Events News

Federal Signal Hosts PA/VA Seminar at PLASA
Friday, 10 August 2001

Federal Signal, a leading supplier of public address and voice alarm (PA/VA) systems, will be hosting a special seminar at PLASA 2001 to highlight the significance of British Standards for PA/VA systems. The initiative is aimed at consultants, specifiers and installers from across the PA/VA and fire protection industry who need to know more about the issue of operating standards and why it is important to use systems with BS5839 compliance. The guest speaker will be industry consultant Doug Edworthy, formerly of Millbank Electronics and a leading expert in systems engineering, marketing and quality management. He has been running his own consultancy since 1994. Jason Hatswell, commercial sales manager at Federal Signal, said: "The event focuses on why British Standards are important to those responsible for product specification, design and installation, and illustrates how our equipment complies with the standards."

Visual Act at PLASA
Friday, 10 August 2001

Visual Act is a system of remote-controlled wagons for creating movement on and off the stage. Movements are limited only by the imagination, giving both artists and technicians total freedom in design. Visual Act combines the elements of computer control, battery-operated servos, high-speed radio communication and laser-based navigation to obtain a high level of flexibility and dependability. All components are modular and easily installed in the wagon framework. They can therefore be reused in wagons of almost any shape and size.

See Visual Act at PLASA at stand R62.

New Fixtures From Clay Paky
Friday, 10 August 2001

At PLASA 2001, Clay Paky is presenting a series of new product lines, as well as expanding existing ones. This wide range includes the ‘Silent Version’ (SV) models, designed to guarantee maximum operating silence and the ‘Golden’ models, which ensure high performances at a low expense.

With Stage Profile 1200 SV, Stage Color 1200 SV and Stage Zoom 1200 SV, Clay Paky have developed three projectors that are over 50% quieter than normal. This is due to an innovative cooling system designed by Clay Paky’s R&D department. The Stage Profile 1200 SV combines the quality of a professional beam shaper with the versatility of a moving body projector. This innovative and creative tool - ideal for use in theatre, television and concert applications - allows beam-shaping evenly in quadrilaterals and triangles of any shape or size. The effect utilizes four beam-shaping blades operating on four focal planes, easily programmed and controlled from the desk. The whole system can rotate 90° in either direction at variable speed.

Equipped with 16+3 control channels, the Stage Profile 1200 SV has a zoom lens unit with a 16° to 24° beam angle controlled from the desk for both electronic focusing and zoom linear movement. It also comes with an iris, colour temperature conversion from 6000 to 3200K, an interchangeable seven-colour disc, dimmers, stop and strobe, lamp control from the control desk and the option of fixed gobos. Another feature of Stage Profile 1200 SV is the possibility of interchanging the moving head with that of the Stage Zoom 1200 SV

Book Now for Theatrical London!
Friday, 10 August 2001

Bookings are now being taken for this year's Theatrical London tour (12-14 September), which follows on directly from the PLASA Show. The event will feature visits to the world-renowned Royal Albert Hall for a night at the Proms; the Apollo Theatre to see the upgraded Starlight Express; Tussaud's Group Studios for an exclusive technical tour, and the Donmar Warehouse for a 'Divas at the Donmar' performance. The cost is just £250 per person for the whole programme! For full details and booking information, visit the website below.

Pani Adds to Projector Range
Thursday, 9 August 2001

Pani is introducing the BP 2.5 ECO - a new development on the PANI ‘T’ (Turbo) generation platform. Economy and effectiveness were the prime aims for the company in the achievement of unprecedented value-for-money in a projector in this category. The BP 2.5 ECO is specially designed for short and medium distances. As a high-quality member of the PANI projection system, it is fully compatible with the complete accessory range including all objectives as well as the new Compact Scroller CS 70.

Another inovation from Pani, the Economic Slide System (ESS), gives users the opportunity to produce their own slides. They only need a PC or Mac. The ESS is a one-stop solution consisting of a state-of-the-art inkjet photoprinter, printer software with template for the output medium, 50 PANI special foils and 15 aluminium slide frames.

Pani can be found on stand R30.

Vivid Launch at PLASA
Thursday, 9 August 2001

Forget three-phase power supplies, water-cooling, unreliable performance and costly maintenance, plug and play lasers are definitely the way ahead according to laser firm VIVID. By plugging into a standard 13amp socket crisp, pin-sharp graphics and animated images can be thrown from the lightweight laser with the bonus of high speed digital blanking. With each image as a separate entity the permutations for all manner of presentations is endless, says Mike Lister, managing director of Vivid.

Lister has teamed up with Clive Davies, the technical mind behind Laser Electronics, to form Vivid, which is based in brand new 12,000sq.ft high-tech headquarters in Wakefield. Vivid manufactures a rotor moulded, stylish lightweight case which can be colour-matched to any interior. Each unit weighs less than 15 kilos and can be daisy-chained like any intelligent lighting rig. Vivid claims it's the only company in the UK to have designed its own electronic hardware and software, including the actual laser diode, which enables technical specifications to be written around the specific requirements of the entertainment industry. Together with the laser head, the company has produced its own PC-based control system, which makes the usual daunting task of laser programming child’s play. Each highly portable unit can be remotely programmed over the internet for punching out advertising messages. Free software upgrades will be available with each PC-based control system as and when new features come on line.

The company is already hinting that it may launch a 3D version and multiple

Carlsbro Makes PLASA Debut
Thursday, 9 August 2001

This year, Carlsbro Electronics will be exhibiting at the PLASA show for the first time. This famous British manufacturer started making quality sound equipment 40 years ago, from their factories near Mansfield, Notts. The company has a new 32-page catalogue and some innovative products on demo, including the revolutionary ‘NlightN’ sound panels, featuring ‘NXT’ technology. The Company’s new owner, Andrew Bishop, will be on the stand, together with R&D manager, Garry Brookes, and area sales manager, Mal Ward.

L&SI Sponsors New Technology Gallery
Wednesday, 8 August 2001

Lighting&Sound International, PLASA Media’s leading entertainment technology journal, is sponsoring the New Technology Gallery at PLASA 2001. This is the showcase of all products nominated for the prestigious PLASA Awards for Product Excellence. Situated on the Top Deck of the PLASA Show, near to the main bar area, the showcase offers visitors a chance to check out the features and capabilities of all of the major product innovations at PLASA 2001, in one place.

L&SI will be based on the Lower Deck (stand K19), where we will be offering free readerships to qualifying UK industry personnel, plus special offers on international subscriptions only available at PLASA 2001 - plus PLASA Media freebies to all new subscribers!

L&SI can be found on stand K19.

SIEL 2002
Wednesday, 8 August 2001

Running from 3-6 February 2002 at the Paris Expo Centre, Porte de Versailles, the 2002 SIEL event celebrates its 20th anniversary and looks set to continue its successful run. Last year the event received close to 24,000 visitors in attendance to meet some 280 exhibitors. Now uniting three major entertainment markets - SIEL Entertainment, SIEL Night & Show and SIEL Event, SIEL offers visitors access to a diverse and complementary range of products. Reed Expositions France, organisers of SIEL, can be contacted at: 70, rue Rivay - 92532 Levallois Perret, Cedex, France.

Lighthouse Stages Nikken World ConventionLighthouse Stages Nikken World Convention
Wednesday, 8 August 2001

Lighthouse Visual Communications were responsible for staging the 5th Nikken Annual European and World Convention in Dusseldorf, Germany for an audience of 5,000 delegates from 25 countries, with translation required for 17 languages. Nikken is an industry leader in network marketing and offer their clients a range of innovative products many of which are based on the latest in magnetic technology. Lighthouse have been involved with this client for over five years and 2001 represented the biggest challenge to date for the team.

The venue chosen was the Messe Congress Halls in Dusseldorf where six halls were booked to cover the main events, the Gala dinner and an exhibition centre. Hall 9 was the main convention site and covered 11,000sq.m. The set was 65m wide and contained two 20ft x 15ft screens. The principal feature of the conference was to reward delegates for sales throughout the year and this entailed up to 500 people on stage at one time. Day two of the conference featured two performances by international group Barrage, and culminated with the award for Distributor of the Year. Day Three was dedicated to the World event and the featured 40 members of the Dusseldorf Symphony Orchestra and a chorus of 10 singers. The total crew tally was 60 headed up by technical director Andy Peat, event producer Steve Penticost of Lighthouse, head of lighting Pete Edwards, head of sound Derrick Zieba, head of vision Paul Volker and stage manager Stephen Richter.

Lighting was supplied by Essential with rigging holding over 300 lamps, including one of their first uses of MAC 2000

Airscreen at Cambridge Film Festival
Wednesday, 8 August 2001

A huge 17m x 10.5m Harkness Hall Airscreen took centre stage at two open air screenings during the revived Cambridge Film Festival. Shown as part of the Festival’s first run Children’s Film Festival, the highlight of the week long programme of events took place on two consecutive evenings with free screenings of Disney’s immensely popular ‘Toy Story 2’ and Aardman Animation’s smash hit ‘Chicken Run’, which entertained audiences of some 5,000 late into the night. Registering another first for the Festival, ‘Chicken Run’ was shown in a special subtitled version, making it the biggest screening ever to take place for deaf and hard-of-hearing audiences.

The Airscreen, a giant inflatable frame incorporating a projection surface from Harkness Hall, was rigged and de-rigged for each show in a little over 25 minutes. A powered air pump quickly inflated the PVC frame, which was anchored by guy ropes to four water-filled ballast weights. No other supporting structure was required. Outdoor screenings have been a speciality of the Cambridge Festival and technicians from the Festival's umbrella organisation, City Screen, are regularly called upon by other organisations for their expertise in this area, so it is with particular pride that the Festival returns with such a spectacular event.

Revived this summer, in association with the Independent, the Film Festival provided Cambridge and its regions with the full wealth and breadth of cinema - from the very big with screenings in widescreen 70mm, to the not so big in the Shor

Virtual Tour Now Online
Tuesday, 7 August 2001

For those visitors new to PLASA or simply keen to remind themselves how impressive last year’s event was, the Show website now features a virtual tour of last year’s PLASA Show. The tour takes in various elements of the exhibition with views from both the lower and top decks. By clicking on any of the green circles featured, visitors can look at the show floor in 3D and also explore other facilities at Earls Court 1.

Brighton Rocks with Rainmaker
Sunday, 5 August 2001

Lighting design and events specialists Rainmaker recently lit an open air stage on Brighton Beach for a Channel Four party event starring dance impresarios Norman Cook AKA Fatboy Slim and Groove Armada, and enjoyed free by approximately 35,000 excited revellers.

The main focus of the stage was a giant Screenco LED screen. This had been rigged to facilitate a C4 broadcast of the Ashes cricket from Edgebaston on the Thursday through Sunday. However, Channel Four then decided it would create a great local buzz of they threw a party on the Friday night, offering an opportunity to groove the summer evening away with the best in contemporary club vibes with local hero - the Fatboy himself! They then decided to broadcast parts of the party a week later on C4’s ‘Fatboy Slim Night’.

The Fatboy Slim event originally started out just as a just live show, with Rainmaker initially asked by production company Skybridge to supply four Space Cannons to reveal spectacular architectural illuminations on Brighton’s famous West Pier at a strategic moment late in the evening. However, a few production meetings down the line, it turned into a filmed event for Channel 4 and became obvious that additional stage lighting would be required as the event gathered pace. Rainmaker’s Paul O’Brien produced a dynamic lighting design for the stage. Using the two 10 metre high PA towers featuring a L-Acoustics’ V-dosc system supplied by Delta Sound and engineered by Andy Jackson, plus two additional six metre towers, Rainmaker installed a spectacular, highly flex

Deadline for PLASA Awards Draws Near
Friday, 3 August 2001

With the closing deadline set at 10 August, there’s just one week to go for companies exhibiting at the PLASA Show 2001 to enter their new products for the prestigious PLASA Awards for Product Excellence. Two awards - one for Design Excellence and one for Technical Innovation - are given in each of the four categories of Lighting, Sound, AV and Stage Engineering. Winners are presented with a trophy (specially-designed by DHA Lighting) at a ceremony on the final morning of the show. All the winners will be featured in a special post-show Awards supplement published with the October edition of Lighting&Sound International magazine, but win or lose, all nominees will benefit from full pre-show publicity for their latest products.

If you want to enter your products for a PLASA Award, full details of the nomination process can be found on the PLASA Show website or call us now on +44 (0)1784 482860. Remember - you’ve got to be in it to win it!

Standards: We Need Your Input
Tuesday, 31 July 2001

PLASA’s Standards Office is appealing for help from the industry. The office is currently reviewing a number of standards-related issues and would value feedback and input from the industry in general, but PLASA Members in particular. Current topics under review include the Event Stewarding Standard - a new British Standard is to be written; EN 55103 - the EMC standard for audio, video and lighting control systems is under revision; EN 60598-2-17 - the electrical safety standard for stage and studio luminaries is to be revised. Also being reviewed at the moment is the Draft Revised EMC Directive - the European Commission's proposed revision and the ESTA Power Cabling Survey - which examines the usage of single conductor feeder cables. If you have an interest in any of these issues, please e-mail Tim Cox at the PLASA Standards Office on

Winwood & Neto
Thursday, 26 July 2001

On the day I visited the Cheltenham Jazz Festival, the sun came out. It blazed all day, the perfect start for a night of hot Brazilian jazz.

Funny thing was, I was there to hear one of the classic voices of British r&b: from the early sixties with the Spencer Davis group, through Traffic and Blind Faith to a lengthy solo career, Stevie Winwood has never been less than a national treasure.

He’s not toured since the mid-90s, so this appearance was all the more welcome. How he came to be performing on stage with Brazilian guitar genius Jose Neto is a lengthy story, suffice to say good musicians attract one another like magnets, and I know from speaking to Jose (a friend, as well as a star) that he’d always wanted to re-arrange some of the Winwood canon, so this was to be a special evening in every sense.

For supporting this fledgling festival, mention must be made of Richard Knowles PA, who supplied all front-of-house and monitor control; Annette Ekers who made a first class job of running house sound for most of the week; d&b audiotechnik for supplying the PA, and the theatre staff of the Everyman for lighting, running and generally making the whole thing work.Lighting for Neto and Winwood turned out to be another revelation for me: Francis Coates is an LD I’ve known since the early 70s, but not seen since ‘82. "That’s because I’ve got into films, dear boy," he says. "Same money, and you don’t have to go away from home so much," he informed.

But it’s as a lighting man and musician I know Coates: he st

Putting the Wow! Into Your Production
Wednesday, 25 July 2001

The PLASA Show, London’s leading entertainment technology event, represents far more than just an arena from which to see the latest developments and innovations within the entertainment technology industry. It also offers visitors the opportunity to learn more about how to use this technology to best effect through its Masterclass Programme. This year, the Masterclass Programme, which runs from the Monday to the Wednesday, will focus on the fields of special effects, architectural installations and audio and corporate presentations and will include an impressive line-up of speakers, all of whom are experts in their specific fields.

Tuesday 11th September 2001, Theme and Leisure Day of the Masterclass Programme is a ‘must’ for visitors interested in learning how, through imaginative design and intelligent production techniques, special effects can be utilised in live entertainment to have maximum effect on the audience. There will be three presentations during the course of the day dealing with different aspects of this vibrant sector.

PLASA welcomes American WOW!Works chief effects artist, Tylor Wymer, an industry leader in pyrotechnics and special effects engineering and the former special effects design director for Walt Disney Entertainment, who will host an exciting session called, ‘Special Effects Ignite The Senses - Putting the Wow! Into Your Productions’. Highlights will include a fun and interactive overview by Mr Wymer in the areas of pyrotechnics, confetti, fog/haze, snow/wind/rain and the new trends in scent technology.

Mr W

Entech 2002
Wednesday, 25 July 2001

The organisers of Entech 2002 have released preliminary details relating to next year’s event, which takes place from February 4-6 at Darling Harbour in Sydney. The visitor programme includes keynote summits for audio, vision and lighting practitioners on 4 February. The summits will cap the opening day’s educational programme set to feature new format seminars held in the lecture facilities within the Sydney Exhibition and Convention Center. Day One features a Venue Design Forum, an afternoon session with leading lighting designers, two pro audio seminars and a vision/video seminar.

Additional events on Day One include a rigging workshop, an opening day reception on the rooftop at closing time and Mark Cunningham’s famous pop quiz at sundown. A complete programme of events, including the sixth and largest Entech Awards Dinner, will be released ahead of an extensive visitor campaign starting in October.

UK Light Jockey 2001 Final
Wednesday, 25 July 2001

On Tuesday 17 July, the world famous Ministry of Sound played host to the Final of the DI UK Light Jockey Contest, sponsored by Clay Paky and Pulsar. Battling it out in front of the judges were Simon Elliott, Chris Penney, Richard Whiteley and Rob Calvert. Simon Elliott emerged as the new UK Light Jockey Champion, with Chris Penney and Richard Whiteley being awarded a silver and bronze medal respectively.

The difficult task of judging the final was given to DI’s Paul Fowler, Ministry of Sound’s Lorenzo Meddi, lighting designer Carl Dodds and current World Light Jockey Champion Chris Shead. Each contestant had to program a five minute lightshow to a piece of music of their choice. The standards were very high throughout, with originality and creativity making each lightshow unique in its own right. As part of his prize package Elliott also won a customised gold plated Masterpiece and an all-expenses paid trip to Italy.

Fisher Productions Relocates
Tuesday, 24 July 2001

Fisher Productions has completed its move to new offices. "The new building is far more spacious than our previous office - as our staff numbers continue to grow, we really needed a place with room for expansion," says Fisher marketer Gemma Courtenay. More staff, bigger projects, a developing in-house lighting and staging department and storage of a variety of props had resulted in Fisher outgrowing its last premises. The 40,000sq.ft area, with warehouse and offices above, presented the company with the ideal solution. With a location that is convenient for both central London and international travel, all that was needed to complete the package was an internal refurbishment to include bright, modern office space with multiple meeting areas and state-of-the-art features.

Projects coordinated from the new premises have ranged from South African Airways Product Launch, the Relaunch of Hong Kong for the HK Economic and Trade Office, a party for 300 guests at Highgrove and the Virt-x Launch Traders Party, which involved a live satellite link with Zurich.

Fisher can now be contacted at 118 Garratt Lane, London, SW18 4DJ.

PLASA 2001 Show Seminars
Monday, 23 July 2001

To complement the exhibition, PLASA has lined up a range of seminars, workshops and clinics that will give an insight into how new technology is creating new opportunities, how individuals have pulled together highly complex projects, why integration is so important and how you can achieve more by picking up tips and techniques from others.

DJs can learn more about MP3 digitally-compressed music files and how this new technology is already creating a platform for a more creative approach. In a programme of seminars sponsored by Installation Europe, audio installation and integration is the theme under which issues of networking, control and the benefits of converging technologies are explored. Tuesday sees a Theme and Leisure Masterclass, presented by Leisure Management, in association with the TEA and TiLE, which focuses on how the leisure industry exploits special effects, lighting and audio technology to create unique environments to enhance the visitor experience. On Wednesday, the sessions move to consider the integration of audio and lighting into building design, the regulations facing those who install lighting, the increasing profile of new media such as LED technology, and the basics of video conferencing.

For the first time, you can also attend any number of focused courses, workshops and clinics. The ISCE is sponsoring three sessions covering the issues associated with audio system design, whilst Loughborough College and the AETTI are jointly promoting a series of courses which offer those interested in theatre a chance to work towards BTEC certification. Al

We Know Where You Live! - Live
Sunday, 22 July 2001

The 40th anniversary of Amnesty International was celebrated in style at Wembley Arena in a comic cavalcade starring Eddie Izzard, and featuring Paul Whitehouse, Harry Enfield, Phill Jupitus, Jeremy Hardy and many more. Alan Rickman also appeared on the bill, as did Badly Drawn Boy, the Stereophonics and Tom Jones - with a satellite-linked slot from U2 in Toronto.

Called We Know Where You Live: Live! the show was hosted by Eddie Izzard in the spirit of the classic Secret Policeman’s Balls of the seventies, eighties and nineties. The role of production manager fell to John Farquar-Smith ably assisted by crew chief Nick Jones.Izzard is known for his love of performing in an intimate club atmosphere, rather than on television, so a compromise had to be reached to ensure that the light levels were high enough for TV company Initial’s cameras, but not too bright for Eddie’s performance. "After chatting with Eddie we came to a reasonable compromise," comments Dave Smith, one of the two lighting designers called in for the event. That compromise involved two separate rigs - one for the stage designed by Mark Henderson and programmed by Tellson James, and a second for the auditorium, designed by Smith and programmed by Mark (Hippo) Cuniffe. 100 VL5s provided the mainstay of the rig, supported by 24 VL5ARCs, 22 VL6Bs and 40 VL6Cs, with control provided by two Artisan consoles. VL5 wash luminaires were used for TV reinforcement, along with the VL6C spot luminaires.

"We tried to keep the rig as simple as possible," added Smith, "and to em

TiLE 2001, London
Saturday, 21 July 2001

The 10th Annual TiLE Conference was held for the third, but last, time (for a few years) at the Business Design Centre in Islington, London 12-14 June 2001.

For those unfamiliar with the TiLE concept, it is not unlike Showlight in its make-up with a conference and exhibition running hand-in-hand, and an associated social programme gluing the two together. Certainly one of the most important conferences in Europe, perhaps in the world, TiLE is a key ‘networking’ event bringing together major developers, operators, designers and suppliers from the international leisure market. It attracts people from around the world because it is the one place to meet people of all levels and to listen to and debate about the real projects, techniques and problems facing this major industry.

Most of the major players can be found on the show floor - companies like Electrosonic, Farmer Studios, Jack Rouse Associates, LCI, Media Projects International, Sarner, Sennhesier, BRC Imagination Arts, Barco, DJ Willrich, Edwards Technologies, ECA2 and Landmark. The Show also saw the official launch of ThemeTech MDM - a new company which will build and project manage contracts for a variety of themed environments. It is born out of the long established model and sculpture manufacturer MDM Ltd.

One of the big draws of TiLE is its conference programme which addresses a different main theme for each of the three days. Day one was titled Shifting Sands - a reference to the uncertain climate of the times. There were sessions on the Megatrends of the next ten years and the provocative opp

PLASA 2001 Hotline Goes Live!
Friday, 20 July 2001

Booking your tickets to the PLASA Show, the entertainment technology industry’s leading event, running from 9-12 September 2001 at Earls Court Exhibition Centre in London, has never been easier. You can now book in any of the following ways:

By Telephone: The Visitor Hotline is now live! Call +44 (0) 870 429 4472 to make your credit card booking or to request an advance booking form.

Online: Go direct to to book online.

There are many advantages to pre-registration. Not only will you save £6 on the cost of entry to the Show (tickets on the door are £12) but you will be sent a personalized badge in advance permitting you fast entry into the show. You will also receive up-to-date information on the Show’s Masterclass Programme and how to book your seat at any of the sessions. Entry to the show is free for overseas visitors.

Now in its 24th year, the PLASA Show will feature over 350 exhibitors - manufacturers, suppliers and distributors of professional lighting, sound and AV equipment for the performing arts, night venues and theme bars, concerts and touring, the DJ market, architectural installation, corporate presentations, amusements and attractions, recording studios, cruise liners, TV and film, educational and religious establishments.


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