The Royal Festival Hall, arguably the UK’s highest profile multi-purpose performance space, recently celebrated its 50th anniversary in a blaze of colourful architectural lighting, basking radiantly and beacon-like on the South Bank, for two glorious weeks.
The idea was first suggested by the RFH’s head of production, Nigel March, in February. Knowing the event was approaching, he decided that it was time to take advantage of the building’s massive white marble facades by lighting it in a visually stimulating style.
"It was an unmissable opportunity," says March who worked hard to get the project approved, realised and within budget, collaborating closely with his associate and production LX Barry Waterman and team of South Bank technicians. The outdoor lighting was sponsored by Accenture (formally known as Andersen Consulting), and March’s concept involved the production of a ‘liquid’ colour fade that rotated slowly and seamlessly around the building throughout the night.
He chose 30 Studio Due City Colors as the primary colour-changing fixtures for the job. This was the first time he’s used them, but he was highly impressed with their power and punch, as well as the even beam diffusion and absence of hot spots. Being IP54-rated, they needed no additional weather protection either.
March also utilised 12 Martin MAC 600 Exteriors which he employed as specials to spot the pillars on the riverside balcony, whilst both RFH and sponsors’ gobos were projected onto the front of the building by three MAC 2000s. The
This summer saw a free concert for 20,000 people staged in the busy heart of London. Mike Mann discovered that such a production has its logistical difficulties . . .
Before even thinking about the problems involved in bringing central London to a standstill, Star Hire’s Roger Barrett realised that the stage design for the Africa Day concert would have to be an unusual one: "We would normally have built a higher stage than this - but a major feature of the design was that the famous lions should be visible on stage." Two of the huge statues were incorporated into the stage, which was positioned just in front of Nelson’s Column, facing northwards towards the National Gallery. Flanked by the South African Embassy (who funded the entire event) and Canada House, the central area of Trafalgar Square itself also needed treatment. "One of the first things we realised was that the ornamental fountains obscure sightlines for a large part of the square," explained Barrett. "So we included 3,000sq.m of industrial flooring to raise the outer sections of the audience." This was the first rock‘n’roll outing for the Danco flooring system - a modular industrial system which has also seen service in Formula One pit areas.
The stage and audience flooring were delivered to Trafalgar Square by a total of 20 full-size trailers, each one bringing traffic to a complete standstill. In addition to this, a further three trucks for the security fencing, plus other deliveries for sound and lighting systems, meant that Londoners had to cope with
The team behind Starlight Express, now in its 17th year at London's Apollo Victoria Theatre, have decided to update the show’s lighting rig. After adding High End Intellabeams back in 1993, lighting designer David Hersey and the show's original production electrician, Howard Eaton, returned this year to update the lighting rig once again. This time they opted to replace the Intellabeams with equipment from Martin Professional.
The Moving Light Company were called upon to supply the production with 24 Martin MAC 500s and three of the new MAC 2000 units. In addition, they supplied two DHA Pitching Digital Light Curtains, which provide a dramatic new way of lighting the spectacular bridge which forms the centrepiece of John Napier's set design. The changes to the lighting rig were made in a tight 10-day period when the production closed temporarily to allow the auditorium to be re-carpeted and re-seated, during which time Eaton and his team also took the opportunity to upgrade the dimmers and lighting control system, with the rig now controlled by the Rosco-ET Horizon lighting controller.
Horizon programming was in the hands of Robert Bell, one of the creators of the WYSIWYG lighting visualisation software and now Horizon's product manager, who worked with David Hersey and Howard Eaton to relight the show using the new equipment in a very hectic final three days.
Since purchase at the Playlight London Auction, two fully working flightcased Clay Paky Golden Scan 3's have been stolen. They were removed from the Playlight London Warehouse between Thursday 31st May and Wednesday 6 June. One case has a distinctive splattering of magnolia paint and may still have auction lot stickers attached. It is likely that these will sold on at a low price. If anyone is offered these items for sale, or has any information regarding their whereabouts, please contact Chris Hatton on +44 07887 933 357.
PLASA has completed the first phase of its major industry research project, which will provide PLASA members with an invaluable insight into their industry. As well as being able to estimate the global market size for professional lighting, sound, staging and AV products and services, the research also gives a very detailed picture of the market in the UK. For the first time, PLASA has information about the value of the product sectors, how fast they are growing and the size and growth of the various vertical sectors into which its members sell. The findings enable the Association to say some very precise things about its members collectively and the nature of the industry as a whole.
PLASA plans to repeat the exercise every 12 months, enabling it to build up ever-more accurate trend information. A quick flick through the 119-page report reveals that it estimates the respective size by revenue of PLASA’s four main product sectors: light, sound, AV and staging; gives growth figures for this year and next across the four product sectors; breaks the sectors down into sales and rental; includes information on revenue from the provision of services such as installation, design and servicing; sizes the target market sectors and indicates which are the healthiest and the fastest growing; includes information on average company size by staff, investment in training, R&D and marketing.
Members who took part in the survey will shortly receive a free 22-page copy of the overview, together with the opportunity to buy the detailed sections. Members who didn’t take part w
Coe-tech Ltd has appointed FPD Savills to hold a two-day public auction/stock clearance sale to make way for the latest range of new Coe-tech products. The auction will take place at Coe-tech’s premises in Northampton on Wednesday 25 and Thursday 26 July 2001. It will feature over 3000 lots of all types of professional sound, lighting, AV and special effects equipment. Viewing day is Tuesday 24 July 2001 from between 9am to 4pm. The diverse array of equipment for sale will include intelligent lighting; moving head luminaires; discothèque lighting; architectural colour changers; theatre lighting including followspots, profiles and fresnels; trussing; video equipment - cameras, switchers and video walls; sound processing equipment; loudspeakers; power distribution and cables. For Further Information and catalogues, please contact: FPD Savills, 4 St. Peter’s Gate, Nottingham, NG1 2JG, UK. Tel: +44 (0) 115 934 8100 Fax: +44 (0) 115 934 8003.
To meet the increasing demand on the Special Projects Division of AC Lighting to design, supply and install complete lighting schemes, the company has formed a new alliance with Reggiani Lighting, a wholly-owned subsidiary of Reggiani Spa (Milan, Italy). Reggiani, formed 40 years ago, is a family-driven business with a strong philosophy for ideas, innovation and quality. Today, Reggiani is a renowned market leader in the field of architectural lighting and manufactures a wide range of luminaires for interior and exterior applications. The Company has subsidiary operations in France and the UK and 47 distributors around the world. Commenting on the new partnership, Peter Keiderling, special projects manager at AC Lighting, stated: "Our projects-driven business continues to expand and diversify and it became vital for us to have access to a broad range of architectural fittings. We are delighted to be working with such a respected name and believe a combination of Reggiani and AC Lighting will be a powerful alliance."
German lighting control manufacturer MA Lighting has announced details of the V2.60 software for its GrandMA, GrandMA Light and GrandMA Replay Unit. The updated software includes a new time code function with up to 100 individual time code settings and individual sequencers, with editing choices in graphic- or list-mode; Command line with entering and editing-functions for all control functions; extended new functions for direct and comfortable handling; command line history offering the possiblity of repeating and editing all commands by scrolling through a log of all commands that have been entered since console power-up; an ‘Agenda’ function with timed schedule for use in theme parks, daily shows or in architectural lighting, fully equipped with astronomical real-time clock; a new ‘move in black’ function for automatic prepositioning of any feature whilst shutter is closed or light is dimmed - selectable per sequence or single cue; editing and storing functions for cues, groups and presets now come in a completely new design and functionality; option to copy features and data of moving lights on one or more fixtures of the same or different type; ‘Playback Tracking’ network of several consoles with different show contents for one show network via ethernet; import of showdata from other control desks in USITT ASCII showfile format; and finally, fast loading of showfiles from hard disk within a few seconds without complete rebooting of the console. All display- and screen-messages are available in five languages.
Recently arrived at industry specialist PR agency JGP, Noelle Lane brings a background in IT - with some media experience tucked away. With a keen interest in music and songwriting, Noelle will work as PR assistant alongside Jerry Gilbert. She says she is relishing the challenges ahead. "I’m really excited about entering an industry where my personal interests overlap those of business. I feel I’m finally embarking on a career worth getting out of bed for."
Albert Wong has been named High End Systems' new regional sales manager for Singapore. He takes over the duties of Jimmy "JR" Chai, who recently left to pursue other interests. Wong will handle all matters pertaining to High End's automated lighting and controller sales in North and Southeast Asia, and will manage operations at HES Singapore. Wong has 12 years of experience in the industry. He recently was sales manager at a pro audio and lighting company, where he worked for the past nine years. "I am really excited being on the High End team," says Wong. "I am going to enjoy working here, especially with the growing potential in the Southeast and Far East Asia markets."
Universal Lighting & Audio Pty Ltd., with offices in Queensland and Melbourne, Australia, is now the exclusive Authorized Reseller of High End Systems automated lighting products as well as the Flying Pig Systems Wholehog II console in Australia. Bytecraft, a Melbourne-based production house, will continue as a Special Projects Production Partner for High End Systems. Both Bytecraft and Universal will provide technical and spare parts support of High End Systems equipment in the marketplace. High End Systems' John Wiseman, vice-president of worldwide sales, says: "With Bytecraft's worldwide influence and strength as a production house and Universal Lighting as an exclusive reseller, we're looking forward to seeing more of our products being bought and specified on projects Down Under."
Strand Lighting has made a major breakthrough into the world of film and location lighting by announcing large orders for their QuartzColor lighting range from leading London rental houses. The company’s exclusive location lighting distributors, LCA, confirm that the two largest specialist companies - Lee Lighting and AFM Film & TV - have placed significant orders with the Greenford company for QC luminaires, resulting in the former adding 400 tungsten heads and the latter 200 to their respective rental stocks. The Lee order is made up mostly of 10K, 1K and 650W luminaires while AFM have purchased a complement of 1K, 2K and 5Ks. LCA director Graham Kerr believes the pledge of faith has much to do with Strand’s improved support infrastructure. "We have put the spares situation in order, giving companies of the calibre of Lee and AFM the confidence to switch to Strand," he said. "Selling 100 1Ks in a single order is a major commitment, whichever way you look at it."
He added that rental companies generally prefer to standardise on single-company products to ensure compatibility between accessories and attachments. One of the customers, Lee Lighting managing director, Tony Lucas, said the time was right to renew their relationship with Strand Lighting’s products on a grand scale. "Strand Lighting have done much to update their equipment and can now supply from stock - which means I can get what I want next day. There was also a time when every job we quoted for was specifying an alternative brand - but all that has now changed. We a
At the recent Showlight 2001 conference in Edinburgh, a new logo for the Light Relief benevolent fund was unveiled by Tony Gottelier and Rick Fisher.
Light Relief is the industry-sponsored fund, supported by PLASA and the ALD, to assist people in the industry when they are affected by catastrophic personal events. "The lot of the freelancer is not always a happy one, just look at the state of Rick!" joked Gottelier, pointing at ALD chairman and lighting designer, Rick Fisher. The duo were attending the Showlight reception, sponsored by Fourth Phase, on the serious matter of launching the newly-designed Light Relief logo and its attendant leaflet, and to raise the profile of the industry’s benevolent fund.
The pair appealed to the manufacturing and service companies to come forward with offers of help. "We need you to come up with creative initiatives to raise cash," Gottelier said. By the end of Showlight, something in the order of £20,000 had been added to Light Relief’s coffers, due to the generosity of those attending. In one particularly impressive stunt, Fred Foster, President of ETC, agreed to wear a kilt the following day, provided £2,000 could be raised for the cause. The money was duly promised and consequently Fred attended the conference resplendent in highland regalia. Not only that, but Foster also attended the tour of his competitor, Strand Lighting’s, factory in the tartan. "This is just the kind of stunt we are asking people to come up with to raise Light Relief’s profile and to enhance the value of the
Performance Exhibitions Ltd has announced the launch of Performance 2001 - an exhibition including conferences, seminars and workshops aimed at the live performance industry. To be staged at the Newcastle Telewest Arena on 17-18 November 2001, the exhibition will bring together manufacturers, venues, producers and promoters, plus a complete range of associated services. Colin Rowell, director of ShowBlokes, whose vast portfolio includes production stage manager of The Tube, stage director for the MTV Awards and stage manager for the Brit Awards, recently returned to the North East, and is involved in live events in the area. He says: "I feel that this exhibition will offer companies a platform for exhibiting to a large audience. It will put the North East on the exhibition circuit where it belongs for this important segment of the industry." Over 1500sq.m of exhibition space will house exhibitors displaying the latest in lighting and sound equipment, staging, studio technology, special effects, transport, catering and support services.
This month, pyrotechnics specialist, Walk The Plank, are going from one extreme to the other. On 10th June they will bring the 600-year old Newark Castle to life as part of the Newark on Water Festival, and then hot-foot it to Singapore for their first international commission - three performances of the spectacular Tower of Light show as part of the Singapore Arts Festival, 22-24 June. The two shows are typical examples of the breadth of Walk The Plank's work. After their successful participation at the Newark on Water Festival last year, they have been asked to animate Newark Castle's impressive facade. This year, they will be using powerful Xenon projection equipment (the biggest in the country) and huge 25m fabric drops, as well as fireworks, lighting and music.
Singapore’s Tower of Light is a set-piece using performers, lighting, music, fireworks and special effects, based around a 15m steel ‘lighthouse’. The show has been seen at Arts Festivals across the country, but this is the first time Walk The Plank's talents have been taken aboard. A team of 10 will be leaving Manchester on 16th June. Most of the materials, including 14 tons of steel and all hazardous substances, have been shipped over. As well as three public shows, Walk The Plank will run a full dress rehearsal in front of the Singapore Army and Police Force.
Elektralite, a division of Group One Limited, displayed its range of lighting controllers at the recent Showtech Fair in Berlin, on the stands of RST and Focus Showtechnic. Of special interest to existing and potential users alike was the all-new CP100xt Effects Engine - available as a software upgrade (Operating System v4.0) and included with all new sales of CP100xt. "The power and flexibility of the new Effects Engine enables the CP100xt to be considered as a viable alternative to other ‘established’ consoles - there’s nothing to be gained by paying more for less elsewhere," said Elektralite’s International sales and marketing manager, Keith Dale.
The Elektralite CP100xt Effects Engine currently includes the following: customisable, effects which can be run simultaneously to produce sophisticated movement, color and intensity patterns: Blue Chase, Chase Circle, Circle Fan, Color Chase, Color 2 Chase, Fan, Figure of Eight, Gobo Chase, Gobo 2 Chase, Green Chase, Iris Chase, Pan Chase, Rainbow Chase, Random Motion, Red Chase, RGB Chase, Shutter Chase, Tilt Chase and Zoom Chase.
DHA has launched its latest product, the Gecko Gobo Rotator, specifically designed for creating cost- effective theatrical lighting effects within architectural and retail settings. As a new accessory to the Gecko Image Projector it allows two gobos to rotate simultaneously in the same or opposite directions. Designed to be either an integral part of the display or hidden away, the open design of the Gecko's optical system has the hi-tech look required by modern architects. Compact, cool-running, stylish and economical, with a long lamp life and low maintenance, the DHA Gecko is ideal for either long or short term applications. Either using the Gobo Rotator as an accessory to an existing DHA Gecko or starting out with the complete Gecko Gobo Rotator as a unit, any E size glass, metal or cibachrome gobo can be rotated. The unit can also be added to in itself with, for example, an extra rotator.
Universal Lighting & Audio Pty Ltd, with offices in Queensland and Melbourne, Australia, is now the exclusive authorized reseller of High End Systems automated lighting products as well as the Flying Pig Systems' Wholehog II console in Australia. Melbourne-based Bytecraft will continue as a special projects production partner for High End Systems. Both Bytecraft and Universal will provide technical and spare parts support of High End Systems’ equipment in the marketplace.
The Production Services Association has made two announcements: the first is that John Jones of PCM has filled the remaining seat on the 2001 PSA Council. John is a long-time supporter of the PSA and through his company PCM has donated £10,000 to the PSA Welfare & Benevolent Fund since the Fund’s inception. PCM has also gained a reputation for being among the industry’s leaders in promoting training, with the PCM Motor Schools now well established. In a separate announcement, Keith Owen will now oversee the PSA’s new series of BTEC courses. The courses, which commence in June in Birmingham with the Production Technician Intermediate BTEC, will be expanded during the year to cover other disciplines. Owen spent 20 years at Light & Sound Design before spending 18 months at Loughborough College as the PSA’s representative for training. He is working for two days a week at BMS in Birmingham in order to kick-off the new range of PSA Entertainment and Events Industry BTEC qualifications.
In the National Forest's permanent Millennium Discovery Centre exhibition, DHA's innovative lighting products are being used to project various tree patterns to represent the four seasons. Three DHA Gecko image projectors beam a rippling gobo pattern, whilst CCT Helio profile spotlights use DHA animation units set at different speeds to create effects such as a windy autumn day and more gentle summer breezes. Located within Conkers park in Moira, near Ashby de la Zouch, the Discovery Centre was opened in April by Princess Anne and provides a unique hands-on interactive nature experience for everyone, demonstrating the growth of new woodlands and animal habitats. On the site of an old mine, the Conkers logo has been created using a collection of children's hand imprints and is projected through a DHA gobo, or lighting template, by a 150W discharge Helios profile, from a new range of environmentally friendly energy saving products from CCT Lighting.
Color Kinetics, a pioneer of full spectrum digital lighting, has achieved a breakthrough with an LED-based white light technology that uses a non-RGB method of producing high quality white light which can be intelligently controlled over a range of colour temperatures from warm to cool shades of light. This patent-pending technology couples a unique optical design with Color Kinetics’ patented Chromacore technology, achieving an LED-based high-quality white light solution for the general illumination market. Chromacore uses microprocessor-controlled multi-coloured LEDs to generate millions of colours and a variety of dynamic lighting effects.
President and CEO of Color Kinetics, George Mueller, envisions Color Kinetics' intelligent white light technology leveraging the advanced control capabilities of Chromacore to give users an entirely new level of flexibility with white light. The intelligent white light technology can produce a high colour rendering index (CRI - for example, users would have the ability to select any shade (colour temperature) of white light they desire, whether it is cooler tones that make the most of certain retail displays, or warmer tones for more comfortable home lighting.
At the recent Showlight 2001 conference in Edinburgh, the new logo for the Light Relief benevolent fund was launched by Tony Gottelier and Rick Fisher. Light Relief is the industry-sponsored benevolent fund, supported by PLASA and the ALD, to assist people in the industry when they are affected by catastrophic personal events. "The lot of the freelancer is not always a happy one, just look at the state of Rick!" joked Gottelier, pointing at ALD chairman and lighting designer, Rick Fisher. The duo were attending the Showlight reception, sponsored by Fourth Phase, on the serious matter of launching the newly-designed Light Relief logo and its attendant leaflet, and to raise the profile of the industry’s benevolent fund. "Actually, it’s no laughing matter," Gottelier went on: "We all know that not all lighting designers are as successful as a Rick Fisher or a David Hersey or even a John Watt, and often they do not have the protection to shield them from life’s catastrophes which will happen to most of us at one time or another."
Rick Fisher told his audience: "There have been many cases recently that you will have read of in the professional press of some pretty ghastly examples of the kind of tragedies that can befall people. Light Relief sets out to bring some comfort to those in our business when they find themselves in such circumstances." The new logo reflects the aspirations of the fund by illustrating an image of letting in some sunshine, with the Light Relief name focused below.
Tony Gottelier then stated th
Color Kinetics Incorporated (CKI), the manufacturer of full spectrum digital lighting, has achieved a major breakthrough with an LED-based white light technology that uses a non-RGB method of producing high quality white light which can be intelligently controlled over a range of colour temperatures from warm to cool shades of light. This patent-pending technology couples a unique optical design with Color Kinetics' patented Chromacore technology, achieving an LED-based high-quality white light solution for the general illumination market. Chromacore uses microprocessor-controlled multi-coloured LEDs to generate millions of colors and a variety of dynamic lighting effects. In addition to its Chromacore patents, Color Kinetics holds several intellectual property filings covering the use of multiple coloured LEDs to generate fully controllable white light. Color Kinetics' is referring to these technologies as 'intelligent white light'.
Royal Caribbean International has recently introduced the first of its Radiance class of ships - Radiance of the Seas. This stunning vessel is the largest ship ever to have been built at the Meyer Werft shipyard in Papenburg, Germany, and the first joint venture between a German shipyard and an American cruise line.
RCI has a tradition of delivering high quality onboard entertainment and Radiance is no exception. The Viking Crown is the trademark destination on-board Royal Caribbean ships, a spectacular space surrounded by a sweep of glazing, that wraps itself around the funnel at the highest point, providing panoramic views for the passengers. In the evening, the Viking Crown takes on a completely new persona and turns into a major entertainment complex and, in the case of the Radiance of the Seas, this includes a disco, a black-box theatre and bars of various hues.
The disco is called Starquest, and Wynne Willson Gottelier (WWG) has designed a spectacular lighting, sound and video system in the area to get the holidaymakers on their toes. One of the main features is a WWG-conceived Beamlight which has been used to create a cage of 78 sequencing, vertical beams around the dance area. Other effects contained in the feature dome above the dancefloor are Martin MAC 250+s, Roboscan Pro 918s and Acrobats, Clay Paky Miniscan HPEs, Diversitronics strobes and a bunch of neon controlled via Mode Digitrans inverters. All the automated lights listed are fitted with custom gobos. The overall lighting control is provided by a ShowCAD system linked to a Lynx button panel. Two Le Mai