General News

The Week in Light & Sound
Tuesday, 28 March 2017

Sgt. Pepper Promotion - The Beatles released Sgt. Pepper’s Lonely Hearts Club Band 50 years ago this week – and it remains widely regarded as the best rock and roll album concept of all time. To mark the anniversary, the city of Liverpool is to host a huge cultural celebration, called Sgt. Pepper at 50: Heading for Home from Thursday 25 May to Friday 16 June. The council has invested £750,000 of National Lottery funding through its Ambition for Excellence scheme to fund the celebration. The events include:
When I’m 64 - A mass sing-along - broadcast live on radio - of 64 choirs from across the city and of all ages. With an inter-generational theme, the event will focus on what age really means to anyone who is between 14 and 64.
Lucy in The Sky with Diamonds - A light festival on an Olympic scale, with music and fireworks, in the beautiful surroundings of Camp Hill.
With a Little Help From My Friends - Two public art commissions that examine the nature of friendship and self-sacrifice.
Commenting on the festival, Alison Clark, the Arts Council’s national director for combined arts and director north, said, "Our Ambition for Excellence fund uses National Lottery investment to support the creation of work for major national moments. The events to celebrate Sgt. Pepper at 50 on the scale and of the quality that this festival promises are very exciting."
New Direction - Shakespeare's Globe is advertising for a new artistic director to succeed Emma Rice, with the organisation confirm

The Week in Light & Sound
Tuesday, 21 March 2017

Diversity Programme - Improving diversity and protecting local authority funding are at the forefront of UK Theatre’s business plan for the next four years. The plan from the membership organisation, which sets out its objectives for 2017-2021, describes its aim to improve the diversity of theatre and the performing arts as “a significant priority”. The organisation commits to working with Tonic Theatre, Equity and other stakeholders to publish a planning tool for the casting process in order to improve diversity on stage.
It will also establish a ‘board bank’ of professionals from black, Asian and minority ethnic, disabled and low socio-economic backgrounds to assist organisations in addressing the diversity of their boards. Another focus in the business plan is addressing the increase in live-to-digital theatre. The industry body promises to negotiate a standard agreement for digital rights, pay scales and royalty fees, in collaboration with Equity.
Roll Over Beethoven - Tributes have poured in from all quarters for Chuck Berry and his contribution to rock music. Mick Jagger, The Jacksons and Bruce Springsteen were among those to mark the Johnny B. Goode singer's passing.
Sir Mick Jagger: "I am so sad to hear of Chuck Berry's passing. I want to thank him for all the inspirational music he gave to us. He lit up our teenage years, and blew life into our dreams of being musicians and performers. His lyrics shone above others & threw a strange light on the American dream. Chuck you were amazing & your music is engraved

VDC Trading streamlines team structure
Tuesday, 21 March 2017

UK - VDC Trading has made a number of new appointments and implemented a re-structure of its London-based team. Designed to offer more streamlined services to clients in the UK and overseas, the new approach centres on customer experience.
Cain Cookson has been appointed to the role of senior relationship development manager, heading up the UK pro-active sales team. With over five years’ B2B sales experience, Cain combines commercial expertise with technical capability, having achieved a first--class honours degree in Audio and Music Technology from the University of the West of England.
Herpreet Kaur Sing has taken on the role of customer service manager, with responsibility for delivering the highest level of customer service to VDC Trading’s growing international client base. With more than three years’ experience in pro-audio sales, Herpreet is also a qualified commercial solicitor and is pursuing a masters’ degree in engineering focusing on electrical and audio technology.
Adam Jafrabadi takes on the role of export / technical consultant. With over 17 years’ experience working within VDC Trading in a variety of roles, most recently as technical manager, Adam will drive VDC Trading’s continued international expansion and extend VDC Trading’s distributor network globally.
Commenting on the appointments, Niall Holden, CEO of VDC Trading, says, “We are always looking to improve service and strengthen our offering to clients. With this new approach and new appointments, we have refined our approach to sales and client ma

mark-watson-and-carol-gibbsBlitz|GES promotes senior players
Tuesday, 21 March 2017

UK - Blitz|GES has promoted two of its senior team - Carol Gibbs and Mark Watson - to newly created roles as the business plans for growth in 2017. The new structure underlines Blitz|GES’ key strengths and supports a robust pipeline for the year ahead.
Carol Gibbs takes on responsibility for the company’s growing venue portfolio in the newly created role of director of venues. Mark Watson is promoted to creative director with a brief to expand Blitz|GES’ strong reputation for high-quality design.
Blitz|GES is the preferred technical production partner to many of the UK’s major venues and recently won official status for the new Hall 1 at Farnborough International Exhibition & Conference Centre – due to open in 2018.
Gibbs will be working closely with the Blitz|GES teams at the venues to identify and capitalise on new business opportunities in the rapidly growing corporate live events sector.
Watson’s elevation to creative director is an extension of his current role and reinforces a crucial differentiator for the business - combining cutting edge technical knowledge with high-quality creative – all from a single account team. With clients increasingly requesting digital content and creative execution, Watson will lead this exciting area of the business.
Both Gibbs and Watson will report directly into Blitz|GES managing director, Paul Hutton.
“For more than 25 years Blitz|GES has been recognised as one of the most creative providers of technical event services in the industry – a reputation that is entirely

backupBackup charity raises awareness at special event
Friday, 17 March 2017

UK – Supporters and trustees of Backup - The Technical Entertainment Charity - gathered in London on Monday evening to help raise the profile of the charity’s new name and logo in entertainment industry. Around 80 guests attended the event, which included live entertainment from Jay Johnson.
Backup exists to provide financial support to technical professionals working in live events, theatre, TV and film, helping them to get back on their feet when their lives are disrupted by illness or injury to themselves or to family members. Previously known as Behind The Scenes UK, the charity changed its name to Backup in 2016.
Backup’s chairman, John Simpson, welcomed guests to The Hospital Club in London’s Covent Garden, which generously sponsored the event. He reiterated the purpose of the charity by highlighting some of its achievements to date. “We have helped a number of technicians and their families when they have suffered falls from sets and studio rigging, been involved in horrific vehicle accidents, suffered rheumatoid arthritis, cancer, Hodgkin’s lymphoma, mental breakdowns and other circumstances that have prevented them from earning a living for a period of time.”
Among those being helped by the charity is Mark Pritchard, who was diagnosed with Hodgkin’s lymphoma while touring with Level 42, and has just undergone a fourth round of chemotherapy. John Simpson read a message from him, in which he thanked the charity, saying: “We are amazed at the generosity of our industry in times of trouble.”
Simpson said: “Backup wil

bts-raffle-crowdLong Reach Long Riders raise funds at USITT
Thursday, 16 March 2017

USA - The Long Reach Long Riders (LRLR) celebrated their upcoming ride through Southern California with a raffle and live auction to benefit Behind the Scenes during the USITT Conference in St. Louis last week.
Sales of raffle tickets, some key donations, and sales of BTS and LRLR-branded swag raised over $15,000 for the charity. The LRLR 2017 ride, dubbed the Avocado Adventure, starts on 16 June in Escondido, CA. The riders cover all their own expenses so everything they raise goes to the charity. Sponsor a rider today at
Festivities led off with the traditional kazoo parade led by Bill Sapsis and USITT executive director David Grindle and many of the LRLR. Following the parade, BTS Pledge-a-Product partners InCord (Orchestra Pit Safety Netting Systems) and ETC (irFR and aRFR application for iOS and Android devices) presented cheques from the sales of their products pledged to BTS.
Live auction items included a custom pen/screwdriver and a seam ripper created by Shan and Trish Ayers and two special ghostlight desk lamps created by Bob Scales.
Just a few minutes before the raffle started Bill Sapsis announced he would donate up to $1,000 to match the amount raised in last minute ticket sales. There was a flurry of activity as the crowd stepped up and made Bill pay out the full amount. Reid Neslage from H&H Specialties stepped up with another $1,000 to triple the amount.
The winners and their prizes are:
Grand Prize, Vectorworks Spotlight with Renderworks won Roger Bardwell
BTS Ghostlig

The Week in Lighting & Sound
Tuesday, 14 March 2017

Unlimited Fines - Online touts who bulk buy tickets and sell them for inflated prices will face unlimited fines under government plans. An amendment to the Digital Economy Bill means it will be illegal to use "bots" to bypass limits on the maximum number of tickets that can be bought. Tickets purchased by bots can appear on secondary websites at prices many times greater than their face value.
A Department for Culture, Media and Sport (DCMS) spokesman said the profiteering was "simply not fair". High profile artists such as Adele and Ed Sheeran have previously criticised the touts and asked their fans not to buy tickets from secondary sites. Last month, resale site Viagogo was accused of "moral repugnance" for selling tickets to an Ed Sheeran Teenage Cancer Trust gig for up to £5,000. And an £85 ticket to see Adele at the O2 in London last year was reportedly being sold for £24,840.
Political Anthems - Russia has announced it will now take part in Eurovision 2017 in Ukraine, appearing to end speculation of a boycott for political reasons. Julia Samoilova is set to represent her country in Kiev in May with the song Flame is Burning. However, her admission she performed in Crimea since it was annexed by Russia in 2014 may compromise her attendance.
Ukraine's SBU security service has blacklisted 140 Russian artists, although she is not on the list so far. Samoilova has confirmed that she sang in Crimea in 2015. Russia and Ukraine have been locked in political conflict since the annexation of the region three years ago.

littliteDWR appointed Littlite agents for SA
Thursday, 9 March 2017

South Africa - DWR Distribution has been appointed Littlite agents. Littlite was represented in South Africa for many years by Tadco’s Simon Oates, who recently made the decision to pass the brand on to DWR. A large stock order is coming soon, and DWR is running a competition where three people will have opportunity to win the Littlite Anser Lampset 18 “Goosneck and Dimmer integrated into chassis.
Littlite products are made in Michigan, America, and the range of task lamps are not only suitable for sound and lighting consoles, but can be used as map lights, desk lights, lectern lights, microscope lights, inspection lights and reading lights.
“We initially wanted to order Littlite task lights from Tadco for our DiGiCo console users,” explained Duncan Riley of DWR. “In true Simon Oates fashion, he opted to rather make a phone call to Littlite and ask if the brand could be transferred to us. Littlite is a well-loved product in our market and we look forward to making it available to our clients. Thankyou Simon.”
(Jim Evans)

The Week in Lighting & Sound
Tuesday, 7 March 2017

Stagecraft - Harry Potter and the Cursed Child has received 11 Olivier Award nominations, which makes it the most nominated new play in Olivier history. The musical Groundhog Day, which begins on Broadway this month, has picked up eight nominations. Glenda Jackson receives her first nomination since 1984 following her return to the stage as King Lear. Her leading role at London's Old Vic last year was her first stage appearance for 25 years after giving up acting for politics in the early 1990s.
Groundhog Day competes in the best new musical category against Dreamgirls, School of Rock and The Girls. Jesus Christ Superstar, composed by Andrew Lloyd Webber, receives six nominations, including best musical revival. "In a year of global change, the nominees for this year's awards demonstrate London theatre's ability to challenge our perceptions, stir our emotions, and entertain us," said Julian Bird, chief executive of the Society of London Theatre, which produces the Olivier Awards.
Noises Off - Reformed pop group Bros have cancelled all their concerts outside London and Manchester. The duo, brothers Matt and Luke Goss, were due to play a full UK tour this summer, after a break of 24 years. But now dates in Newcastle, Glasgow, Nottingham and Birmingham have been scrapped. A statement said the dates had been cancelled "due to unforeseen logistical circumstances", with the brothers offering "sincere apologies" to fans. Two shows at London's O2 arena will go ahead, as will a date at

tommy-1Tommy Stephenson, 1963-2017
Thursday, 23 February 2017

USA - TMB has issued the following tribute to its first employee Tommy Stephenson who sadly passed away this week . . .
“TMB fondly remembers our first employee, Tommy Stephenson, the loudest man in show business.
“After a record breaking stint as PA for Greg Lake (of ELP fame) Tommy joined TMB around 1984 (who kept track in those days?). He transformed the fledgling organization from Two Men in a Bedroom to Three Men and a Dog. Tommy’s primary role then was, and always remained, Confusion Analyst, but his early duties also included cable coiler, driver, shipping/receiving expert, and ace booth builder (specializing in the afternoon shift). Later, in the spare time between his ongoing confusion analysis, he grew to become TMB’s Sales Manager. His heavy focus on confusion was the origin of TMB’s famous Rule Three: “Do Not Believe A Word Tommy Tells You.” In 2013 Tommy sadly retired from TMB for health reasons.
Tommy was infamous for not listening – ever! Known far and wide as “Large and Loud,” his blustery voice carried like a foghorn, irrespective of the environment or situation, or the choice language he was also known for. A demure patron in a London Indian restaurant put it succinctly: “I want to thank you for sharing your entire evening with the entire restaurant. You sir, are an a***hole.” Once, during one of many long flights over the Pacific, a passenger asked Tommy’s frequent and long-suffering travel companion, Colin Waters, “Does your friend know his voice projects really far?” It is almost impossible to belie

susanmcguirlloresSusan McGuirl joins BTS Foundation Board
Wednesday, 22 February 2017

USA - Susan McGuirl, the Head of North America Entertainment, Entertainment Division, Allianz Global Corporate & Specialty, has accepted an invitation to join the Behind the Scenes Foundation Board of Directors.
Susan has been in the insurance industry for over 25 years holding various leadership positions in both claims and underwriting. Allianz Entertainment is the largest entertainment insurance writer in the U.S. focusing on providing specialized insurance solutions for the entertainment industry
Upon accepting the appointment, Susan commented, "I am honoured to serve on the Behind the Scenes Board of Directors. BTS’ dedication to the entertainment industry is important and necessary in serving those who need our help and support."
Rick Rudolph, the chair of the Behind the Scenes Foundation, welcomed Susan to the Board saying, “We are extremely honoured to have Susan join us in our work. Her desire to support entertainment technology professionals in need is a natural extension of her longstanding commitment to making our industry a safer place. We look forward to breadth of experience and new ideas she will bring to the Board.”
The Behind the Scenes charity provides entertainment technology professionals who are seriously ill or injured with grants that may be used for basic living and medical expenses. For more information about Behind the Scenes, to donate, or to apply for a grant, visit
(Jim Evans)

pinkfloydThe Week in Lighting & Sound
Tuesday, 21 February 2017

Off The Wall - Roger Waters has said he would consider performing on the border between the US and Mexico as an act of defiance. The veteran Pink Floyd frontman and bassist has been a vocal critic of Donald Trump's plans to build a security barrier along the Mexico border. In a rare public appearance alongside drummer Nick Mason, promoting the forthcoming Pink Floyd: Their Mortal Remains exhibition at the V&A Museum, the two former Pink Floyd members discussed their new exhibition as well as what would happen when Donald Trump visits the UK. "I'm quite sure if President Trump comes to this country there will be an enormous taking to the streets," Waters said. "I think we would see demonstrations in London bigger than any demonstrations than have ever been seen."
Profiteering - Secondary ticketing website Viagogo has been criticised for "profiteering at the expense of teenage cancer sufferers". The website is advertising seats at vastly inflated prices for next month's Ed Sheeran concert at London's Royal Albert Hall, which is a fundraiser for the Teenage Cancer Trust. Seats have reportedly been advertised for up to £5,000, with the most expensive on the website currently costing about £1,500. Viagogo admitted on its website that the original face value for each ticket was between £49.50 and £110.
In a statement on their website, the Teenager Cancer Trust said: "The only people who should profit from Teenage Cancer Trust at the Royal Albert Hall are young people with cancer." They added: "ID will be rigorously checked and anyo

rubberboxkitDistro equipment stolen from site
Tuesday, 21 February 2017

UK – A piece of distro equipment stolen from a site in East London recently is being sought by its owner, The Technical Department Ltd. The item is a DT12 - Type 12, 63A/3-phase to 2x32A/3-phase box (pictured). As the photograph shows, the item is clearly marked on the top with ‘TYPE 12’.
It is believed that the item was stolen by an opportunist thief, and that it will reappear for sale on the market. Anyone with information on the whereabouts of the equipment is asked to contact Jerry Singleton at The Technical Department

winners-on-stageFestival Supplier Awards 2017 winners announced
Thursday, 2 February 2017

UK - Almost 370 of the UK festival and outdoor event industry’s leading suppliers and organisers attended the Festival Supplier Awards to celebrate and applaud the 2017 winners on Thursday 26 January.
Now in its third year, and settled in to its home at the Hurlingham Club, the awards recognise companies who work tirelessly to deliver great events, many of whose efforts often go unseen.
Amongst the awards presented were accolades for Best Stage, Best Power, Best Temporary Structure, Best Toilets/ Waste Management, Best Concession/ Bar and Best Sound, along with gongs for Best Production Team and Best Festival Support Service.
The full list of awards presented and the winners is:
Best Concession / Bar: Peppermint Bars, Bestival
Best Festival Technology Provider: TOURtech, Lollapalooza
Best Crowd / Pit Barrier: Actavo Events, London Stadium
Best Crew / Artist Catering: Global Infusion Group, BBC Radio 2 Live in Hyde Park
Best Festival PR company: Full Fat, Liverpool International Music Festival
Best Glamping & Accommodation: Hotel Bell Tent, CarFest North
Best Event Branding: Imagination, V Festival – Hylands Park & Weston Park
Best Toilets / Waste Management: Qdos Event Hire, Royal Windsor Horse Show & HMQ90
Best Health & Safety: The Fair, Junction 2
Best Power: Power Logistics, V Festival, Hylands Park
Best Fencing / Hoarding: GAP Hire Solutions, V Festival, Weston Park
Best Crewing Company: Showforce, Creamfields
Best Screen Supplier: ADI UK Ltd, Ro

The Week in Lighting & Sound
Tuesday, 24 January 2017

Forever Young - Petula Clark will make her UK festival debut at Fairport Convention's Cropredy Festival on Friday 11 August. "We're really proud to be the first British festival that Petula has played," says Fairport bassist and Cropredy co-organiser Dave Pegg. "I saw her show in Birmingham recently and it blew me away - she is a wonderful live performer. I was surprised how many of her hits I knew and her contemporary songs are really great too. Our audience will love her, I'm sure."

Also lined up for the Oxfordshire event is The Trevor Horn Band. The producer will front a 14-piece all-star band featuring fellow producers Steve Lipson and Lol Creme. The setlist will be packed with songs the trio have produced - between them they've had over 200 hit singles - and there may be guest appearances from some of the musicians they have worked with.

Dark Times Ahead - Gorillaz have returned from a five-year hiatus with a new song titled Hallelujah Money, warning of 'dark times' ahead. The video, featuring vocals from Mercury Prize-winning poet and composer Benjamin Clementine, was released on YouTube one day before Donald Trump's inauguration. The band - formed by Blur frontman Damon Albarn and Tank Girl creator Jamie Hewlett - has regularly hinted at politics in their lyrics.

Publishing News - Sir Paul McCartney is taking legal action against Sony/ATV as he fights to reclaim ownership of the Beatles hits he wrote with John Lennon. The musician filed a lawsuit in New York against the publishing firm - which controls the rights to songs inclu

Symphotech grows with four appointmentsSymphotech grows with four appointments
Tuesday, 24 January 2017

UK - Marking the company's ongoing growth, Symphotech has welcomed four event safety and fire safety professionals as the company looks forward to a busy year.

Chartered safety and health practitioner, Eddy Grant, joins the North West office as a legal and safety consultant. With over 30 years of industry experience, Eddy has worked with the Event Industry Forum and HSE to produce the new Purple Guide and has overseen health and safety on a variety of events including The London 2012 Summer Olympics, the Tour de France 2014, and was employed by Liverpool City Council to deliver the city's 2008 Capital of Culture programme.

Also joining the North West office is Graham Picken as safety consultant. A former member of Merseyside Police, Graham was part of the major events planning team and became lead logistics officer for Aintree Grand National Planning Teams and the lead planner on over 50 events per year.

Joining the team, and heading up the South West office, is Duncan White as lead consultant for event fire and crowd safety. Duncan brings over 30 years of experience as a former fire officer with Devon & Somerset Fire & Rescue Service where he was responsible for the event safety management team.

Peter Golding also joins the South West office as fire and event safety consultant. Peter's background is also from Devon & Somerset Fire & Rescue Service where his responsibilities included licensing, technical fire safety and building regulation consultations.

Julian Spear, Director of logistics at Symphotech comments, "The entire Symphotech team are gr

Showforce assists with Les Misérables in DubaiShowforce assists with Les Misérables in Dubai
Wednesday, 18 January 2017

UAE - When the touring version of the musical Les Misérables arrived at the newly opened Dubai Opera in November 2016, members of Showforce's experienced team of stage crew and event staff were on-hand to assist. Running from 17 November until 2 December, there were 18 performances in total and as the first show of its kind to be held in the UAE, it was hailed a huge success.

Working directly with the team at Dubai Opera, as part of its on-going contract with the venue, and long-standing client, Sports & Entertainment Solutions, the Showforce team supported the touring production throughout the load in, the three-week run of sell-out performances and subsequent load out.

Initially, a team of 10 crew members was tasked with the unloading of no less than 17 40-foot shipping containers, that had arrived in Dubai from Singapore, the previous stop on the tour. During the second day of the build, the crew were tasked with helping to assemble the large pieces of stage set that were required for all the multiple set changes the show is famous for. In addition, four specialist lighting technicians provided support to the production's touring crew.

Once the run of performances began Showforce provided a team of two follow spot operators, three stage technicians who assisted with all set changes and a hostess who helped to seat Dubai Opera's and Sports & Entertainment Solutions VIP guests. In addition, eight of Showforce's accomplished wardrobe assistants helped the cast with costume changes, which included 392 costumes in total and 1,782 items of clot

The Week in Light & Sound
Tuesday, 17 January 2017

Final Curtain - The curtain is coming down on the most celebrated circus in the US, the Greatest Show on Earth, run by Ringling Brothers and Barnum & Bailey. After 146 years in the business, the owners said declining tickets sales and high operating costs were to blame. Activists who campaigned for decades against the travelling circus's animal acts welcomed the news.

"After much evaluation and deliberation, my family and I have made the difficult business decision that Ringling Bros and Barnum & Bailey will hold its final performances in May," said a statement from Kenneth Feld, CEO of Feld Entertainment, the family business which has run the circus since the late 1960s.

Sep Outside Love - A life-size bronze statue of Cilla Black has been unveiled outside Liverpool's Cavern Club as the venue celebrates its 60th anniversary. The club, credited with launching the career of The Beatles, opened its doors on 16 January 1957 as a jazz cellar. Crowds gathered in Mathew Street to see the sculpture which shows a young Cilla performing one of her early songs. The TV celebrity and 1960s singing star, who died in 2015, started work as a cloakroom attendant at the club.

Country File - Kris Kristofferson is to play the Pyramid Stage in Glastonbury this year, according to the singer's official website. A spokesman for Glastonbury said the next official line-up announcement will be in the spring and would not confirm Kristofferson is in fact performing. Kristofferson, one of the most influential country singers of all time, has released 17 albums in reports 2016 as best year ever
Tuesday, 17 January 2017

UK - Software provider has announced 2016 to have been the company's best year ever since its incorporation in 2000. The news follows the announcement last year that 2015 had already been a record year for sales and usage stats of's award-winning design and documentation software, Stardraw Design 7.2, and 2016 has been better still.

"Obviously, we're delighted," said CEO, Rob Robinson. "We had already recorded close to 25% growth during 2015, and we were up nearly another 20% again over the course of 2016. Our usage stats bear out the same story with an average of 10,000 sessions per month opened during 2016 which increased to a staggering 15,000 per month in 2016. That we should be enjoying this kind of growth in what has been a precarious year in so many other ways is particularly gratifying.

"There are doubtless a number of factors that explain this positive shift," he continued. "We think that it is due to in part to the increased accessibility of Stardraw Design 7, as well, of course, as the constant improvements, refinements and new features we have been adding over the years. As a result, we have a product that can be fully tailored to our customers' requirements and budget thanks to its modular nature.

"We have also improved accessibility by moving to a new, subscription-based business model which allows customers to pay a small amount monthly rather than a single annual fee. This is a much better solution for cash-flow management and ensures that customers are always enjoying the most up-to-date version of t

Point Source Audio on the movePoint Source Audio on the move
Tuesday, 17 January 2017

USA - Point Source Audio (PSA) an audio equipment manufacturer specializing in the development of miniature microphones and headsets has completed its move into a new corporate headquarters in Petaluma, California. The new office will be just a mile away from the previous location, but is 50 percent larger and offers a more efficient layout to support the company's administrative and operational functions as well as product development, sales and marketing, and assembly staff.

The move comes as a result of the company's "phenomenal growth" attributed to the adoption of its miniature performance microphones and audio headsets. In 2016, the company celebrated its 10th year in business and also received a granted patent for design of the world's first modular in-ear audio headset known as the CM-i3.

It currently has another innovation, the customizable fitted Embrace Microphone, under patent filing. Expanding operations to the new facility with larger warehousing and assembly facilities is in alignment with the company's plans for market growth and new product development.

President of Point Source Audio James Lamb comments, "The expansion of our headquarters is the culmination of an exciting year of breakout products. We are honored to be selected by a long list of distinguished microphone users that include the San Francisco Opera and the Berklee School of Music - it is humbling to be such an integral part of their productions." Lamb further added, "This investment in our infrastructure underscores our commitment to both our customers and our employees."

Hawthorn celebrates record yearHawthorn celebrates record year
Thursday, 12 January 2017

UK - Award-winning technical event production company Hawthorn has recorded a 25% increase in turnover to £18m in its last financial year (July 2015-June 2016).

Since the acquisition of technical production house Anagram in 2013, the company has embarked upon an ambitious five-year growth plan to increase its turnover from £11.3m to £20m by July 2018. Hawthorn is on track to achieve this in 2017 - its 30th anniversary year - one year ahead of target.

To support this growth, the company has seen a significant investment in its people and training, with a 16% increase in employees, rising from 129 in June 2013 to 162 in June 2016; by 7 December 2016, the employee count had already risen to 187.

Key factors contributing to the company's continued expansion since 2013, says the company, include:

Investment in the in-house sales and marketing team and the launch of a new Hawthorn brand in 2015, which amalgamated the Core Creative, Rex Howard Drapes and Anagram brands under one name: Hawthorn.

Successful development of existing client accounts and new business acquisition across the company's hire, installation & sales and technical event production services.

A £9m investment over three years in new equipment and major warehouse improvements at the company's Leicestershire headquarters.

Significant expansion in equipment supply to the theatre and concert touring markets, with an impressive 433% increase in business.

Emphasis upon nurturing the next generation of technical talent and recruiting the best to the business

The Week in Lighting & Sound
Tuesday, 10 January 2017

Going La La - Hollywood musical La La Land has broken the record for the most Golden Globe Awards, winning seven prizes. It won every award it was nominated for - including best musical or comedy film, best director, screenplay, score and song.

The ceremony featured several references to Mr Trump - not least when Meryl Streep launched an attack on the US President-elect while accepting the Cecil B Demille award for outstanding contribution to entertainment. Streep referred to Trump's mocking of a disabled reporter and said, "Disrespect invites disrespect, violence incites violence. And when the powerful use their position to bully others we all lose." The Golden Globe Awards, which are run by the Hollywood Foreign Press Association, honour the best in TV and film from the past year.

With or Without You - U2 will celebrate the 30th anniversary of their seminal Joshua Tree album this summer by playing the album in full around the world. The 25 shows include dates in London and at Dublin's Croke Park, where the band played a triumphant homecoming show on the original Joshua Tree tour. Released in 1987, the album included hits such as Where the Streets Have No Name and With or Without You.

In an interview with Rolling Stone, U2 guitarist The Edge said the band had not yet decided how to structure the concerts. "The show might not necessarily start with track one, side one - Where the Streets Have No Name - because we feel like maybe we need to build up to that moment," he said. "So we're still in the middle of

Intellitix acquires stake in LOC Pay SystemsIntellitix acquires stake in LOC Pay Systems
Tuesday, 10 January 2017

Europe - Intellitix, global RFID cashless payment and access control specialist, has acquired a controlling stake in Netherlands based LOC Pay Systems.

LOC Pay Systems supplied 200 festivals and venues across Europe in 2016 with its token-based payment system and will continue to operate from its head office in Lochem, Netherlands, retaining its 13 full time employees under the management of CEO Roland Wassink.

Intellitix has grown organically to date, aiming to provide cashless RFID environment to 500 events in 2017. The acquisition of LOC Pay Systems, which until 2015 was a division of LOC 7000, marks the first time Intellitix has expanded by acquisition.

Serge Grimaux, Intellitix CEO states, "There is a great synergy between our companies in our approach to delivering the best possible, practicable Access Control and Payment Systems to events. The acquisition of LOC Pay Systems aligns with our core belief that clients' confidence to use new technology is centred around trust and proven track records.

"There is a fantastic team at LOC Pay Systems with a strong reputation based on multiple successes for their clients across the years. They will introduce our RFID technologies to an event or venue when appropriate. Where it can bring benefits to a client we know LOC Pay Systems advice will pave the path for the use of our technologies.

"Bringing the two companies together means that LOC Pay Systems clients will now have access to RFID Cashless technology, while Intellitix's global network of events can draw on the considerable expertise and experi

Companies and individuals pledge to save the TSP
Tuesday, 10 January 2017

USA - When ESTA learned it would be losing a long-term source of revenue, the association faced the loss of almost a third of its income in 2017. The immediate impact of this is to endanger the survival of ESTA's ANSI-accredited Technical Standards Program (TSP). The ramifications of this would be enormous to the entertainment technology industry. Upon hearing of the situation, Ford Sellers, senior product manager at Chauvet Lighting, commented, "The work that is done by the TSP is indispensable. It is central to our industry...In fact, it is what makes us an industry, instead of just a bunch of individual projects."

The rallying cry went out from the volunteer leadership of ESTA and members of the Technical Standards Program, "Everyone in the industry benefits from the TSP and everyone needs to step forward and fund this critical program to keep it alive." The standards created under the TSP are used directly or indirectly every day by almost every manufacturer, dealer, installer, production company and end user. These standards prevent accidents, protect lives and property, save time and money, solve problems, and enhance creativity.

The industry is being asked to step up with five-year pledges to ensure the important work of the TSP can continue uninterrupted while ESTA strives to put other sources of funding in place. To date, 51 companies and individuals have stepped forward with pledges totaling roughly $200,000 per year, putting ESTA over halfway towards its goal. The list of companies making the pledge can be seen at To jo


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