General News

The Week in Light & Sound
Tuesday, 18 May 2021

Olympic Proportions - Plans have been announced for the construction of the biggest theatre in London for 45 years. The 1,575-seat Olympia will form part of a redevelopment of the same name in Kensington. It follows a £100m deal between theatre operator Trafalgar Entertainment and the site owners of Kensington Olympia in west London. The last theatre to open in the capital with over 1,000 seats was the National Theatre on South Bank in 1976.
If plans are approved, the Olympia theatre is scheduled to open in 2025 and Trafalgar Entertainment would have a lease for 35 years. Trafalgar co-founder Sir Howard Panter said it would be "something of international stature as the UK emerges into the new era". He added: "We hope that a bit like our neighbour just down the road, the Royal Albert Hall, it will become an iconic, marvellous cultural building in its own right. The announcement preceded Monday's scheduled reopening of many theatres with socially-distanced audiences for the first time this year, having been closed down because of the coronavirus pandemic.
Dance On - Blackpool Tower's famed ballroom is being prepared to reopen to the public after a £1.1m refurbishment. Dancers hope to be allowed to step on to the dancefloor on 21 June when the last Covid-19 restrictions are lifted. Meanwhile, the ballroom has undergone its most extensive work programme and deep-cleaning for more than 60 years. Craftsmen, who worked on projects including the Queen's Gallery at Buckingham Palace, have dedicated more than 21,000 hours over six months.
The work on

ilovemetalHeavy metal supports Stagehand campaign
Tuesday, 18 May 2021

UK - Donated by international metal-music industry heavyweights such as Black Sabbath, Nuclear Blast, My Dying Bride, Laney, Epiphone, Earache, Kerrang, Century Media, Sony/BMG, Razamataz, Krusher Joule, Live Nation/Download, 5BAM, Bravado, Blaze Bailey, Very Metal Art, Good As Gold, and UK Metal Merger, #ILoveMetal is the world’s biggest ever metal-music charity prize draw.
In partnership with Julie Weir/Music For Nations – the #ILoveMetal collection was collated by the UK Metal Merger In Solitude single supergroup collaboration, with the motivation of raising funds for the Stagehand Charity which is dedicated to providing severe-hardship funding and mental health support for live events industry workers.
The #ILoveMetal campaign supports the UK’s live event workers who right now, are in financial crisis. Whilst providing the opportunity to win money-can’t-buy prizes, #ILoveMetal is a way for the metal community to come together to support live music, giving back to the concert touring professionals who make these life-affirming events happen.
With this prize draw, the whole of the international metal community can participate via £5 entries at the #ILoveMetal Crowdfunder page. Each person who enters will receive a free download of the |Metal-Merger album, featuring previously unreleased tracks and remixes.
The limited-edition items up for grabs include a Limited Edition Tony Iommi Epiphone Signature SG Custom, and rare/exclusive Black Sabbath book, both of which are signed by Tony Iommi, two VIP passes for Download

 
 
estaSix ESTA TSP standards approved
Monday, 17 May 2021

USA - On 5 May, ANSI's Board of Standards Review approved two ESTA documents as American National Standards. The following day, ANSI's BSR approved four more. All six are now published and available on the ESTA TSP website for download at no cost at http://tsp.esta.org/freestandards. You also may buy them from ANSI and IHS Markit for $40 each.
ANSI E1.2 – 2021, Entertainment Technology - Design, Manufacture and Use of Aluminum Trusses and Towers describes what the title says, and also the associated aluminium structural components, such as head blocks, sleeve blocks, bases, and corner blocks, used in the entertainment industry in portable structures. It's a revision of and supersedes the previous version.
ANSI E1.28 – 2011 (R2021), Guidance on planning followspot positions in places of public assembly, offers guidance on the planning of permanent followspot positions, including recommendations on the locations of the followspot positions within the venue, the power likely to be needed, the waste heat generated, the amount of space likely to be needed, and the fall protection and egress issues to be considered for the followspot operator's safety. This is a reaffirmation of the 2011 edition.
ANSI E1.39 – 2021, Entertainment Technology - Selection and Use of Personal Fall Arrest Systems on Portable Structures Used in the Entertainment Industry establishes minimum requirements for the selection and use of personal fall arrest systems (PFAS) on portable structures in the entertainment industry. In addition, the standard establ

 
The Week in Light & Sound
Tuesday, 11 May 2021

Green Light - Theatres across England have been given the green light to reopen from next week under the next stage of the government’s roadmap. Venues will be able to open with social distancing, with capacities capped at 50% or 1,000 people for indoor shows, and 50% or 4,000 people outdoors.
For many theatres it will mark the first time they have been able to open their doors in more than a year, with theatre bosses now looking forward to the possibility of social distancing being removed completely by June 21, the next date in the roadmap.
Prime minister Boris Johnson said theatres would be able to reopen on 17 May and added that the country was “on track" to move to Step 4 of the roadmap on 21 June, under which social distancing would be removed. "Today we are announcing the single biggest step in our roadmap and it will allow us to do many of the things we have yearned to do for a long time," he said.
On Broadway - Tickets for Broadway go on sale this week, although shows will not restart until 14 September. Theatres will then be allowed to fill 100% of capacity, New York Governor Andrew Cuomo has announced. Thousands lost work when Broadway theatres closed in March 2020 due to the pandemic. "Broadway is a major part of our state's identity and economy, and we are thrilled that the curtains will rise again," Cuomo said on Twitter.
New York plans to lift the majority of coronavirus restrictions later this month, but Broadway needs more time for rehearsals and producers need time to advertise the shows. "Restarting Broadway is a

 
 
will-nicola-eddyFirst Dance for Symphotech at Liverpool test event
Tuesday, 11 May 2021

UK - Eyes in the UK and across the World focused on Liverpool’s Bramley Moore Dock successful test events, at Circus, hailing the return of live music from lockdown, with two nights of dance music (30 April/1 May), with over 6,000 people in the audience and Symphotech managing the health & safety.
Symphotech worked from the conception of the test events, supporting the organisers, Circus Music and The Events Company UK, to create a Covid safe event. With the emphasis on the research and test event aspect of the shows, protocols had to meet the criteria required by the scientists and multiple stakeholders.
Symphotech director Eddy Grant was their project leader, producing a detailed, constantly evolving risk analysis for the staff and the audience. He explains: “When the roadmap out of lockdown was announced by the government, in February, I spoke with Sam Newson (The Events Company UK), Richard McGinnis (Circus Music) and Culture Liverpool, aware that DCMS were favouring Liverpool as a location. All were enthusiastic to ‘Make Events Happen’ and the ensuing months have been spent considering the additional challenges to working a normal gig.
“The almost daily shifting sands of the science meant we weren’t certain which elements the scientists were going to look at, with the additional protocols each brought into the frame adding to our planning.”
Speaking on site, Sam Newson states: “Eddy has worked very closely with me in the weeks leading in to these shows. The science has been changing daily to trigger us figuring out wh

 
travelVisa service addresses new touring landscape
Friday, 7 May 2021

UK - Only Helix, known for its work with artists like Years & Years, Bat For Lashes, Amy Macdonald and Bombay Bicycle Club, has launched a new travel service that’s designed to meet the specific needs of touring professionals. OH Visas is rooted in an understanding of how the entertainment industry works, and has been developed to take the travel stress out of touring.
Only Helix’s Steven Down and Tom Nicol are the masterminds behind the service, which will be headed up by travel industry specialist, Ben Young.
“OH Visas was borne from our combined experiences, frustrations and successes with travel over the years,” explains Down. “Brexit and Covid-19 has obviously also shifted things quite dramatically and we wanted to find an easier process for ourselves and our clients.”
Nicol elaborates: “We realised this solution was something that others would probably benefit from too, so we’ve decided to make it a bigger part of our agency offering. We’ve got some great expertise in Ben, and we’re excited about getting it out there.”
As the shifting political landscape has made touring more complex than ever before, travel schedules that previously required no or minimal visas, may now need multiple visas and additional paperwork to ensure a smooth passage from one country to the next.
The new service handles the entire visa process from start to finish - covering applications, appointments and embassy visits. Learning from previous experiences (and challenges) of tour and production travel, OH Visas has streamlined the

 
 
btslogoheader600BTS backs National Mental Health Action Day
Thursday, 6 May 2021

USA - The Behind the Scenes Mental Health and Suicide Prevention Initiative has announced its participation in the Mental Health Action Day, to be held on 20 May in partnership with more than 600 leading brands, non-profit organisations, government agencies, and cultural leaders.
Over the past two decades, suicide rates have risen and the COVID pandemic has accelerated the already crisis, giving way to what many mental health professionals have called the “second pandemic”.
Though more people than ever are comfortable discussing mental health, finding effective resources and knowing how to get help remains a challenge. Mental Health Action Day is an open-source movement to drive culture from mental health awareness to mental health action.
Partners will encourage people to take mental health action - whether for themselves, for their loved ones, or to advocate for systemic changes. Resources and tools will be available for people to seek help in a myriad of ways from starting a meditation practice, learning how to support a friend, or advocating for change.
Lori Rubinstein, executive director of Behind the Scenes, says: “Our Mental Health steering committee views every day as Mental Health Action Day. We have spent the last year spreading the word to our industry about the free tools and resources available to everyone through our Mental Health and Suicide Prevention Initiative (btshelp.org/mentalhealth). We welcome this opportunity to amplify the

 
The Week in Light & Sound
Tuesday, 4 May 2021

On Trial - A pilot concert in Liverpool on Sunday saw 5,000 people legally crammed into a small space for the first time since the start of the pandemic. The mini-festival, headlined by Blossoms, in Liverpool's Sefton Park was one of the government's official trial events to research how large gatherings can safely take place again.
All ticket holders had to take a supervised lateral flow test at one of four testing centres in the city the day before and were only allowed in if the test was negative. They were also strongly encouraged to take more sensitive PCR tests on the day of the show and to do so again five days later, on Friday. That will be crucial to working out whether there was any spread of the virus. It's all with the aim of working out how summer music festivals can go ahead after 21 June, when stage four of the government reopening roadmap will, in theory, see the end of restrictions on social contact.
Safety Net - Most of the music festivals still due to take place this year could be scrapped without the safety net of government-backed cancellation insurance, organisers have warned. A quarter of UK festivals have already been called off, but 76% of the rest are at risk, according to the Association of Independent Festivals (AIF) which has called for "urgent intervention" to save the season.
The government said it was exploring what further support it could provide. The AIF said events had been scrapped because of "government inaction on insurance". It has been calling on the government to back cancellation insurance. That woul

 
 
The Week in Light & Sound
Tuesday, 27 April 2021

Silent Spaces - Venues and spaces that have remained largely unused due to the pandemic feature in a new series of films in which performers and musicians take over the spaces. The series of films, called Silent Spaces, is described as a “creative lockdown response driven by a pervading sense of Covid-induced personal and professional loneliness”. It has been created by musician and composer Soumik Datta and directed by his brother Souvid Datta.
Featuring a team of British Asian, black and ethnic minority musicians and dancers, the film-makers and performers create works in the British Museum, the Royal Albert Hall, Depot Mayfield in Manchester and Sage Gateshead, alongside Hawkwood College and London King’s Cross station. The six films explore “resonant themes in keeping with the choice of venue”, the producers said, and tackle issues around mental health, activism, the environment, colonisation and identity.
Three Raspberries - Sia has been named ‘worst director’ for her controversial debut film at the Razzies, the pre-Oscars prizes for the year's worst movies. Titled Music, her film won three Golden Raspberry Awards in total, including worst actress for Kate Hudson and worst supporting actress for Maddie Ziegler. The movie has been criticised for casting Ziegler in the autistic lead role and for its portrayal of autism. It was described as an "insensitive" and "ill-conceived" "autism musical".
The film follows Zu, a drug dealer, who is a recovering alcoholic, played by Hudson, who becomes the guardian of her you

 
showgearHighlite creates Showgear brand for accessories
Tuesday, 27 April 2021

The Netherlands - Highlite International has announced a new brand for all their accessory products. Showgear will be the brand for all accessories for event and installation solutions including flight cases, stands and stage essentials, and provide ‘every piece of supplemental gear you need for your show’.
“Showgear will offer basically every piece of accessory that is needed on or off stage, from flight cases to back drops to speaker stands to rigging equipment,” says Highlite. “Products from Showgear will be supporting your stage performances and events in every situation you can think of.”
Showgear carries clamps, LED bulbs, tapes, heavy duty power strips, gear bags, butterfly locks, 19-inch racks and accessories, stands, cable straps, fog fluids, confetti and other expendables, and every other indispensable event accessory you may need. “Take the Showgear PSA-32A12S for example. This power distributor will provide safe power to your stage while showing the power usage per phase via its built-in digital volt and current displays. Or the MT-230 lifting tower, which ensures safe lifting of your truss or heavy loudspeakers.
“With this, Showgear is replacing several products from DAP, Showtec, Artecta and DMT, which are all brands of Highlite International B.V. Based on the established premium value of their predecessors, Showgear assures that their products will inherit the same quality with matching great price to performance ratio.”
Showgear emphasises that they are ready for the expected surge in demand when covid measure

 
 
sonny-evansPenguin appoints MD, opens London warehouse
Tuesday, 27 April 2021

UK - Penguin Media Hire, the Brighton based event production and rental company, has appointed Sonny Evans as its new managing director. This coincides with the announcement of their expansion with a London warehouse and further facilities to come in the near future.
Co-founder Dylan Thompson explains: “We have worked with Sonny on a number of projects over the years, and we’ve always had a great working relationship. With an exit in sight from the Covid nightmare we have all found ourselves in, now is the time to continue securing the best team for our current and future clients. Our sales and installation sector of the group, Penguin Media Solutions, is taking much more of my focus, and I can’t think of anyone better to push the rental and event production side onwards.”
Penguin Media Hire has also secured a new premises less than a mile from ExCeL London, placing them in a good position to service their London clients as well as those further afield, to supplement the facilities already available at their Brighton & Hove base.
Sonny comments, “It’s been a horrendous and unpredictable time for the whole industry over the last 14 plus months, but thankfully, due to the variety of industries I work with, I’ve managed to keep busy both working and developing plans for the future.
“Since we first started talking about my appointment as managing director of Penguin Media Hire, I’ve been really excited about the future and can’t wait to get started.”
One of the first projects Evans is undertaking is the development

 
live-events-industryIndustry will work with government towards recovery
Tuesday, 27 April 2021

UK - The live events and music industry will work with the Government on COVID-status certification to support full reopening and sector recovery.
Industry organisations including PLASA, Music Venues Trust, Live and Association of Festival Organisers, alongside major venues including the 02 and NEC Group, have issued a statement that outlines this support.
“The live events and music industry which includes exhibitions; conferences; music arenas; festivals; theatres and indoor sporting events, welcomes the establishment of the Events Research Programme and the safe return of live events as part of the Government’s roadmap out of lockdown,” says the statement.
“The industry is committed to working with the Government to ensure a swift delivery of the Event Research Programme’s pilot events and stands ready to establish protocols based upon the information and guidance they provide.
Under the current roadmap, the live events and music industry can plan for the return of some indoor business and music events from 17 May. These will follow social distancing guidelines and have attendance capped to the lower of 1,000 people or 50% of capacity indoors, 4,000 or 50% capacity outdoors and 10,000 or 25% capacity if seated outdoors.
“However, given the economic threshold for most business and music events is around 80% of maximum capacity, activities under these limits will be far from sufficient to end the sector’s financial crisis. This will also continue to have grave economic impacts on sectors that every live event supports, inc

 
 
mdgVersion 2 chooses MDG ATMe haze for TV
Tuesday, 20 April 2021

UK - Version 2, which specialises in lighting hire specifically for the television industry, has expanded its stock of MDG products with the addition of two ATMe haze generators. “Our clients trust us to specify the right products and we know that MDG produces the best haze for the television market,” says Nick Edwards, managing director of Version 2.
Edwards has 25 years of dedicated television lighting experience, having held technical, commercial and management positions at PRG, Panalux and Aurora, after his training at the flagship training facility in BBC Wood Norton, prior to founding Version 2 in 2016. This experience puts him in a strong position when it comes to choosing the best products for his clients, many of whom have worked with him for years and trust his technical know-how.
“All our equipment investments have been rigorously researched and tested, plus we have had years of experience with many manufacturers’ products, so we have a good idea of what works and what doesn’t,” he says. “This allows us to make better decisions on our capital expenditure and only invest in the best products for our market. In effect we are testing and processing on behalf of the client so they can be confident in our recommendations.”
Good haze is one of the most critical ingredients to a show, particularly for television. “Primetime television programmes are broadcast to millions of viewers and demand a highly polished result. A fine balance is needed between deploying enough haze to achieve the desired beam read on camera, yet not so

 
The Week in Light & Sound
Tuesday, 20 April 2021


Blossom Time - Music fans in Liverpool are to get the chance to enjoy a near-normal gig as part of a government pilot event. A crowd of 5,000 will see headline act Blossoms without having to social-distance or wear face coverings. But they will only get into the 2 May event by having a negative Covid test.
The outdoor concert at Sefton Park will operate below its capacity of 7,500. Ticket-holders will be required to take a lateral flow test, which can produce a result within 30 minutes, at a local testing centre before entry, the Department for Digital Culture Media and Sport said. Attendees will also be asked to take a test after the concert - and will have to provide contact details to NHS Test and Trace to ensure they can be reached if someone who attended tests positive.
Culture Secretary Oliver Dowden said: "We're one step closer to a summer of live events now our science-led programme is under way. Testing different settings and looking at different mitigations is key to getting crowds back safely. I hope it won't be too much longer until gigs are back for good."
Claire McColgan, director of Culture Liverpool, told the BBC that scientists would assess how attendees move and respond during the gig, and voluntary tests taken afterwards will be used to identify any infections that might arise. The stuff you see on stage is just a tiny, tiny part of it," she said. "It's loads of people's jobs - it's 60,000 jobs across our city region."
Giant Step - Entertainment giant WarnerMedia has given £250,000 to the Theatre Artists Fund

 
 
ken-wattsRemembering tour director Ken Watts
Tuesday, 20 April 2021

UK - Colleagues, clients and friends have been paying tribute to Ken Watts, the popular tour director who died last week. Acts he worked with include George Michael, Duran Duran, Natalie Imbruglia, Bond, Blues Brothers, Jamiroquai and Duran Duran.
Dennis Gardner, production manager for singer-songwriter Cat Stevens, wrote in a Facebook post: “It is with much sadness, this weekend I received news of the passing of my mentor, my friend, my brother and fearless leader Ken Watts. He was (and will remain) an industry legend and a personal hero of mine. I have learnt and continue to learn from Ken and the way he approached everything he did with heart, a heavy dose of common sense and, as ever, a wonderful sense of humour. Simply put, Ken taught me nearly everything.”
Neg Earth Lights wrote on Facebook: “The shock with which we learnt of the loss of Ken Watts, who passed away suddenly over the weekend, has given way to deep sadness and heartache; an industry giant, and friend of Neg Earth Lights for decades, we will miss him greatly and hold his family, friends and colleagues in our thoughts.”
“Our wonderful, dependable friend & tour manager, Ken Watts died unexpectedly last weekend,” said Duran Duran’s Simon Le Bon. “In his calm, determined, good natured way, Ken directed some of our most successful and memorable tours. He took the strain & made the job feel easy for us. Our thoughts & sympathy are with his family. I will miss him very much. I know that we all will.”
Watts’ family has requested that those who would

 
The Week in Light & Sound
Tuesday, 13 April 2021


Back Home - An arts venue in Manchester is to open a new 400-seat socially distanced outdoor theatre space. Home said the temporary venue would provide shows, music, cabaret and comedy for people "looking for a safe and fun night out as lockdown eases". Named Homeground, it will open on 28 May on a future development site in the city's First Street.
The project will create 450 new jobs for freelance artists and creatives, the venue said. Over the summer the venue plans to stage musical versions of A Midsummer Night's Dream and Alice in Wonderland. It will also host work by partners including Frog & Bucket, Contact and Trans Creative.
Park Life - Regent’s Park Open Air Theatre will reopen in the summer with an extended season and has announced a new co-production with London’s Unicorn Theatre. The previously announced production of Romeo and Juliet, directed by Kimberley Sykes, will run from 17 June to 24 July. This will be followed by Carousel, directed by Timothy Sheader, from 31 July to 25 September. Dragons and Mythical Beasts will open in August.
A series of MOREoutdoor events will include comedy performances from Aisling Bea, Jimmy Carr, and Luisa Omielan, and Canned Laughter will present a comedy fundraiser in support of the Trussell Trust featuring Lolly Adefope, Rosie Jones, Rose Matafeo and Suzi Ruffell. Covid safety procedures will remain in place in line with government restrictions, including an initial 50% reduction in seating capacity.
Fringe Matters - Brighton Fringe has unveiled

 
 
mgg-tamsyn-strydomMGG supports TUT’s alternative programme
Tuesday, 13 April 2021

South Africa - It’s a new season for the Tshwane University of Technology (TUT) in Pretoria who rode the Covid-19 wave and have turned their Performing Arts Diploma curriculum upside down with a different approach. The students are currently working alongside technical supply company MGG, to host a virtual stage, which will also be recorded for external examiners.
“We are very excited to announce that all previous departments that worked within the Performing Arts have now merged into one Department of Performing Arts (DPA),” comments Janine Lewis, professor and HOD at TUT. “The six programmes we had before are being phased out while first-year students will now follow the new multi-disciplinary Diploma in Performing Arts and then go into a discipline stream of speciality where they can focus on Dance, TAD (Theatre, Art & Design which includes performance and technical), or Music incorporating opera and jazz.”
While students may know what they want to specialise in, the first year sees them all participating in the same classes. While technicians learn what it’s like to be a performer, performers gain an understanding of lighting and know where to stand on a stage, and how to sew on a button if need be! More importantly, the various departments now collaborate and work together instead of running as separate entities.
Part of the shift was initiated by the Covid-19 pandemic. “2020 was the best year and also the worst year,” says Hardus Koekemoer, a technical lecturer. “It was the best year as we discovered all the technologies

 
incordInCord backs Behind the Scenes
Wednesday, 7 April 2021

USA - InCord has made its 2021 donation to the Behind the Scenes Pledge-of-Support Programme reflecting a percentage of profits from sales of their Theatrical Safety Netting Systems. The systems are hand-crafted in the USA, safety tested to exceed all applicable industry standards, and are custom designed by professional engineers.
Joe Menhart, InCord’s Theatre Division sales manager, comments: “We are forever grateful to BTS for all they do, especially when so many have been in need for so long due to the global pandemic. We are very proud of our support for BTS. Our hearts go out to all those who benefit from the grants and resources provided by BTS.”
Rick Rudolph, the chair of Behind the Scenes, adds: “InCord’s steadfast commitment to our Pledge-of-Support Programme is so heartening. It lets our industry know that no matter how tough times are it’s important to continue to care for those who are less fortunate.”

 
 
The Week in Light & Sound
Tuesday, 6 April 2021

Cultural Recovery - Music festivals, West End theatres, comedy clubs and Canterbury Cathedral will get a share of £400m emergency government culture funding. A total of 2,700 English culture and heritage venues will share the latest round of the Culture Recovery Fund.
Canterbury Cathedral has the biggest grant with £2m, while the Serpentine Galleries in London has been awarded £1.9m and Camden Roundhouse has £1.5m. West End chain Nimax Theatres and Glastonbury will receive £900,000 each.
Glastonbury Festival organisers Emily and Michael Eavis said the money would "make a huge difference in helping to secure our future". Emily told told BBC Radio 4's Today programme that the event had "suffered huge losses" in the past year. This is the last major tranche of money to be awarded from the £1.57bn Culture Recovery Fund that was announced last July. In his Budget in March, Chancellor Rishi Sunak announced a further £300m for the fund, which is yet to be allocated.
Fairport’s Cropredy Convention has received a grant of £100k. “We are extremely grateful for this award,” says festival organiser Gareth Williams. “The money from the CRF Round 1 has already filtered out in the form of deposits to our terrific support companies, without whom there would be no festival and the Round 2 grant will continue to ensure that we are all in place to open the gates once again this August.”
Back On Song - The Eurovision Song Contest has been given permission to let 3,500 fans watch in person as part of a trial by the Dutch government.

 
The Week in Light & Sound
Tuesday, 30 March 2021

One Night Stand - Around 5,000 people spent Saturday night at a gig in Barcelona after receiving negative results in same-day Covid testing. Spanish authorities let the concert, featuring band Love of Lesbian, go ahead as part of a pilot. Fans took a test earlier in the day and did not have to keep physically apart but they still wore masks.
It is one of the largest gatherings in Europe in more than a year since the pandemic began. "This is for one night only, so enjoy it," one of the hosts said before the concert started at Saint Jordi Arena. The gig was held as part of a research project looking at the viability of holding Covid-secure mass events following rapid-testing of guests. It follows a similar experiment in the Netherlands last week, when fans attended a two-day music festival after showing proof of a negative Covid test.
In Barcelona, ticket-holders were only permitted to enter the stadium once a negative result code was sent to their phones. Temperatures and IDs were checked at the door. Staff from a local hospital and event promoters teamed up to carry out rapid testing in booths within tents at three local venues. "We expect it to be completely safe. Over the next 14 days we will look at how many of the audience test positive for Covid and will report back," doctor Josep Maria Llibre told AFP.
Peer Pressure - House of Lords peers have urged the government to negotiate a solution for UK creatives working in Europe, warning that current restrictions are putting the sector’s future at risk. In an inquiry report into the future o

 
 
The Week in Light & Sound
Tuesday, 23 March 2021

Glastonbury - Proposals have been submitted for a concert at the Glastonbury festival site this autumn. The news comes after it was announced in January that the festival had been cancelled for a second year in a row because of the coronavirus pandemic. But festival organiser Emily Eavis said in a post on Instagram that an application has been made to stage a concert at Worthy Farm in September instead.
She wrote: "For those asking for an update on our plans later this year, we have put an application in for a licence for a concert at the farm in September (around the time we'd usually do Pilton Party). Of course, we've no idea yet whether we'll able to do that, but we wanted to get the application in to be in with a chance. Unlikely we'll have any news for a couple of months - but will let you know right here when we do."
On The Strip - Former West End strip club the Windmill is in line to reopen as a theatre with a 250-seat auditorium featuring the “biggest names in entertainment”. A licensing application is currently being considered by Westminster City Council. The venue lost its sexual entertainment licence in January 2018 and has since been purchased by Immerse London, which has spent £7m restoring the building.
If the conditions are approved, the venue will accommodate up to 250 in the main theatre auditorium and refurbished Royal Box and Palais De Luxe Mezzanine Floor, with performances throughout the afternoon and night. Additionally, there will be a theatre lounge called Hendersons located in the basement of the building, which

 
mhfa-btslogoBTS launches mental health First Aid training
Tuesday, 23 March 2021

USA - The Behind the Scenes Mental Health and Suicide Prevention Initiative has announced online Mental Health First Aid training will now be available to entertainment industry workers in the U.S at a variety of days and times on an ongoing basis. Mental Health First Aid is a training course that gives you the skills you need to reach out and provide initial help and support to someone who may be developing a mental health or substance use problem, or experiencing a crisis, and help connect them to the appropriate care.
Mental Health First Aid is an international training programme that was created in Australia in 2000, brought to the U.S in 2008, and is now in 24 countries around the world. Upon completing the course you will become a certified Mental Health First Aider which is valid for three years.
Mental Health First Aid takes the fear and hesitation out of starting conversations about mental health and substance use problems by teaching you how to recognise the signs and symptoms that suggest a potential mental health challenge, how to listen non judgmentally and give reassurance to someone who may be experiencing a mental health challenge, and how to refer a person to appropriate professional support and services.
The course is delivered in two parts. The first is a two-four hour self-paced online course that must be completed prior to the second part which is a five-hour virtual live instructor led session. Go to btshelp.org/mhfa to learn more and to select the date and time you wish to attend the virtual live instructor led session. Dates

 
 
backupIndustry collectives mount Backup initiatives
Tuesday, 23 March 2021

UK - This month, two industry collectives have mounted new initiatives to raise awareness of the live industry’s ongoing battle to stay afloat and to raise much needed funds to allow industry charity Backup to continue in its mission to help those in need.
For the whole of the month of March, #WeNeedCrew’s new initiative #moveforcrew is challenging people to walk or run 31 miles in their local area. This is the equivalent of 50 times around the perimeter of Wembley Stadium, which it has chosen as the focal point for the challenge to symbolise how much we are all missing live events and music.
#WeNeedCrew, which was started by Karen Ringland and Alice Martin, knows that treating mental health issues should be even more of a priority now. #moveforcrew’s aim is to raise vital funds to pay for therapy sessions for those in need and connect our community with certified practitioners who understand our industry.
“The #WeNeedCrew campaign has successfully galvanised the music touring industry to raise funds for the UK crews. The campaign has made a real difference to people’s lives giving hope and helping to alleviate real financial hardship,” says Backup vice chairman, Piers Shepperd. “Backup quickly identified that some people needed more than financial support and we therefore warmly welcome the new initiative #moveforcrew. This new campaign will raise funds to provide mental health support for our colleagues who work across music, theatre, TV and film.”
#WeMakeEvents, meanwhile, launched a powerful new video campaign last week to

 
BS 7909 public review to close soon
Thursday, 18 March 2021

UK - The British Standards Institute has published the five-year review of BS 7909, with comments from the public sought until 26 March.
The standard gives recommendations for the management, design, setting-up and operation of temporary electrical systems using low voltage AC electricity, for the entertainment and similar or related industries. It gives guidance on matters of common interest to producers, production companies, event organizers and managers, freelance people, facilities and services hire companies, equipment hire companies, equipment manufacturers, electrical consultants, electrical installation contractors, distributors, suppliers of electricity, venues, local authorities and those responsible for safety.
End-users are encouraged to submit their comments on the proposals during the review period. All comments will be examined by the standard development committee, enabling the public to directly influence the next revision of the standard.
Head over to BSI’s landing page to see the latest proposal and log your comments.

 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 

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