers’ MD John Caton told PLASA Media: "We chose JBL components because Arbiter guaranteed the delivery in what turned into a very tight schedule - in time for the new season to kick-off."

The AF2 and the smaller AF1 full-bandwidth JBL reflex boxes are now available as part of the Arbiter/JBL product range. The potent AF2 box is optimized using a JBL 12" 2020 loudspeaker and a 2446 high frequency compression driver, designed to work together via a passive crossover network for maximum cost-effectively. 22 AF2s were supplied to the club, along with 22 AF1s , strategically located in the ground.

Selecon Pacific Lights ‘My Fair Lady’Selecon Pacific Lights ‘My Fair Lady’
Wednesday, 5 September 2001

In its West End debut, Selecon's unique 80volt Pacific is being used to show Eliza Doolittle and Professor Henry Higgins in the best possible light in Cameron Mackintosh's new production of My Fair Lady at the Theatre Royal, Drury Lane in London. After an initial run at the National Theatre, the show, lit by top lighting designer, David Hersey, has transferred to the much larger stage at Drury Lane. With an output equivalent to a 2.5kW light, the Pacific provides the effect of sunlight streaming through the four large windows of the professor's study.

Bryan Raven, general manager of White Light who supplied all the lighting for the show, explains. "The phone call came half way through the focus period of the West End transfer of the acclaimed National Theatre production of My Fair Lady. It was lighting designer David Hersey: did White Light have anything brighter than a 750W Source Four available? Hersey was focusing the 'opening curtain' toplight window gobos for the show: four lanterns fitted with DHA's new YoYo+ indexing gobo yoyo and glass window gobos. On cue, the yoyos are used to slide gobos with a curtain edge profile across the glass window gobo, creating the effect of curtains being opened. With the lighting rig for the Drury Lane version of the show consisting largely of 750W Source Fours, the effect somehow just wasn't cutting through. But the requirements were slightly more complicated than just a brighter lantern: any replacement also had to offer a cool gate in order to protect the yoyo and gobos from heat damage."

White Light arra

Wildfire and UV/FX Form Strategic Alliance
Tuesday, 4 September 2001

An alliance has been established between ultraviolet lighting manufacturer and scenic production firms Wildfire and UV/FX. The agreement, which commences immediately, calls for UV/FX to handle all of Wildfire’s scenic design and production, while UV/FX will exclusively utilize Wildfire’s ultraviolet lighting fixtures, lamps and other creative materials on all of its projects.

"Over the years, Wildfire has helped create some of the most dramatic ultraviolet scenic productions at destinations and events all around the world. Working with UV/FX, we will be able to expand our scope of services while continuing to create the innovative ultraviolet lighting systems that the industry has come to expect from us," said Wildfire vice president John Berardi. This new alliance also reunites UV/FX president Richard Green and creative director Kent Mathieu with Wildfire, the company Green helped found back in 1989."“UF/FX is excited about this arrangement, as we know first-hand how well Wildfire’s UV lighting products bring ultraviolet scenic productions to life," said Green.

UV/FX has built its reputation providing design, art direction and painting capabilities for ultraviolet-based scenic backdrops, murals, sets, stages, costumes and practically any other surface for music, film, stage, club, architectural and themed entertainment projects worldwide. Since 1989, Wildfire has been providing the entertainment industry with ultraviolet lighting fixtures, ultraviolet sensitive paints, creative materials, and scenic art for the creation of s

PLASA Launches Clinic
Tuesday, 4 September 2001

For the first time PLASA is running an on-site clinic at the PLASA Show to lend useful business support and advice to member companies exhibiting at the event. This new initiative, which will also see the launch of a new health-related service, is aimed not only at existing PLASA members, but also at prospective members who can learn for themselves the advantages to be gained from using PLASA services. During the course of the Show, representatives from the Association's range of service providers will be on hand in the PLASA Clinic to answer questions and assist members. Services available include the following:

Telephone Interpreting Service provided by Comunicado: interpreters specializing in over 100 languages. Cost is charged per minute, less than half price to PLASA members.

Legal Advice Service provided by Sherman Phillips: advice on intellectual property, contract, leasehold matters and company matters. Free 15 minutes of advice per call. Solicitor will advise if any costs to be incurred.

PLASA Insurance Scheme provided by Allan, Chapman and James: single comprehensive policy with wide range of benefits including exhibitions, full theft cover, samples and spares, financial loss etc. Further policies include medical insurance, stakeholder pensions. Preferential rates for UK company members.

Human Resources provided by CP Associates: professional advice on human resource issues including terms of employment, pay reviews, redundancy etc. Free service to eligible members.Business Financial Reporting Service provided by Dun and Bradstreet: financial reports evalu

Metro Leads UK into European Multi Camera High Definition Shoots
Tuesday, 4 September 2001

Metro Broadcast led the UK by providing state-of-the-art High-Definition multicamera equipment into Europe, on Saturday 11th August 2001. Produced by Done and Dusted and staged at the Mungersdorf stadium in Cologne, Germany, the Robbie Williams concert was captured using 15 Sony High-Definition cameras following Metro’s success in supplying the UK’s first ever multi-camera High-Definition shoot to an S Club 7 concert earlier this summer. Metro sourced six of the camcorders from the Continent using its global agency, Eurocrew Worldwide, whilst obtaining the other nine from various hire companies in the UK. Having managed the first multicamera High-Definition shoot, the main challenges were logistical. "10 camcorders from one country was exciting in itself, but 15 spread over four was certainly a challenge," reveals Mark Cox, facilities director at Metro. "There were also a few extra toys on this shoot, including an Akela crane and 300’ cherry picker to add to the excitement of the rig," adds Cox.

This highly mobile and compact 2.2 million pixel acquisition and recording solution offers superb picture quality efficiently packed onto a half inch tape. "As an alternative medium to film, High-Definition is a very strong competitor to 16mm at the moment and certainly more flexible," states Celia Blaker, producer at Done and Dusted. The concert will be post-produced by The Farm for release on DVD and video at a later date.

World’s First Rotating Bridge Opens to Public
Tuesday, 4 September 2001

Four days of events will mark the public opening of the world's first rotating bridge. The Gateshead Millennium Bridge links Newcastle Quayside with the new arts and leisure developments on Gateshead Quays - including BALTIC the Centre for Contemporary Art, which opens next year, and the Music Centre Gateshead, where work has already started on the new international centre for music performance and education. The £9.7 million lottery-funded project will be officially opened on Friday September 14, the date for the first public showing of its high-tech lighting system. This will be followed by a weekend of unique live musical performances - staged by music north, the producing and presenting arm of Music Centre, Gateshead.

Fourth Phase and the Kings of the Castle
Monday, 3 September 2001

Lighting distributor Fourth Phase in London was chosen to provide additional projection equipment for what was the culmination of U2's Elevation Tour, which played to fans at the specially constructed 80,000 capacity arena at Slane Castle, County Meath, Ireland, on August 24 and September 1.

U2's regular show designer Willie Williams and lighting director Bruce Ramus worked with the band to create a simple background to complement the mega group’s performances. Working closely with head of projection Anne Johnston, Williams chose Fourth Phase in the USA to supply products for the duration of the world tour: initially the design used four projectors but, due to the greatly increased size of the audience at Slane Castle, Fourth Phase London was asked to supply an additional four projectors.

Integral to the production, the E/T/C Audiovisuel PIGI projectors were used to project abstract images (the work of acclaimed Irish artist Catherine Owens, and a team of English artists) and to alter the atmosphere and colour temperature during the concerts. In line with worldwide ticket sales for the tour, over 200,000 tickets for all eight of U2's UK shows sold out within hours of going on sale in March. Ticket sales for the Slane Castle concert sold out in under an hour, and left thousands of U2 fans disappointed. Subsequently, special permission was granted for the band to put on a historic additional performance on September 1. The culmination of the Elevation Tour at Slane Castle marked the band's first concert appearance in Ireland in four years and the 20th anniversary of


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