UK - When Kidzania London opened its doors at Westfield London for the first time on 25 June, 300 local children converged on the child-size city, keen to be the first to experience this real-life introduction to the adult world.

The atmosphere on opening day was electric, and as the excited children charged into the city, they were greeted by music and special effects delivered through a Bose audio system.

As an official industry partner of Kidzania London, Bose supplied all of the audio within the city, from the streets on the main concourse to many of the 60 individual establishments, including a Hospital, Police Station, Fire Station, Airline, Stadium and Theatre.

Built over the course of one year, the 75,000sq.ft child-size city is the equivalent in size to Leicester Square, with the ceiling height of Heathrow Terminal Five. It is able to welcome up to 1,700 visitors at

USA - The 15-passenger van that Brothers Gow rolls with has logged a lot of miles of late, as the much-in-demand jam band has been playing to packed houses from San Diego to Seattle on its current Bring The Heat tour in support of its fourth studio album, Reflections. Fans aren't flocking just to hear the quintet's captivating blend of rock, funk, jazz and reggae, they're coming to see it too, thanks to a quick moving lightshow that reflects the improvisational spirit of the music.

Lighting is so much a part of the Brothers Gow experience that their website refers to their LD Matt Collier as the sixth member of the band. Collier, who traverses the country with the well-travelled band (it's been averaging over 80 shows a year), shares the group's passion for taking the audience's experience to the next level. This commitment led him to expand his lighting rig for the curre

UK - Avolites Tiger Touch II consoles and Ai media servers were partners for The Charlatans, as they performed at Manchester's Castlefield Bowl for Summer in the City.

Appearing after a special event at Hotel Football the previous night, the band captivated the audience with an assortment of crowd-pleasers from their extensive catalogue, as well as new material from their latest album, Modern Nature.

Andy Liddle programmed and operated the lighting using an Avolites Tiger Touch II console, which controlled an array of lighting fixtures including Martin MAC Vipers, Quantum Washes, Atomic 3000s and Clay Paky Sharpys supplied and rigged by Adlib Lighting with a floor package from Lite Alternative consisting of Solaris Flares, i-Pix Satellite IIs and SGM X5s.

Chris Ewington of i-Pix programmed and operated the video content for the show, using 24 of the Db1 video and ligh

Namibia - Celebrating the very best of Namibian musical and recording talent, the 2015 Namibian Annual Music Awards (NAMAs) was staged at the Swakopmund Indoor Sports Centre, in the coastal city of the same name, with full technical production delivered by Windhoek based dB Audio Namibia for producers Rockstar 4000.

The eye-catching lighting scheme was created by Jonathan Bandli from design practice Bad Weather in Cape Town, and included over 100 Robe moving lights.

The show, sponsored by a combination of Mobile Telecommunications Company (MTC) and the Namibian Broadcasting Corporation (NBC) who broadcast it live, was the second NAMAs for Jonathan, having been asked on-board last year by dB Audio Namibia to set the scene with a production design incorporating the visual mediums of lighting, video and set.

He received a brief from the producers outlining the theme and directi

South Africa - The Michael W Smith South African Tour 2015 included performances at the CRC in Bloemfontein, Durban ICC, GrandWest Arena in Cape Town, Rhema Church in Johannesburg and the Moreletapark Church in Pretoria. With the venues ranging in size and application from church auditoriums to the convention centre, and set up different at each location, Wayne Mertz had little choice but to busk a fair amount of the show - a Robe rig - on his grandMA2 lite.

Mertz, lighting operator for the South African tour, is from Delta Stage Lighting in Nashville. The Delta motto says it all: "Not the one in the limelight, just the ones who cast it." It was the seventh show he had worked on for Michael W Smith and the first time in his career to make use of Robe Pointes.

The tour was organised by 104 Concerts who appointed Phoenix 5 Productions to assess the artist's rider and i

South Africa - The annual Hillsong Colour Conference was hosted at the Grand West Casino in Cape Town from 15-19 April. Rental company C&S supplied and set up the custom built stage, lighting - which included over 160 Robe fixtures - rigging, trussing, LED Screens and the Backline. Bad Weather, for the third consecutive year, helped Hillsong South Africa redesign and primarily execute the lighting and video elements whilst assisting all areas of the technical production.

"As the conference was hosted over three countries, our equipment had to meet with international standards," commented Henning de Villiers, production manager at C&S. "We worked with the Hillsong team to achieve and surpass all expectations and were delighted that the event was a major success."

Jonathan Bandli, creative director at Bad Weather elaborates. "This process is very complex

UK - In response to a significant increase in business, award-winning sound design and audio facility Factory has expanded its offering to incorporate two new audio studios, including one of the first Dolby Atmos certified mix rooms for Commercials & Trailers.

Acoustic consultancy White Mark Ltd was called in to handle the design of both rooms on the basis of Factory's previous good experience with the company. This is the fourth time the consultancy has undertaken work for Factory.

"White Mark was instrumental in designing our existing studios, which have proved to be a great success," says Ben Firth, Factory's head of technical support and sound engineer. "We have always been very happy with the service White Mark provides, and their knowledge of designing world class studios is invaluable."

Established in 1997, the Soho-based Factory Family Group offer

USA - Audinate's industry leading networking solution Dante helped Willow Creek Community Church, a Chicago metro area house of worship solve the problem of distributing high-quality audio to close to 20,000 congregants each week. Through a high-capacity, low-latency Dante media network, the South Barrington, Illinois interdenominational church has significantly simplified the process of routing, distributing and managing multiple audio channels across four distinct venues on campus.

In the main auditorium, Willow Creek Community's congregants enjoy live musical performances, hear inspirational sermons and witness ceremonies like baptisms and weddings. Incorporating a Dante network ensures high-quality sound can be heard from the main level up to the mezzanine and upper balconies. By installing Dante, Willow Creek Community can leverage a standard IT network and lightweight, low

UK - The Arcadia Spectacular stage pumped out some serious visuals at Glastonbury this year created and controlled by blinkinLAB's Tom Wall using an Avolites Sapphire Media and Ai server.

The Spider stage is Arcadia's most monumental environment. Built from recycled military hardware, it is a 360-degree, interactive environment with a fully programmable DJ booth and integrated video mapping, amongst many other pyrotechnics!

2015 is the third year running that Tom Wall has masterminded the Arcadia visuals. This year's performance was called the Metamorphosis show, and the returning spider was accompanied by some new Ai powered costumes and zorbing balls, created by Light Initiative.

"We created mapped animations for the projection on each face of the three legs, the LED screens installed inside and around the DJ booth, and this year for Light Initiative's alien eg

Regional Catastrophe - Regional theatres have claimed that planned government cuts could have "catastrophic" effects on the sector. George Osborne last week told government departments to prepare for cuts of 25% and 40% in order to make £20 billion of savings. Curve chief executive Fiona Allan said that if these cuts were passed on to the theatre sector by the Department for Culture, Media and Sport and the Department for Communities and Local Government, they would have a "catastrophic effect on the theatre ecology of this country".

She warned that training programmes, support for emerging artists and the development of new work "would be slashed" as a result. "The subsidised sector is without doubt the research and development arm of the commercial sector, where new productions, new work and new talent are developed. Ultimately, cuts of

UK - 5 Star Family Reunion is a new game show that sees UK family and their long-lost overseas relatives working together, both from the studio and over satellite link, to win a once-in-a-lifetime reunion in a five star location.

The show, produced by 12 Yard, is being filmed for the BBC at Pacific Quay Glasgow and is hosted by Nick Knowles. Richard Martin Lighting (RML) provides the lighting rig; RML's relationship with local firm Technique Systems continues and they are on hand to ensure a smooth transition from London to Scotland.

Lighting designer Roger Williams lights the show and his rig features MAC Auras, Sharpys, Alpha Spot 700 HPE, Colour Block 2 Kits and an Alex Follow Spot. "Auras are my favourite lamps so I've used those on a wide zoom in the back of shot to fill out the gaps and also sometimes zoomed in for a sharper beam," says Roger. "I've

UK - Following the establishment of offices in Hong Kong and, more recently, Sydney, theatre consultancy practice, Theatreplan continues to expand and develop operations with the addition of new team members and the launch of a new website.

Practice manager Paul Connolly has moved from his post in London to manage the Hong Kong office, where he will be working alongside, Robin Auld, and new project liaison officer, Ellen Young. Paul will take responsibility for business development and marketing initiatives and will support Robin on the West Kowloon Cultural District and other projects.

"It's an exciting time for Theatreplan Hong Kong," said Paul. "We are working on two prestigious building projects, have moved into a new office in east Kowloon, and are currently speaking with a number of local architects about new project opportunities. We're also delighted to

UK - DTS Raptor and Wonder supplied by Qeytek wowed the crowd at Two Counties Music Festival at Bewl Water in Kent.

Steve Hubbard, lighting designer and owner of BigFish SRL explains why he likes and uses the lights from DTS, "First, we are so pleased to be the main supplier of stage, roofing, rigging, lighting and sound to theTwo Counties Music Festival. With such a great turn out it certainly was a resounding success."

Hubbard continues, "DTS products were truly spectacular, I was blown away by the light output and quality of light. The continuous pan rotation, FPR, is a great feature. Whilst it is too early to say, I do feel the reliability will be excellent. Certainly if I judge the DTS XR series I have from 10 years ago, and they are still going strong. Having Qeytek as the UK partner for DTS is an added bonus, and a breath of fresh air, their combined indu

Switzerland - Stagelight AG of Switzerland has been celebrating the receipt of the first Robert Juliat Merlin followspots to roll off the production line. Merlin is Robert Juliat's new 2500W HMI sturdy followspot designed specifically for the touring market.

Merlin worked its magic on the Stagelight team at Lucerne's Light and Sound show in October 2014, where they immediately placed an order for four of the 2500W HMI touring giants from Robert Juliat's Swiss supplier, Electric Claudio Merlo.

"It was time to replace our old, big followspots, so we were looking around for a good alternative and found Robert Juliat's new Merlin," says Stagelight's managing director, Peter Lemmenmeier. "We decided on Merlin because of its excellent new technology: the newly developed integrated PSU with the 2500W HMI arc lamp provide great brightness; the zoom range from 3° to

Switzerland - Martin Audio's premier PA systems were all across the main stages at Europe's biggest hip-hop festival recently. Crowds of up to 130,000 attending OpenAir Frauenfeld in Switzerland were treated to music from leading exponents of the dance genre pumping through their high profile rigs across the three main stages.

These were equipped exclusively with Martin Audio components by Stagelight AG Showtechnik Switzerland, a long time user of Martin Audio systems, as part of a complete technical infrastructure that included lighting, video, audio and power. All Martin Audio components were sourced from their own inventory with the exception of the main stage, where Berlin based Complete Audio, the first company to invest in the British manufacturer's new generation MLA series, supplied this award winning system.

Stagelight audio project manager, Michael Dünki confirms th

Germany - A special televised concert of La Bohème - a new production in the NDR Classic Open Air series - took place recently in Hannover's Maschpark.

Puccini's famous opera was not only heard live by an audience of 20,000 through Martin Audio's award-winning MLA loudspeaker array system, but by television viewers tuning into NDR throughout the country and those picking up the live stream on

The 2,000 ticketed concert goers in front of the stage were joined by crowds who gathered in the park, where they had an opportunity to witness the event (including rehearsal) for free.

Responsible for the event's sound system design was once again Georg Hentschel of Braunschweig based LiveAudio event technic GmbH. A specialist in classical shows, he had helped deliver the first classical open air concert (with MLA) in Hannover last year.

The main PA rig comprised two

Italy- Based outside Turku, Finnish loudspeaker manufacturer Aura Audio Oy is using the magic of Powersoft's M-Force's electromagnetic conversion principle to power its XD30 subwoofer. This was pressed into action at the recent Colors dance festival at Kaapelitehdas, the former cable factory in Helsinki.

Aura Audio's managing director, Mika Isotalo, explains that they worked closely with rental company AMJ Turku Audio Oy, who equipped both the main and second stages with Aura's premier sound reinforcement systems.

M-Force first captured their imagination at its launch during Prolight+Sound 2013 in Frankfurt. "We started working with it immediately, so that by Frankfurt this year we were able to present our own M-Force product, the XD30 subwoofer," stated Mika. At the same time the X-series amplifiers had been introduced.

M-Force features an innovative transducer ba

Kazakhstan - Astana city celebrated its 21st anniversary as Kazakhstan's capital on 6 July with an abundance of festivities. Announced as the new capital by the Kazakh President in 1994 and later receiving the title City of Peace from UNESCO in 1999, Astana has become an architectural gem and a symbol of the achievements of the Republic of Kazakhstan for the years of its independence.

Astana Day is a beautiful celebration attracting thousands of visitors as a culmination of week-long festivities. This day recognizes Astana's growth from a provincial city to a 21st century regional hub of Central Asia, and with the attendance of high profile politicians such as the President of Kazakhstan, Nursultan Nazarbayev, the President of Kirgistan, Almazbek Atambayev and the former President of Turkey, Abdulla Gjulem, as well as world famous artists, opera and ballet performers it is a bri

UK - Presteigne Broadcast Hire has now added a Calrec Artemis Shine audio desk to its roster. The Artemis digital console is widely used in outside broadcast applications because of its high functionality in a compact frame. Production companies now have the ability to rent this familiar and popular audio console.

Presteigne has selected a 40 fader Artemis console, with a frame which supports 680 channels in just 8U of rack space. The mixer provides 128 main and group buses, 32 auxiliary buses and 64 track buses, making it suitable for large event live mixing and simultaneous multitrack recording.

Included in the kit is a Calrec Hydra2 audio router with two remote stage boxes, two local I/O boxes and six MADI interfaces. The result is a powerful audio system which is fast to rig and configure, as well as giving state of the art audio quality and control.

"As a rental bu

UK - The Mayor's Newham Show is a free two-day event which aims to provide fun and entertainment for those living in the borough of Newham, East London. Organised by Newham Council, a record crowd of 50,000 attended this year's event which had the theme 50 Years of Newham, marking five decades since the show's formation in 1965. The event saw East Ham's Central Park buzzing with a wide range of events for all ages including live music, a pop-up beach and sports taster sessions. White Light was once again called upon to provide its lighting and rigging services, having worked on the event for the past four years.

Taking place on 11-12 July, the event featured the traditional village fΩte 'Best in Show' competition, various arts and crafts activities, alongside the selection of plants and flowers that were on sale. It also saw 2,000 schoolchildren from 22 Newham schools take

UK - LED design and manufacture house Light Initiative (LI) lit up this year's Glastonbury Festival with bespoke creations on Years and Years, Enter Shikari and the Arcadia Spectacular stage.

For Arcadia's audio-visual feast Metamorphosis, LI worked alongside costume designer Joanna Peacock to create six custom performance wearables, integrated with LED, and six zorbs.

The costumes transformed Arcadia's dancers into fantastic alien/jellyfish hybrids, or 'Jellyfish Light Queens', who appeared from the zorbs as if hatching from an alien egg.

"The moment we saw Jo Peacock's sketch of a performer being released from a zorb we knew the LED solution must be above and beyond anything ever delivered before, and pushing the boundaries of what can be achieved is what really excites us," says Light Initiative's MD Bryn Williams.

LI's immediate task was to develop a f

UK - Created by Joe Rush's Mutoid Waste Company, the structure Peace Time Flies at Glastonbury was a giant metallic winged clock that spanned the entire breadth of the Pyramid stage and captured the free, uninhibited and hopeful spirit that defines Glastonbury.

A sweeping sculpture supporting a soaring and noble ambition required bold lighting. This is exactly what was provided by the Iluminarc Colorist Panel 36Qa, which is packed with 36 15-watt RGBA LEDs that radiate bright and vibrant colour washes, and the Chauvet Professional COLORado 1-Quad IP par-style RGBW fixture. A total of nine of the Colorist panels and six of the LED parts were used to direct coloured light at the Peace Time Flies. The rich colours of this collection of fixtures animated the sculpture, amplifying the artist's suggestion of flight, while the intensity of their output ensured that the sculpture would

USA - The legendary Suwannee River is enshrined in folklore and history - the wild backwater river rises in the Okefenokee Swamp emerging at Fargo, Georgia, passes through southern Georgia and northern Florida for 246 miles before flowing out into the Gulf of Mexico near the town of Suwannee.

The Suwanee River Jam is a popular and well known annual three-day country music festival staged in Live Oak, Florida and attended by around 9000 music enthusiasts. Robe Lighting Inc.'s Thommy Hall - regional sales manager for the southeastern U.S. and also an LD and programmer in his own right - has been involved with lighting both stages at this major event in his hometown ... for the last seven years.

This year, he was able to supply a variety of Robe products for use on both the Main and Amphitheater Stages in what was also a fabulous working showcase opportunity.

Thommy worked clos

Mexico - Daktronics in conjunction with Mexican partner Pantallas Publitronics, was called on to provide two new LED video displays for Estadio BBVA Bancomer, home of C.F. Monterrey in Monterrey, Mexico. The displays were installed this summer and are ready for C.F. Monterrey, commonly known as Los Rayados, to take to the pitch for their first match on 2 August, the eighth edition of S.L Benfica's Eusébio Cup.

"We are excited to work with Daktronics to bring a better overall experience to our fans and sponsors for interaction, information and statistics at every event held at Estadio BBVA Bancomer," said vice president of C.F. Monterrey Tonatiuh Mejía. "We worked with world leaders in every aspect of creating this facility which will be a tourist icon for the city, designed with iconic materials from our states and equipped with the highest audio and video

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