Projects News

adjADJ LED video panels on mobile kitchen menu
Tuesday, 6 April 2021

- USA - Specialist mobile business fabricator Cruising Kitchens has created a custom food truck for the Raising Cane’s chicken finger restaurant chain, which was designed ‘not only to deliver delicious food but also to get the party started’. The fully functioning mobile kitchen also features a custom-designed pop-up DJ booth on the roof, which is surrounded on three sides by ADJ weatherproof LED video panels.
Already operating from over 500 restaurants in 29 states and territories, they are moving into more areas, thanks to a pair of custom food trucks. The trucks were delivered at the end of 2020, as a surprise for the company’s founder, Todd Graves, from his co-CEO, AJ Kumaran, to celebrate the brand’s 25th anniversary. They are now making their way across the US, as part of the Cane’s Across America campaign, visiting areas not yet served by a Raising Cane’s restaurant.
A true ‘rags to riches’ story, Graves came up with the idea for a restaurant chain focused on delivering quick, delicious chicken finger meals while in college. The concept received the worst grade in a Business Plan class and was rejected every time Todd presented it to a bank. Undeterred, he worked hard to save enough of his own money to open his first store in August 1996 from which the business rapidly expanded. Despite now operating from over 500 locations, a hallmark of Raising Cane’s is individuality. Every restaurant is unique, with 100s of distinctive details, which is something AJ and his team were keen to see replicated in their food trucks.

girls-on-the-move1Chauvet celebrates Zimbabwean Women in Music
Tuesday, 6 April 2021

Zimbabwe - The rhythmic Afro-pop dance floor sound of Ammara Brown flows through a musical path that is distinctly different from the jazz infused offerings of Tamy Moyo. Yet both of these multi-instrumentalists and All Africa Music Award winners exude a captivating aura every time they step on to the stage.
This was plain to see on 12 February when they joined forces for Girls on the Move, a two-hour pay-for-view livestream on Gateway Stream Music intended to celebrate and raise awareness of Zimbabwean women in music.
Providing a lively and brightly coloured setting in support of their performances was a Blessing Bero designed lightshow that featured Chauvet Professional Maverick and Rogue fixtures, including eight MK2 Spot units, four R2 Spots and four R2 Washes, all of which were supplied by Events Evolution.
Working in coordination with video designer Tatenda Gaylord Rushwaya, Bero reflected the personality and music of the two artists, each of whom performed separately during the livestream, after briefly meeting on stage. At the same time, he relied on recurring patterns in light angles and thematic colour mixes to create a consistent, unifying image throughout the livestream.
Key to highlighting the artists and their backup performers was downlighting from the Maverick MK2 Spot fixtures. At times, Bero tightened the zoom on the 440-Watt moving fixtures to create a circle of light around each person on stage. For dramatic effect, he also created spot circles in front of the performers, adding greater dimensionality to the stage.<

robe-eesti-laul-2021-6-pRobe on song for Esotinian Eurovision contest
Tuesday, 6 April 2021

Estonia - Robe moving lights and two RoboSpot systems provided a neat solution for the 2021 Eesti Laul competition to select Estonia’s entry to this year’s Eurovision Song Contest.
Lighting and set designer for the finale show and the two semi-finals that preceded it in Tallinn’s Saku Suurhall arena was Rene Jõhve, who was approached to work on the project by Estonian national broadcaster, ERR. This was his tenth year of lighting the finale and semi-final events which were aired live, and - for obvious reasons - this year were staged without an audience.
The lighting rig included a selection of Robe fixtures including two BMFL WashBeams, 13 x DL7 Profiles, 12 x 300E Spot, 42 x Pointes, 25 x Spiider LED wash beams, 18 x LEDBeam150s and eight MMX WashBeams, plus other lights, all of which were supplied to the production by rental company Cuuclub.
The streamlined main stage design was triangular, with angled side struts meeting above the centre to create a triangular arched ceiling over the upstage section which were clad in LED panels, leaving the forestage open.
The transparent stage floor also contained tilted LED screens, and another main triangular LED screen upstage had lights rigged on both edges to accentuate its shape. A long and elegant runway at the front of the stage connected it to a smaller B stage out in the centre of the arena. Had there been an audience, this would have been right in the middle.
The geometry of the stage lent itself to a lot of dynamic beam lighting effects and worked brilliantly on camera even with

lilyleeprimage1Genelec adds sound sophistication to Lily Lee
Thursday, 1 April 2021

Finland - Tomi Björck is one of Finland’s best-known chefs and restaurateurs. With 10 restaurants and two bakeries already to his name across Finland, Sweden and Australia, Björck with his wife Minka and three other associates embarked on their latest project in Spring 2020.
Lily Lee, in the heart of the Finnish capital of Helsinki, offers a range of dishes inspired by Taiwanese cuisine, Hong Kong’s street kitchens and classical Cantonese cooking.
Finnish AV integrator, 4Business Oy, installed a Genelec loudspeaker system in the environmentally friendly RAW aluminium finish to enhance the dark, sultry interior with an audio experience that blends into the lush surroundings. In fact, Björck contacted Genelec directly for his latest project. 4Business’s Janne Lankinen was unsurprised by Björck’s choice. “Music and atmosphere are crucial elements for Tomi at all of his venues, so an easy-to-use, high quality audio system was a must-have feature for Lily Lee.”
“We have had Genelec loudspeakers in almost all of our restaurants and there is no other brand we would go with,” confirms Lily Lee’s Minka Björck. “The full, rounded sound of Genelec is key for us and it is totally unique. No other brand sounds quite like it. We like to play music quite loud in our venues, so sound quality is super important. Finally, we love the sleek look of the loudspeakers, they work really well with our décor.”
Lankinen and his team installed a total of 12 Genelec 4030 installation loudspeakers in the distinctive RAW finish across the three

space-coast-5Events United returns to live events with Chauvet
Thursday, 1 April 2021

USA - The Events United team and production manager Kevin Hart returned to live work in March at the Space Coast City Fest in Melbourne, Florida.
For Events United, the two-day evangelical conference represented its first large-scale live event (with the exception of a few smaller outdoor projects) since the pandemic started. As if putting together a stage for Dove Award winners Casting Crowns, Zach Williams, Social Club Misfits, Andy Mineo and other praise music stars while dealing with COVID-19 safety protocols wasn’t enough, they also had to contend with problematic weather throughout the two-day event.
“The winds got pretty intense at some points. The gusts ended up peaking around 35 mph.” said Jon Martell, who made up the Events United team along with Donald Van Slyke, Chase Clark, Ryan Lane, and Joel Pelletier.
As a result of the wind, the festival had to shut down for most of Sunday, putting time pressure on the crew. “Our headliner couldn’t load in until later that afternoon and we ended up building a “C” stage out in the audience so we could have some of the program happen without being on the main stage,” said Martell. “The PA was landed, the lighting rig was high and tight, and the LED walls were lowered, but the show was able to go on without any danger.”
At dusk, the winds died down, and the festival moved forward as planned. Events United supported the stars on stage with an immersive light and video show that featured Chauvet Professional Maverick and STRIKE fixtures as well as X6IP and F4IP video panels.

cheersport-cheerleading-championship3Elation lights cheerleading championship
Thursday, 1 April 2021

USA - With up to 50,000 people in and out of the Georgia World Congress Centre each day over a two-day period in February, the Cheersport National Cheerleading Championship in Atlanta may be the largest event to have taken place in the world under the COVID pandemic.
Rental and production company Lite Tek Entertainment supplied and designed lighting for the event and turned to an Elation lighting package of Cuepix and DTW blinders, Protron strobes, SixPars and more to highlight team routines across five different stages.
The National Cheerleading Championship is one of the biggest of its kind in the world. A typical year would see 1,400 teams competing but due to a 50%, reduction in allowed participants due to the pandemic, some 700 teams competed at this year’s event. Nevertheless, the event was huge with stages spread across two buildings and 90 acres.
“This was, to the best of our knowledge, the largest event in the world since COVID with up to 50,000 people coming through the facility two days in a row,” states Lite Tek founder and owner, Darren Lewis. “Cheersport created an effective plan to manage the onsite people flow with guidance from Varsity Spirit and the CDC fulfilling a discrete observation role. There were no spikes or known outbreaks that were traced to the event so it worked out really well.”
Lite Tek Entertainment, based in Richmond, Virginia, has handled all of Cheersports’ regional cheerleading events for the past 15 years and has worked the National Cheerleading Championship event several times. This year, Le

santiagoDante enables aids audio setup at Santiago stadium
Thursday, 1 April 2021

Argentina - Estadio Unico Madre de Ciudades is the largest stadium in the province of Santiago del Estero with a capacity of 29,000. Completed in October 2020, the stadium will host matches for upcoming editions of the Copa America and the Supercopa Argentina.
To meet the project’s deadline, the AV integration firm working on the stadium, Equaphon Sistemas de Sonido SRL, found a way to integrate the stadium’s audio system while still adhering to all health and safety restrictions in place due to COVID-19 - all thanks to the trust they put in Audinate’s Dante audio network platform.
“Dante saves on costs and ensures the stadium can expand and scale the system as needed,” explains Francisco Maiocchi, member of the Equaphon Engineering Department. “Dante also offers many great audio control and management benefits. Dante was always part of our integration plan.”
What wasn’t part of the plan was the global pandemic. Equaphon management was faced with reducing the number of staff it had on-site during the integration process due to social distancing requirements. They discovered that Dante would enable a modified number of staff to be on-site without compromising the quality of work or timeline.
“We quickly realised that with Dante we could work on all the routing, programming and testing from our headquarters, which is located 600 miles away,” says Equaphon’s Alberto Escriña. “We sent a small team to the site for just a few days of installation, adjustment and measurement and we did most everything else remotely. When we f

pliant-technologiesulm-school-of-arts2Louisiana university switches to CrewCom
Wednesday, 31 March 2021

USA - When the University of Louisiana Monroe (ULM) School of Visual and Performing Arts was looking to update its existing wireless intercom system, the task of finding the right equipment was left in the hands of the programme’s veteran technical director Steven Burnside. He found the solution he was looking for with Pliant Technologies’ CrewCom wireless intercom system.
Burnside’s primary goal in upgrading the equipment at ULM School of Visual and Performing Arts was ensuring complete coverage throughout the entire building. “Our main auditorium was built in 1931 and made out of steel and concrete, so we really wanted to make sure we had a solid signal throughout,” says Burnside. “We were able to secure a CrewCom demo and we were really impressed, right off the bat.
“With just one Radio Transceiver (RT), we pretty much covered the entire building. To take the system to its limits, we used four Radio Packs (RPs) and sent people to all four corners of the building, both upstairs and downstairs. We never lost the signal and that says a lot for a 700-seat venue. With the budget I was given and CrewCom’s outstanding performance, it was an easy decision to purchase the system.”
The university worked with Pliant manufacturer’s representative, Sigmet Corp., and authorized dealer BMI Supply out of New York to purchase all of the necessary equipment, including one CrewCom Control Unit (CCU) and one CrewCom Radio Transceiver, five CrewCom Radio packs as well as Pliant’s SmartBoom® PRO single-ear headsets.
“The CrewCom system

spacesessions1Chauvet lights The Space Shop Sessions
Wednesday, 31 March 2021

USA - Berkeley Dent, Jason Pastel, Trevor Creany, Dustin Lee and the team at 81 Productions demonstrated the unifying power of music in a real sense during this cold, hard winter.
With live music venues in their area of Roanoke, VA, locked down, and musicians out of work, they launched The Space Shop Sessions, a series of five livestream concerts, each featuring a different Roanoke band, and each supported by a different hometown business. Taking place over a two-month period, the sessions helped feed the local appetite for live music, while also providing gigs for some of the region’s favourite groups, and giving businesses a chance to engage directly with customers.
Helping the 81 Productions team create a flowing series of distinctive, colourful looks that reflected the personality of each band in the livestream series, was the company’s “virtually all Chauvet” livestream studio rig, anchored by a collection of Rogue R1X Spot and R1 Spot fixtures. Arranged in different configurations depending on the band, the Rogue units expanded design possibilities on the studio’s 24ft by 20ft stage.
“Flexibility is obviously critical in this type of project when you have this many bands playing in the same space,” said Pastel. “The Rogues are ideal in this case, because they are such workhorses that will take you wherever you want to go.”
When Virginia Electric took to the stage for a session, Pastel went with more stylized looks with ambers, magentas, purples and greens playing off against one another. “One of my favourite looks oc

hippoHippotizer delivers winter wonderland in Arizona
Wednesday, 31 March 2021

USA - The Victory Worship Centre, a multi-campus community church in Arizona, created a special Christmas service for its limited-capacity congregations in December. As a backdrop for the music and sermons, a stage-wide picture window setpiece framed wintery vistas, displayed in ultra-high definition on a 30ft x 10ft LED videowall. Faithfully delivering the visual content, day after day, was a Hippotizer Karst+ Media Server from Green Hippo.
A recent purchase by the Victory Worship Centre, the Karst+ Media Server was used for the very first time on this show. Production designer Alex Fuller, of Fuller Lights LLC, was familiar with Hippotizer from previous projects and was able to link the Karst+ unit to the grandMA3 lighting console at the heart of the Victory Center’s control booth.
Situated in a separate video control suite, the Karst+ was fibre-linked to the MA3, and to the LED videowall on the stage, with a ZooKeeper remote interface set up in the front-of-house booth for operator Eli Ekdahl. “That all worked really well,” says Fuller.
The set, designed by Fuller and including fake, snow-covered fir trees, was fabricated by Mod Scenes to frame the 3mm pixel pitch ROE Visual LED wall, rented from Concept Pixels Entertainment, Inc. Visual content was sourced from Visual Revival. “We chose a lot of outdoor scenes of nature - mountains, forests, snowscapes and that kind of thing - to complement all the fake Christmas trees on the set,” says Fuller. Later, as the services ran closer to Christmas, he introduced other more dynamic elements

robe-lol-2020-worlds-final-94950566108323oRoboSpots light League of Legends Finals
Wednesday, 31 March 2021

China - League of Legends’ World Championship 2020 Finals were staged at the new Pudong Football Stadium in Shanghai, a high-profile, hi-energy event notable for many things, which – in addition to being an eSports calendar highlight – included a spectacular production lighting design by Mat Stovall of LampedUp and his team.
Thirty-seven Robe RoboSpot systems were part of a large lighting rig for the event, specified by Mat and associate LD Trevor Stirlin Burk of Visual Noise Creative, and supplied by Christie Lites out of their UK and US bases to the event’s main technical contractor, Creative Technology (CT) Shanghai.
Robert Roth coordinated for Christie Lites, working closely with the CT Shanghai team headed by Aaron Ross Durdin, Sam Tibble and Daniel Sun.
Mat wanted RoboSpots on the event for several reasons. He needed “a quality white light source” to key talent for the opening and closing shows and during the gaming action, with capacity to cover specific choreographed aspects, plus coach and team ‘moments’ throughout the tournament.
With a massive performance area to cover in the centre of the stadium, Mat was not sure that it would be possible to physically get operators into all the required locations, so RoboSpot was his go-to solution.
The 37 x Robe BMFL moving light units were positioned everywhere - on the downstage trusses, above and below the two giant LED screens onstage that flanked a huge central scenic Paifang arch, and on top of this elegant 33m-high centrepiece of Joe Kale’s scenic design which w

labec1Colorado Eagles flying high with L-Acoustics
Wednesday, 31 March 2021

USA - Home to the Colorado Eagles of the American Hockey League, the Budweiser Events Centre (BEC) at The Ranch Events Complex in Loveland, Colorado is a 7,200-capacity multi-purpose arena that hosts everything from hockey, basketball and indoor football to concerts, rodeo, family shows and more.
Less than an hour drive from both Denver and Cheyenne, Wyoming, BEC has become the focal point for sports and entertainment in Northern Colorado, offering approximately 200 events each year, including the 2021 NCAA Division I Men’s Ice Hockey Loveland Regional Tournament held there in late March.
Larimer County, which owns the Spectra-managed venue, recently took advantage of the COVID-mandated downtime to make several notable renovations to the arena. The most significant of these was integrating a new L-Acoustics A Series loudspeaker system, which was designed and installed by Denver-based Brown Note Productions (BNP).
Although the facility is only 16 years old, the arena’s original loudspeaker system - a distributed point-source design - was no longer meeting BEC’s clients’ and patrons’ needs. “The main issues with our former system were coverage deficiencies, poor intelligibility and the lack of availability of replacement parts,” says Spectra director of operations Tom Manning. “With increasing numbers of dead spots throughout the bowl seating areas, trying to equalize volumes was very difficult. In fact, in all of the customer satisfaction surveys that we did following sports or concert events, sound was the number one complaint, so it

wbdWBD leads lighting upgrade at Bahrain International Circuit
Tuesday, 30 March 2021

Bahrain - Woodroffe Bassett Design (WBD) recently designed and delivered a new lighting and video installation on the façade of the Sakhir Tower at the Bahrain International Circuit (BIC) in time for the first Grand Prix of the Formula One season. The circular viewing tower is the centrepiece of the BIC and has become a key visual element of the television broadcast of the race, seen all over the world.
The design of the scheme enhances the night-time drama of the track illumination installed in 2014 and follows the original visual concepts that were developed in collaboration with architectural design practice Stufish in London five years ago.
The dynamic and colour-rich scheme is a deliberate counterpoint to the myriad of powerful white lights that illuminate the track during the night races. The design explores the geometry of the spectacular building and articulates its elegant circular form, but also gives the tower a dynamic that reflects the speed and power of the motorsport that literally surrounds it.
The content that plays on the tower was developed by Dandelion and Burdock in London and is a mixture of Bahraini cultural elements, abstract patterns, FIA and F1 related logos and schedule information. This plays out over the period of the race weekend, building to a climax for the race itself. Particular care has been given to avoid distracting the drivers when they are on the track to the point that no red, yellow or green content plays during the race to avoid being mistaken by the drivers as part of the FIA warning lights.
The tech

sonus-exsertus-2021-03-18-hr-10DiGiGrid sales stay strong with Sonus
Tuesday, 30 March 2021

Lithuania - Sonus Exsertus, based in Vilnius, is a specialist in stage technologies with a 20-year history of providing turnkey solutions for a wide range of venues, from theatres and houses of worship to cinemas, arts centres and retail settings.
The company also acts as a distributor for many leading brands across Lithuania, Latvia and Estonia and Georgia, offering comprehensive sales and servicing. For the last five years, Sonus has been distributing DiGiGrid products in the region, and has overseen a steadily upward trajectory in sales during that time.
Whilst recent world events have seen turbulent times across the industry, Sonus has adapted to circumstances and continued to perform well. Its sales of DiGiGrid units continued to grow strongly throughout last year, something that head of sales Ramunas Alenskas attributes to a combination of factors:
“As far as our overall business is concerned, when the pandemic struck, we were working on a number of projects that we’d already designed. Our government had invested funds into the infrastructure of the culture sector, so it was a case of right place, right time in that respect. We actually expanded our team during the pandemic, employing designers, project managers and integrators. We worked in shifts to minimise contact.
“More specifically in relation to DiGiGrid, I feel that we benefitted from a lot of groundwork that we had done in previous years to acquaint customers with the brand and its strengths. We put a great deal of effort into public and private demonstrations, sometimes

afastheater-26Sustainable AFAS Theatre adds Signature
Tuesday, 30 March 2021

The Netherlands - The sustainable AFAS Theatre, which is incorporated in the new HQ of software developer AFAS, named the AFAS Experience Centre in Leusden, has recently been equipped by Rolight with 74 Infinity TS-260C7 Profile engines from Infinity’s Signature series.
The AFAS Experience Centre has been designed from the ground up to create an “experience” for clients, employees and visitors - a complex that includes office space, meeting rooms, relax areas, demonstration rooms, fitness area, gym, educational spaces, studios, patio & atrium suitable for events, exhibitions and social gathering. The complex takes ecological and environmental aspects into account as much as possible.
Almost energy neutral, it is fitted with solar panels, sedum roofs, heat pumps, heat exchangers, triple glazing, a multitude of sensors and 50 charging stations for electric vehicles.
When it came time to furnish the theatre area, specialists from Rolight found a fitting candidate in the Infinity TS-260C7 Profile engine to light up the main stage. Its efficient, high output LED light holds up to the principle of environmental awareness that has been used throughout the Centre’s design, making it a solid choice for the application, while ticking all the boxes.
74 fixtures with a total output of over 330,000 lumens were used to provide lighting to the main stage. The TS-260C7 is able to produce light in seven colours with a CRI of over 96, ensuring a very natural illumination of the stage. The fixtures are combined with 58 Irises, 54 TLT-235- and 4 TLT-1

seongnamamx2Seongnam Arts Centre connects with AMX
Tuesday, 30 March 2021

South Korea - Harman Professional Solutions recently partnered with MIX Media and TechDataPS Coto upgrade Seongnam Arts Centre’s AV system with AMX networked video solutions.
Seongnam Arts Centre is the largest venue for cultural arts in the city of Seongnam. The facility features a 1,804-seat opera house, a concert hall, ensemble theatre for smaller performances, two visual art galleries and an outdoor amphitheatre with seating for 11,000 people.
The centre hired MIX Media to upgrade its video infrastructure with a HARMAN networked VoIP solution consisting of AMX encoders, decoders and controllers supplied by TechDataPS.
To provide a scalable AV control platform with intuitive operation, network security and backward compatibility, MIX Media selected the AMX NX-3200 NetLinx NX Integrated Controller as the core of the AV infrastructure. For transmitting and receiving AV signals with latency, MIX Media installed AMX N1000 Series encoder and decoder units throughout the facility.
To make operating the system easy and intuitive for staff, MIX Media provided Seongnam Arts Center with AMX MCP108 Keypad Controllers and a MT1002 Modero Touch Panel. Combined with the ability to control the NetLinx controller via tablet, the keypads and touch panels allow centre staff to conveniently control the AV system in real time from anywhere in the facility.
Seongnam Arts Centre staff reported being completely satisfied with the new AMX AV network’s user-friendliness and reliability, saying it gave them integrated control of the equipment inside the c

hybrid-studios-berlin1Hybrid Studio Berlin calls on Chauvet
Tuesday, 30 March 2021

Germany - Fine & Bright’s Hybrid Studio Berlin is located in the bustling heart of Germany’s capital. The new 425sq.m space is housed in a century-old former malt factory. Its black and white tile floor and industrial fittings serve as reminders of the building’s past, whilst its advanced design make it suited to provide clients with COVID-safe options for connecting to customers through virtual productions, or (once it is permitted by the government) with combined virtual/live events accommodating an audience of up to 50 people.
“We developed this studio with our partners ICT AG and the Malzfabrik, in order to offer our customers a high-quality and fully equipped space for digital and hybrid events during the COVID-19 pandemic,”explains Robert Ulm, CEO of Fine & Bright. “The studio has all the digital tools required for the quick and direct implementation of virtual conferences, interviews, live streams, press briefings, panel discussions, product presentations and music events in a safe, attractive environment.”
Helping to ensure that Hybrid has the flexibility to fulfil its mission is an adaptable studio stage outfitted with four separate rigs. By lowering one of the rigs over the stage, the design team can create a new setting quickly, depending on the needs of the client.
“Our technology here is permanently installed,” says Ulm. “Our philosophy is to be ready to play at any time, so we can also enable our customers to carry out projects at short notice.”
The studio’s lighting system is critical to helping i

clw-bonn-church-4-pressBonn church upgrades with Martin Audio CDD
Tuesday, 30 March 2021

Germany - The CLW in Bonn-Bad Godesberg is a protestant free church and open to believers of all nationalities and generations. The parish has a church with an adjoining kindergarten and offers, among other things, services for the whole family every Sunday at 10.00 am. The Living Word (CLW) is an acronym for Centrum für Lebendiges Wort) is the focus of the services, in the form of sermons and musical contributions. The live music component in the church has grown steadily in recent years, so an upgrade of the sound system was necessary.
Julian Betker, trainee pastor and vicar at the CLW, states: "We have been working on a new sound reinforcement solution to meet our many requirements for a while. On the one hand, we wanted to use our existing technology, including mixing consoles, microphones and subwoofers.
“Our church lives through, and with, live music - which could be heard with our old system outside the church building as well. However, the positioning of the loudspeakers meant that there was always a risk of feedback. The last important point was to stay within budget. We are a donation-financed institution and thus have to pay particular attention to expenditure.”
Several loudspeaker manufacturers were approached to develop a solution. The company Klein Beschallungs- und Kirchentechnik from Cologne, together with Audio-Technica, created a concept with loudspeakers and power amplifiers from Martin Audio. Emphasis was placed on seamless integration into the existing system.
Owner Paul Klein states: “We have been working with Audi

vergeaeroprinnovationnation1Verge Aero provides drone show for CBS Saturday
Tuesday, 30 March 2021

USA - Innovation Nation, the CBS Saturday morning TV show about change-making technologies, recently called on Verge Aero, to find out more about the new aerial technology.
Produced by The Henry Ford Museum of American Innovation and Litton Entertainment, Innovation Nation presents stories of history’s technological turning points, as well as looking at the innovations that are changing the world around us. With drone light shows offering spectacular additions - or even alternatives - to traditional fireworks displays, the technology was ripe for further investigation by the educational programme.
Verge Aero’s drone fleets have been seen performing aerial celebrations at high-profile events including Joe Biden’s victory speech in Wilmington, Delaware, back in November. Presenter Alie Ward visited the company’s headquarters at Pennovation Works, part of the University of Pennsylvania in Philadelphia.
Alie met with Verge Aero founder Nils Thorjussen to see how the team “choreographed their engineering, artistic, computing and aviation skills to create a dance of lights in the sky”. They discussed the process of design and preparation, and the powerful proprietary software that makes it all possible. As she found out, it’s not just about complex choreography.
“In order to get to the point where you can actually do this, there is an incredible amount of engineering work that goes into creating the software that allows you to do it - reliably, and also safely,” explains Nils.
In a live demonstration Nils and Alie watched a

edge-lab1Edge Lab creates buzz with Brompton Technology
Tuesday, 30 March 2021

Australia - Cutting Edge has been a leading provider of sound and picture post production for the advertising, features and television industries, both in Australia and internationally, for almost three decades. The company recently announced Edge Lab, its newest venture in Virtual Production (VP) based in Brisbane, Queensland.
The facility is a research and development (R&D) hub for production industry professionals, developed in partnership with Big Picture, part of the NEP Worldwide Network, and motion caption integrator Logemas.
Brompton Technology processing is used for the main LED screen as well as ambient reflection and lighting walls.
Cutting Edge is able to facilitate all its clients’ needs across commercial, television and feature film productions. Now, the company can also tap into the latest technical innovations in VP with its Unreal Engine powered virtual production stage with a high resolution 12m by 4m LED wall and moveable LED side panels.
The set up comprises a Uniview Tekken 3mm main LED screen with two Tekken 3m by 2.5m ambient reflection walls and a further two ROE Visual CB5 5mm ambient lighting walls. The entire system runs on four Brompton Tessera SX40 4K LED processors and four Tessera XD 10G data distribution units.
“Because our LED stage has been built with high quality components and is powered by Brompton processing, we are able to achieve realistic virtual environments that help with experimental shooting and environment creation,” says Cutting Edge CEO Michael Burton.
Josh Moffat, special p

robe-clearsound-heart-it-in-red-livestream-lig202101202Hearts lit in red for livestream event
Tuesday, 30 March 2021

UK - Dan Ridd, Steven Haynes and a team from Clearsound Productions in Shipston on Stour marked the culmination of a week of #LightItInRed ‘heart’ actions around the country with a livestream broadcast featuring mixmaster DJ Benji surrounded by a heart-shaped lighting rig designed by Steven and featuring Robe moving lights.
With overall direction by Dan Ridd and camera and humour direction by Andy Cox, the multi-camera broadcast included two drone feeds plus assorted visual highlights from the last year of #LightItInRed campaigns. These have focused on keeping the entertainment, production, and performance industry visible and relevant during the pandemic and consequent shut down, and this content was eloquently wrangled by #LightItInRed’s Sarah Berryman.
Working alongside Steven on lighting were two fellow Rose Bruford College students, Sam Jones, who programmed and operated the grandMA console running the lighting, and technician Daniel Bow, who were joined by George O’Connor of Dragonfly Lighting in Banbury. Also assisting the Clearsound livestream on the night were drone pilot Danny Gibbs and Matt ‘Toff’ Roff.
Seventeen Robe Spiiders were at the heart of the matter, set up in the yard in front of the Clearsound warehouse.
It was during the drawing and pre-vis stage that Steven and the lighting crew realised just how complex it is to create a heart shape accurately!
The Spiiders marked the outline of the heart contour, with the intervening spaces filled by LED battens and the DJ console right in the centre. The rig wa

star-in-motion-7Unusual rigs Star in Motion over Arabian sky
Tuesday, 30 March 2021

Saudi Arabia - Noor Riyadh is a citywide annual festival of light and art that showcases individual artists and talent and promotes creativity. The event produced by Balich Worldwide Shows (BWS) brings together artists from all over the world.
Star in Motion by renowned lighting designer Koert Vermeulen, is a powerful focal point in the middle of the city of Riyadh - a shining star, suspended from the top of the famous Kingdom Tower more than 300m in the air. Balich Worldwide Shows has worked with Unusual Rigging on other events in the past, and as such they were the natural choice when it came to rigging this spectacular installation.
Steve Porter, director at Unusual, explains: “Having worked with BWS on several projects in the past, when they approached us to hang the centrepiece for the festival, it was a pleasure to collaborate with them again. We were approached by Ollie Green, BWS technical director, to hang a lighting feature or star in the space at the top of the building. We loved the idea but never really thought permissions would be granted so we were thrilled when BWS overcame many difficult hurdles to secure this.”
Unusual’s design team and production rigging department worked in conjunction with Ollie green and BWS’s independent structural engineer Rasti Bartek from Cundall. “We had to work quickly and efficiently in the design and fabrication process of all the heavy-duty bracketry and Dyneema which was supplied by Marlow Ropes. Load cells were also an issue due to short notice in order to make the freight shipment dates a

thumbnailayrton-diablo-shows-rafe-spall-as-michael-in-death-of-england-by-clint-dyer-and-roy-williamsAyrton Diablo spotlights Death of England
Tuesday, 30 March 2021

UK - The National Theatre’s production of Clint Dyer and Roy Williams’ Death of England was performed at the Dorfman Theatre in spring 2020 before the venue closed due to the COVID-19 pandemic.
The one-man show was an intense study of grief and identity in Britain, performed in-the-round on a cross-shaped stage by Rafe Spall in an explosively energetic performance. Dyer’s direction, and Sadeysa Greenaway-Bailey and ULTZ’s stark set demanded equally dramatic lighting from the outset, which was provided by dance and theatre lighting designer, and NT regular, Jackie Shemesh.
Shemesh chose four Ayrton Diablo 300W LED profile fixtures as central features of his design, which he mainly deployed as followspots to track Spall’s every move.
The Diablo fixtures were rigged above the four inner corners of the cross stage, side-mounted and dropped 1m lower than the rest of the rig to allow clear sightlines to every angle of the stage. “I felt very strongly that the Diablos should be lower than the height of the Dorfman as I wanted them to be visible to the audience as part of the overall design concept,” says Shemesh. “Diablo’s small form factor proved a definite advantage: they just looked right and their compact size did not obscure the audience sightlines.”
The Dorfman Theatre is the smallest of the National Theatre’s three spaces with a 450-seat capacity, and a balcony on a level with the lighting rig. “The Diablos were rigged only 2m - 2.5m from audience yet we had no complaints about noise,” says Shemesh.

amandla-productionsChauvet colours streamed Tuscan blues festival
Monday, 29 March 2021

Italy - The Lucca region has given birth to many of the greatest voices in opera, but every spring and summer, Tuscany’s historic piazzas resonate with the impassioned sound of another kind of music, as they play host to world famous blues festivals.
In 2015, Lucca joined the list of Tuscan cities celebrating the musical genre by starting a blues festival of its own. Given the city’s evocative charm and rich musical tradition, the Lucca Blues Festival was an overnight success, attracting internationally acclaimed artists and legions of fans.
This year, because of the pandemic, the live event was cancelled, but the Lucca Blues festival continued its robust celebration of all things blues with a series of livestreams from Amandla Productions Studios, a versatile broadcast facility set up inside the city’s 1,500sq.m event centre by locally-based Amandla Productions.
Helping to create an immersive, camera-friendly environment for the blue performances, as well as the wide variety of other shows filmed at the studio, is a flexible lighting rig installed by Audiosales Entertainment Solutions that features 34 Maverick MK2 Wash fixtures, 10 Ovation E-910FC colour-rendering ellipsoidals, and 25 COLORdash Batten Quad12 units from Chauvet Professional. Controlling this rig are a ChamSys MQ500 Stadium console along with a ChamSys PC Wing and an extra wing.
Amandla Studios began on New Year’s Eve when, with lockdown restrictions still in place from 2020, the city of Lucca moved its popular celebration indoors for livestreaming. “Creating an indo


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