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
Europe - On Tuesday 9th October, the EU released a revised version of their proposed new Ecodesign and Ecolabelling Lighting regulations. These are the intended final versions of these regulations.
The full texts are available to read via the links below.
From an entertainment lighting perspective, this version is almost entirely unchanged from the draft published in July. There is a minor addition of a new exemption for some specialist fluorescent lamps used in the film industry. And the exemptions established in the July draft, which cover many areas of entertainment lighting, remain in place.
However, this draft does not address any of the issues that the entertainment lighting industry’s Ecodesign Task Group have been trying to raise with the EU since the publication of the July draft.
This means that some key issues remain:
- requirement for lighting fixtures to use less than 0.5W of power in standby mode (when not emitting light), which is not achievable for DMX-controlled lighting fixtures that have to respond immediately to cues.
- inability of high-powered white LED sources to meet the efficiency requirements because of the combined impacts of the Auger effect, thermal effects and in-built optics. Many such sources are far from achieving the regulation limits.
- the definition of green used in colour-tuneable (additive colour mixing) fixtures, which is not set at the right point for the most efficient design of colour mixing systems.
- a number of specific lamp bases and white light sources for which exemptio
Hold The Music - The family Prince has hit out at Donald Trump, calling for the US president to stop playing the star's songs at his rallies. The late musician joins a growing list of other artists who have also objected to the billionaire tycoon-turned-world leader playing their music at public events. Omarr Baker, Prince's half-brother, tweeted: "The Prince Estate has never given permission to President Trump or The White House to use Prince's songs and have requested that they cease all use immediately."
Purple Rain was reportedly part of the president's playlist in Mississippi last week. It comes after Trump's team reportedly included the star's hit song in a campaign rally playlist in the lead up to the November midterm elections. Others who have spoken against their music being played at Republican rallies include the Rolling Stones, Adele, Queen, George Harrison, Aerosmith, R.E.M. and Neil Young.
Luciano Pavarotti's family also criticised the use of the singer's rendition of the Puccini aria Nessun Dorma at the now US leader's 2016 election rallies. Rolling Stones frontman Mick Jagger previously said there was nothing he could do under US law to stop Mr Trump playing his music.
Wake-up Call - Andrew Lloyd Webber is urging the industry to work together on a strategy to protect music in education, labelling recent research highlighting its demise as a “wake-up call” for the sector. According to research from the University of Sussex, the decline of music in secondary schools has “reached crisis point”. The study, wh
UK - Stage Electrics has announced the appointment of Adam Blaxill as operations director. His responsibilities include managing Stage Electrics’ engineering workshop, service department, purchasing function and sales warehouse. He continues with his marketing responsibilities.
Maria Townsend, Stage Electrics’ group CEO, commented, “Adam was the obvious candidate for this role. He has a great deal of knowledge of the Stage Electrics operation, as well as the technical entertainment industry. His appointment strengthens the team and allows us to continue our plan of further sustainable growth.”
Protest Song - Bob Geldof is spearheading a campaign to warn of the impact of Brexit on the music industry. Sting, Rita Ora and Ed Sheeran and many others have joined forces to warn Theresa May a no-deal Brexit will put Britain in a "cultural jail".
Geldof said: "It's two-fold. One is the income it generates for this country, £94bn, contrast that to the NHS spend, of £115bn, almost the same. The second reason is cultural - the voice of Britain, the genuine, global British voice is music, it has been since the Beatles. No one knows quite why this tiny island produces such vast reservoirs of talent but we do know the entire planet dances, eats, sleeps, and plays hard to our noise. That is being endangered by a recklessness which is existential and historically self-damaging."
A joint letter states: "Imagine Britain without its music. If it's hard for us, then it's impossible for the rest of the world. In this one area, if nowhere else, Britain does still rule the waves. The airwaves. But Brexit threatens, as it does so much else, this vast voice. This huge global cultural influence. We are about to make a very serious mistake regarding our giant industry and the vast pool of yet undiscovered genius that lives on this little island."
Backstage - A technical apprenticeships scheme aimed at closing a skills gap in the sector is being launched by Trafalgar Entertainment Group, the company formed by Howard Panter and Rosemary Squire. Launched initially as a pilot programme, the scheme will employ two paid apprentices, for 21 months each. One will
Here We Go Again - Comedian and Great British Bake Off host Sandi Toksvig will adapt the story for the Mamma Mia! spin-off show when it opens at the O2 in London next August. The writer and broadcaster will adapt Calle Norlen, Roine Soderlundh and Bjorn Ulvaeus’ original story into English for the immersive theatrical and dining experience, Mamma Mia! The Party.
Set in a Greek taverna, Mamma Mia! The Party will take place in a venue within the O2. It will seat 500 audience members, who will experience the show alongside a Mediterranean meal. The show has been created by Abba’s Ulvaeus, with producer Ingrid Sutej, and features music and lyrics by Ulvaeus and Benny Andersson. It will be directed by Soderlundh, with set by Bengt Froderberg, costumes by Annsofi Nyberg, lighting by Patrick Woodroffe and sound by Gareth Owen.
Welcome News - Theatre by the Lake in Keswick and Belfast’s Grand Opera House are among the 12 regional winners of the UK’s Most Welcoming Theatre Award 2018. The prize, which is run by theatre membership organisation UK Theatre, is judged by members of the public who vote to celebrate their local theatre. Other regional winners included the Mill at Sonning in the South East, which won the overall prize in 2017, and Swindon’s Arts Centre in the South West category.
Cassie Chadderton, head of UK Theatre, said: “This award is a chance to recognise the importance of theatres as valuable cultural hubs, and the loyalty they can inspire by creating a fantastic audience experience - from friendly fron
UK - A special benefit concert is being held for musician and loudspeaker manufacturer, Paul MacCallum at the O2 Academy Islington, on October 29th.
The popular bass player, who was diagnosed with an advanced form of Multiple System Atrophy some years ago, was not only the brainchild behind PLASA member company Wembley Loudspeaker, but also bass player with Zoot Money’s Big Roll Band, and other major names.
In addition to playing their own set, Zoot will provide the rhythm section for guest musicians who will appear on the night.
Affectionately known as ‘The Womble’ from his days as Uncle Bulgaria in Mike Batt’s original Wombles, MacCallum has also played in many bands during his career including those of Helen Shapiro and Billy Fury.
Sadly, Paul MacCallum is now confined to a hospice, and all proceeds from the event will go towards funding his medical expenses.
Admission is £20 and tickets can be purchased in advance from Rick Wilson online via Eventsbrite.
USA - ANSI E1.60 – 2018, Guidelines for the Use of Raked Stages in Live Performance Environments, was approved by ANSI's Board of Standards Review on Friday, 21 September, and published on Monday, 24 September. It can be downloaded at no cost from the ESTA TSP website at http://tsp.esta.org/freestandards.
The no-cost download is made possible by the sponsorship of ProSight Specialty Insurance. It may be purchased for $40 from ANSI and IHS at https://webstore.ansi.org/ and https://global.ihs.com/ respectively.
ANSI E1.60 offers guidance for the use of raked stages in live performance environments to mitigate the risks for the protection of actors and technicians. The guidance offered is fundamentally a risk assessment/risk reduction approach, with a process outlined and suggestions offered on what must, should, or might be done to control the risk.
Take That Back - Take That have announced a greatest hits tour to mark their 30th anniversary next year. Gary Barlow, Howard Donald and Mark Owen will kick off their UK arena tour in April with two shows at Sheffield's FlyDSA Arena. They will go on to play in Glasgow, their home city of Manchester, and six dates at London's O2 Arena. The tour will also see them perform in Dublin, Birmingham, Milton Keynes, Southampton, Bristol City, Norwich, Middlesbrough and Huddersfield.
A new Take That album, Odyssey, is also being released on 23 November. It will feature 27 tracks spanning three decades of the band's history, as well as three new songs.
Training Opportunities - Lighting designer Paule Constable has called on theatres to provide more training opportunities for emerging designers. Constable was speaking at The Stage Debut Awards 2018, where she presented the best designer award to Khadija Raza.
Constable said: “There should be more opportunities for designers to work on a body of work and more bursaries. At the moment it’s very informal – it’s designers who take on young designers as assistants – but actually buildings need to take on young designers and give them opportunities to work all over the industry and also give us environments where we can take risks. She added: “That’s what we all desperately need, to be able to take risks. There’s nowhere near enough of that for set and costume designers, lighting designers or sound designers.”
Cry Wolf - Wolf Alice won the 2018 Hyundai Mercury Prize
UK - MDG enjoyed a successful PLASA London where it presented its latest products. These included the new IP55-rated Me2 WPE fog and ATMe WPE haze generators, a standard Me2 fog generator, theFAN digital fan, and the ICE FOG Compack HP low fog generator alongside two award-winning products theONE dual mode haze and fog generator, winner of the LDI Best Debut product in 2010, and the RFP (Round Floor Pocket) which won the ABTT Engineering Product of the Year 2018 in June.
Alongside its regular stand, MDG had two of its new ATMe WPE weatherproof hazer generators and an ICE FOG Compack HP involved in the spectacular dance and light show on the adjacent Robe booth.
Inspired by Indiana Jones and Tomb Raider movies, the show environment emulated tropical forests, caves and volcanoes. Here the ATMe WPE machines showed their true mettle as they stood for three days under torrential ‘tropical rain’, adding to the drama of the adventure unfolding on stage as they produced constant fine haze to showcase the lighting, even amid the downpours!
“People were very surprised to see a haze generator able to perform successfully in such harsh ‘outdoor’ conditions,” says MDG CEO Martin Michaud. “But seeing is believing, and we are proud to say our ATMe WPE units drew much admiration at the quality of the haze they produced, and the sheer volume of water they could tolerate being thrown at them! There is no doubt they are very capable of the job they were designed to do, that is provide powerful haze generation for permanent installation in theme parks, ou
UK - For the past four years, the Lightpower Collection has toured worldwide with In the Eye of the Rock ’n’ Roll Hurricane, an exhibition which shows the body of work from acclaimed rock ‘n’ roll photographer, Neal Preston. In it are more than 70 of his iconic pictures: legendary album covers, views behind the scenes, moments that made history - the essence of rock ’n’ roll and concert touring that has dominated out industry since the late '60s.
Neal Preston’s fine art prints are highly sought after by collectors worldwide, and Lightpower Collection donates all proceeds from the sale of prints and merchandise to Behind the Scenes and Backup - two technical entertainment charities that provide relief for event technicians in need.
At PLASA 2018, the Lightpower Collection was proud to be able to donate another £10,000 to Backup. The donation was presented to Backup chairman, John Simpson, by Lightpower Collection owner, Ralph-Jörg Wezorke, bringing the total raised for both charities to over $110,000 since the Lightpower Collection tour began in 2014.
“This would not be possible without the help of friends who lend their support,” says Ralph-Jörg Wezorke. “In this case a special thank you goes to Ambersphere Solutions which not only supports the Lightpower Collection, but also donates a considerable sum to the charity and help us spread the word out there.”
In addition to Lightpower’s own exhibition stand, more of Preston’s photographs were exhibited on the Ambersphere Solutions stand a
USA - Charity Behind the Scenes has said the deadline for ordering its 2018 holiday cards is 4 October.
Three card ordering options include personalised cards with a company logo and custom message, card packs of 10 with a standard greeting, and e-cards.
Seven designs are featured this year. Perennial favourites Andrew Hefter and Robert Mendoza are back while Mount Vernon Senior High School is represented by Madelyn Plough. New contributors are Vicki Davis, Jocelyn Joyah Henry of Scenic Art Studios, Vicki Pui and Anastasia Vasilakis.
Those interested in purchasing cards should place an order at www.behindthescenescharity.org/holidaycards.
UK - Blitz, the technical event production arm of global events company GES, has announced a strategic alliance with audience engagement and event analytics platform Glisser.
This agreement will see Glisser’s audience engagement and analytics solution delivered and managed by Blitz’s in-house team of technical experts. Blitz has a longstanding reputation for technical innovation and has already successfully deployed Glisser’s complete audience participation platform - including live slide sharing, integrated live polling, audience Q&A, and social media walls - for a number of high profile customers.
Mike Piddock, Glisser’s founder and CEO, comments: “We’ve worked with the Blitz team at numerous events since we launched three years ago, and have always been impressed with both their professionalism and appreciation of the role of technology. It’s great to be able to cement those working relationships into something bigger and more strategic.”
Graham Pope, group commercial director, Blitz, adds: “Our technical production experts are true ‘event tech’ pioneers and we are delighted to add Glisser’s impressive capabilities to our customer offer. Driving audience engagement is central to the ambitions of our clients and we are excited to work with a partner that will help us bring even more dynamism to the live event experience.”
UK - Innovative technology and insightful seminars have been the highlights on Day One at the PLASA Show, with exhibitors wowing visitors with new technologies and stylish solutions.
After revealing its new stand concept, Platinum Sponsor Robe continues to showcase its latest lighting fixtures in a show-stopping stand production featuring a dance troupe, rain, fire and a mysterious cave, all visible from the Gallery Level. “We decided to create a ‘Lost World’ trilogy for three trade shows,” explains design duo Nathan Wan and Andy Webb. “We drew inspiration from Tomb Raider, Indiana Jones and the Goonies, creating an epic fire VS water battle. We always go big and this year sees a 22m wide rain feature.”
Stand aesthetics have led the way for Yamaha, too. Chris Irvine, Yamaha’s product manager, says: “This year we took a new approach which has had a great reaction. Rather than bringing loads of gear, we built an aesthetically-pleasing stand and chose a few key products - the legacy PM5D digital mixing console which is out of production, and the modern, cutting-edge PM7. This has allowed us to engage with visitors regarding which products they have used over the years.”
Debuting at PLASA for the first time are Epson with their PLASA Award for Innovation-nominated EB-L1755U projector, which has already proved itself as a show-stopper. Sharon Head, sales manager for Epson, says: “I’ve been delighted by our first time at PLASA Show - it has exceeded expectations. Footfall came quick and fast and we’ve met interesting new potentia
UK - As part of an on-going company-wide investment programme, Pinewood MBS Lighting has expanded its range of location services with delivery of a collection of new mobile generator units.
Forming part of the company’s transport fleet expansion, the super silent units use the very latest acoustic design and technology making them the quietest generators in the market.
This first consignment of 250kW sets are mounted on the latest Euro 6 emission compliant chassis, custom built to feature substantial equipment compartments, compatibility with PMBS customisable rolling equipment racks and 1500kg capacity 1.8m tail lifts.
The 250kW output is easily switchable between three and single phase. For added flexibility, each generator set can be fully synchronised, allowing for load sharing or instant seamless power change over for back up. Distribution via Powerlock two 400A 3ph, three 400A 1ph outlets with RCD protection ensures safe, reliable operation, whilst convenient remote monitoring and control is available using the latest ComAp InteliGen controllers.
The 1,200 litre fuel capacity delivers operational benefits through improved running times with reduced fuelling costs. For extra convenience, on-board tracking provides live updates for precision control over vehicle movement and scheduling.
Commenting on the delivery, Pinewood MBS managing director Darren Smith says: “This initial delivery is the first in our new line of custom built, intelligent generator sets. Mobile power is an essential part of our location service and these n
Belgium - Patrick Van de Sande, founder and CEO of Belgian pro audio manufacturer PVS, has announced his son Tom will succeed him as CEO.
The company is also finalising an investment of €12m in new buildings for R&D, quality control and distribution in Stevoort, Hasselt.
Tom Van de Sande comments: “A few years ago, PVS invested heavily in its own experience centre at the Veldstraat in Hasselt. In the meantime, the company has bought the buildings and land of a former transportation company in Stevoort, Hasselt. We have invested 12m euro in our new logistics centre, complete with new testing facilities and R&D centre. From this location our products are shipped worldwide, to every continent.”
The own brands Audac (audio equipment), Procab (cables and accessories) and Caymon (flightcases and racks), all developed in Hasselt are finding their way to 83 countries. “We are proud to collaborate with several leading brands worldwide”, says Van de Sande. Today the PVS equipment can be admired at branches of Nike, Starbuck, IKEA and many others. There is even more than 70 kilometres of Procab cables in the Burj Khalifa, the world’s tallest building.”
The company celebrated its 35th anniversary along with over 200 clients from all parts of the world.
USA - E1.33 - 201x, Entertainment Technology -- (RDMnet) -- Message Transport and Device Management of ANSI E1.20 (RDM) over IP Networks: This standard defines a method for carrying E1.20 (RDM) messages over IP networks. It also defines a scalable architecture for RDM message transmission that allows multi-controller environments with tens of thousands of RDM Responders. Additionally, a minimal protocol is defined for carrying non-RDM data over the same architecture.
BSR E1.37-7, Additional Message Sets for ANSI E1.20 (RDM) - Gateway & Splitter Messages: This document provides additional Get/Set Parameter Messages for use with the ANSI E1.20 Remote Device Management protocol. This document contains messages relating to configuring managed splitters, proxy devices, and RDMnet Devices.
These standards will be in public review until 5 November. Those that might be materially affected by any of these projects are invited to participate in the work, either by joining the appropriate working group or by commenting on the public review documents, which can be found by following this link to the TSP's public review documents web page.
Slovakia - SRS Group, lighting rigging and power distribution specialist, has recently moved its production and offices into a larger facility.
The new base, in Rybnicna 38/B, 83107 Bratislava, is just across the street from the company’s old location. The larger premises will enable SRS to hold a larger stock of products, have more space for the R&D department, assembly and metal-work production. The building also features its own 600A transformer that gives an opportunity for PDU testing under full load.
SRS Group believes their customers will benefit from this step ahead by having better delivery times, more organised production and even more developed R&D.
Customers are advised that despite the move, SRS Group’s billing address has remained unchanged.
UK - Curtain Call, a network for theatre professionals, is exhibiting jointly with Soulsound, a leading online resource centre for audio engineers, for the first time at PLASA this year. The two companies will be offering a special joint membership offer.
Hailed as ‘LinkedIn meets IMDB, for theatre’, Curtain Call is an online network dedicated to connecting theatre professionals. Members can build profiles, find jobs and collaborate with new and existing connections using the game-changing platform.
Soulsound has been helping sound engineers to improve their skills, find work and be insured since 2011. Members benefit from full public liability insurance as well as training and mentorship from highly successful professionals who share their knowledge and experience.
Together, Curtain Call and Soulsound cover all the needs of theatre and live event technicians and can be of profound service to their members.
If you’re at PLASA 2018, visit stand V4 to discover more about how these innovative organisations will benefit your career in sound and take advantage of their exclusive joint membership offer. For more information and to register interest, please visit https://info.curtaincallonline.com/soulsound
Voices Off - U2 frontman Bono says he expects to be "back to full voice" for the rest of the band's tour a day after a Berlin show was cancelled over a vocal issue. "I've seen a great doctor," the singer said in a statement, adding that he was "happy and relieved that anything serious has been ruled out".
In his statement on Sunday, the singer said his "relief" at being able to return to performing was "tempered by the knowledge that the Berlin audience were so inconvenienced".
"There was an amazing atmosphere in the house, it was going to be one of those unforgettable nights but not for this reason. We can't wait to get back there on 13 November," the statement added. It was the second night of the European leg of U2's Experience + Innocence tour, which had kicked off at the same venue on Friday night.
Zero Tolerance - Kevin Hart has split opinion as a "zero tolerance" mobile phone ban at his UK gigs left some people out of pocket. Fans were left frustrated with the US comedian's strict policy as some claimed they were removed from the venue for as little as sending a text.
It is not the first time phones have been banned at gigs - but it might be the dawning of a new age of enforcement. Chris Rock fans will recall a similar ban as they were forced to keep their mobile phones in a locked pouch while at his shows last year. But Hart's ban does not include any such technology - instead relying on so-called "cell phone security" to police the venue and enforce the rule. Fans were warned in advance of the ban, which has applied to
UK - The career of rock photographer Neal Preston spans more than 40 years. He has built up an extensive body of work from Alice Cooper to Frank Zappa, from Led Zeppelin to Queen, on and off the stage.
His work forms the core of the Lightpower Collection of Rock ‘n’ Roll photography and cover art - a collection born out of a company culture with a passion for collecting Rock’n’Roll art.
For the past four years, the Lightpower Collection has toured worldwide with In the Eye of the Rock ’n’ Roll Hurricane, an exhibition which shows the body of Preston’s work. In it are more than 70 of his iconic pictures: legendary album covers, views behind the scenes, moments that made history – the essence of rock and concert touring that has dominated out industry since the late ‘60s.
Now it is PLASA’s turn to proudly present a fine selection from the Lightpower Collection which honours and celebrates those legends in the limelight, while returning something to those who worked hard in the background to make this all happen.
Neal Preston’s fine art prints are highly sought after by collectors worldwide, and all proceeds from Lightpower Collection sales go to Behind the Scenes and Backup, foundations that provide relief for event technicians in need.
The exhibition has already been enthusiastically received by visitors to the Montreux Jazz Festival, LDi in Las Vegas, LLB in Stockholm and Musikmesse in Frankfurt. “The UK has always been a massive source and host of live music with many great international bands hailing
USA - Four documents have been posted for public review on the ESTA website.
BSR E1.29 - 2009 (R2014), Product Safety Standard for Theatrical Fog Generators that Create Aerosols of Water, Aqueous Solutions of Glycol or Glycerin, or Aerosols of Highly Refined Alkane Mineral Oil
This standard is being considered for reaffirmation. It's intended to help guide product safety testing laboratories in evaluating fog-making equipment for design or construction defects that might create unacceptable hazards. It is based on UL 998 - 2006, Humidifiers, with modifications. Products covered are theatrical fog generators intended for use in professional theatrical entertainment, film and video production, theme parks, and fire safety training.
BSR E1.62, Minimum specifications for mass-produced portable platforms, ramps, stairs, and choral risers for live performance events
The standard covers 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.
BSR E1.5 - 2009 (R2014), Theatrical Fog Made with Aqueous Solutions of Di- and Trihydric Alcohols
This standard is being considered for reaffirmation. This standard describes the composition of theatrical fogs or artificial mists that are not likely to be harmful to healthy performers, technicians, or audience members of normal working age.
Those three standards are in public review until 24 Septe
Missing Out - The number of GCSE students sitting creative subjects this year has slipped by 10% on last year, prompting yet further warnings that young people are missing out on “essential” life skills. GCSE drama uptake has fallen by 5.3% on 2017, according to this year’s final figures, released by the Joint Council for Qualifications on GCSE results day.
The 10% decline in entries for creative subjects in England comprises statistics for drama, art and design, design and technology, film and TV studies, music and performing / expressive arts. This is a further 10% on the 9% decline recorded between 2016 and 2017.
Those taking performing / expressive arts fell by 45% - from 15,641 to just 8,646. As of 2017, this course is being phased out of the curriculum, which accounts for the dramatic decline, but the numbers are not being made up elsewhere. The drop in creative subjects contrasts with an increase for subjects that are part of the English Baccalaureate.
The chief executive of the Incorporated Society of Musicians, Deborah Annetts, who also founded the Bacc for the Future campaign, said the decline is set “against a backdrop of the government claiming that the EBacc is not detrimental to the take up of arts GCSEs. This is simply not true”.
Charlotte Jones, chief executive of the Independent Theatre Council, said: “Now more than ever in this terrifyingly uncertain world, it is essential for young people to have the opportunity to express and develop their creativity. This year’s GCSE results show a worrying downturn of take u
Music & Politics - Lana Del Rey has hit back at critics defending her decision to perform at Meteor festival in Israel. She tweeted: “I believe music is universal and should be used to bring us together. Performing in Tel Aviv is not a political statement or a commitment to the politics there, just like singing here in California doesn’t mean my views are in alignment [with] my current government’s opinions or sometimes inhuman actions.”
In response, The Palestine Campaign for the Academic and Cultural Boycott of Israel issued a statement urging the singer "to reconsider". The debate about artists performing in Israel is still very politicised. Roger Waters, Lauryn Hill and Elvis Costello have boycotted Israel in recent years. But there are also plenty of artists who have played Tel Aviv, including Justin Bieber, Radiohead, Elton John, Guns N' Roses and Lady Gaga.
Radiohead went ahead with their performance there in 2017. Frontman Thom Yorke argued that "playing in a country isn’t the same as endorsing its government. We don’t endorse Netanyahu any more than Trump, but we still play in America. Music, art and academia is about crossing borders, not building them; about open minds not closed ones, about shared humanity, dialogue and freedom of expression.”
Storm Warning - At least 14 Backstreet Boys fans were injured after a metal structure at an outdoor concert venue collapsed in a storm in the US state of Oklahoma. Staff were evacuating fans when rain and winds of 70-80mph (113-128 km/h) knocked over the concert entrance tr