UK - Acclaimed lighting designer Paule Constable will deliver this year's Trotter Paterson Lecture, the Society of Light and Lighting (SLL) has announced.
Taking place on 10 September (Thursday) from 1pm, the event will for the first time be held online due to the COVID-19 pandemic, with free access to those registered. Constable will discuss her award-winning work, motivations, and experience as a lighting designer. Following the lecture, there will be a live Q&A session, where attendees will have the opportunity to submit questions.
Constable is an honorary fellow of Goldsmith’s College, Rose Bruford College and the Central School of Speech and Drama. She also received an honorary doctorate from the Royal Scottish Academy and has been leading the freelance lobbying of the UK government, which contributed to securing the £1.57bn investment to protect Britain’s cultural, arts and heritage institutions from the impact of the coronavirus pandemic.
After studying English and Drama at Goldsmith’s University, Paule trained in lighting design, whilst working in the music industry. In 2005, she was the first woman to receive the Olivier Award for Best Lighting. Since then, she has gone on to win it three more times and has been nominated a further ten times. She has won the Tony Award for Best Lighting twice and has received four additional nominations, amongst many other accolades and is an Associate Director of the National Theatre and an Associate of the Lyric Hammersmith. Her shows include Ocean at the end of the Lane, Curious Incident of th
UK - Initially launched by PLASA in response to calls from its membership, the #WeMakeEvents campaign aims to raise awareness around the current plight of the live events sector and how it urgently needs financial support in order to survive the COVID-19 crisis. The initial response resulted in a collective Day of Action on 11 August, with creative expressions across the country, including over 700 buildings lit up in red and other activities that culminated with 4,000 socially distanced event professionals lining bridges and the bankside of the Thames, expressing their need for support with the red alert theme. (Read extensive coverage of the Red Alert day of action in LSi September – out now!)
In order to represent all those in the communities that #WeMakeEvents represents, PLASA is now announcing that the campaign has moved into total independence, steered by a collective of industry trade bodies, including PLASA, businesses and freelancers who are all working together to ensure it receives as much awareness as possible. The success of the initial activity has led to a global movement, with organisations from around the world coming together in a spirit of mutual support and solidarity.
This next stage in the campaign will be known as ‘Stand as One’ – taken from the newly released song and now campaign anthem, written and performed by Joe Bygraves, who has generously agreed to do
USA - In an effort ranging from coast to coast - and also taking in the Pacific and Caribbean Oceans - the Red Alert RESTART event, organized by members of the live industry, cast a red glow on the night of 1 September. More than 1,600 buildings, iconic structures, and residences, as theatres, production houses, hotels, casinos, recording studios, opera houses, ballrooms, nightclubs, arenas, and individual homes were part of the event, which also included demonstrations in many cities.
The goal of #RedAlert RESTART is to urge Congress to vote for the RESTART Act and to support the efforts of ExtendPUA.org by pushing for an extension and expansion of PUA benefits for 1099 and freelance workers, i.e. independent contractors; and an extension of the $600 FPUC as part of a comprehensive pandemic relief package.
A four-and-a-half-hour livestream on Facebook, hosted by lighting designer/programmer Christian Jackson, featured reports from many cities. In New York, where the illuminated structures included the Empire State building and the registry at Ellis Island, stagehands massed in Times Square with cases, making a powerful display of solidarity. A report from Buffalo took viewers to the Riviera Theatre, which went red inside and out. The skyline of Rochester, New York also went red.
In Trinidad, technicians used LED battens to spell out "WME," an allusion to the events #WeMakeEvents hashtag. In Boston, following an urgent message of support from Ken Casey of the Dropkick Murphys, technicians staged a moment of silence outside the conven
South Africa - South African technical companies, technical crew and freelance technicians have initiated the Flightcase Movement – a campaign to hand-deliver a memorandum of demands to the country’s Department of Sports, Arts and Culture (DSAC) on 8 September (next Tuesday).
The aim of the movement is to enable the resumption of live events whilst maintaining social distancing by following protocols set out by the Event Safety Council.
The action will take place in Pretoria, with business owners, technicians and freelancers in the live events industry meeting at Paul Kruger Statue in church Square at 9am. They will push 250 flight cases to the Department of Sports, Arts and Culture building, where a memorandum will be handed over at noon. Campaigners will be dressed in black with full PPE including masks, gloves, safety shoes and hard hats.
The South African live events industry has been shut down since 27 March due to the COVID-19 pandemic. Campaigners say there are at least 700 independent freelancers who have had no government assistance and no work during this period, their only help coming from a single food voucher of R500 donated by Feed Our Crew, an NGO created by technicians working within the industry.
Meanwhile, technical rental companies, of which there are hundreds across the country, have had to either temporarily lay off staff, lay off staff permanently, re-trench or embark on a total shutdown of operation.
South Africa’s president Cyril Ramaphosa relaxed some of the restrictions on gatherings in August, but gather
UK - Each Wednesday from 9 to 30 September, a line-up of the West End’s most well-loved singers will perform alongside some of theatre’s top musicians in West End Unplugged (live from L-Acoustics Creations), a series of four 45-minute charity concerts.
Featuring top Olivier Award-winning talent from hit productions like We Will Rock You, Wicked, Beautiful, Come From Away, The Tina Turner Musical, the concerts will feature a mixture of show tunes and some of the performers’ personal favourite songs. The series is presented by choreographer Anthony Van Last and music director Ben Goddard and promises to be a joyful mix of music and relaxed chat.
Guests stars include Mazz Murray, Alice Fearn, Sandra Marvin, Hugh Maynard, Aisha Jawando, Richard Fleeshman and Celinde Schoenmaker, Tim Howar, Siobhan McCarthy, Joe Stilgoe, Hanna Waddingham, David Bedella, Cavin Cornwall and Katie Brayben. Everyone involved, from the performers to all of the technicians and technical equipment suppliers, have come together and given their time for free to mount these concerts.
Bobby Aitken, theatre sound designer and the shows’ producer, comments: “All funds raised on the day will benefit three charities: Backup - The Technical Theatre Charity, Help Musicians UK, Theatre Artists Fund. We feel that between them, these three charities best represent everyone in our theatre family.”
The concerts are free to watch, but donations are wel
China - Prolight+Sound Guangzhou (PLSG) 2020 is taking place from 21-24 August at the China Import and Export Fair Complex.
Organisers Messe Frankfurt and the Guangdong International Science and Technology Exhibition Company say they have put all of the necessary safety precautions in place to provide a safe and effective business platform for the industry.
“Participants will be able to reconnect with industry peers and explore sourcing and networking opportunities to help the industry reboot,” say the organisers, “677 exhibitors will utilise 80,000sq.m across eight halls. The fair will also provide enhanced services including online participation to facilitate interactions between buyers and exhibitors. Furthermore, over 40 seminars, forums and product demonstrations will be featured concurrently, highlighting the latest industry knowledge in the entertainment, media and AV sectors.”
Judy Cheung, deputy general manager of Messe Frankfurt (HK) says she is looking forward to a productive week: “For the past 18 years, Prolight + Sound Guangzhou has played an important role in information exchange, marketing, training and education for the industry, but this year in particular the fair has become more valuable than ever.
“On the back of a difficult first half of the year, we are pleased to offer participants the opportunity to benefit from emerging opportunities as the market rebounds. We are grateful to have retained the support of many renowned exhibitors. This demonstrates that the industry places a high level of trust in PLSG.
USA - Inspired by efforts in the UK, mainland Europe and South Africa, the US live events industry is set to host its own #WeMakeEvents ‘Red Alert’ day of action on 1 September.
Using the hashtags #WeMakeEvents #RedAlertRESTART and #ExtendPUA to gain momentum, the move represents a major call to action on Tuesday, 1 September, imploring the US Congress to pass the RESTART Act (S.3814) as quickly as possible, offering economic relief to America’s live events industry, which has been shuttered since March, 2020, putting millions of people out of work. Additionally, the movement is to support ExtendPUA.org in their efforts towards continuation and extension of the Pandemic Unemployment Assistance to provide relief to those without work due to COVID-19.
#WeMakeEvents North American director, Brad Nelms comments: "The group has managed to gather incredible support for this important movement, signing on more than 30 regional directors to lead the initiative in markets nationally. This team have been so fired up and already have commitments from hundreds of incredible venues and iconic locations nationally who will show support."
On 1 September buildings, structures, and residences across the US will be lit in red from 9pm-12am (local time in each market) as the event rolls across North America. The goal to raise public awareness that the live events industry is on ‘Red Alert’ for its very survival, and to create congressional pressure to act now.
#BeAnArtsHero, a grassroots coalition of arts and cultural workers, reports: "The Arts &
Europe - Sennheiser’s popular live Crew Calls continue with four members from Ed Sheeran’s live touring crew from the world record-breaking Divide Tour
On 8 September at 8pm CET, Sennheiser hosts Andy Egerton and Tim Moore will welcome Chris Marsh (production manager, FOH sound), Mark Friend (tour manager), Matt Jones (lighting director) and Dave White (guitar/Chewie tech). Organisers are urging those wishing to tune in to register early for the live round table with the touring crew behind Ed Sheeran’s.
During the 90-minute Crew Call, Chris Marsh and Mark Friend will discuss production and tour management and speak about the FOH sound, while Matt Jones will give insights into the tour’s lighting design. Guitar fans will be delighted to see David White on board, who designed and built Ed Sheeran’s Chewie looper pedalboard. As always, all panellists will b e happy to take questions questions from the audience.
For more detail and to register, visit this link.
Canada - Driving over an hour on the highway, headed northeast from Montreal, motorists find themselves at Parc Bellerive, a secluded, peaceful expanse of green on the banks of the River Richelieu.
Time seems to stand still here. Being far enough away from the big city, the clear and fragrant night sky is free of light pollution. This creates an idyllic setting for star gazing. It also provides a beautiful canvas on which to project colourful and dynamic aerial effects.
This attribute was not lost on Érik Nowosielski-Lamoureux when he was called upon to light a two-hour drive-in concert headlined by Québécois recording stars Les Colocs for Canada Day.
“Saint-Ours is a small city about 100km from Montreal, so the sky over the riverside park was completely dark,” said Nowosielski-Lamoureux. “I used this aspect to create interesting looks in the sky. Because the show was a drive-in event, cars could be quite far from stage. The bright output of my Rogue R2 beams made it easy for me to light up almost all the area above the cars. By doing this, I gave the cars in the back of the site some visuals to enjoy, even with the stage being pretty far from them.”
Nowosielski-Lamoureux positioned six Rogue R2 Beams along the upstage deck at various heights. The fixtures on either edge of the stage were raised three feet, while the two units further in were placed four feet high and the two centre units were on 6ft truss totems.
From these positions, the Rogue R2 Beams did more than create interestingly patterned aerial displays, they also
UK - A webinar designed to unite the live production industry in developing new working practices for a more sustainable approach has shown a “clear willingness” for change, according to The Sustainability in Production Alliance (SiPA).
The panel discussion, broadcast live on social media channels as well as via a Zoom video meeting, brought together many of the leading companies and individuals who are committed to a more sustainable future for live event production.
The webinar was a collaboration between SiPA, the Association of British Technicians (ABTT) and The United States Institute for Theatre Technology (USITT). Top of the agenda was how the industry can use the current hiatus caused by the COVID-19 pandemic to create a more sustainable approach to its work.
SiPA’s Carol Scott, principal advocate for sustainability at TAIT and SiPA, was joined by a host of live production industry and environment leaders, including: Jon Bausor - multi-award-winning international stage designer and creative director; Spike Brant - production designer, CEO of Nimblist and advocator of sustainability; Ian Garrett - USITT Memmber and designer with Toasterlab; Huntly Christie - CEO of Christie Lites and Dr Chris Jones, research fellow at University of Manchester who is currently examining the key impact areas of the music industry on the environment.
“The webinar was a great success - the audience engagement was fantastic, with the live stream figures going into the thousands,” says Carol Scott. “There is a clear willingness in our industry to
UK - As part of the #WeMakeEvents campaign, Calrec lit up its historic Nutclough Mill building in red on the night of 11 August to help raise the alarm for the live events and entertainment sector.
Backed by a wide range industry bodies and companies, a series of events was held on Tuesday across the UK to highlight the plight of those struggling for work as a result of the pandemic. The live entertainment sector has been particularly badly hit, with calls to the government to step in and provide more assistance.
Sid Stanley, Calrec’s general manager, comments: “This has affected our customers in every territory, and the impact on live events like sports and entertainment has been devastating. In the UK alone there are over one million people employed in delivering events, 72% of whom are freelance, and many of which have no access to any financial support. We worked with other companies in the valley where we are based, including the Hippodrome, one of the UK’s largest volunteer-run theatres, to bring as much attention as possible. We hope that by coming together to support one another our voices are heard.”
Calrec has worked with A1 craft mixers during this period to help promote their achievements as widely as possible. The company has also worked with customers to create flexible technical solutions to allow as much live coverage to occur as possible.
“But, of course, massive challenges remain and the UK government needs to provide support to allow the sector to return to its former glory,” Calrec says in a statement. “We st
The Netherlands - The UK’s #WeMakeEvents campaign received support in the Netherlands, where local companies took part in a nationwide Red Alert action under the banner of #WijMakenEvents.
More than 250 buildings across the country were lit in red on the evening of 11 August. The original campaign is a PLASA initiative that was adopted by the VTTE (the Association of Technical Event Suppliers) in the Netherlands.
Trussing, staging and hoist supplier Prolyte participated in the protest action on the night. The event industry and sectors have been at a complete standstill since the very beginning of the coronavirus crisis earlier this year. It has been more than five months, which means there are all costs but no turnover. Despite the government’s support during this period, companies are now on the verge of collapsing.
In order to draw attention to this crisis-like-situation in a peaceful and public-friendly manner, the Prolyte building was illuminated in red at 9pm local time and pulled the plug out exactly at five to 12 (11:55pm). “Together, we hope to get the support packages for the event industries extended and a clearer prospect is outlined until we can go back to work normally without the 1.5m restrictions. Without this commitment, a large number of companies will end up going bankrupt and employees will end up on the street,” says Prolyte.
“Politicians need to wake up and understand that if nothing happens, the entire event sector is in danger of disappearing.”
UK - In support of the PLASA-led #WeMakeEvents campaign, which culminated in a day of action coordinated across the UK on 11 August, Martin Audio joined other well-known entertainment technology manufacturers in backing the campaign. Alongside fully supporting the industry with social media - its Facebook posts alone reaching one million people on the day - Martin Audio helped organise a full TV production and livestream of the activities in London, including a helicopter swoop across the city.
These included many of the capital’s major landmarks being lit up in red and people gathering along the banks of the River Thames and bridges, dressed in red t-shirts, wearing red masks and waving their own red lights. Martin Audio also supplied its loudspeakers as the main PA for the boat that took members of the press and industry professionals on a trip along the River Thames past the illuminated landmarks.
Closer to home for Martin Audio, the company also supported the Wycombe Swan Theatre and High Wycombe Town Hall being lit in emergency red, alongside its own headquarters.
“Martin Audio has been extremely lucky to continue to operate during COVID-19 with the amazing support of our worldwide sales partners and end users, but most of our friends in the UK live event industry have had zero revenue since this all began,” reflected Martin Audio managing director, Dom Harter. “Without further funding from the Government the industry is at risk of collapse and we simply wanted to do everything we could to support their plight.”
UK - The UK events industry proudly came together in a show of solidarity under the #WeMakeEvents campaign banner yesterday (11 August) to ask the government to ‘throw us a line’ in the form of on-going and increased financial support.
As part of the movement, over 715 buildings across the UK lit up in red to symbolise the imminent danger over one million people in the live events industry face unless the government provides additional financial support.
20 of the UK’s biggest cities hosted events to raise awareness of the struggling supply chain that facilitates events across the country. From the Minnack Theatre Cornwall to The Queen’s Hall Edinburgh, Principality Stadium Cardiff and the Millennium Forum Northern Ireland, the message was spread far and wide – the situation is urgent. In Manchester, 200 technicians pushed redundant flightcases through the city centre as part of their protest, observing COVID-19 safety protocols at all times.
The capital’s finale began aboard a boat at 20:30, which made its way down the Thames - passing iconic buildings including the Royal Festival Hall, the London Eye, the National Theatre and the Tate all illuminated in emergency red. Some 4000 socially distanced supporters dressed in red lined the banks of the Thames and bridges including the Millennium Bridge and Jubilee Bridge to further drive the message home.
Level 42 frontman Mark King and folk singer Frank Turner performed on the boat, both expressing the importance of their skilled crews. The call to action focused on raising awareness
UK - Today’s We Make Events day of action has already generated interest from some of the UK’s largest media outlets, helping to promote the wide-spread protest action taking place throughout the day.
At 7.45am, BBC Breakfast featured a segment on the planned event in London. The demonstration will see a boat sail down the Thames from the Westminster Pier, passing by key cultural landmarks including the National Theatre and the Tate, lit in red, whist socially-distanced crowds will line the river’s banks and lower a rope of lights to symbolise the ‘throwing of a line’ to an industry battling for survival.
BBC Breakfast’s arts correspondent Rebecca Jones said in her report on the event: “Those taking part say while livestreams, virtual festivals and some socially distanced events provide an alternative, they are not going to sustain an industry worth £100bn to the economy.”
Speaking on behalf of the organisers, Gary White, a technical director and technical production manager, explained the importance of further state support for the sector, which employs over one million event professionals.
Putting further pressure on the government to act, White said many high-profile artists are backing the campaign, including Peter Gabriel, The Cure, New Order, Doves, Captain Sensible, Frank Turner, Paloma Faith, Leona Lewis, Blossoms, Trevor Horn and more. Shown in the report, Peter Gabriel said: “If we want live events
UK - As part of today’s nationwide #WeMakeEvents initiative, Manchester will hold a socially-distanced march in order to draw attention to the numbers of people and their livelihoods affected by the government closure of the events industry.
Greater Manchester production and events industry companies and freelancers have come together to hold an event outside of London to support the campaign and show this is an issue across the UK. The Manchester music community is also pledging its support, with New Order, Doves, Mani and Blossoms helping raise awareness for the initiative and the march.
Blossoms said: “Our industry is in need of urgent action. Due to the Covid-19 crisis the whole music & live events sector has been devastated. So many skilled people are at risk of being lost to the whole industry if government support doesn’t come soon. Millions of talented people, including many people close to us, need help now. Please join together to support the campaign and call for the government to act now!”
Sacha Lord, night time economy adviser for Greater Manchester, said, "Freelancers and the self-employed are the forgotten workforce during Covid. Where other businesses have had access to Government support, those who work for themselves have been left behind. I personally know of many DJs, photographers, sound engineers and artists who were at the top of their industries pre-Covid and who have now been forced to give up their passions and who are now working in retail or construction just to make ends meet.
“I have been particular
UK - On 11 August (Tuesday), the live events industry across the UK will come together in solidarity to host a series of protests to help save the live events and entertainment sector, which is on the verge of collapsing without financial support from the government.
Encouraged by the #WeMakeEvents and #LightItInRed campaigns, hundreds of venues are expected to light up red, along with other creative activities being staged in over 20 cities across the UK to symbolise the industry going into red alert, and a final call to action titled ‘throw us a line’ will be taking centre stage on London’s South Bank.
The capital’s finale will begin on a boat at 20:20, as it makes it way down the Thames - passing Royal Festival Hall, the National Theatre and the Tate, and more all illuminated in emergency red. As the boat reaches key locations, such as Westminster Bridge and Jubilee Bridge, hundreds of volunteers will symbolise the ‘throw us a line’ theme creatively.
The call to action hopes to raise awareness for over a million professionals at risk of losing their jobs, 600,000 of whom deliver outdoor events. With around 70% of the workforce being freelance, the imminent closure of the self-employed income support scheme at the end of the month threatens their livelihood.
Unlike other industries, events, festivals, and performances have been unable to safely reopen due to social distancing guidance and may not reopen until early 2021 – and opening times keep being pushed back. With no government support on the horizon for the event supply ch
UK - Registration details of the #WeMakeEvents campaign’s upcoming protest day have been made available for those wishing to take part in the day of action on 11 August (Tuesday).
#WeMakeEvents is raising the alarm for the live events and entertainment sector affected by the COVID-19 pandemic, with a series of events taking place in London and other UK cities next week.
With demonstrations on the river Thames and its banks, campaigners will urge the UK government to ‘throw us a line’ before the talent and expertise that makes the UK’s live events and entertainment industry world-leading is lost.
Journalists and politicians have been invited to board a boat at Westminster Pier, from where they will sail through a series of ‘arenas’ which will feature many of the capital’s iconic landmarks lit up in red. Industry members wishing to take part in the action are being asked to line up, socially-distanced, on river banks and bridges to create a Red Alert route. In key locations, supporters will lower down red rope lights to the boat as it passes, to symbolise the throwing of a line.
Those wishing to join the route must wear face coverings during the event and must pre-register via EventBrite, where they can also select their preferred location to join the action. Participants are asked to wear red and download the MyLight - Flashlight mobile app to turn their phone’s flashlight red.
Andy Dockerty, managing director of Adlib, comments:
USA - Two more ESTA draft standards are now available for public review until 21 September 2020.
BSR ES1.7 - 202x, Event Safety - Weather Preparedness addresses the considerations, development, and use of event planning strategies that mitigate weather-related risks associated with live events, and with the temporary structures used for these events.
BSR E1.4-2, Entertainment Technology - Statically Suspended Rigging Systems establishes minimum performance requirements, recommendations, and guidelines that can be used for installation, use, maintenance and inspection of statically suspended rigging systems, permanently installed in venues used for entertainment purposes.
Both of these draft standards, along with their respective public review forms and instructions, can be downloaded at https://tsp.esta.org/tsp/documents/public_review_docs.php.
On 6 July, ANSI's Board of Standards Review approved another ESTA standard: ANSI ES1.9 - 2020, Crowd Management. This standard - the second to be published in a series of event safety guidance standards currently in development - helps the user understand the basic principles of crowd management theory and vocabulary, so they can be appropriately applied to certain reasonably foreseeable risks that arise during live events. It is available for free download from the TSP website at tsp.esta.org/freestandards. It is also available for sale from ANSI and IHS.
USA - Live Design International (LDI) is the latest major industry event to fall victim to the coronavirus pandemic. Questex, the parent company of LDI, has announced the event will be forced to cancel due to the COVID-19 pandemic. LDI was originally scheduled to run 23-25 October 2020 at the Las Vegas Convention Center in Las Vegas.
The event has been rescheduled for 19-21 November 2021.
The organisers say in a statement: “We recognise the tremendous economic and emotional impact the COVID-19 pandemic has had on the global market, and we are committed to working with each stakeholder on a solution to support your business. For more than three decades, LDI has been the hub for the global live production community to learn about new technologies and applications, engage with peers and industry vendors and replenish creativity.
“This will be the first time in our 32-year history that the event has been forced to cancel. Our thoughts go out to everyone who has been affected by the current situation. Our number-one priority remains keeping our entire industry safe and helping to rebuild in the near future, in a manner that reflects our community-forward focus.
“The LDI team is working through the logistics that are involved with cancelling an event. Any paid attendance options will be automatically rolled over to the 2021 show. Exhibitors and sponsors will be contacted shortly with additional information. Thank you for your continued patience and support.”
Immediate exhibitor enquiries should be addressed to Marian Sandberg, vice-pre
UK - Edinburgh International Festival has unveiled My Light Shines On, a series of video works and light installations across Scotland’s capital to mark the beginning of the festival season and celebrate the enduring spirit of the Festival City.
Through a series of digital commissions, the Edinburgh International Festival is partnering with Scottish artists and national arts companies, spanning the worlds of theatre, music and dance, to film original performances in venues including the Edinburgh Festival Theatre, The King’s Theatre, Leith Theatre, The Hub, Usher Hall and The Queen’s Hall. All films premiere on Edinburgh International Festival’s YouTube channel on Saturday 8 August at 9:30pm.
The films include a personal love letter to Scottish theatre from the National Theatre of Scotland, directed by award-winning filmmaker Hope Dickson Leach and co-conceived with National Theatre of Scotland artistic director Jackie Wylie and dramaturg Philip Howard, along with Scottish Opera’s modern-day interpretation of Gian Carlo Menotti’s The Telephone, starring Soraya Mafi and Jonathan McGovern, filmed in the bar of the King’s Theatre.
The Royal Scottish National Orchestra features mezzo soprano Karen Cargill in a recorded performance led by music director Thomas Søndergård in his International Festival debut. The Orchestra performs a rich programme in celebration of Mahler’s 160th birthday.
A series of films from Scottish Ballet includes new work from emerging choreographer Nicholas Shoesmith, as well as a revival of acclaim
France - Once again BroaMan and Optocore network devices were deployed to maximum effect at this year’s Grand Concert de Paris spectacular.
The event coincides with France’s National Day (on July 14). And having scaled new heights last year with the solutions and I/O capacity provided by the two German partner brands - creating an immersive environment for Radio France, with 152 Optocore preamps and MUX22 IVT / MADI connectivity - this year technology contractors GB4D went even further. Working once again for Radio France, they set up an elaborate optical broadcast network topography on the Champ de Mars in the shadow of the Eiffel Tower, but with the location eerily empty other than for technicians.
“Playing without an audience due to COVID-19 was certainly weird,” stated GB4D owner, Gilles Bouvard. “We felt really alone without the 500,000 spectators!”
Bouvard was clear in what the challenge represented, and it was essentially to produce an advance multi-format broadcast signal flow to the Radio France and France TV OB trucks from the FOH and monitor positions, as well as from the pyrotechnics position.
“We had to provide Radio France’s sound engineers with all the necessary tools,” he confirmed. And this year that again included 144 Optocore microphone preamps (both X6RFX and TP) as well as MADI stream connectivity between the Lawo, Yamaha and Studer consoles, via BroaMan MUX22 MADI and Optocore M12 and DD2FR-FX devices. In all, GB4D created a distribution universe of more than 600 audio streams between the FOH and monito
UK - The #WeMakeEvents campaign has progressed into the ‘Red Alert’ phase, with planned activities set to take place across London and other major cities in the UK on the evening of 11 August.
The initiative will raise the alarm for the live events and entertainment sector, which has been badly-hit by the pandemic, resulting in countless event cancellations.
The campaign reports that the disruption of the summer season alone has affected over 600,000+ jobs in outdoor events. Meanwhile, a campaign survey revealed that redundancies in the sector are already happening, with 15% of businesses stating that they plan to make redundancies during August and 70% reporting that they could be forced to do so by the end of 2020.
The campaign warns that the termination of the government’s furlough scheme and the self-employment income support scheme in October would leave up to one million industry professionals with no financial security. “The complete lack of work in the sector combined with the withdrawal of government support will force industry professionals, including the 72% of freelancers, to seek work in other sectors,” says a statement.
Live events may not be able to return until March 2021 due to social distancing rules and the long-term planning now has the collaborative support of 17 trade bodies and several more production companies and manufacturers required for many arena tours, festivals, and stadium events.
Europe - Professionals from across the global concert touring industry have joined forces to form the PSA Tour Production Group (PSA TPG) in order to provide a unified response to the impact of COVID-19 on live music events.
The body is a new arm of the Production Services Association (PSA) and includes tour managers, production managers, safety professionals, venue and festival managers, travel and logistics specialists, promoters, and industry suppliers.
The Covid-19 Working Procedures Guidance outlines how touring productions - which include one-off shows, festivals and live events of any size that require moving personnel and equipment to a new destination - can better align with suppliers, venues and promoters through consistency and consultation to assist risk management relating to COVID-19 transmission.
Based around a hierarchy of control (including elimination, substitution, engineering controls, administration and PPE) and a responsive threat scale, the guidance details different levels of design, schedule and control measures appropriate to conditions. These measures include social distancing, health declarations and monitoring, hygiene and cleaning, and mitigation.
Members of the PSA TPG have worked for artists including Madonna, Queen + Adam Lambert, Sam Smith, P!nk, Kings of Leon, Robbie Williams, Spice Girls, One Direction, Adele, U2, BST Hyde Park, Reading Festival,