South Africa - DWR has announced details for its upcoming Robe roadshow, taking place in Cape Town, Durban and Johannesburg this month.
DWR will bring Robe’s new T1 Profile, iParfect, RoboSpot and SuperSpikie fixtures to each location and Robe CEO Josef Valchar and international sales director Harry von den Stemmen will introduce the products in person.
The roadshow will be hosted in Cape Town on 5 November at the Roxy Revue Bar at the GrandWest Casino from 10am to 5pm.
In Durban, the event will take place on 7 November at the Grace Family Church, Umgeni Park from 10 am to 4pm.
Meanwhile, those living in Johannesburg are invited to visit the DWR Distribution offices in Laser Park, Honeydew, on 9 November from 10am to 5pm.
For catering purposes, forward booking is requested on line at www.dwrdistribution.co.za/register/robe-roadshow-november-2018
USA - Three teams of lighting programmers competed in High End Systems’ annual Hog Factor USA Collegiate Competition held during LDI on Friday 19 October in the Las Vegas Convention Centre.
With three Hog 4 lighting desks up for grabs, the finalists performed a lightshow to Queen’s Bohemian Rhapsody using the latest in HES LED technology on the stand rig. The performances were judged by a panel comprising Howard Ungerleider (LD, Rush, Rod Stewart and Van Halen), Seth Jackson (creative director and production designer for Barry Manilow, Toby Keith, Carrie Underwood), Scott Barnes (film lighting programmer) and Patrick Hayes (LD/programmer with The Decemberists).
Team Sola Tartan (under the leadership of professor Todd Brown) claimed first prize - a Road Hog 4 console – for Carnegie Mellon University. Runners-up Brown Sugar of Southern Methodist University received a HedgeHog 4X console for their school and third-placed The Pig Ears took home a Hoglet desk for California State University - Long Beach. Each student received an ETC Student Nomad software package and dongle.
Since its origin in 2015, HES has held its Hog Factor competitions at various trade shows. The next edition of the competition is taking place at the upcoming Production Futures in the UK on 7 November in Production Park in Wakefield, West Yorkshire, England.
Sweden - Around 50 Chroma-Q Inspire XT LED house lights have been fitted in the Västerås concert hall in Sweden.
The concert hall is home to an orchestra that requires a quiet environment to perform in, a key aspect that had to be considered during the upgrade of the existing house lights.
Stage technical manager Per Andersson comments: “I chose the Inspire XT because there are no fans, which is a must for us since we house a classical orchestra, The orchestra is really happy with the brighter lights when they are rehearsing, and from a technical point of view, it is very easy to change the colour when I am asked. The other benefit for me is that they are more energy efficient; we went from 47 fixtures at 575W to 47 at 120W, and most of the fixtures are just on around 60%.”
Japan - Rental company Super 4 has invested in a Martin Audio WPC PA to handle its many events and concerts. The company recently placed the order for 18 x WPC elements and six SX218 subwoofers with Martin Audio Japan.
Super 4 is based in Takamatsu, Kagawa. Its vice-president Higasa comments: “It has been 18 years since we established the company, and during that time we have expanded from our first purchase of a microphone, up to the level where we can handle major events by ourselves.
“All the while we have watched developments with Martin Audio, and having experienced MLA and MLA Compact, and understood the philosophy behind the consistency of sound as well as the capability to control noise spill.”
He adds that noise pollution had recently become and issue. which convinced the company to purchase a WPC rig in order to achieve the required controllability. “Today’s PA is not only for the satisfaction of sound engineers but also for the clients and the audience,” he notes. “It is important for us to satisfy everyone and meet all considerations.”
Mr. Seki, the president of Super 4, added that the new system will come into its own at professional wrestling matches. “Recently, this has been increasingly focused on entertainment and so the sound quality for the show is getting more important. We know that WPC will be able to deliver clear and powerful sound to every seat in the arena - and this is our absolute ideal in terms of quality.”
Australia - The KV2 Asia Pacific team recently gathered in Melbourne to demonstrate the new VHD5.0 Constant Power Point Source Array and the VHD2.0 Large Format Point Source System at the city’s best-known outdoor venue, the Sydney Myer Music Bowl.
Loading in at 7.00am, both systems were flown and ready for operation by 10.00am. Angus Davidson, technical director for Asia Pacific and North America was in charge of the set up. “It never ceases to amaze not just how quickly these systems go up but how little tweaking is required once they are in the air,” remarked Davidson. “Basically, once you get the height right it is simply a matter of adjusting the tilt angle, which on VHD5.0 can be done via remote control as the fly bar incorporates integrated tilt adjustment.”
A noise curfew was in place until midday, but everything was ready to roll as many of Australia’s leading sound engineers started to arrive to experience this new format in large-scale sound reinforcement. With the VHD5.0 Constant Power Point Source Array, KV2 has focused on creating a modular system that has minimal destructive interference while utilising multiple components in a small number of cabinets. VHD 8.10 Low Mid expansion boxes are arrayed around the VHD5.0 Mid High enclosure providing the headroom needed to deliver the low mids and keep the sound balanced.
The system is pieced together to represent one very large point source, each part of the system being proportional in size to the frequency wavelengths it reproduces. The radiated power of each bandwidth there
Europe - Yamaha Music Europe has launched a YouTube channel to informally profile respected mix engineers, sound designers, technicians and other audio professionals.
Titled In The Spotlight, the first video features Terry ‘TJ’ Jackson (Earth Wind & Fire / Michael Jackson), who discusses how he became a leading mix engineer and offers crucial advice to fellow colleagues and up-and-coming engineers alike.
“We wanted to bring high production values to interviews with a range of audio professionals, highlighting not only the importance of their work, but also to draw the attention of the general public to how much work goes into the sound that they largely take completely for granted,” says Alex Warren, sales manager (UK and ROI) at Yamaha Music Europe.
“As well as being at the top of their game professionally, the audio industry has many interesting and engaging personalities and we look forward to highlighting the many facets of them and their work as the series progresses.”
Further videos in the series will be publicised via Yamaha’s social media channels and other outlets.
USA - Three more ESTA standards have been posted for public review.
ANSI E1.34 - 2009, Entertainment Technology - Measuring and Specifying the Slipperiness of Floors Used in Live Performance Venues is being considered for reaffirmation again (i.e., no changes in requirements, only updating organization name, address, copyright date, etc.) The document describes a simple means of measuring and specifying the slipperiness of floor surfaces used by performers in live entertainment venues. The standard is not for normal walking and working surfaces, but only for those floor surfaces used by actors, dancers, and other similar artists when performing before an audience. Comments are due before the end of the day on 17 December; the review is over when 18 December starts.
BSR E1.37-5, General Purpose Messages for ANSI E1.20, RDM is a new standard that creates new Get/Set parameter messages (PIDs) for use with the ANSI E1.20 Remote Device Management protocol. Comments are due no later than 24 December. The review is over by 25 December.
BSR E1.62, Minimum specifications for mass-produced portable platforms, ramps, stairs, and choral risers for live performance events is a new standard for mass-produced portable platforms, stair units and ramps used with those platforms, and choral risers, designed to be used for the presentation of music concerts, dramatic plays, fashion shows, and other entertainment and special events. Comments are due no later than 17 Decem
UK - Henley Theatre Services (HTS) is hosting two open days on 1-2 November at its premises in Henley-on-Thames.
Representatives from leading manufacturers, including Robe, Avolites, Electro Voice, Allen & Heath, Le Maitre and JTS Microphones, will demonstrate the companies' latest products, with a focus towards the theatre market.
The event will also feature a live demo of Avolites’ PLASA Award for Innovation-winning Synergy platform and also offer visitors the chance to be the first people in the UK to demo the new Robe T1, along with live pyro, console and PA demos and informal training sessions.
[Europe] European entertainment industry bodies have proposed ‘small but essential’ amendments to the Ecodesign regulations ahead of key talks in December.
The European Entertainment Ecodesign Coalition (EEEC) - comprising PLASA, PEARLE, the ALD, DTHG, the IALD, OETHG, SLF, STEPP and VPLT - and other national and international organisations have released a joint statement to highlight 'some serious concerns' about technical requirements that the bodies insist cannot be met by the industry.
Meanwhile, the regulatory committee is meeting with the European Commission on 17-20 December to decide on the draft.
The proposed amendments (available in full here) are:
Exemption for lighting fixtures from standby power mode and networked stand-by power mode
Exemption for white light sources for specific needs
Widen the range of wavelength for 'green' used in colour-tuneable light sources
Further lamp bases to be exempted for use in professional entertainment lighting products
The proposals' signatories say in a statement: "The current EU Regulation includes an exemption for ‘studio lighting, show effect lighting, theatre lighting’. We welcome
Then Play On - Fleetwood Mac have announced they will perform at Wembley Stadium next summer as part of a European tour. The veteran rock band, who are currently touring the US, will play Wembley on 16 June after gigs in Berlin and Dublin. Fleetwood Mac have a new line-up after guitarist Lindsey Buckingham was fired back in April due to "scheduling conflicts". Guitarist Mike Campbell and Crowded House frontman Neil Finn have joined existing members Mick Fleetwood, Stevie Nicks, Christine McVie and John McVie.
The group have said they are "thrilled" to welcome the new two musicians, adding: "With Mike and Neil, we'll be performing all the hits that the fans love, plus we'll be surprising our audiences with some tracks from our historic catalogue of songs. Fleetwood Mac has always been a creative evolution. We look forward to honouring that spirit on this upcoming tour."
Musical Menu - A restaurant featuring a cast of singing waiters that is dubbing itself the ‘UK’s answer to Ellen’s Stardust Diner’ in New York is to open this week in Liverpool. The American-themed bar and diner, called Mulholland, opens on 25 October in Liverpool city centre and will feature a 16-strong team of waiting staff made solely of performers.
It is being modelled on Ellen’s Stardust Diner in New York’s Times Square, which has been staffed by performers for more than 30 years. Each dish will be served alongside its own show tune, with singers performing musical theatre numbers, film theme tunes and power ballads. Managing director Kris Mochrie said: “We a
USA - ESTA's Technical Standards Programme has published one revised standard, put another up for public review and a third one is available for public review for reaffirmation (no changes planned).
ANSI E1.1 - 2018, Entertainment Technology--Construction and Use of Wire Rope Ladders, was approved by ANSI's Board of Standards Review on 27 September. It is a revision of the 2012 standard, which was a revision of the 2006 standard with changed load ratings to accommodate heavier workers. Wire rope ladders are commonly used in concert touring for access to lighting trusses, but are rarely used in other industries.
ANSI E1.48 - 2014, A Recommended Luminous Efficiency Function for Stage and Studio Luminaire Photometry is being considered for reaffirmation. It is available for public review for free at http://estalink.us/pr.
The standard specifies a V (lambda) function that more accurately reflects the response of the human eye at the extreme blue and red ends of the spectrum than the 80+ year-old function used with many light meters. The differences between the functions are significant when measuring the output of RGB LED luminaires. Public review is an opportunity for anyone materially affected by the standard to comment on it. Is it reasonable? Are there errors that need correction? Should something be added to it? Comments are due before the end of day on 17 December.
BSR E1.20, Entertainment Technology - Remote Device Management over USITT DMX512 N
UK - Shure UK has announced Aztec Event Services as its 2018 UK Rental Partner of the Year. The award was presented to Aztec's operations director, Steve Colesell in recognition of the company’s commitment to embracing new technologies that ensure the best results for their customers.
Most recently, Aztec technical staff were quick to realise the potential of Shure's new Axient Digital wireless system, and their early adoption was crucial in staying ahead of the game. "The entire team at Aztec are a pleasure to deal with," comments Stuart Moots, regional sales manager. "At Shure, we've always advocated that continued commitment to education in the latest techniques and tools are paramount in delivering solutions fit for the challenges faced by today's production teams, and there's no doubt we see this commitment from the team at Aztec.”
Steve Colesell comments: "Shure's commitment to the continuous development of new wireless systems is exemplary. It's been an exciting journey working with Shure over the past 12 years, and we look forward to building on the strong partnership we've built.”
USA - The winners of the inaugural Knight of Illumination Awards USA (KOI-USA) have been revealed.
An independent jury picked 18 lighting and video designers who were ‘knighted’ for their creative talent across Theatre, Live for Broadcast, and Concert Touring & Events at a gala ceremony attended by 300 professionals in Las Vegas on 20 October.
The winners are as follows:
The DTS Award for Projection Design: Finn Ross & Adam Young for Mean Girls
The ETC Award for Dance: Al Crawford for Victoria
The Altman Award for Plays: Jules Fisher & Peggy Eisenhauer for The Iceman Cometh
The Elation Professional Award for Opera: Joe Levasseur for Cellular Songs
The Robe Lighting Award for Musicals: Tyler Micoleau for The Band's Visit
Live for Broadcast
The Philips Vari-Lite Award for Awards Shows: Robert Dickinson & Travis Hagenbuch for 90th Academy Awards
The Green Hippo Award for Set & Video Design: Michael Figge for The 2018 MTV Movie & TV Awards
The SGM Award for Unscripted Series: Noah Mitz for America's Got Talent
The ARRI Award for Scripted Series: P.J. Dillon for The Alienist, Season 1, Netflix
The Ayrton Award for Entertainment & Events: Al Gurdon for Jesus Christ Superstar: Live in Concert
Concert Touring & Events
The MA Lighting Award for Club: Sarah Landau for Fever Ray Tour 2018
The disguise Award for Video Content: Bob Bonniol for GM World In
South Africa - Festival Sound has invested in additional L-Acoustics equipment to enable them to service more clients and offer flexibility to events.
Petru Palmer, owner of the company, comments: “I purchased my first L-Acoustics system about four years ago. I initially bought two ARCS Wide, two SB18m and an LA4X amplified controller. I remember choosing the ARCS WiFo because it was the only system of its kind and did everything I needed in a PA System. It has been a great investment and I have only had positive results.”
Festival Sound has now purchased ARCS Focus from DWR Distribution, the local L-Acoustics agents. “The ARCS are so versatile that you can use them, pretty much, for anything,” Palmer explains. “I wanted to expand on the system I already have and support the rest of the L-Acoustics network users with more equipment options. As for the L-Acoustics network, it’s always great to know that any of the users have your back no matter what.”
“Petru is so well respected in the industry and it has been great to support him in his journey and watch him grow from strength to strength,” says DWR Distribution’s Richard Smith, who looks after L-Acoustics at the company. “We have many rental companies who ask about the bigger line source array systems, and it was refreshing to see how Petru saw early on that there is a place for the ARCS WiFo constant curvature system.”
UK - High End Systems’ Hog Factor UK competition is poised to return on 7 November, when the Live Finals will be held during Production Futures in Wakefield.
The previous winner of the contest, Nina Mesitz and her team Status Cue, triumphed at Hog Factor at Prolight + Sound 2018. Six months on she looks back at her progress since and plans for the future.
The team are students from the Austrian vocational school BS Evita. Mesitz, who is a trainee of the Graz theatres, speaks highly of the competition, commenting on the ‘valuable experience and lifelong key contacts’ she made from it. “It’s a unique opportunity that aspiring lighting designers or technicians must take advantage of,” she states.
Mesitz and her team jumped at the chance to participate in the competition, recognising the importance of getting hands-on experience with industry professionals. Presenting their work in front of an audience with a passion for the field was her greatest incentive.
The aspiring lighting designer received the Hoglet 4 console lighting desk as the winning prize and has already made use of the console at the international a capella competition Vocal.Total. The desk will play a key role in her professional life as she explains “With the lighting console, I can continue to work independently, gain experience and practice for the future. Hog Factor has allowed me to take the most important step towards self-employment.”
Looking at future Hog Factor competitions, Mesitz emphasises how worthwhile and valuable the experience has been
USA - At LDI 2018, ETC presented entertainment technology charity Behind the Scenes with a cheque for $18,567.19.
The funds were collected from the most recent proceeds from ETC’s iRFR and aRFR Radio Focus Remote mobile applications that enable remote control of the Eos family consoles and controllers.
Fred Foster, ETC’s CEO, comments: “Over the years, it has become clear that this industry draws in great people that truly feel like family. We are honoured to be part of an industry where the whole spectrum of professionals, from technicians to designers to manufacturers, are so willing to contribute to BTS’s mission to support our colleagues in need.”
Rick Rudolph, chair of the BTS Board of Directors, adds: “ETC’s employees and customers should be enormously proud of what they are doing. At a time when feeding profits seems to be the motivating force for so many, ETC reminds us that this industry would not exist without the people who work so hard to bring the magic of entertainment to life and that we need to take care of each other.”
The Fred Foster Scholarships, which is awarded to children who need help to continue their educations, went to Maddy. She lost both her parents in quick succession, leaving her alone and in danger of forfeiting her dream of finishing her degree. Maddy wrote: “Both my mom and dad were very passionate members of the film industry. After their sudden and tragic loss, I decided to throw my energy into helping others as a school psychology graduate student. This gift will help ease my financial burd
The Netherlands - Load and force monitoring systems company PROTOS has only been active since July but has already acquired partners in Holland, China, Canada, Australia and India.
Jasper van der Sluis, director and co-owner of PROTOS, comments: “The entertainment industry is constantly and quickly developing to keep up with the latest developments. While the audience's hunger for state of the art shows keeps growing. Concerts, plays and shows are constantly evolving and it seems like each iteration has to be more spectacular than the last."
"Through our work with Prolyte and Doughty Asia Pacific and Prolyte Doughty Japan, we have noticed a strongly growing demand for force measuring equipment on a global scale. A demand for a system that is easy to set up, understand and above all, a system that ensures a safe working environment."
“We are still expanding the load measuring system by adding functionality based on feedback from the industry. We're currently working on a cloud service that, among other things, will make it possible to send (overload) messages remotely to any device connected to the cloud, mobile or otherwise." added Cor van der Sluis.
UK - Shure has launched a free integrated systems certification programme to offer sales and technical advice about its products and solutions.
Courses from the Shure Audio Institute (SAI) Integrated Systems Certification programme are available through Shure’s regional websites and are open to all clients looking to gain up-to-date knowledge on how to purchase, resell, and technically support Shure products in the integrated systems market.
The microphone manufacturer has also launched a new training space at its UK offices at the I.O Centre, Waltham Abbey. It is fitted out with high-end equipment including Shure Microflex Advance MXA910 ceiling microphone arrays, IntelliMix P300 audio conferencing processors and ANIUSB-MATRIX for use in video conferencing applications, with a third-party DSP platform for voice lift. Those who wish to attend the training facility can simply plug in their laptops via USB to gain access to the AV system in the room.
Andrew Francis, manager of applications at Shure UK, comments: “We welcome any visitors to come in and talk to us about our technology. We can now deliver the best possible training and technical support to all our customers, as well as designing and building a unique space to be able to demonstrate how end users can create their own workspaces and use the technology within them effectively.”
USA - ESTA will hold its Happy Hour for Behind the Scenes charity event on the opening night of The NAMM Show 2019, on Thursday, 24 January, from 6pm to 8pm on the Platinum Patio at the Anaheim Marriott.
Tickets are on sale now at www.behindthescenescharity.org/btshh and proceeds go directly to the Behind the Scenes charity.
The event is sponsored by Altman (Executive); IATSE and NAMM (Diamond); Ultratec (Platinum); Barbizon, Hayden Productions, H&H Specialties, Reed Rigging, Sapsis Rigging, Stage Rigging, and Stage Equipment and Lighting (Gold); Taylor & Taylor (Silver); Earl Girls, InCord, iWeiss Theatrical Solutions, and Osram (Bronze).
The Behind the Scenes charity provides financial support to entertainment technology industry professionals, or their immediate dependent family, who are seriously ill or injured, or to their surviving dependent family. Grants are tailored to each individual and uses include basic living or medical costs and funeral expenses. Behind the Scenes brings help and hope in times of great need.
UK - A.C. Entertainment Technologies (AC-ET) is holding a recruitment event on 1 November at the company’s High Wycombe headquarters, seeking experienced lighting professionals with a background in theatre, touring, corporate or rental to join the team on both a freelance and a permanent basis.
The company says there are opportunities for lighting freelancers to work across a calendar of tradeshows and events around Europe as well as permanent positions for lighting professionals.
The informal event will include an introduction to AC-ET, a tour of the facilities, and a talk about current vacancies. As well as meeting the team, there will be an opportunity to discuss the roles one-on-one with experienced AC-ET staff.
To sign up, email email@example.com with your CV or call 01494 446000.
South Africa - DWR Distribution’s Ole Boinamo hosted his first dot2 training session in both Tshwana and English at DWR’s offices in Johannesburg on 27-28 September.
The training was requested and sponsored by MGG with the aim to train crew based at Sun Arena’s Time Square in Pretoria, where MGG are the in-house technical supplier, as well as TUT (Tshwane University of Technology) students who are currently gaining work experience and training at MGG in order to complete their diploma.
“With most delegates residing in Pretoria, I presented the course in both Tshwana and English,” says Boinamo. “It makes a huge difference in understanding the functions of the console when you are being taught in your mother tongue. Learning becomes quicker, and more importantly, it creates an environment where students feel confident to ask any questions.”
“Once they grasped the concept, it opened a bucket of creativity,” explains Boinamo. “It was fantastic watching them come up with new ideas of what they could now do. This certainly was a rewarding experience.”
Mark Gaylard from MGG adds: “From our side it is very beneficial to get as many new entrants into our industry that are proficient on dot2 consoles which also lays a good foundation to start with the bigger MA console range. Thanks for offering the training and well done to Ole on putting it together.”
UK - Christie is technical sponsor for the Dead Puppet Society’s production of The Wider Earth by David Morton. The award-winning drama tells the story of a young Charles Darwin’s around-the-world journey aboard the HMS Beagle - is showing at a purpose-built theatre in London’s Natural History Museum.
Christie provided the Pandoras Box Players, Pandoras Box Manager and Widget Designer software to control animated projection content for the 11m screen, which provides a vibrant and detailed backdrop for the actors and puppets on a revolving stage.
The Wider Earth blends the traditional storytelling medium of puppetry with creative sound, lighting and video elements in an impressive spectacle at the 357-seat venue located in the museum’s Jerwood Gallery. The screen depicts many of the exotic locations that Darwin explored, further immersing the audience in the action told by seven characters and 30 wooden puppets.
The backdrop is a three-way projector blend mapped to a curved canvas screen stretching over 10m wide and 2.5m high. Each projector relays its native resolution of 1920 x 1200, creating a 5000 x 1200-pixel canvas. Pandoras Box manages the warp and blend, as well as controlling the internal shutters of the projectors via Art-Net.
“The projection provides a powerful representation of the places that Darwin travelled to on the voyage, and it allows us to deliver the landscapes in a visually compelling way,” says Nicholas Paine, executive producer, Dead Puppet Society. “Pandoras Box combines with other elements -
South Africa - Absen users in South Africa were invited to attend a three-day training session with Ricky Qiu from Absen at local distributor DWR Distribution earlier this year.
The ACE Training (Absen Accredited Certified Engineering) was attended by 20 delegates from both the rental and install markets, with the aim of imparting practical user knowledge to operate and set up screens as well as fault-finding.
“The Absen panels have taken off beyond our wildest imagination,” says Schalk Botha, sales representative at DWR. “The panels are user-friendly, reliable, cost effective and easy to maintain.”
Ricky Qiu from Absen adds: “The training went very well and was much better than I had anticipated. The course made sense to the delegates, and I can see a positive future for Absen in South Africa.”
Qui will be in the country again in November to demonstrate the new Absen Polaris Lite range - dates will be confirmed in due course.
USA - Nemesis Audio has agreed an exclusive distribution agreement with Pro-Sound for the distribution of the entire range of Nemesis Audio products in North and South America and Canada.
New York-based Pro-Sound is run by industry veterans Jim Flynn and Andy Hilton who combine many years of industry experience with a hand-picked team of technical experts to handle their sales and support operations across many audio disciplines including broadcast, theatre sound and concert touring.
Pro-Sound CEO Andy Hilton comments: “Nemesis products are ground-breaking and very well thought out and are already deployed on many theatre musicals in the USA. We aim to increase the line’s presence within this market area and further expand into new markets.”
Chris Headlam, Nemesis Audio managing director, adds: “With the ever-increasing presence of Nemesis Audio products in the USA and around the world, it was high time we started to look at a distribution arrangement to better handle sales, service back up and new releases in the USA and beyond.”
Pro-Sound’s first outing with the Nemesis Audio product range will be at this year’s AES New York convention this week on stand 548.
Along with the Pro-Sound team, Nemesis Audio’s Richard Carter will be on hand to demonstrate the features the various products bring to the industry.
Hilton concludes: “With products such as the CCS-2 Computer Control Switch and the popular Dante-SW Switch handling show control duties on many major musicals on Broadway and the wider USA we wanted to bring