France - On 12 July at Lille’s Stade Pierre-Mauroy, L-Acoustics deployed an L-ISA Live hyper-realistic sound system for the singular performance of Verdi’s Requiem by the Orchestre National de Lille (ONL) and the Choeur Régional Hauts-de-France. The 30,000-capacity stadium, normally home to Lille’s football club, was a spectacular yet fitting venue for a performance intended to bring classical music to the widest possible audience.
Founded by Jean-Claude Casadesus and the Nord-Pas de Calais region (now the Hauts-de-France region) in 1976, the ONL has resolutely focused on ‘bringing music wherever it will be heard’ ever since, performing both in Lille as well as in over 30 countries around the world. After spending 40 years at the head of the ONL, conductor Jean-Claude Casadesus continues to lead three series each season, while also forging a stellar international career.
For this special stadium performance of Verdi’s masterpiece, François Bou, managing director of the ONL consulted L-Acoustics founder Christian Heil. The L-Acoustics team custom-designed an L-ISA immersive sound system to face the hurdle of delivering the power of a world-renowned orchestra to the entire audience, all while preserving the emotional and artistic intensity of the performance. Central to the system’s design is the desire to deliver ‘what you see is what you hear’ to each spectator at the Stade Pierre-Mauroy, effectively putting the audience into the sweet spot occupied traditionally by Jean-Claude Casadesus himself.
“Our challenge was to pu
UK - The CPS Group, based on the south coast, has long had a close relationship with leisure and event venue operator BH Live. Since 1994, CPS has secured a reputation for providing high-end technical services and installations of performance lighting, pro-audio, and AV technology to the entertainment and leisure industries across the south and the UK. So, it came as no surprise that BH Live’s technical stage manager, Simon Bagnall contacted Simon White at CPS in the first instance when he was looking for a new console.
“Our choice for another MA Lighting dot2 console from Ambersphere Solutions through CPS was to build on standardising our stock of control surfaces across our venues,” opens Bagnall. “We purchased our first dot2 about 18 months ago. Since then, we have invested in two further consoles along with a fader and button wing. The platform has proved itself not only powerful but also a versatile and cost-effective investment. This latest purchase of a dot2 XL-F includes a Button wing which was really down to improving flexibility across the various uses required to more complicated programming to simple standalone applications. This brings our total inventory of dot2s to three XL-Fs, two F-Wings and a B-Wing.”
One of the most recent shows hosted by BH Live at Bournemouth’s Pavilion theatre was a production of Priscilla Queen of the Desert. The lighting was designed and programmed on the dot2 by resident designer, Olly White. “The lighting rig comprises a combination of moving heads, LED Pars along with approximately 140 gener
Belgium - The largest summer beach festival in Belgium and one of the most popular in Northern Europe, 2 Meisjes op het Strand, is known for more than just music.
Also drawing thousands of fans and attracting a large national TV audience on Flemish network VTM are the breathtaking harbour vistas at the festival site. At this year’s event, Michiel Milbou and his team at Never Fear Shadows did justice to the festival’s music and its surroundings with a stunning stage and lighting design that featured 410 Chauvet Professional ÉPIX Strip IP fixtures, supplied by Phlippo Productions.
Never Fear Shadows’ design concept for the festival was built around a 60m x 20m translucent stage structure built exclusively from the ÉPIX Strip IP fixtures. The structure provided sizzling visual support for the music of K3, Niels Destadsbader, Gers Pardoel and other stars. At the same time, it also allowed the audience (both live and television) to take in the beautiful scenic backdrop around the festival.
Unlike a black backdrop or video wall, which are the norms on large festival stages, Never Fear Shadows’ radical opaque ÉPIX Strip IP structure provided an interesting visual alternative for festivalgoers and television spectators alike. This was particularly important for TV viewers during sweeping panoramic shots of the festival.
“The long and thin batten shapes of the ÉPIX fixtures functioned as ideal building blocks for the structure whilst simultaneously doubling as the lighting sources,” said Milbou. “As a result, we were able to fu
UK - When Bat Out of Hell-The Musical co-producer Michael Cohl stood on a make-shift stage outside the London Coliseum at the press launch in November, he declared his latest project, along with fellow producers David Sonenberg, Randy Lennox and Tony Smith, and production manager, Simon Marlow, to be the biggest rock musical to premiere in London since We Will Rock You.
Peter Marshall, director of theatre for PRG XL, oversaw the provision of kit to the musical: “The show initially opened for a 12-week run in Manchester at the start of the year, before transferring to the Coliseum for the summer season from June to August. It was brilliant to continue our relationship with producer Michael Cohl and general manager Julian Stoneman again - after supporting them on Rock of Ages, and very exciting to work with Patrick and Finn, providing some of the latest technology on the market, including the Panasonic PT-RZ31K laser projectors.
“Bat Out of Hell was one of the first installs of these fabulous projectors in the world, which came straight from the Panasonic factory in Japan to the Opera House in Manchester.”
Associate lighting designer, Rob Casey worked alongside Patrick Woodroffe: “The overarching theme of the lighting for Bat Out of Hell is to achieve big, operatic backlighting which compliments Jon Bausor’s rugged set. We took a basic set of ideas from Patrick and theatricalised it using numerous positions overhead and around the set. The trusses are trimmed to around twelve metres, well out of view and capable o
Australia - IKONIX, the Australian audio-visual production expert, has supplied an Avolites Ai RX8 media server and two Avolites Miami Dongles, to run 960 gigabytes of content for Queensland's largest youth performing arts event, Creative Generation (CGEN) - State Schools on Stage 2017.
The event, now in its 13th year, was held at the Brisbane Convention and Exhibition Centre in Queensland. GCEN aims to mentor the next generation of performers, providing opportunities for them to work with professional artists. More than 1800 students aged between four and seventeen took part in this year's event.
Zachary Burton, co-founder of IKONIX alongside business partner Richard Saunders, worked with the CGEN team to manage and coordinate the production's entire lighting and video aspect.
"IKONIX has been working with CGEN since 2014," says Burton. "This year we decided to use the Ai RX8 media servers to map out and control the video content for the production's 38m x 6m rear screen."
Discussing why IKONIX selected the award-winning media server, Burton says, "The Ai RX8 server is a high performance media server. The integration between Ai RX8 and our lighting console for CGEN was fantastic. Integration was high on our agenda as we had two other media servers in operation as well as our Ai systems. Ai was also the easiest system to programme and make changes to on the fly, which is an aspect we really like."
The video content for CGEN's back screen was displayed at a resolution of 7000 x 1080 pixels and managed over four layers. Burton used a m
Spain - Multiple Grammy and Latin Grammy Award winning Spanish singer / songwriter and musician Alejandro Sanz performed a ‘once-in-a-lifetime’ show at the Vicente Calderón Stadium in Madrid to celebrate the 20th anniversary of his best-selling and landmark fifth studio album, Más, released in 1997.
The production team wanted some spectacular visual moments to make what was already going to be an outstanding show even more memorable, so the show’s production manager Borja Gonzales contacted stage automation and engineering specialists WIcreations.
WI’s Geert Stockmans headed their team after the introduction, which initially came six months ahead of the gig via Frank Janssens, a Belgian lighting specialist living and working in Spain. Geert and Frank have worked together many times, including on Malu’s 2016 tour.
Containing a diverse collection of ballads strongly influenced by flamenco, pop, and tropical rhythms, Más opened the door to international stardom for Alejandro Sanz who is from Madrid, and it was a pivotal work in his incredibly successful career.
Fifty thousand ecstatic Sanz fans attended the concert, made all the more special, historic – and emotional - for the fact that - as soon as the get-out was completed, demolition began on a truly iconic building, home to the legendary Atlético Madrid football club between 1966 and this summer.
Sanz’ lighting and set designer Luis Pastor already had an ambitious plan! It involved the tracking of LED screen columns around a curved upstage truss to reveal matri
UK - Dr. Marten’s Boot Room is the aptly named live venue at the rear of the legendary industrial boot manufacturer’s prominent new store in London’s Camden Market.
Promoting a regular programme of gigs since its Easter opening, the DM Boot Room has enabled emerging talent, bands and DJs to perform through a Martin Audio CDD PA, installed by Leicestershire-based NoiseBoys Technologies Ltd.
NoiseBoys director, Phill Beynon, knew that the store’s aim was to become a cultural hub, upholding the musical heritage of Camden Town by providing a complete experience. As a freelance engineer, he had been familiar with Martin Audio’s high premium technology and was happy to extend the relationship after NoiseBoys was set up nine years ago.
Therefore, when his company was approached by the store’s shopfitters, the retail design company Closed Sundays, to equip the 8m x 8m room with a complete staging infrastructure, NoiseBoys had no hesitation in specifying CDD - a solution already proven through the HoW and cruise ship sectors in which they have worked.
The first challenge they faced was that the store was set within The Stables, a 19th-century, Grade-II listed building at the hub of Camden Market. “This meant we had to fly the speakers off ground supported box truss rather than from the ceiling,” he said. “Therefore, aside from CDD’s excellent dispersion pattern, weight and size were a further consideration.”
NoiseBoys have flown a pair of the compact CDD10 (10”) Coaxial Differential Dispersion speakers on each PA wing alo
UK - Arthur Holm, specialist manufacturer of sleek, high-end conferencing solutions, has decided to take the mountain to Mohammed in the guise of a new, extra-long wheelbase Mercedes Sprinter that has been fully equipped as a mobile showroom. Having just completed the Spanish leg of its European tour, the van arrives on British shores on 4 September where Simon Druce of Arthur Holm’s UK distributor, CUK Audio, takes over for the UK and Ireland leg.
Boasting dimensions of nearly 7m x 2m, the interior of the van is both spacious and luxurious, furnished with durable, neutral-coloured woven fabric and floor tiles, and faux leather table tops. “Attention has been paid to every detail in order to show the products in their best light, and to demonstrate the perfect furniture integration of the retractable monitors and signal distribution systems, “explained Druce. “There’s plenty of room, the lighting is excellent, and we even have air conditioning!”
The products on display are the latest innovations from Arthur Holm: the DB2 vertical, motorised retractable monitor; the DynamicX2 motorised, retractable monitor; a connectivity box with motorised cables; DynamicShare smart video signal distribution and cable optimisation solution; the Undercover range of integrated, automated cover plates; and a motorised Kleenex box (yes, really!).
“The van is a self-contained showroom featuring all the newest, most technically advanced products yet from the Arthur Holm range,” continued Druce. “Visitors can expect to see how the Arthur Holm range can tr
Hungary - Four Robert Juliat’s 4000W HTI Lancelot fixtures were the followspots of choice for Frédéric “Aldo” Fayard, the lighting designer behind the opening ceremony of the 17th FINA World Aquatic Championships, which took place in Budapest and Balatonfüred in July this year. The FINA World Championships is one of the biggest sporting events in the world and the largest sporting showcase Hungary has ever hosted. With over 2,500 athletes from 180 countries and 200 events over a period of 17 days, this was a massive undertaking.
Frederic Fayard, who is founder and designer with Concept K in Paris, created and programmed the lighting for the opening ceremony event, which was conceived and produced by the French production ECA2 Group with MUPA from Hungary. The four 4kW Lancelot followspots were supplied by PRG France and were rigged on two technical towers front of stage. The Ceremony also provided the ideal opportunity for Aldo to test out Robert Juliat’s newest product, SpotMe, where he put it through its paces under live conditions for the first time ever.
SpotMe is a 3-D real-time tracking system that turns the followspots into an innovative solution to give the position of performers on stage, without the need for emitters and/or cameras. The followspot is equipped with sensors which send signals to the server and communicates all the positions and beam size parameters to the lighting console through PSN and DMX protocols. The parameters can then be used by the console to control any automated, or static, lights. Any moving light can theref
UK - A cutting-edge Adamson S10 line array system supplied by pro audio specialists, The Warehouse Sound Services Ltd, ensured power, precision and a party atmosphere during a high profile charity screening of the seminal 1996 film Trainspotting.
Trainspotting author Irvine Welsh staged a huge fundraising party celebrating the 21st anniversary of Trainspotting hitting cinemas to help efforts to reopen Leith Theatre after nearly 30 years.
A special birthday screening of Danny Boyle’s iconic movie was staged in Leith Theatre’s auditorium during the Edinburgh Festival last month. The 1200-strong audience were urged to get into the party spirit by joining in and even chanting some of the iconic dialogue from the film.
Welsh joined forces with arts collective Neu! Reekie! to stage the fundraise alongside post-punk band The Fire Engines and celebrated US record producer and DJ Arthur Baker.
Ewan Bremner, who played Spud in the film also appeared at the event reading excerpts from a new Irvine Welsh novel, which will reveal what has happened to Spud. Ewen Bremner is also a Leith Theatre ambassador and contributed to the event.
To ensure dynamic sound and a party atmosphere for this important fundraising event The Warehouse used six Adamson S10 line array loudspeakers and four S119 subs per side, with S10 front-fills, powered by Lab.gruppen PLM20K44 amplifiers running Lake Processing. New Shure Axient Digital radio mics with KSM9 heads where used for speech and vocals together with a Midas Pro2 mixing console at front of house
USA - As the primary AVL vendor for Colorado’s Red Rocks Amphitheatre, Thornton-based Brown Note Productions (BNP) will have provided audio reinforcement there more than 70 times this year when the venue’s 2017 season closes in late-October. The only other thing giving the breathtaking venue’s visual splendour a run for its money this year is the amphitheatre’s stunningly powerful yet natural sound, seeing that BNP joined L-Acoustics’ Certified Provider network for rental markets (CPr) back in April with the purchase of a K Series system.
Brown Note’s inaugural order was nothing short of massive and included 48 K1, 36 K2, 36 Kara and six ARCS II enclosures, 36 KS28, 24 K1-SB and eight SB18 subs, and 21 LA-RAK II touring racks containing a collective total of 63 LA12X amplified controllers. At the same time, the company also added two Avid S6L-32 and two S6L-24 consoles, as well as one DiGiCo SD10 and three new SD12 desks.
And Red Rocks is hardly Brown Note’s sole client. This year, the company has been out on national tours with Gorillaz, Flume, Death Cab for Cutie, Bonobo, Rodrigo y Gabriela, Nathaniel Rateliff & The Nightsweats, Snoop Dogg, Cut Copy, The String Cheese Incident, Misterwives and Mike Posner, just to name a few.
Brown Note also provides full stage PAs, along with lighting and video production, for many festivals across the country, including Welcome to Rockville and Chicago Open Air. BNP additionally served as the audio provider this year for North Coast Music Festival, Decadence, Carolina Rebellion, Global Dance Fe
Belgium - Spread across four stories and six zoned entertainment areas, the new 6000sq.m Comics Station Antwerp indoor theme park is a colourful celebration of creativity. Located in the city’s central station complex, it offers children and adults alike the opportunity to interact with Belgium’s best loved comic heroes such as Suske en Wiske (Spike and Suzy), Jommeke and the Smurfs.
To highlight the zones and multiple interactive elements within the theme park, Belgian creative visual design practice Luc Peumans and his team at Painting with Light drew on their multi-disciplinary experiences working on theatrical shows and attractions to implement a comprehensive lighting concept. Peumans and production lighting designer Kristof Devriese turned their vision into reality with some help from over 200 Chauvet Professional fixtures, which they used to create engaging looks in several areas including the foyer and theatre.
For the hallways adorning the huge 22.5m high atrium space within the station – which houses the world’s tallest indoor slide, Devriese specified an array of Chauvet Professional Ovation E10WWZ and E260WW fixtures. “The Ovation E-260WW IP fixture offered us exactly the kind of flat field of light we were looking for to illuminate the vast atrium space,” he commented. “The incredible optics combined with the 750W source offers intense brightness, and as a result works well highlighting certain elements within the entrance zone.”
Offering further highlighting within the atrium areas were the Ovation Min-E-10WW fixtures,
UK - GLP’s award-winning X4 Bar 20s were out in force at this year’s Glastonbury Festival, led by Andi Watson, who had already been lighting Radiohead on tour using 14 of the large X4 L as well as quantities of Bar 20s and Bar 10s. The inventory was supplied by Neg Earth.
Speaking of the Bars, he noted, “I love how you can make light move within these fixtures. I am looking for texture, beams and movement and the X4 Bars do that really well.” All are pixel controlled through the grandMA desk.
Of the large X4 L he added, “While I’ve always been a big fan of the X4, when we came to do the tour, knowing we would be headlining Coachella and Glastonbury, I knew I wouldn't be able to light the crowd adequately with these. So, on those two front trusses, the lights are mainly X4 L.”
Elsewhere, award-winning Tobias Rylander of Seven Design Works used 36 GLP Impression X4 Bars with London Grammar on the John Peel Stage (with Chris Davis the touring LD). These were suspended from a pipe attached to the overhead truss.
On the Pyramid stage Michael Straun used quantities of X4 Bar 20s with the XX. These were predominantly in vertical strips built into custom scenic pieces with a mirror coating. The mirrors rotated throughout the show and were used as a canvas to bounce the light from.
He says the real competitive edge of the Bars is giving the designer the ability to create one light curtain but at the same time initiate the single pixels to make gradients and mapped effects. “In fact, we have been using them in a couple of ways. One
Australia - South Perth’s Wesley College has been shaping young minds since 1923. Its Goatcher Auditorium, seating more than 300, has been serving the College’s needs since opening in 2008, and after nine years of constant use, it was time to refresh the lighting system and upgrade to LED. Alex Spartalis, head of lighting for the college, helped the school to install four High End Systems SolaSpot Pro 1000s and four Elation Platinum Sevens, giving them their first moving lights and first LED sources.
“I’ve used the SolaSpot Pro 1500s and was really happy with them,” said Alex. “They were too big for this use case, as the school needs fixtures that are a one-person lift. I was just as happy with the smaller SolaSpot Pro 1000s – they have good colour mixing, a good zoom, and they run extremely quietly, if not silently. They’ve got the output and colour the College needs, and it’s great to move away from lamps in a school environment because of the maintenance issues.”
With the profiles sorted, Alex turned to the wash. “I’ve used Elation’s Sixpars, and found them to be great products,” Alex continued. “The College wanted a really bright, affordable wash with really good colour mixing, so they decided to install four Elation Platinum Sevens. They have a great zoom range to cover the Goatcher Auditorium’s relatively large stage, and the UV is a great bonus. The kids always want to use UV effects, and previously we’d hire in 400W UV canons on a case-by-case basis, so it’s nice to not have to do that anymore.”
The Netherlands - While large multiplex cinema chains compete on quantity, smaller independent venues are finding a new market by specialising in quality. An example is RSB Cinemas, a Dutch company that has recently opened its second venue where cinemagoers can enjoy a new level of quality and personal service. An Alcons audio system and laser projection in each room mean they enjoy a uniformly excellent movie experience.
Located in Veldhoven, just a few kilometres from the centre of Eindhoven, each of the new-build Cinema Gold’s four rooms features large, comfortable chairs with tables, at seat luxury snacks and drinks - ordered via each seat’s service button at any time - and spectacular quality movies, thanks to Alcons pro-ribbon 7.1 channel surround sound systems and Barco flagship laser cinema projectors.
"We are all about giving our guests a quality experience with the personal touch," says Joop Hamers, RSB Cinemas senior marketing manager. "Both of our new venues - Cinema Gold and Cinema Roma in Wijchen - are smaller than the multiplex chains, but we still offer very commercial programming."
Alcons C-series pro-ribbon systems range from the ultra-compact CR1 up to the large format CR4 and scalable Cinemarray systems. Complemented by a range of surround and subwoofer units, the C-series ensures that - whatever the space and sound reproduction demands - audiences enjoy unrivalled quality cinema sound.
Opened in mid-2016, the three-screen Cinema Roma featured two Alcons CR3 and one CR2 three-way, pro-ribbon screen systems, a recipe for
USA - When fans of American singer-songwriter Gavin DeGraw arrive at a show of his, they can anticipate the Grammy-nominated artist to play all his hits, albeit with one notable modification: a pared down band.
Bandit Lites provided the lighting package for the production, and while previous tours elicited more of a rock show feel, the Gavin DeGraw Tour utilises a three-piece band to give a much more stripped back, intimate feel.
“We wanted a classic and intimate look to fit this show,” said production manager Mitch Vanhoose. “Also, going into smaller venues, we wanted to keep it somewhat scalable. What we ended up with is a simple yet elegant look.”
Bandit Lites supplied Chauvet Rogue RH1 Hybrids, Chauvet Freedom Par Quad 4 fixtures, Color Kinetics Blaze 72 along with Portman P1 Retro Lamps and a Whole Hog 4 for control. The recently acquired Portman P1 Retro Lamps to Bandit’s touring inventory provided palpable picturesque elements to the stage with an LED tungsten glow.
“The colour temperature of those lights also really just sealed the deal for us,” said Vanhoose. “The retro look of those lights fits really nicely with our Austrian curtain and candles throughout the stage.”
While Vanhoose initially suggested alternative fixtures for tight, beam looks, LD Jarrett Goldman wanted a hybrid moving light, which supplied depth and texture.
“It is such a privilege to work with Jarrett Goldman and the team at Relay Productions,” said Bandit business development officer Brent Barrett. “We are very fortunate to hav
Germany - Beer, food, folk music and a wide variety of other forms of entertainment are a perfect recipe for a good time. The Licher Wiesnfest Beer Festival has been following this formula successfully since 2009. While Munich’s Oktoberfest is Germany’s most internationally famous beer festival export, this summer event, which takes place near Frankfurt am Main, has been gaining traction since its inception, thanks to its beer and varied entertainment programme.
Wanting to give Licher Wiesnfest’s main stage a visual look worthy of a much larger festival main stage, local production specialists Flashlight Veranstaltungstechnik supplied light operator Björn Göbel and lighting technician and LD Benjamin Graff with 14 Chauvet DJ Intimidator Hybrid 140SR fixtures, which they skilfully deployed to create some impressive looks.
By positioning eight Intimidator units from above stage trussing and a further eight units at the base of the stage, Göbel and Graff were able to exploit the wash, beam and spot effects of the Intimidator fixtures to successfully engender a great sense of engagement between the acts on stage and the beer-drinking festivalgoers.
The top tier of Intimidators was used primarily to wash the stage with an evenly distributed canvas of saturated colour with occasional bursts of spot lighting during solo performances. Göbel and Graff used the bottom tier units to project vivid throws of light onto the stage and into the audience, taking advantage of the Intimidator 140SR’s powerful 140W beam.
“Considering their compact
The Netherlands - The Analogues is an extraordinary band with an ambitious mission. The aim is to recreate, live, the last six studio albums of The Beatles using the same instruments, amplifiers, and arrangements, complete with live strings and horns.
The band has tracked down and restored period instruments from all over the world, such as a rare Lowrey Heritage Deluxe Organ, as used on the introduction to Lucy In The Sky With Diamonds. To date, the band has conquered Sgt. Pepper's Lonely Hearts Club Band and Magical Mystery Tour, and will start touring The White Album from January 2018.
Remko Luijten, Front of House Engineer for The Analogues, has been working with the band for two years already, and Ger Arts, monitor engineer, has recently joined the tour. Because of the extreme demands of this project, both engineers have selected SSL Live L500 consoles as their tools of choice, supplied to the tour by the Dutch rental company Peak Audio.
Solid State Logic spoke to both Luijten and Arts shortly after a tour highlight - the celebration of the 50th anniversary of the release of Sgt. Pepper with a sold-out show at the 17,000-seat Amsterdam Ziggo Dome.
The Analogues’ attention to detail, extensive instrument collection, and additional ensemble members, mean that the input count for any show is high. 'Normal' shows use four 32-input SSL SuperAnalogueTM Stageracks, while the Ziggodome special added another rack to accommodate guests and additional ensemble. 'Normally we have around 100 to 110 inputs," says Luijten.
Brazil - One of Brazil’s most renowned country folk bands, Guilherme and Santiago, has begun a new tour of South America travelling with a dLive S Class system at FOH with a GLD mixer on monitors from Allen & Heath.
Formed 20 years ago, the band has released 17 albums, five DVDs, and has sold over a million records. The latest tour commenced in São Paulo, at the Villa Country venue.
Provided by PA company, Torau Som e Luz, the FOH dLive system comprises a S7000 Surface with DM64 MixRack, whilst the monitor mixer is a GLD-80.
“We chose dLive for FOH due to its precise dynamics,” explains FOH engineer Valmar Fernandes. “The audio quality of dLive is second to none.”
“GLD is the perfect choice for monitors,” continues monitor engineer, Claudinei Monteiro. “The compact size of the mixer make it very practical for touring. GLD manages a total of 46 input channels, 20 outputs and 6 FX, quickly and with amazing sonic quality.”
Hungary - The Volt and Balaton Sound Festivals are part of a series of major festivals in Hungary, held over the summer.
Both have been serviced for a number of years by Capital Sound, and all continue to feature Martin Audio’s premium loudspeaker systems on main stages.
Volt Festival is a massive multi-genre event set in Sopron over five days, with over 100,000 music-lovers attending the celebrations year on year. Known for attracting diverse and talented headliners over 25 years, its huge popularity has resulted in a massive European following.
This year saw Linkin Park, Martin Garrix, Imagine Dragons, Ellie Goulding, Jesse Glynne, The Cult, Years and Years, Pendulum and Paramore appearing over the five days.
As for Balaton Sound, this takes place on the shores of Lake Balaton, the largest in Central Europe, creating a beach party vibe 200 miles from the sea.
Now over 10 years old, the festival has consistently offered its enormous fanbase the chance to see some of the biggest and best names in dance music — and this year those names included Armin Van Buuren, Hardwell, KSHMR, Tiesto and The Bloody Beetroots.
Capital sent experienced crew chief Kevin Smith to supervise both events, along with system tech Luke Murphy, ensuring that both events went off smoothly. They, in turn, were supported by Marci Mezei, Hungarian Audio crew chief, who had a huge influence on system set-up.
At Volt Festival, the main PA consisted of an MLA PA (18 per side, including an MLD Downfill), with 36 MLX subwoofers in a cardioid broadside se
UK - Formed in 2013 in Brighton on the UK south coast, Black Peaks is a four-piece rock band that is going places. Their debut album Statues has been described by The Independent as ‘an exceptional combination of alternative rock, heavy metallic riffs, prog infused concepts and subtle post-rock flourishes that all interweave to create an extremely accomplished debut’ and they have been championed by both Radio 1’s Daniel P Carter and Zane Lowe. Having started out, as most fledgling bands do, with an unrefined mix of microphones, adding Sennheiser to their inventory has made a world of difference.
“We were originally an instrumental three-piece, which was me, Andrew Gosden on bass and Liam Kearley on drums,” explains guitarist Joe Gosney. “We quickly got Will Gardner (vocals) involved and from there our music really started to take shape. We spent 2013 and 14 playing a bunch of shows around the UK and getting tracks together for what would eventually become our debut album Statues.”
With their live performances becoming more frequent and higher profile – last year, for example, saw them support the Deftones, playing to a crowd of 12,000 at Wembley Arena and this year, as part of a six-week run round Europe and Scandinavia, Mastodon and System Of A Down – they wanted to upgrade their equipment, with microphones being the number one priority.
“We’re now using Sennheiser e 935s on Will’s vocal and 904s on Liam’s toms,” says their front-of-house engineer, Jack Childs. “I love the 935s for their clear glassy h
Germany - The 1000th edition of Germany’s hugely popular children’s TV show 1, 2 oder 3 aired in July, and Green Hippo and mo2 design helped ensure it looked suitably impressive. Based on the original US version, which was called Runaround, those in the UK may be familiar with the UK show, which went out in the 70s and 80s under that same original US title. The success of the German show has outstripped that of any of its ‘siblings’ seeing it become a mainstay of German childhood TV watching.
mo2 design produced the historic episode, and to help ensure that the visuals went perfectly to plan, Green Hippo delivered special training to the German lighting and design company. Cologne-based mo2 design has extensive experience working with Media Servers – it was the first lighting designer to widely use them in German television – and has recently focused its attention on Green Hippo’s Hippotizer product line. Consequently, Lanz Short, product specialist at Green Hippo, provided three days of Hippotizer training sessions, including a bespoke day, which was planned around the technical requirements of the upcoming show.
The live event itself saw mo2 design use four Hippotizer Boreals – teamed with a pair of grandMA2 lighting desks – controlling four Barco HD 30.000 projectors creating a four-cube wall, a further two Barco HD 30.000 projectors enabling rear projection, plus an LEDGO Black Spinel LED floor.
Manfred Ollie Olma, founder and owner of mo2 design commented: "Hippotizer Media Servers work visual creative for a desi
World - Canadian singer-songwriter Shawn Mendes shot to fame via a clip he posted to Vine in 2014 and has quickly garnered pop royalty status with a social media fan following of millions. At the pinnacle of his career playing sold-out arenas around the world, Shawn is currently embarking on his Illuminate world tour – and French manufacturer and provider of lighting balloons for the event industry, Airstar, is helping to set the stage with its Pendulair LED product.
The llluminate tour comprises 61 dates in total touching every continent, with Shawn playing some of the world’s biggest music venues. Named after his current platinum-selling second studio album, the show features a set built around a 5m wide Airstar Pendulair LED lighting balloon - known as the ‘Orb’. Providing the main source of the light for fans as they walk into the venue, in an off-blue hue which links the tour to the Illuminate album logo, the ‘Orb’ takes centre stage alongside Shawn for the duration of the concert.
Lighting and stage design for Shawn’s third concert tour and first all-arena tour is overseen by Louis Oliver and James Scott of Okulus, working alongside Shawn’s creative director Paul Caslin, on-the-road lighting director Ryan Nixon and production manager Andrew Thornton at 24/7 Productions (UK).
“With Shawn’s current album entitled Illuminate, we wanted a central piece to the performance that brought this to life visually and set the right tone and atmosphere. Paul took inspiration from the dramatic Solar Equation pr
South Africa - Indian Independence Day, holds a special meaning for the people of Lenasia Township. It was here in the early 20th century that a young Mahatma Gandhi staged a famous protest at the local railway station to advance the cause of civil rights for South Africa’s Indian population. Later, when he returned to India, Gandhi would employ the idea of non-violent civil disobedience that he had honed in South Africa to win independence for his native country, and in the process, change the world.
This year, as India celebrated the 70th anniversary of its independence, Lenasia hosted an array of events to mark the occasion. Among the most moving and colourful was Celebrating India at the township’s Patidar Hall, which featured a performance by the Kashvita Music and Dance Academy. Creating a bright and upbeat background for the spirited performances on stage was a vivid Vikash Maharaj-designed lightshow that featured Chauvet Professional Rogue R2 Spots supplied by JMY Sound and Lighting.
Maharaj arranged six of the 240W moving LED spots across the upstage deck. Drawing on their 16.5-degree beam angle and intense output, he used them to create dynamic aerial effects that energized the Independence Day celebrations and accented key moments in the performance. He also relied on the Rogue’s split color capabilities and dual colour wheels with seven colours to cover the stage and crowd in a rainbow of hues.
“Colour is very important to the overall mood of this event,” said Vishal Nana, president of JMY Sound and Light. “We specifie