Zimbabwe - Minister Michael Mehendere recently hosted a Night of Worship at UFIC Mutare, filling the venue with worshippers and beautiful music. Well known throughout Africa, Mehendere has worked with some of the best musicians on the continent, as well as being a senior pastor at the renowned United Family International Church.
For the Night of Worship, it was important the lighting helped transport the audience visually in the same way Mehendere’s gospel-driven music did spiritually. Blessing Bero of Events Evolution was tapped for lighting design, with Tatenda Rushwaya running the board for the show.
Using a mix of Chauvet DJ fixtures, Bero focused on creating warmth for the show through washes and special effects that would fit seamlessly with the inspiring and celebratory theme of the event.
“UFIC Mutare has a good stage, but it is not very large, so it was important to create depth by alternating patterns of shadows and light,” says Bero. “I used eight EVE F-50Z Fresnels, rigged on the balcony of the venue, to wash a warm feel of light for backing vocalists and some band members. The spill of light from that angle worked as side warm wash for the leading vocalists as well. For main FOH lighting, I used six EVE E-100Z spots for all the leading vocals and MCs.”
The flexibility of the EVE fixtures helped the Events Evolution team create varied looks throughout the service. “We like their manual zoom, which was allowed us to create an even field of light while we changed the coverage area,” says Bero. “The crisp edges of t
New Zealand - NZ Sound Reinforcement recently deployed a JBL by Harman audio system at Bay Dreams music festival for performances by Cardi B, Tash Sultana, Rich the Kid and more.
Bay Dreams is an annual music festival that takes place every 2 January at Mount Maunganui. Established in 2016, Bay Dreams has quickly become one of New Zealand’s biggest summer music festivals. In 2019, the festival expanded to Nelson City with a second day of performances.
In order to deliver industry-leading sound for some of the biggest artists in the world, Bay Dreams recruited the help of NZ Sound Reinforcement, a full-service production company in New Zealand. NZ Sound partnered with JPRO, one of New Zealand's premier pro audio distribution companies, to deploy a JBL Professional audio system.
“The new JBL VTX A-Series systems have provided an amazing experience for all involved, from the artists to the spectators,” says Ray Ward, owner, NZ Sound Reinforcement. “The systems have shown impressive coverage outdoors, providing a very smooth and natural top-end. We look forward to providing incredible sound for upcoming summer festivals and international artists making their way to New Zealand in the coming months. We thank organizers Pato Alvarez and Mitch Lowe for putting on another sold-out masterpiece.”
“We are blown away, Bay Dreams was pretty epic,” says Brenda Ward, owner, NZ Sound Reinforcement. “The JBL VTX A12 and A8 systems have performed even beyond our expectations - they sound amazing. JBL certainly helped the artists to put on some
UK - A.C. Entertainment Technologies (AC-ET) has supplied the award-winning StageSmarts smartPDU power distribution system to creative technical production company, WCE-AV, to provide power management for its new lighting inventory.
WCE-AV works with some of the UK’s most high-profile conference, live event, exhibition, roadshow, and fashion show clients. Its end-to-end service covers everything from set & stage design through to lighting, AV, power & rigging equipment.
After recently upgrading all of the company's lighting inventory to modern LED-source fixtures, company director, Wayne Whitson was keen to find a power & distribution system which would offer maximum protection for the considerable new stock investment.
Wayne approached one-stop technology supplier, AC-ET, who he had purchased equipment from before, to suggest a suitable solution. Peter Loosemore in the company's lighting sales division recommended the StageSmarts smartPDU, a next generation intelligent power distribution solution which has been designed to provide a new level of functionality, reliability and safety.
In keeping with the latest 'smart' technologies, the smartPDU provides simple and highly accurate real-time load monitoring of each individual circuit - either via status indicators on the unit or remotely via any web-enabled device - enabling users to identify a potential problem before the circuit breaker trips.
Wayne invested in two smartPDU 48-channel systems for the company's production needs.
He commented: "The smartPDU has give
Italy - The Colosseum in Rome is one of the world’s busiest tourist attractions, with over six million visitors per year. Now, under the management of archaeological park director Alfonsina Russo, it has once again become a venue for all kinds of events.
Last year, visitors to the Colosseum were treated to a spectacular show, Sangue e Arena, at nightfall. This international collaboration between Canada and Italy offered a totally immersive experience, in English and Italian, with lights and remarkable holographic video effects at the heart of the ancient monument. wysiwyg was at the centre of all the action.
The Sangue e Arena project was the result of a close collaboration between Italian company, Electa Editore under the direction of the Parco Archeologico del Colosseo. Graphics eMotion and Lumin-ART gave life to the Colosseum, a world heritage site. Canadian company, Lumin-ART, are avid wysiwyg users and supporters of CAST Group of Companies Inc.
Shouldered by an array of talents, Lumin-ART met several needs of Sangue e Arena, Roma Coliseum. With the help of his team, Simon Gauthier, who acted as lighting designer, took care of design, programming and rendering of the lighting aspects of the production through wysisyg. Simon teamed up with Graphics eMotion to project historically accurate animated pictures and 2D/3D models reminiscent of the era on the outer and inner walls of the Colosseum, as well as on a see-through, hologrammatic screen. The experience is compounded by lighting and sound effects.
Ireland - Picture This played a record five sold out nights at Dublin’s 3Arena. This beat U2’s four nights and offered a lively, show-stopping performance to 60,000 adoring fans.
Helping make everything at the 3Arena bit look that bit more special was production designer Liam McCarthy, who spec’d over 150 Robe moving lights for this extravaganza, delivered by Irish rental company Just Lite Productions, and featuring 37 BMFL Spots, 36 Spiiders, 46 Pointes, 16 LEDWash 600s and 16 SuperSpikies.
Liam worked closely with the band and created some initial set and visual concepts based on their ideas of initially wanting a circular video screen - which was developed into two curved screens. Video content director Darragh McAuliffe and the team from content producers Algorithm were commissioned by Just Lite’s Paul Smith with input from the band. The IMAG camera mix directed by Brian Judge was also a big part of the show’s overall visuality.
The LED screen was split into two elegant curves. The curved theme continued with a circular video floor and drum riser.
Both these curved screens were on a Kinesys automation system and they moved in and out at strategic points in the show.
The 16 x Pointes on the centre circle were joined by 12 on the back of the circular floor, and the other 18 on the three upstage trusses where they were used for some spectacular ‘light wall’ effects.
The Spiiders were spread between the downstage trusses for key light with 12 upstage on the floor and 18 on the back-wall trusses. The BMFL Spots were p
USA - Jen Fok says that she enjoys making “large gestures” that mix colour and shadow, evidenced by her work as the lighting designer on Qui Nguyen’s family saga Vietgone, which is running at the Boston Centre for the Arts from until 25 May.
An Emmy Award-winning writer, Qui recounts the story of his Vietnamese parents, who met in an Arkansas refugee camp following the end of the war in 1975. His play is a delightful mashup of hip-hop, romance, road trip, Kung Fu and myriad other elements that make up the mosaic of life. Scenes morph radically during the telling of this story, and Fok’s lighting never fails to keep pace, thanks in part to its evocative colour changes, made with help from Chauvet Professional COLORdash Par-Hex 12 fixtures, supplied by High Output.
Positioned on the third Unistrut position, the RGBAW+UV LED wash fixtures were instrumental in creating some fast colour changes. “I used the COLORdash units primarily as a backlight system for the deck,” she says. “They also really shined during the play’s Asian hip-hop numbers with quick colour changing and nice colour fades. The UV was also really great for some isolated moments. I haven’t used the effect of UV a lot in my previous work. However, in this play it gave a really cold and ghostly feeling when paired with other systems.”
In a multi-dimensional story that jumps quickly from Saigon, to a refugee camp at the Fort Chaffee military base in Arkansas, the lighting served as a thread that ran through the play and helped inform the audience’s sense of time, plac
Hungary - For Event is based in Budapest and is among Hungary’s leading technical production and equipment rental specialists, working across multiple entertainment and event sectors including music festivals and concert touring, live events, exhibitions and corporates.
The company was the first in Hungary to invest in Robe MegaPointes in early 2018. Before then, they were also the first rental operation with BMFLs in Hungary - of which they have purchased more in the last year together with 24 x Spiiders and 26 x ParFects.
The For Event brand was founded in 2011 by Gábor Glatz, a well-known Hungarian rock musician and celebrity who also runs another successful company, GDP, dedicated to providing full creative scenic and décor services.
For Event’s focus has always been on providing additional technical value - both in design and equipment - lighting, sound, rigging and staging, in particular to capitalise on the buzzing live events scene in and around Budapest. The city is replete with amazing venues and spaces embracing classical, historic, funky and modern.
The last 18 months has seen a dramatic increase in For Event’s lighting and sound rental departments, which has included all the newest Robe investments, which have been delivered by Hungarian distributor, AVL Trade.
“We like to be innovative,” states Gábor, who has been using Robe products in his various commercial entertainment technology enterprises for some years - dating back at least a decade to the days of Robe XT scanners and the ColorMix 575.
UK - Stage Electrics has installed and commissioned the power distribution and data systems, including 40 Socapex and data connection facility panels, in the Hippodrome Casino London, ahead of the Casino’s critically acclaimed production of Magic Mike Live, a spin-off live-version of the major motion picture.
“We went from concept to installation in less than two weeks, we were called in to provide the Casino with the necessary infrastructure to meet the technical requirements for the show,” commented Stage Electrics’ project manager Tim Sachno. “The whole installation was delivered on a very tight time scale, including the design and manufacture of over 40 bespoke facility panels.”
Stage Electrics has a long-standing relationship with the client, V&A Productions. “We’ve worked with V&A Productions in the past, mainly on equipment sales.” continues Sachno. “However, they knew of our capability to provide high quality installations in very short time frames, so they asked us for support in the completion of the project.”
Stage Electrics’ installation teams rose to the challenge and provided the Hippodrome Casino London with the required technical systems in record time, ready for the UK debut performance of the show.
Denmark - The clarity, detail and natural sound delivered by DPA’s d:vote 4099 Instrument Microphone has enabled producer and engineer Chan Pui Ching to record 30 singing bowls being played by Chinese artist and wellness guru Tsang Man Tung.
Singing bowls are ancient instruments that have long been used in Buddhist religious ceremonies to accompany periods of meditation and chanting. They have become popular with music therapists, sound healers and yoga practitioners who use their steady and harmonious sound to create a sense of calm and relaxation.
“To capture the sound and full frequency range of the bowls, it was crucial to choose the right microphone early on in the process, at concept stage,” Chan says. “We decided to go with d:vote 4099 Instrument Microphones because they could deliver the results we wanted. We mounted them in the correct location and they perfectly captured a balanced mix of the high and low frequencies.”
Tsang Man Tung’s new album, The Seed of Sound, draws on his years of experience with singing bowls, which he plays and also teaches others to play. For this project, Chan was given an additional test because Tsang wanted the album recorded live.
“This is not the first time I have recorded with singing bowls, but it is the most challenging one because, unlike other albums, almost all of the music on it was recorded live and without adding any effects at the post production stage,” he explains. “More than 30 bowls were used, each of which sounds very different to our ears. Each bowl has a compli
UK - White Light has supplied the lighting equipment for Night of the Living Dead LIVE! which is currently spooking audiences at The Pleasance Theatre, London.
Based on the George A. Romero film, Night of the Living Dead LIVE! tells the story of a group of strangers holed up in a farmhouse in rural Pennsylvania. With hoards of the undead approaching, will any of them make it out alive? The show is lit by Nic Farman, who comments: “I hadn’t actually seen the film version prior to working on the show but I allowed myself to watch the first 20 minutes. This was so I could get a feel for the style of the cinematography, but also not become fixated on recreating the film on stage from a lighting point of view.”
Despite not wanting to be an imitation of the film, the production did remain true to the Romero classic. Nic explains: “The interesting thing about the show is that we’ve tried to recreate it as if it were a black and white film. The designer Diego Pitarch has created a monochrome set of the interior of the farmhouse in which the action is set. The costumes are all black and white and the actors are in make up to appear greyscale. My brief was to buy into that concept and to keep us in a black and white world, which was quite daunting, especially as creating a rich colour palette is often part of my work.”
He continues: “The first act stays quite faithful to the film, but as the show moves forward, it becomes a number of ‘what if’ scenarios. As a result, towards the end I was able to start sneaking colour back in
USA - In order to deliver studio-quality live mixes for some of music’s biggest stars, renowned front-of-house mixer Kyle Hamilton uses JBL 708P monitors in rehearsal to craft a solid foundation that translates to any venue.
Kyle Hamilton founded his company NeverSleep Productions in 2004, after working in live sound since 1993. In that time, he has become a go-to touring FOH engineer for artists including Janet Jackson, Prince, Usher, Rihanna, Kendrick Lamar, Pharrell Williams and more.
Hamilton is known throughout the music industry for his ability to recreate the sound and energy of chart-topping hits in large-venue settings. The pop, hip hop, and R&B acts he specializes in demand a tight, polished sound, and Hamilton has developed a system for delivering high-quality results with maximum consistency. It all starts in the rehearsal studio, where Hamilton works diligently to get the mix sounding as close to the record as possible.
“Usher, Pharrell, or whomever I'm working with - they want to hear the show like a record,” says Hamilton. “So I multi-track the entire rehearsal while I'm in the same room as the band; let them do their thing. Then when they have a break, I play back what I've captured and then subsequently mix it like I would do in the studio. So then, at the end of the day when you add a PA, you know your foundation is right.”
Hamilton has been using this technique to great effect throughout his career, but back when he first signed on as Usher’s FOH engineer, he was determined to find the absolute best monitors
Columbia - El Lugar de Su Presencia (The Place of His Presence) is a neo-charismatic Christian denominational church in Bogota, currently headquartered on two sites in the Castellana district of the capital city.
These two venues are on opposite sides of the same road. The first arena was built in 2005 with a capacity of 3,000, and in 2017 the new building was constructed to contain an overflow congregation of up to 1,500 people.
They have Robe Spikies, LEDBeam 150s and ParFect 150s installed in these two main venues, where all-things technical are looked after by technical manager David Zamora, who is also a lighting designer.
David has worked there for six years and manages a full-time technical team of around 50 - covering all aspects of these two auditoriums - from staging to IT - plus five other sites around Bogota. They have around 400 volunteers regularly involved in sound, lighting, cameras and the video elements, staging weekly worship services across all these sites.
With so much interest in technical elements amongst the many volunteers, the Church offers a valuable potential opportunity for budding future industry professionals to get fully hands-on with the kit.
El Lugar de Su Presencia is also well known for its ‘house’ bands which are active in the worship sessions and at other gigs with an independent fanbase. The eight or so weekend worship sessions accommodate around 45,000 people.
Robe moving lights were chosen for the two main arenas because “they get worked extremely hard and so we needed strong and r
Europe - Will Chandler side-hung 10 Chauvet Professional Next NXT-1 panels on poles behind diamond-shaped band risers for Hayley Kiyoko’s European tour, which concluded on 3 March in Madrid. The symmetrical diamond-on-diamond design created an engaging, balanced look on stage and served as a supportive backdrop for the 2018 MTV Push Artist of the Year’s famed dance moves.
“This show is a mixture of very powerful, beat heavy songs and some slower, more subtle moments,” says Chandler. “Especially with having dancers on this tour, I wanted to be able to create some really bold hip-hop moments with blocks of light, and also to be able to have a lot of the rig disappear into the background during slower dance solos. We toured last year with various designs incorporating LED strips, but with this version of the show I wanted to break up those lines into bolder blocks of intense light.”
Chandler credits the Next NXT-1 units in his rig with helping him achieve his design goal.
“First of all, these are incredibly powerful fixtures with the ability to create some epic aerial effects with their narrow beam angle,” he says. “For dance breaks and similar moments, I used them for strobe/blinder effects, which helped give us a hip-hop vibe. Also, I really enjoyed using the NXTs to create some sizzle effects.”
Designed in Los Angeles for rehearsals before the start of the European tour on January 29, the rig did not include video panels. This brought a focus to the pixel-mapping capabilities of the Next NXT-1 fixtures.
Vietnam - Situated at the Starcity Halong Bay Hotel, H Club has installed a Martin Audio THV three-way biamp loudspeaker system as the centrepiece of a high-specification package provided by the manufacturer’s Vietnamese distributor, Duc Proaudio.
Ha Long Bay is widely considered to be one of the seven wonders of the world. Located in the middle of the Bai Chay tourist centre, H Club was been built on an area of 4000sq.m and has a capacity of 1,200.
Over 10 years, investor Bui Minh Hong has made a major contribution to the nightlife tapestry with venues such as Ha Long Club, New Ha Long Club, Ha Long View KTV, Phantom Karaoke. In putting together his operational team for this latest venture, Hong comments: “If you come to Ha Long and don’t visit H Club, we would consider it as not coming to Ha Long Bay at all.”
The investor selected Duc Proaudio, as the audio design consultants and installation contractors. Pham Duy Duc, director of Duc Proaudio, had no hesitation in recommending Martin Audio. “If you are a serious player then you will have heard the superior sound of Martin Audio systems, as it is a brand name trusted by leading bars and clubs in Vietnam and around the world. Typical names using Martin Audio sound systems, supplied by Duc Proaudio are Gold 2 Club, Canalis Club, Barroco Club, Deluxe 030 Club, Kashso Club, XingXing Club and Gaia Lounge in Hanoi.”
He continues: The sound system required at H Club takes this to a completely different level.” And by this he was referring to the new THV. “These loudspeakers were d
Poland - Fans from across the globe turned the Polish city of Katowice into the epicentre of esports in late February for the Intel Extreme Masters tournament. Included in the large lighting and video package used by Warsaw-based technical event production company ARAM were full colour SixBar 1000 and white light DTW Bar 1000 battens along with Fuze Par Z60 luminaires, all from Elation Professional.
Intel Extreme Masters is one of the biggest esports events in the world with a modern multimedia Champions Stage designed especially for the tournament. Held 28 February - 3 March at Spodek Arena in Katowice, players and teams from around the world competed in a variety of games for a prize pool of $2.5m.
The Electronic Sports League (ESL) sanctioned event, sponsored by Intel, is not only a hot ticket to come by, it attracts a huge online audience as well. “Every year we try to introduce something new to the stage look so both the online audience and live audience will be amazed and have a great experience,” said Michal Mrzyglocki, COO and set designer at ARAM. “This year, we set the bar high and I think we managed to meet expectations.”
This year’s design featured large LED screens and a renewed lighting design that featured 650 lighting units. A signature of the 2019 Champions Stage was a scaffold structure used as both a support system and design element. Framing several LED screens positioned behind the teams were meter-long SixBar 1000 battens with 6-color LED multi-chip and a discreet, narrow profile that makes them ideal for outlining
South Africa - With the new production of Phantom of the Opera, which started a world tour in January this year in Manila, Philippines, Gearhouse Splitbeam have added the Eilon Ron StageMaster 6000 G4 Wireless System to their rigging rental stock for the first time.
“The 10-load cell system, that we purchased from DWR Distribution, can be remotely monitored in conjunction with the wireless receiver and Apple compatible software via blue tooth technology,” comments Alistair Kilbee, managing director at Splitbeam. “The Eilon load cells are easy to install due to the perpendicular design and wireless capabilities.”
The Eilon Ron StageMaster 6000 System, that allows for “always on” wireless continuous monitoring, was the main reason Splitbeam selected the 6000 series. “This means that the load on the motors can be monitored as the motors are moving scenery in and out to ensure safe load dispersion between the motors,” Kilbee explains. “The load cells have a battery life of up to 5,000 hours so we can confidently install them on a touring production where they will be in the rig for a month at a time. Each monitoring system has the capability to monitor up to 200 load cells allowing us to easily purchase additional load cells to add to our current system.”
Kilbee concludes: “With over 100 of our Prolyft Aetos Motors on the tour, the Eilon StageMaster 6000 system provides peace of mind by preventing and warning of potential overloading and thus putting safety first.”
USA - Astro Spatial Audio is at the centre of a new flagship e-sports studio in Los Angeles, bringing object-based 3D sound to one of the world’s fastest growing areas of sports entertainment.
For millions of fans worldwide, the future of sports can be found not on a pitch or a field, but on a screen, with e-sports such as League of Legends and Player Unknown's Battlegrounds (PUBG) having now entered the mainstream.
For leading South Korean e-sports promoter and broadcaster OGN, the popularity of PUBG has prompted the opening of its first dedicated North American e-sports arena, located in Manhattan Beach, Los Angeles, California. Equipped with 80 PCs on stage with a backdrop of giant three-sided immersive LED screen, the 35,000sq.ft arena delivers entertainment not only for those watching at home but also the in-house audience. A key part of the experience is true object-based 3D sound courtesy of Astro Spatial Audio.
“The studio’s screens and audio set-up have been designed to provide a more immersive experience than you’d traditionally expect in a TV studio,” explains Matthew Park responsible for the audio project management at OGN. “In particular, we are trying to convey a unique experience to the audience in real time using the PUBG game’s API data plus sound location information and directional sound. The real-time 3D sound of the game can be reproduced in the studio. It delivers a real wow factor for the studio audience.”
Working seamlessly with the OGN Arena's Meyer Sound loudspeaker set-up, plus D3 media servers and a
USA - Robe MegaPointes were used to dramatic effect on the most recent US tour by multi-instrumentalist French Kiwi Juice (FKJ).
Lighting and production designer Stu Dingley was delighted when approached by FKJ’s management and asked if he would create a design for the artist known for his elegant loungy music and funky visuals.
He chatted to FKJ at the start of the design process. The artist was open to ideas, however as a keen videographer with terabytes of content available, he really wanted to get selected elements of this right at the essence of the live show… to tie everything together visually.
With that in mind, Stu immediately thought of MegaPointes which he wanted to use for some very specific effects - shadows and silhouettes - to balance artfully in juxtaposition with the video images. He needed brightness, accurate shuttering and a beautiful quality of light.
They decided against an upstage video screen - it was a bit too standard - instead choosing some transparent silk drapes downstage for the main projections.
The idea was to contrast and play with shadows and silhouettes in the context of the front projected video images and fill in some of the gaps with lighting accents and looks. As FKJ plays multiple instruments, the silhouette / shadow idea was also a fun and playful vehicle by which they could highlight the different instruments.
Stu sourced a selection of fabrics from ShowTex which were sent to LA where they built scale models and looked at how the projected images appeared. These were recorded and sent t
The Netherlands - Poppodium Nieuwe Nor, a 400-capacity venue in the city of Heerlen not only hosts a diverse programme of music from pop and hip-hop to metal, blues and everything in between, it also holds regular club nights with DJs and serves as a location for corporate presentations and other events.
As Nieuwe Nor was getting in bigger acts with greater lighting needs, the venue’s existing discharge-based lighting rig was proving outdated with limited features and colour choice, as well as restricted output. “It just couldn’t deliver some of the things guest LD’s were looking for,” says Youri Gidding, head technician at the venue. Having to replace lamps every year was also taking a bite out of the tech budget, he says, and as the contract with their previous supplier was ending, the time was right to upgrade.
“Since we get a lot of different kinds of acts in, the lighting we required needed to be feature packed,” states Gidding, who was responsible for the entire lighting system upgrade including design, fixture choice, rigging, plots and patching. “We needed something that could create lots of different moods and looks, something that could, for instance, do wide spots with break-up gobos or animation effects for slow intimate music but also punchy beams and fast switches between looks and colours for club nights or a metal band.”
Gidding says he also wanted to move away from discharge-based fixtures in order to avoid lamp changes and lower the power consumption. Furthermore, he says the fixtures needed to be reliable and fr
South Africa - First Love Generation, a church based in Ruimsig Roodepoort, has invested in an L-Acoustics ARCS WiFo system knowing that their ministry will, in the future, include international speakers, worship bands and become a home to equip Christians on their daily walk.
Ordained Pastors Pieter and Tilla van Tonder initially left a mainstream church in 2006, planted a church on their property with another pastoral couple in 2007, and served together for nine years. During this time, the couple obtained permission to build a church, auditorium and lecture rooms on what used to be their tennis court. In January 2016, First Love Generation was officially born. Since the new church was formally launched, the numbers continue to grow year-on-year from the original handful of people.
DWR Distribution’s Victor Vermaak has been a friend to Pastor Pieter for many years and was pleased to assist with the installation of a new L-Acoustics ARCS WiFo system in a stereo configuration. “Pastor Pieter is a man who strives for excellence, and when it came to the audio, he wanted the right system that would cater for growth,” says Vermaak. “The set up includes one ARCS Wide and one Focus flown per side, and a pair of ground-stacked SB18i subs, again on either side of the stage. The system is run by an LA8 amplified controller.”
While the new audio has been welcomed, it has not been tested to the max, the ministry still being relatively small for the time being. “We are very happy with the building blocks and the quality, and are excited to see G
UK - McQueen in Shoreditch has been a feature of London’s club landscape for 10 years. Themed after the late American star Steve McQueen, the multiple award-winning venue has an overall capacity of 650, divided between two principal spaces and a 55-cover restaurant. Its strong reputation has been built on its ability to stage and attract high profile events, feature top DJs and deliver excellent hospitality.
Shoreditch continues to grow as one of the capital’s leisure industry hubs and entrepreneur Dezzi McCausland, head of design and concepts at McQueen, is aware of the need to take a progressive view in an evolving and highly competitive market. Recognising a trend towards increasingly multi-functional venues, McCausland took the decision to use the occasion of the club’s 10th anniversary to re-launch McQueen - updated, upgraded and able to deliver a wider spectrum of entertainment.
The core values of popular club nights and excellent hospitality would remain in place, supplemented by more live music, a modern American pool lounge and casino tables. Essential to the design was audio provision that could deliver all the power and quality required in a club setting, as well as possess the versatility to address the needs of the venue’s multi-functional spaces. McQueen chose Pioneer Pro Audio’s XY Series speakers.
Dezzi McCausland was seeking audiophile quality throughout and having experimented with other brands, had yet to find what he was looking for. His team was aware of Pioneer Pro Audio’s growing reputation and decided to make cont
UK - When Elliot Patterson from Evolve Install embarked on his third fit-out for the Kricket restaurant chain at the BBC Television Centre in White City, he worked in a new building with an industrial theme. This gave him the opportunity to suspend a series of down facing JBL pendant loudspeakers in the three open-plan zones and direct the sound away from the offices upstairs.
Owned by Will Bowlby and Rik Campbell, Kricket Television Centre is also the group’s largest restaurant to date, offering 100 covers inside and 40 outside. It features an open kitchen, booth and banquet seating, and a garden terrace with views of the studios.
Like the other two venues (in Soho and Brixton), Patterson turned to the Harman Pro audio catalogue for his solutions, sourcing the materials from their UK and Ireland distributors Sound Technology.
“It’s always nice to be involved with a new building as there’s more freedom with what you can do with the speakers,” he says. “The building was just a wide open space when we first saw it, but theme is very industrial, with overhead ducting and cable trays.”
The installer knew instinctively that the JBL Control 67P/T would provide the right solution, incorporating a large enclosure and high-power 6.5” transducer for extended bass response, and 120° dispersion for even coverage pattern. “These speakers have a nice LF response and so deliver a really warm sound without the need for additional subs. Fed by the right music you get the benefits of the full frequency range.”
The three-zone venue i
USA - It was still 32 days before the Cubbies kicked off the 2019 baseball season, but as one of the coldest winters in memory drew to a close, a group of 400 Windy City rock fans jump-started summer on the 20th annual Chicago Music Cruise, a weeklong Caribbean excursion on Royal Caribbean’s Symphony of The Seas.
Organised by local rock icons 7th Heaven, the cruise featured a group of leading Chicagoland bands and radio personalities. When cruise-goers weren’t walking the ship’s promenade or dining at its restaurants, they were packing its theatre to dance to a relentless procession of rock and country tunes. Keeping pace with the hard-driving music notes was a dynamic and colourful Zach Scott-designed lightshow, run with a ChamSys Maxi Wing and ChamSys Extra Wing Compact.
“Given that space is always an issue in a cruise ship environment, I wanted something with a small travel footprint that would still give me enough power to run a 22-universe show with no hiccups,” says Scott. “I’ve been running shows with the MagicQ MQ 500 Stadium, but size was an issue here. It was also very important that whatever I used had the ability to be up and running quickly from show to show. Having used ChamSys for a long time, I knew that it would do the trick.”
In addition to his Maxi Wing and Extra Wing, Scott’s system included a MacBook Pro and Elo Touch Screen. “The MacBook Pro running the MagicQ on PC was the core of the operation,” he says. “I received plots a couple of months prior to the cruise, which gave me ample time to build the rig
UK - Creative vision can often be frustrated by the limitations of technology, yet ever so quietly, UB40, with some help from Grant Hickey, Oli Metcalfe, Video Design, and the latest Notch effects software are revealing to their UK audiences that at least one technological barrier has been crossed. “Astro and Ali said to Grant, their production designer, that they wanted to ‘step it up a bit’ as far as this year’s tour was concerned; they wanted something that set it apart from other recent outings.”
As Metcalfe comments: “This was a case of right place, right time. It was an opportunity to try out some ideas I’ve been having about generative video and being creative in real-time.”
Metcalfe is video director for the tour, called in by Hickey on that ‘step-up’ initiative from Ali and Astro. “Grant and I have worked together many times before; he has often been my wingman on a number of other productions and I’ve recently seen his work with Kodaline - that was visually very nice.”
Video Design supplies the full video system and crew for UB40, IMAG either side of stage and large LED back wall screen on stage, providing Metcalfe with a Ross Carbonite. Content and Notch resides on a disguise (formerly d3) server which is final output to all screens. “And, I have a four-camera HD package. When you’re going to try something truly experimental, having the quality of support and stability Video Design provide is essential.”
Metcalfe’s vision was founded on the Notch software. “There’s a lot of excitement around th