Germany - Headquartered in Hamburg, Fielmann AG is an ophthalmic optics specialist, with 780 branches spread throughout Germany and Europe. In July this year, the company invited its shareholders to attend its annual general meeting. However, due to the coronavirus pandemic, this took place virtually, without the physical presence of the shareholders.
The stage was set up at the Cinegate Studios in Hamburg - and optimised for live streaming online. As a technical service provider, PRG Streaming Solutions was responsible for the entire technical infrastructure - including the stage and décor - as well as supplying the entire lighting, sound, video, and transmission technology. Lighting designer Jerry Appelt was responsible for the scenography, and overall look of the event.
The centrepiece of the stage design was a high-resolution 17m x 5m LED wall, onto which all camera feeds were displayed. Three camera systems and a further camera on rails provided the images.
"Compared with a face-to-face event, the camera image is, of course, much more important in the event of a virtual general meeting," said Appelt. "For this reason, it was essential that the entire lighting was matched to the camera technology."
As an experienced lighting designer and DoP for some of the largest TV productions in Europe, Appelt turned to the GLP portfolio. He specified 22 impression S350’s in both Spot and Wash versions, 24 impression X4 Bar 20’s and 18 of the compact and powerful FR1 moving heads.
“For the basic lighting, we mainly used the GLP S350 series
USA - At the last big event in Las Vegas before the lockdown, Bobby Grey of Notan Creative used 60 Claypaky Mythos 2 fixtures to deliver a variety of looks for the 102 songs that rock band 311 performed in three marathon shows at the Park MGM’s Park Theatre. Felix Lighting in Los Angeles was the lighting vendor for the concerts.
Grey did the full production design for the series of concerts, 11-13 March, and created and curated the shows’ video content. The band annually celebrates ‘311 Day’ on 11 March, staging marathon live concerts in even-numbered years and playing a cruise for fans in odd-numbered years. Formed in 1988, 311 has released 13 studio albums, two live albums, four compilation albums, four EPs and four DVDs.
“Mythos 2 is my go-to for a beam and utility light,” says Grey. “A lot of lights claim to do a lot, but typically they do only one thing well and everything else not so well. But Mythos 2 is a great wash, a great profile and a great beam, and it flawlessly moves from one type of lighting to another. It’s my must-have in every rig.”
For 311’s 2020 celebration, Grey gave the concerts “a space explorer-galactic theme”. He supplemented the Park Theatre’s house rig with triangular pod trusses – a moving rig that would help “keep things versatile”.
Grey used sci-fi UFO art for reference and liked the look of triangular spacecraft with lights at the front tip. “So I found a place on the truss to mount Mythos on each corner for a strong, tight beam that could also spread out wide from the bottom.
UK - Initially launched by PLASA in response to calls from its membership, the #WeMakeEvents campaign aims to raise awareness around the current plight of the live events sector and how it urgently needs financial support in order to survive the COVID-19 crisis. The initial response resulted in a collective Day of Action on 11 August, with creative expressions across the country, including over 700 buildings lit up in red and other activities that culminated with 4,000 socially distanced event professionals lining bridges and the bankside of the Thames, expressing their need for support with the red alert theme. (Read extensive coverage of the Red Alert day of action in LSi September – out now!)
In order to represent all those in the communities that #WeMakeEvents represents, PLASA is now announcing that the campaign has moved into total independence, steered by a collective of industry trade bodies, including PLASA, businesses and freelancers who are all working together to ensure it receives as much awareness as possible. The success of the initial activity has led to a global movement, with organisations from around the world coming together in a spirit of mutual support and solidarity.
This next stage in the campaign will be known as ‘Stand as One’ – taken from the newly released song and now campaign anthem, written and performed by Joe Bygraves, who has generously agreed to do
USA - ETC has officially released the Eos v3.0 software, bringing powerful three-dimensional programming and augmented-reality control to the Eos platform. This update marks the official integration of the much-anticipated Augment3d toolkit into Eos.
With Augment3d, users can programme moving fixtures with unprecedented speed and ease, visualize their cues in an imported model of their space, and even position lights with a flick of an augmented-reality smartphone “focus wand”. Over 5,000 beta users tested the software in recent months, and their feedback has helped to build one of the most exciting new Eos feature sets yet.
The new software runs natively on all the latest Eos Family hardware and can be used with the ETCnomad software on Mac and PC. Educators, students, and those wishing to learn the software can download the latest ETCnomad software for free and make use of the Augment3d programming space to create virtual design projects in offline mode. ETC has also created a virtual light lab show file to help students use Augment3d to learn about lighting.
If the educational potential of Augment3d seems perfectly timed for the current distance-learning moment, the long-term professional applications for Augment3d are even more powerful. Augment3d supports over 50 different 3D file extensions for importing venue or set models, and you can easily import your fixture plot using a Vectorworks plugin. Even without a pre-existing plot or model, you can use the Fixture Position Estimation tool to quickly reverse-engineer the spatial coordinates of
Belgium - Lighting is often asked to perform a variety of functions, such as when it is called upon to illuminate a speaker, but also furnish a colorful background for the camera. Or, when it is relied on to accent the architectural features of a room, as well as highlight the event going on inside.
Seldom, though, does lighting fill roles that are as diverse as those that Blue Moon assigned to it at Zoo Antwerpen. The well-known production and system integrator company was asked to provide a system that could create ambient light for the zoo’s alligator enclosure, add dramatic effects to its thunder and lightning show, and (most importantly) provide nourishing lumens to the animals and live plants inside.
Visitors to the zoo can’t say how well the lighting system is doing in filling the latter role (the excellent health of the enclosure’s inhabitants attests to that), but one thing that’s obvious to all is that the Chauvet Professional and Iluminarc fixtures in Blue Moon’s design are creating captivating visuals.
With its cavernous paths, tangles of wild plants, and water that cascades off stony embankments into quiet pools, the enclosure conveys the sense of being in a tropical environment. The thin even fields of white light that shine throughout the exhibit and play off its shadowy spaces enhance the realism of scene.
Gradual colour temperature changes and illumination levels give rise to a feeling of time passing as the day progresses. During the tropical storm show, sudden burst of light from the fixtures create a sensation of
China - Located in Hong Kong, the 1,031-seat Ko Shan Theatre hosts traditional opera, dance, music, school functions or community gatherings. Already equipped with an advanced sound and staging system, the theatre also wanted to incorporate the latest in lighting technology as well. Looking to bring in a new LED theatrical luminaire to provide elegant colour-changing with a smooth, even wash, they worked with Pacific Lighting who installed a rig of AP-150 PAR LED luminaires from Altman Lighting.
“The Ko Shan Theatre has been a long-time client of ours and we have worked on many supply projects for them,” began Hugh Chinnick, Pacific lighting director. “When we were approached about this particular upgrade, they were looking for an LED colour-changing Fresnel or PAR to replace their existing two-colour Tungsten Fresnel downlights. After Nick Champion conducted a demo of the AP-150 while in Hong Kong, they were really impressed with the fixtures and we were able to move forward with the upgrade to their standard rig.”
The AP-150 PAR from Altman Lighting is a compact and lightweight, 135-watt RGBW LED wash which produces deep, saturated colours and soft, delicate pastels, while maintaining a smooth, uniform beam throughout the entire motorized zoom range.
“When looking at the main performance attributes needed from the new luminaires, the Altman fixtures really won out due to their combination of intensity, colour-mixing, a motorised zoom function, and the cost,” added Chinnick. “With a stage area of approximately 13m x 12m, we now have
USA - The music of the Grateful Dead has a way of bringing people closer together, even when they have to stay socially distant. This was evident when tribute band Scarlet Begonias performed the group’s classic hits at the Columbia County Amphitheatre in Evans.
The concert’s organisers set up tables 10ft apart from one another, allowing only fans who came together to occupy each restricted zone. Distancing did not seem to bother the mask-wearing fans, as they enjoyed the music together at this drive-in-show-minus-the cars.
“We had a much smaller crowd than you’d typically find at this kind of concert because of social distancing, but the energy was all there,” said John Berret, of Quest Sound & Productions, who lit the show with an all Chauvet Professional rig that featured 20 Rogue and COLORado fixtures.
Berret did his part to convey the “spirit of The Dead,” by busking a free-flowing light show. “You can’t really do a totally programmed time-coded show with these guys,” he said. “The set list isn’t written in stone, so you can’t be sure what they’re going to play next. Plus, songs are played differently, so you have to be able to get the feel of what’s happening and change with the flow. There are lots of dynamics in the music which need to be complimented with dynamics in the light show.”
Yellow and magenta colours created with the rig’s four Rogue R1 Beam, four R2 Spot, four Rogue R1 FX-B, and eight COLORado 1-Tri IP fixtures, evoking psychedelic imagery, dominated the design. “It felt good painting
Europe - Elation offers a comprehensive range of professional white light LED luminaires. In the 3 September Elation Coffee Break, The company’s Elation’s Alistair Smyth and Frederik Afif will take a close look at Elation’s KL Fresnel series, WW and CW Profile HP ellipsoidal spots, TVL series of softlights, and new KL Panel, white light LED luminaires optimized for the equirements of broadcast, film, tradeshows and theatre.
The Elation Coffee Break with a focus on white light will air live on Thursday, 3 September at 11:00 a.m. CEST on Elation Europe’s Facebook page at www.facebook.com/ELATION.Pro.Europe/live/. No registration is required.
The Elation Coffee Break is an online presentation series from Elation’s European office in Kerkrade, the Netherlands that takes an up-close look at some of the company’s most popular product series. Previous episodes are available on the company's Facebook page, linked above.
Australia - In May 2020, The Voice Australia returned for Season Nine with coaches Delta Goodrem, Kelly Rowland, Guy Sebastian and Boy George going head to head to find Australia's best-unsigned singing talent.
This year it was more of a massive undertaking than usual as the show moved out of Fox Studios (which was fully occupied with the production of a Marvel movie) to a new temporary 13,000sqm warehouse location in Moorebank consisting of three studio spaces. Large super grids had to be installed, container walls used to separate areas, temporary buildings, art workshops, power, plumbing and air conditioning systems added to make the location TV friendly.
The base lighting inventory for the Playoff, Showdowns and Finals shows was entirely LED-based except for the Claypaky Sharpys and Robert Juliat followspots. This was a first for lighting designer Ian Anderson of Mitech Design with various needs leading to this decision; power supply was limited, total weight loads throughout the temporary super grid were lower than what the show is used to in a regular studio space and the reliability of the LED fixtures played a big part to minimise labour costs. In fact, Ian reports that they didn’t swap one light out of the rig the whole time they were in production.
“With manufactures now tending to focus more on the quality of light rather than the brightness or how many cool things they can do, it makes it much easier to be able to match colours and match colour temperatures throughout these larger systems,” commented Ian. “The Martin MAC
UK - Robe UK partnered with Clearsound Productions, Venue Lab and Broadwick Live to support #LightItInRed and PLASA’s #WeMakeEvents national call to action on 11 August to draw attention to the live entertainment industry and its need for sector support from the government to survive the coronavirus crisis.
Robe moving lights were used to illuminate the exteriors of three flagship live entertainment venues - Magazine London on Greenwich Peninsula, Printworks London in Canada Water and Exhibition London in White City - all managed by Venue Lab, part of Vibration Group.
Escape to Freight Island, attached to Broadwick Live’s Depot Mayfield site in Manchester, was also lit in red for the day of action. The installation there was coordinated by dbnAudile which also includes some Robe LEDBeam 100 fixtures. dbnAudile is also the house supplier for audio, lighting and screens in both Printworks London and Depot Mayfield when the venues are running.
Simon Tracey, CEO of Vibration Group underlined the importance of the industry uniting, and was very proud to have Magazine London (which has previously been lit in blue for the NHS) lit in red alongside some of their other venues to highlight the struggles faced by live events and its massive support infrastructure.
He’s particularly aware of the impact the crisis is having on individuals, both their own employees and the freelancers utilised across their various businesses. “Many talented people are currently out of work, so lighting our venues red is a tribute to them and hopefully restores hope
Germany - Pioneer DJ Germany and Chauvet DJ have taken a major step to meet the growing demand for livestream productions by collaborating on a multi-functional broadcast studio. Located in Chauvet DJ’s German headquarters, the new facility is fully equipped to accommodate a range of production needs, from talks and product demos, to DJ sets and live band performances.
The production ready studio is outfitted with over 25 Chauvet DJ fixtures. A full set of Pioneer DJ equipment is also in place, including the DJM-V10 Mixer, a DJS-1000 Performance-Sampler and the All-in-One unit XDJ-XZ.
For Chauvet DJ and Pioneer DJ, the new collaboration is the result of a longstanding friendship between the two companies in Germany. “We already had an excellent partnership in the past,” says Marcus Gierkens, country manager from Pioneer DJ Germany. “Collaborations at trade shows like Musikmesse, where we shared our booth, as well as the workshops we’ve held together to educate people on how to connect music and light together are proof that both brands can profit from each other’s expertise.”
Both companies are already using the studio to communicate with customers. The popular “Joy of Disco“ streaming series is being produced in the studio same as multiple product showcases, workshops and promotional videos.
Chauvet DJ will also be using the studio to feature recent and upcoming products as well as workshops in German language. An upcoming example will be how to control Chauvet DJ fixtures automatically within Pioneer DJ’s rekordbox softwa
UK - Taking place on a purpose-built site on the beach next to Brighton’s Palace Pier, The Warren Outdoor Season opened earlier this month, offering a range of live comedy, theatre, cabaret and family shows. Having supported the Brighton Fringe at The Warren for over five years, White Light was called upon to supply the lighting, rigging and power equipment for this new season, which is one of the first to open following the outbreak of COVID-19.
The Warren is a pop-up, multi-purpose site which consists of four venue spaces and four bar areas. Annually, it hosts Brighton Fringe festival events. As with so many other live performances, the outbreak of COVID-19 saw the cancellation of this year’s festival. As such, Otherplace Productions, the team who run The Warren, decided to look for an alternative, safe way to put on live entertainment.
Joshua Carr, technical director at Otherplace Productions, comments: “We were all incredibly disappointed when we had to cancel the festival back in March. Not only was it a blow for the city in terms of culture but also the economy, as it employed over 250 people. That said, we knew that it was in the public’s interest and we had to abide with government guidelines. It soon dawned on us though that social distancing wasn’t going away anytime soon and, as such, decided to look at ways in which performances could happen with this in place. We knew this would need to be outside and, after speaking to the local authority, put together an outdoor concept which would be situated next to our main permanent venue.
South Africa - Shaun Sebastian and Dino Moran have been recognised for their outstanding creative contribution to the #LightSAred campaign, each receiving a Shure Limited Edition microphone presented by South African distributor, Wild & Marr.
On 5 August, the live events industry, under the banner of #LightSAred and supported by The Southern African Communications Industries Association (SACIA), Technical Production Services Association (TPSA) and SA Events Council, lit over 500 buildings and sites across South Africa, to draw attention to the desperate situation the industry has faced during South Africa’s lockdown restrictions. The ban on events has seen many businesses shut their doors after not having an income for almost six months.
Over a two-week period leading up to the #LightSAred activation, Shaun Sebastian was responsible for creating the dynamic and eye-catching marketing assets and promotional material of the event, while Dino Moran created a #LightSAred anthem and song. Moran also mobilised industry players for a #LightSAred live broadcast stream by SkyRoom Live from virtual studios based at Solid Group in Cape Town and MGG in Johannesburg.
Wild and Marr, the distributor of Shure products in South Africa, wanted to show their support for the campaign and events industry. During the #LightSAred broadcast, the company’s Gary Furman and Darren Durbach presented a Shure 5575LE Unidyne Limited Edition 75th Anniversary Vocal microphone to Dino Moran. Shaun Sebastian, who in addition to his career in advertising, is a pianist and avi
USA - Excitement was in the air at Grace Bible Church, College Station, TX, on 10 July, 2018 when the building committee presented their first official rendering of the house of worship’s new 45,000sq.ft Creekside campus.
For years, the dynamic church had been looking to build a new facility to house its growing congregation in this area just to the southeast of the city.
If all went well, the congregation could expect to worship in their new building “by spring 2020”. But, as it has with so many other things around the world, the COVID-19 pandemic brought the church’s plans to a halt in March.
As the construction crew continued to work on completing the campus, worshippers waited patiently for the restrictions on public gatherings to be eased. Then on Sunday 2 August, more than two years after viewing the architect’s plans, the congregation entered the new church for services, following social distance guidelines.
What greeted them was an elegant, modern, and harmoniously balanced worship space with a semi-circular thrust stage, expansive windows, gently curved walls with attractive stone facades, and an advanced LED lighting system capable of rendering a rainbow of colours, while also provide smooth, even key lighting for even the most sensitive cameras.
Developed around an extensive collection of Chauvet Professional fixtures, the lighting rig, along with the rest of the AVL system, was installed by the CSD Group. This collection of fixtures includes 10 Ovation E-160 WW ellipsoidals on the front bar. The placement of these
UK - Bristol-based production manager and lighting designer Tim Smith of TS-TS Productions utilised the power and practicality of Astera wireless lighting to illuminate his One-hundred Unseen, an innovative high-impact live art installation created as part of a UK nationwide campaign day on 11 August 2020 to the highlight the critical state of the live entertainment industry amidst the Coronavirus pandemic.
Shows and events came to an abrupt halt in March, stranding companies, venues, organisations and a large community of freelance creatives and technicians without any income, with precious little government financial assistance, and currently, no roadmap to reopening.
One-hundred Unseen featured 100 event professionals invited to take part in the art action - dressed in stage blacks with red masks arranged in a socially distanced formation on College Green, one of the most prominent locations in Bristol right in front of the chambers of Bristol City Council.
The highly symbolic piece represented the unseen nature of technicians working in all disciplines of productions, shows and events.
Tim asked lighting designer Chris Bushell to devise a lighting scheme - highly mobile and deployable at short notice - to illuminate the One-Hundred in ‘emergency red’ denoting the state of the industry for 10 minutes during ‘the blue hour’ of the evening.
An LED Screen installed at the back of the One-Hundred displayed facts and statistics related to the live entertainment industry and the huge revenue it brings int
New Zealand - The first live arena concert in the world since coronavirus silently spread global mayhem, was headlined by rising-stars L.A.B. at Auckland’s Spark Arena.
Robe moving lights were on the rig in a production design created by lighting designer Jack Hooper - his first gig for the band - together with the artists, their management team Loop, visual director Olivier Jean and live video specialist Big Picture.
This event was enabled by New Zealand’s effective coronavirus response which saw a nationwide end to lockdown in early June and social distancing relaxed, with a return to the prospect of live shows and events.
All that changed on 11 August when new cases were recorded for the first time in 102 days, a sign of just how volatile the situation is. Auckland was immediately returned to lockdown.
In the intervening period however, this concert, promoted by Loop, was also L.A.B.’s largest gig to date.
Originally planned for another famous gig in the city - Auckland Town Hall - the demand for tickets was so insane that they shifted to the larger venue. This also effortlessly sold out and was packed with a diverse and wildly enthusiastic audience of 6,000.
“We wanted to make NZ feel good about the world's first arena show post lockdown, blow the budget and make a statement,” declared manager Michael ‘Mikee’ Tucker of Loop.
Oceania was the lighting rental supplier. Jack worked with them for four years before launching his freelance career at the end of 2019, and that’s where he first started working wi
USA - As a light-hearted escape from the tribulations that mark everyday life at present, online comedy shows are experiencing a resurgence of popularity. Comedian Pat McGann’s recently released special, Sebastian Maniscalco Presents Pat McGann: When’s Mom Gonna Be Home? is testament to that upsurge with large viewer numbers since premiering on streaming services at the end of July.
Pat McGann is a fast rising stand-up comedian from Chicago whose sarcastic charm and wit have endeared him to fans across North America. In his first Comedy Dynamics original special, McGann offers his take on family life and marriage. Shot last September at the 1000-seat Vic Theatre in Chicago, Andris Kasparovics lit two sold-out evenings using a combination of Elation Artiste Van Gogh and Elation Dartz 360 LED luminaires.
Head of creative and principal designer for Sight Unseen Studios, Kasparovics has been doing shows with Comedy Dynamics since 2012. For the Pat McGann special, he worked with Chicago-based production company JRLX to secure the Elation fixtures and was one of the first to get his hands on the Artiste Van Gogh. “I have known Jason Reberski at JRLX for years; this was a great opportunity to finally work with him on his own turf in Chicago,” Kasparovics said. “Knowing that he was a big supplier of Elation gear, I wanted to try out a couple of the new products so both he and my Elation rep Jean Lariviere were super helpful in getting me the Artiste Van Gogh ahead of their production run.”
Kasparovics explains that he has b
USA - Familiar, comforting sights have often been obscured in the haze of the pandemic, a time of broken plans and lost connections. But like every crisis, the current one is also a great revealer. Forcing people into unfamiliar paths, it can lead to new, unexpected discoveries, which, even when seemingly insignificant, can lift the spirits.
Christopher Robin, the production/lighting designer for the country rockers The Andy Davis Band, had such an experience on Saturday 15 August when he lit his first concert at the Evergreen Drive-In in Mt Pleasant, PA. A highlight of the evening for him came at the end of the show, when fans (some of whom were fire fighters, given free tickets by the band), called for an encore by sounding their car alarms.
“It was something I never thought I’d see at the end of a concert,” said Robin. “All of a sudden all these alarms went off and lights started flashing. It was a new way for fans to express themselves in a new kind of concert setting - and it felt good to see.”
Robin and his co-designer Tyler Kluck engaged the sellout crowd at the drive-in by turning its SL100 stage into a glowing jewel box of vivid colours with help from Chauvet Professional Maverick and COLORado fixtures supplied by Star Design Event Services.
“Tyler and I co-designed the show for a tour to support the band’s new album, Blue Collar,” said Robin. “We did this thinking that it would make it easier for either of us to run the show during the busy touring season. But of course, that never happened because of the pan
Slovakia - From 23-27 July 2020, the Zemplínska Šírava resort hosted the 13th edition of the Sundance Festival, one of the largest festivals of electronic dance music in the country.
Despite the limitations of COVID-19, which reduced its form and the participation of foreign stars, the event was a success.
This year, 40 DJs performed for three days. The entire Line-up was built just on local DJs and the main star was DJ Borra, all of them lit up by Prolights Stark1000.
Topevent was the rental company who worked on the lighting installation for the festival. Jaro Varga, lighting designer for Topevent, said: “This year, due to a reduced budget, it was necessary to build a simple stage, but so that it was vigorous and effective. That's why we chose Prolights Stark1000. The fixtures were installed on the console to emphasise the DJ's performances and on the front of the stage. The Stark1000 have great power and a large zoom range, and these amazing features has allowed us to create great scenes.”
Company owner Martin Kravec said: “We have been using Prolights products for more than two years. We have used the fixtures for several tours and also the production of Ice Queen, which was a big show on ice. The devices have proven to be very reliable with excellent features, and we definitely plan to expand our portfolio with Prolights brand in the future.”
Greece - German DJ Boris Brejcha appeared at the reopened.Cavo Paradiso club on the island of Mykonos earlier this month, with a dynamic lightshow provided by Kiriakos Dimitriadis.
Because of the pandemic, the club had to follow strict social distancing protocols. Temperatures were taken before anyone could enter, the number of visitors was limited, and patrons could not mingle between tables, at the DJ booth, or on the outdoor dancefloor.
Without the crowds, and with no one dancing, the vibe at this normally jubilant club could have seemed flat. Dimitriadis did his part to prevent this from happening. With human movement absent from the dance floor, he made sure to provide a “dance of light” with his full-throttle four-universe, 75-fixture show that he ran on his ChamSys MagicQ PC Wing with an Extra Wing.
Dimitriadis arranged some of the fixtures in his rig on five totems behind the DJ booth, spacing them out to preserve the sea view. Other fixtures were positioned on overhead hang points as well as on each side of the booth. This allowed him to hit the DJ and the widely separated tables on what would normally be the dancefloor with an immersive web of light from every direction.
To convey “the energy of motion” through the movement of his light, he created a relentless flow of pixel mapped chase effects on his 10 color bars. Dimitriadis, who used a Resolume Arena Video Server, credits his MagicQ PC Wing with helping him achieve these compelling looks.
“The pixel mapping server and my MagicQ were invaluable,” he said. “I
UK - Described as an immersive, socially-distanced sound installation, Blindness is a new adaptation of Jose Saramago’s novel which recently re-opened London’s Donmar Warehouse. The production is one of the first to be staged post lockdown and White Light was called upon to supply the lighting equipment.
Adapted by Olivier Award-winning Simon Stephens, Blindness tells the story of when a contagious disease spreads through a city and renders its victims instantly blind. The production has no performers onstage. Instead, audience members are seated 2m apart across the Donmar stage and wear headphones through which they hear the story’s narration, provided by Juliette Stevenson.
The lighting designer is Jessica Hung Han Yun, who comments: “This project is, unsurprisingly, unlike anything I’ve ever worked on before. My role was to help create an environment where the listeners feel the story is happening around them and that they’re full immersed in the action. This is a piece told through sound and visuals and the sound designers, Ben and Max Ringham, have created this amazing soundscape using binaural technology.
“For many audience members, it will be the first time they’ve experienced something like this and we wanted to ensure we took them on a genuinely captivating journey in which they were completely immersed.”
Jessica had to work closely with both the sound designers and set designer Lizzie Clachan in order to bring this world to life. She explains: “The configuration Lizzie came up with was genius. It ma
South Africa - #LightSAred, a campaign initiated by the Technical Production and Services Association (TPSA) and Southern African Communications Industries Association (SACIA), has made significant headway with government to devise a strategy for the industry’s survival during lockdown level 2.
Campaign leaders encouraged stakeholders in the live events industry to remain positive, as discussions are being held with the South African government to ensure the survival of the entertainment industry and to present guidelines for reopening the sector.
Sharif Baker, chair of the TPSA and spokesperson of the #LightSAred movement, along with representatives of SACIA and the SA Events Council, are in discussions with representatives from the Department of Sports Arts and Culture, including Charles Mabaso, chief director for cultural development and Topsy Musi, chief of staff.
“It is imperative that we develop the guidelines needed to kickstart our industry, with regards to adhering to the protocols prescribed in the gathering act,” said Baker. “We are pleased to report that the government is working with us and not against us. Discussions are underway to determine how social distancing will be achieved at live events. We are particularly interested in creating a situation where permissible capacities will be based on volume capacity rather than a hard and fast number,” Baker points out. “We are making serious progress! So much so that a meeting with the legal department of DSAC is on the cards for this week to establish this in actuality.”
USA - iHeartMedia, the USA’s largest radio station owner, called on Verge Aero’s drone show technology to add some high-flying, high-impact visuals to local station Q102’s broadcast announcement of its 102 Grand in the Sand competition in Philadelphia.
Amid 2020’s pandemic restrictions, 102 Grand in the Sand switched from a physical treasure hunt to a virtual one, with lucky listeners winning prizes worth $102,000 dollars. To ensure maximum engagement for Q102’s announcement of the competition, local drone show innovator Verge Aero delivered the attention-grabbing aerial imagery. Although the show was flown in central Philadelphia, it was not pre-announced to limit social gathering.
Flying high above the Philadelphia Museum of Art – the steps of which are known to movie lovers everywhere from Sylvester Stallone’s 1976 film Rocky – the 11-minute drone show was synchronized with the music soundtrack and live announcements broadcast on Q102.
Verge Aero’s fleet of 130 drones created a colourful, choreographed performance, featuring the logos of iHeartMedia, Q102 and the competition sponsors, plus support for the Philadelphia Flyers ice hockey team, the Flyers’ crazy-eyed mascot Gritty, and of course, Rocky himself, gloves raised in celebration, accompanied by Eye of the Tiger on Q102.
This was the latest in a string of projects in which Verge Aero’s drone technology, custom-developed for the requirements of entertainment production, has proved a perfect tool for reinforcing branding and sponsorship
USA - “The client had a secondary guest-house on his property, and he wanted to turn the single room into a miniature bar/nightclub so he reached out to us at Blue Haze Entertainment with this idea, and we immediately got started on putting together a design concept,” explained Nikolai Beyla, designer and manager of the installation for Blue Haze Entertainment.
The club has a video wall 8m wide covering two of the walls, composed of Chauvet Video F3 panels, as well as mirrors everywhere and large glass patio doors that open to a view of the mountains. The video wall and the various lighting fixtures reflect off all the mirrored and glass surfaces, giving the feeling of being in a much larger space with even more lighting.
Fifteen wood panels are attached to the ceiling, each containing a section of Firefly FloppyFlex LED Neon. These panels create a massive, 91m long geometric pattern on the ceiling, scattered through which are dozens of recessed Gantom RGBW wash fixtures.
Firefly FloppyFlex LED Neon comprises a range of green-friendly, safe, low voltage, DIY, easy to install, lineal long-life lighting systems that can be simply bent and cut to whatever your design requires, for both indoors and out. “We utilised just over 91m of the RGBW FloppyFlex on the ceiling, arranged into a large geometric pattern, driven by 12 ProPlex Din Rail FloppyDrives.” said Nikolai.
“Each section of the FloppyFlex is mounted onto stained plywood panels that were attached to the ceiling on-site at various heights, giving the entire geometric pattern a thr