UK - The Association of British Theatre Technicians (ABTT) has announced that Louise Jeffreys, the Barbican's director of arts, will be its new chairman. Jeffreys succeeds Mark White, regional manager UK & Ireland for Electronic Theatre Controls (ETC).

Jeffreys' extensive background in the performing arts, encompassing programming, production and venue management, alongside roles as head of production at Bayerische Staatsoper in Munich and technical director at English National Opera, make her the ideal candidate to lead the ABTT's Council of Management over the next 12 months, says the association.

Her timely appointment comes at an exciting moment for the ABTT following 12 years of consolidation and steady development under White, and with the full-time Chief Executive Officer Robin Townley now in post.

Elected by the Council of Management, Jeffreys follows in a great trad

UK - If you could go anywhere in the world, where would you go? It's time to start dreaming of faraway places! Enter the Behind the Scenes UK raffle at the PLASA London show in October and you could win the grand prize - a £2500 travel voucher. Second prize is a £1,000 Amazon gift card, and third prize is a £500 voucher with Mr and Mrs Smith hotels.

Raffle tickets are just £10 each and will be available throughout the show at the Behind the Scenes stand M65. The draw will be held on Wednesday afternoon, 8 October but you do not need to be present to win.

The raffle is to help raise funds for the new UK charity Behind the Scenes which will provide financial assistance to entertainment technology professionals, or their immediate family, who are seriously ill or injured. Grants may be used for

Italy - Pasquale Quadri, founder and chairman of Clay Paky SpA, passed away on Saturday night at his home in Torre De Roveri, aged 67.

Pasquale 'Paky' Quadri was a highly successful entrepreneur, although very reserved. He preferred not to appear very much but every lighting professional, all over the world, knows that he was the creative soul of Clay Paky, the Italian company that exports 97% of its production and is present, with its sophisticated luminaires, on the stages of the most important events and shows in the world.

Just some of the most recent projects that are worth remembering include the London Olympic Games, the Winter Olympics in Sochi, the Academy Awards, shows by Bruno Mars and Madonna during the finals of the Superbowl, the tours of many artists such as Justin Timberlake, Lady Gaga, the Rolling Stones and, in Italy, Vasco Rossi, Ligabue, Laura Pausini and G

UK - uTRAC returns to PLASA London to give attendees a preview of uTRAC 2.0. The workforce management application for event services companies has received a significant re-design, with a number of new features facilitating more efficient organising and tracking of labour for events.

Visit uTRAC at PLASA on stand K03 where the team will be giving tutorials on how the software can best be utilised for your business. In addition to the re-designed interface, new features on show include safety certification management, automated scheduling and GPS tracking.

This summer uTRAC has invested significantly into the development of its team, and the uTRAC system, positioning itself as the go-to workforce management application for events. The comprehensive system improves efficiencies in all aspects of managing labour for an event, with operations managers finding an easier way to co-o

Pub Rock - Pubs around the UK are being urged to host live entertainment - including theatre shows - as part of a new campaign launched by Equity. The Live Entertainment Works! campaign is aimed at highlighting changes to licensing laws introduced in 2012, which make it easier for pubs and small venues to host live entertainment, such as music and theatre performances. Under the Live Music Act, performances of plays and dance for audiences up to 500 are permitted without a licence. Live music events for audiences of 200 or fewer do not need a licence either, providing the event does not take place before 8am and after 11pm.

Hilary Hadley, live performance head at Equity, said, "We believe this is a win-win situation for our members and publicans. Pubs get more trade through people enjoying the live entertainment, the community benefits by joining together in a shared

UK - Britannia Row Productions Training is hosting an Open Evening on Tuesday 16 September - 6.00pm - 8.30pm at its Wandsworth Training Centre in London.

Says the organisation, "Learn about the course from the world-class sound engineers who deliver our training, and who will be running practical demos for you. Explore the facilities and hear from students how our training has enabled them to start their careers in live sound. Come along and tell us how we can help you!"

(Jim Evans)

UK - On behalf of Glastonbury Festivals Ltd, the event production services company was responsible for overseeing all production aspects. A local crowd of over 5,000 enjoyed a stellar line up, as headliners the Foals were supported by Ella Eyre, and local up-and-coming band Fast Decline.

Introduced by Michael Eavis, the event serves as a thank you to Pilton village that lives with the disruption the main festival can bring, with all money raised given in grants to different local organisations.

Managing director of EnTEEtainment Ltd, Dick Tee said, "With the likes of Kasabian headlining in 2005 when it was held at the village hall playing fields, the popularity of the event quickly outgrew its former site, and moved to Worthy Farm in 2007. Drawing on our depth of knowledge of the site and long standing relationship with Glastonbury Festivals, we were brought in to provide

UK - The seventh Knight of Illumination Awards has once more seen record submissions for the title of outstanding lighting and video design in the sectors of TV, Theatre and Concert Touring and Events. Combined with the fact that industry sponsorship and support for the event is at an all time high, it's clear that the KOI 2014 will be the most coveted invite of the autumn season.

The KOI Awards, organised by Clay Paky alongside the Society of Television Lighting Designers (STLD), the Association of Lighting Designers (ALD) and Ambersphere Solutions, will be held following the first day of the PLASA Show on the evening of Sunday 5 October at London's fabulous Art Deco Troxy Theatre.

Submissions for each sector are now closed and the shortlist of nominations for each of the sector categories have been agreed by the judging panels as follows:

Theatre Nominations:

Danc

Volume Control - New regulations should be introduced to protect live music venues from possible closure following noise complaints, the Musicians' Union has said. At the Trades Union Congress conference this week, the union proposed a motion, which was passed, demanding the introduction of new regulations that would help put a stop to the "worrying trend of long-established music venues being forced to close after only one or two complaints from neighbours".

Increasing numbers of residential properties being built close to venues has resulted in noise abatement notices from local authorities, said the union. It is calling for a new 'agent of change principle' law that would mean property developers are obliged to soundproof their accommodation, rather than the venue being responsible for reducing potential noise disturbances.

John Smith, MU general secretary, said,

UK - Video Equipment Rental (VER), worldwide leaders in the provision of professional video systems to the entertainment and presentation industry, operating from multiple bases across North America and Europe, has announced the launch of VER LIVE in the UK.

The team at VER LIVE is headed up by Adrian Offord and Patrick Dore, both of whom have extensive experience in the market. VER LIVE will work alongside the current and busy Dry Hire division of VER's UK operation to deliver full video services to the Television & Live Events industry. This will include VER's vast and latest lines of LED screens and projectors, backed up by the comprehensive level of service and support demanded by today's productions.

Offord, who has 20 years' experience in the pro AV industry, commented: "It's a very exciting time to be a part of the VER team, particularly with new technologies comin

USA - The AES and OCA Alliance will be working together at the forthcoming 137th AES Convention in Los Angeles towards the ratification of the alliance's proposed Open Control Architecture as an AES public standard.

At the same time, the alliance will be exhibiting on the exhibition floor (booth 1152), explaining and demonstrating the benefits of the OCA standards-based control and monitoring architecture, with a live demonstration of control and monitoring across networked audio devices from different manufacturers.

OCA defines communications protocols for reliable and secure control and monitoring of AV device networks of 2 to 10,000 nodes. AES project "AES-X210" is currently working to render OCA into a ratified AES standard.

At the convention alliance members will be participating in panel discussions to increase the understanding of the benefits and impact of

UK - The Grade II* former circus theatre, Brighton Hippodrome, tops the 33 theatres on The Theatres Trust's Theatre Buildings at Risk Register 2014, launched at the Theatre Royal Brighton on 18 September. The annually published register features the most 'at risk' theatre buildings across the UK under threat of demolition and redevelopment, theatres that lie abandoned, neglected and decaying, and theatres in use at risk of closure.

Brighton & Hove City Council has approved demolition and redevelopment plans for the Grade II* Brighton Hippodrome to create a cinema multiplex and restaurant. Designed by Frank Matcham the theatre is of national significance as one of only three remaining Victorian circus theatres in the UK. The Secretary of State for Communities and Local Government has yet to decide if he will call-in the planning and listed building applications and hold a

UK - A.C. Entertainment Technologies (AC-ET) has announced the appointment of well-known industry figure, Mats Karlsson, in a new international business development role.

Mats has more than 30 years of experience in various roles spanning rental and production, lighting design, sales and product development - and joins the company after some 10 years in LED display development at Barco, Martin Professional, and most recently, VER.

He will be responsible for increasing the market share of AC-ET's exclusive and key brands internationally, including the supply of Chroma-Q, Jands, Prolights and many more marques - from a portfolio of over 200 - to selected territories.

Commenting on his appointment, Mats says, "My association with A.C. goes back almost 30 years, and so to be asked by co-founder David Leggett to come on-board to grow their international business is a real ho

UK - Realtime Environment Systems Ltd - to be known as 'RES' - is a new technical solutions company offering services to help designers, creative agencies and artists "achieve their wildest visual dreams". Mark Calvert and Dave Green have formed RES to provide "technical consultation and project-wide integration of all things visual in stage shows, corporate campaigns and permanent installations". The company will utilise the Ai Media Server - one the world's most powerful media server platforms, manufactured and developed in the UK by Avolites Media Ltd. RES Ltd is a global reseller of the Ai product, and has also been named as the first 'Ai Centre of Excellence'. RES continues to work very closely with the Avolites family, Calvert says.

Together over the past 10 years, Calvert and Green have worked closely with designers, artists and corporate bodies on a b

John Peel Lecture - Iggy Pop is to deliver this year's John Peel Lecture. The singer, regarded by many as the godfather of punk, will talk about the subject of free music in a capitalist society on 13 October. The lecture will be aired live on BBC 6 Music, the digital radio station on which Pop hosts a weekly show, and later on BBC Four. The lecture is named in honour of late BBC Radio 1 broadcaster John Peel, who died in 2004. An annual event since 2011, the lecture allows prominent musicians to discuss the state of music and the music industry. It has previously been delivered by Charlotte Church, Billy Bragg and Pete Townshend.

Eurovision - Ukraine has announced it will not be taking part in next year's Eurovision Song Contest due to limited finances. "We don't want to do something badly, and we don't have the money to do something well," said Zurab Alasania,

UK - Robe, Clay Paky and Shure have been announced as the headline sponsors for PLASA London 2014. The show, which returns to ExCeL London for a second consecutive year starts on Sunday 5 October and is expecting visitor numbers of over 13,000. There they will see 250 exhibiting brands and 100 hours of educational seminar content along with numerous press launches, parties, networking events and gala dinners.

Robe Lighting is Platinum Sponsor for the third year running and will mark the occasion by occupying a huge, 1,000 square metre space on the show floor. Robe World - PLASA London's biggest ever stand - promises to deliver a new experience to visitors, while showcasing the manufacturer's range of innovative, high-quality moving lights and digital lighting products for the professional entertainment and leisure, architectural, and themed environment industries.

The s

UK - The Theatres Trust announces the full programme of events on its TheatreStage at PLASA London from 5 - 8 October at ExCel London. A total of 21 presentations will be held on the TheatreStage - running over all four days of the PLASA London show.

TheatreStage provides a focus on the show floor for visitors and the theatre industry to network and learn about projects, initiatives, campaigns and organisations connected to the theatre sector.

New initiatives launched from TheatreStage this year include The Backstage Heritage Collection, and the ALD / Lightmongers' Award for Lighting Design 2014. The Theatres Trust will also launch its new Workshop Programme to support theatres developing capital projects and other key issues, and announce plans for next year's Theatres Trust Conference 15: Valuing Theatres on 23 June 2015.

Award highlights include the Technical Theatre Awar

UK - As the deadline for entries approaches, nominations for the PLASA Awards for Innovation are rolling in. Examples of all the nominated products will be exhibited at the PLASA Show's Innovation Gallery at the centre of the PLASA show (ExCeL London, 5-8 October), forming a focal point for visitors to the exhibition keen to view the latest technologies.

The products will be judged against one another on the strength of their innovation alone. All nominees will have the opportunity to make a 5-minute presentation, during the show, to a team of independent expert judges, who will have eight awards of equal standing at their disposal - plus the option to give a 'Gold' Award to one or more products which they feel reach a particularly high standard of Innovation.

The judges are tasked with making their decisions based on the PLASA Awards criteria for Innovation. The winners will

UK - Jaguar dramatically unveiled its brand new sports saloon, the Jaguar XE, celebrating British creativity with a number of exhilarating live performances and stunts.

Global creative agency, Imagination was briefed by Jaguar to design and produce a series of innovative special events across London at iconic locations, defining another moment in the remarkable history of this brand.

Events started with an installation of the XE word cloud sculpture in 'The Tank' at the design museum on the 5 September. Imagination worked closely with Jaguar's design team to hand craft these contemporary pieces.

Global lifestyle and automotive media were flown into London where they attended a media briefing at the ME Hotel on the 8 September. Imagination produced a series of workshops based around the all new XE, which was then revealed to them later that evening.

The journey began with 1

USA - Axente is looking forward to optimising the market potential of Symetrix digital processing solutions in its new role as the US manufacturer's French distribution partner. Based in Longjumeau, in the south of Paris, Axente was established in 1994 to serve lighting and truss manufacturers. Following its diversification into audio in 2003, the company has progressed to represent some of the biggest brands in the business, including fellow Dante-enabled lines Televic, EAW and Powersoft.

"The addition of Symetrix to its portfolio arrives at an opportune moment for both Axente and France's AV market in general. Demand for processing solutions integrating support for Audinate's industry-leading Dante media networking technology continues to grow - and these requirements are catered to abundantly in the Symetrix range with products including SymNet Edge, Radius 12x8 and Radi

UK - MDG Fog Ltd has appointed two new distributors for its range of fog and haze generators.

From 1 October 2014, MDGfog UK, a trading division of Robe UK Ltd, will take responsibility for the exclusive distribution of the full MDG product range in the UK & Eire. This new division will be headed by Matt Wiseman, a well-known face in the UK entertainment industry who brings 20 years of experience to the role.

"I am looking forward to the new avenues and responsibilities this arrangement brings," says Wiseman. "It will allow MDGfog UK to focus wholeheartedly on promoting and servicing the MDG brand across the UK and Eire, with the added confidence of solid backing from Robe UK's established administrative, service and warehouse facilities in Northampton."

Mick Hannaford, Managing Director of Robe UK, adds, "We believe the quality and performance of th

Directors' Cut - Leading theatre figures including Marianne Elliott, Matthew Warchus, Vicky Featherstone and Jeremy Herrin have launched the industry's first body aimed at representing stage directors. Increasing fees in the sector is one of Stage Directors UK's first priorities. It will also represent directors on issues such as royalties, contracts, digital rights and copyright, as well as leading on training initiatives. Directors can become members of Equity, but SDUK says the lack of an organisation dedicated to the needs of opera and theatre directors has "led to an increasing sense of anger and frustration" in the sector.

Who's Next - The Who have unveiled their first song in eight years as they mark their 50th anniversary. Be Lucky includes lyrical references to Australian rockers AC/DC and French electro band Daft Punk and will be included in a d

UK - Award-winning design and documentation software specialist, Stardraw.com, has announced some important enhancements to its Product Requests service, (historically known as Symbols Requests) to improve responsiveness and transparency. Product requests are a way for users to tailor the Product Libraries contained in Stardraw Design 7.1 to their own specific requirements.

The service already has an excellent track record: of the nearly 13,000 requests received since the service was inaugurated in 2002, over 95% have been published, with 40% of requests being published within a week and 50% published within two weeks. The tiny percentage that is not published is due to factors beyond Stardraw's control, such as manufacturers being unable or unwilling to provide the necessary product information (despite the service being entirely free for manufacturers). In addition to their Pr

UK - Award-winning staging, seating and rigging specialist, Star Events Group, has four new faces at the window and a vacancy for an industry savvy structural engineer.

Senior design technician, Barry Gaynor, brings more than 30-years' experience as a project designer/draughtsman in the construction industry to the role.

Sales administrator, Sharan Tott, comes to the job from a very well known internet and telecommunications provider, where she managed a range of large projects and high net worth clients as project coordinator.

Martin Hunt, tasked with overseeing crew management and deployment, spent the last 12-years in transport logistics, overseeing thousands of movements for vehicles and drivers.

Technical services manager Tim Ford, who joined Star Events in August, has already worked on a number of profile projects, including the Jaguar XE launch on the Thames. Ultima

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