France - Parodic metal band Ultra Vomit and EDM solo act Sebastian are in the middle of popular autumn club and festival tours throughout France. The two artists have something else in common too, each is supported by high-energy light and video shows created by Chirac Design and run with ChamSys consoles.
“We tend to have intense clients, and we strive to match their intensity with our shows,” says Chirac co-founder and Marilyn Manson LD Nico Riot. “I have been a ChamSys user for quite some time, because the simplicity of the console frees me up to do the things I envision.”
Riot’s enthusiasm for ChamSys is shared by his partner and Chirac co-founder Romain Dronne, who is using a ChamSys MagicQ MQ60 to run shows for Sebastian, and Gregory Dutein, who is powering Ultra Vomit shows with a MagicQ MQ80 plus an extra wing.
“Sebastian is an EDM light show, but without the cliché of it,” says Dronne. “Our show has to be tight on the rhythm, but with flood lights - and not an army of tight narrow beams. We are doing RGB fast colour chasers. Ultra Vomit is more like a theatre comedy rock show that includes standup comedy and light, as well as sound effects, managed via ChamSys Magic HD.”
For Ultra Vomit’s tour, the Chirac team began the design process on a ChamSys MagicQ MQ500, then once the show was programmed switched to a MQ80 plus an extra wing.
“Each song Ultra Vomit does is a parody of a musical genre inside the metal sphere,” says Dutein. “We respect all the codes of every genre in term of lights and video
UK - AJ Tracey played two sold-out shows at London’s Alexandra Palace earlier this month.
“I certainly felt this was a career highlight,” explains production manager Joel Stanley. “Bronski (creative director) and I had a long chat; the show would be streamed live so we knew it had to be the best quality for everything. Time was short, we hit the ground running, there was no time for introductions.”
Two intense production meetings later saw Video Design chosen to supply the four-sided LED display above the stage that Bronski conceived to contextualise the energy of AJ Tracey’s performance beneath it.
Neg Earth supplied lights and rigging, while SSE provided sound. “Bronski’s creative side knows no bounds,” continues Stanley. “He confounds us all with ever more amazing platforms for his performers.
“Video Design are a good example of what we needed,” adds Stanley. “Bronski and I agreed they would give more care and attention to the job. That’s what made this work so well. Come load-in, low and behold Alex (Leinster) was there, getting his hands dirty. I won’t be forgetting this show in a while. I’m very grateful to Alex and the other suppliers for helping us pull this off. A terrific show for a terrific performer.”
France - The Amphithéâtre de la Verrière, located in Aix-en-Provence, recently added Robert Juliat Dalis 863 Access lighting fixtures to its in-house inventory. These LED battens can be used to illuminate a cyclorama, or as front of stage lighting.
Located inside the Cité du Livre, the Amphithéâtre de la Verrière is a 450-seat multi-purpose hall. Jean-Marie Albaladejo, technical director of L'Amphithéâtre, was looking for an LED solution to replace old luminaires and provide effective low-angle lighting. Until now, this had been problematic in this amphitheatre-shaped venue, with an audience that sits very close to the stage.
"We are already equipped with many long-standing Robert Juliat luminaires, so it was only natural that we should turn to the same brand with confidence to find an appropriate solution, and choose LED sources that are more energy efficient," says Jean-Marie Albaladejo.
"TEXEN (Robert Juliat’s distributor for the area) presented us with Dalis 860 cyclorama fixture as a first step. This fixture has a proven record as very effective with a high quality of light and an extremely wide colour palette. However, our budgetary constraints made Dalis 860 inaccessible. TEXEN then advised us of a very interesting alternative, the Dalis Access 863 model.
"The Dalis Access 863 beam is very precise and the colour rendering is perfect, with great evenness on the cyclorama,” continues Jean-Marie Albaladejo. “It is a fixture that we can also use as a footlight to illuminate artists or various speakers. We are completely sati
USA - The 53rd Annual Country Music Association (CMA) Awards, broadcast live from Bridgestone Arena, saw the biggest names in country music come together once again for an evening of live music and industry recognition. Millions of viewers tuned in to see performances from both breakthrough artists and established acts. Throughout the evening, Sennheiser delivered the audio through its new Digital 6000 wireless system.
Early in the evening, Female Vocalist of the Year nominee Kelsea Ballerini took the stage to deliver a stripped-down version of Homecoming Queen, the leading single off her latest album. Every detail of her intimate vocal performance was captured through a Sennheiser SKM 6000 handheld transmitter, coupled with an MD 9235 capsule.
Ballerini’s microphone, adorned with dozens of black Swarovski crystals, faithfully rendered the raw emotion of her performance. “She loves that microphone, and we love it too,” comments FOH engineer Chris Diener.
Lady Antebellum, who received a nomination for Vocal Group of the Year, performed with Sennheiser MMD 9235 capsules
“When the Digital 6000 came out, it was a gamechanger for us,” commented Pete Bowman, Monitor engineer for Lady Antebellum. “The system has always been solid for us RF-wise, and we never have to worry about drop-outs. Also we love the Dante output command channel. We are pretty reliant on that feature for our full shows.”
One of the most memorable performances of the evening came from country superstar Blake Shelton, who performed his latest chart-top
Hungary - Supernova Techno presents The Boris Brejcha Showcase is how the event at Budapest’s 12,000-capacity László Papp Sports Arena (aka Budapest Arena) on 5 October billed itself. The DJ was supported by Deniz Bul, Ann Clue & Theydream.
Once again, the German DJ / producer, who performs in a Joker’s mask, delivered a powerful three-hour set through Martin Audio’s MLA PA, provided by Hungarian partner, BG Event.
The set-up featured a main PA comprising 15 MLA elements (and one MLD down-fill enclosure) on each flank of the stage, with a first delay line comprising eight MLA per side and the second delay position with eight MLA Compact per side. Some 24 MLX enclosures were placed in a sub array, eight stacks of three, with the bottom box in each flipped to cardioid. In addition, 2x6 W8LS rigged subs were set up in end fire configuration behind one side of the first delay point. The system was driven by three Lake LM44 processors, four Martin Audio Merlin system management controllers and a U-Net network hub.
BG Event also equipped the VIP Backstage area with a further hang of four MLA Compact (on one side only) and similarly there was a single hang of six MLA Compact in the VIP Sky Bar.
BG Event’s Balázs Szentiványi says: “The size of the audience area in the László Papp Sports Arena is 110m long and 40m wide. The mighty Martin Audio MLA system could easily have done the job with a single left and right hang based on the pre-calculations.
“However, at the request of the promoters, and bearing in mind the type of g
UK - Temporary power specialist Midas will take the UK’s first rental LPG genset into Kew Gardens this month as part of its low emission package that will drive Christmas at Kew from 20 November to 5 January.
A premier dealer with Himoinsa, multi-award-winning manufacturer at the vanguard of developing gas generator sets, Midas is the only power supplier in the country with these engines in its fleet. Fully EU Stage V emission standard compliant, they feature a three-way catalyst which slashes CO, CO2 and NOx emissions.
Appointed to Christmas at Kew on a multi-year deal, Midas will also provide Stage 3A machines, and HVO fuel, to the contract - all of which it will monitor remotely via DSE Gateway and Livelink to ensure optimum performance.
Dáire Basra, head of event operations at Kew Gardens, comments: “Midas’ innovative approach to power generation is a sure fit with our onus on efficiency and environmentalism and I’m really pleased to be working with the Midas team.”
Midas’ managing director, Dave Noble, says: “The new Stage V engine emission regs for non-mobile road machinery phase in from the end of this year and while many manufacturers and suppliers try to address the changes, the Himoinsa LPG genset is fully compliant and ready.
“There has been so much chatter about people getting their heads together to plan to reduce emissions, we’re thrilled to take a real 21st century, fully monitored, sustainable power solution into Kew Gardens right now. We look forward to getting more of these machines i
USA - To create a natural and immersive sound environment for The Rose Tattoo in Broadway’s American Airlines theatre, associate sound designer Bradlee Ward specified a TiMax SoundHub 2 audio spatialisation engine to create localisation of the actors’ voices as they moved around the multimedia-adorned set of Tennessee Williams musical drama. TiMax was also used to spatialise the evocative music and redolent sound effects created by sound designer Fitz Patton.
Ward says: “I knew I needed some kind of movement tracking for the actors. I’ve always wanted to use TiMax on one of my shows and based on prior work with Robin (Whittaker, director of TiMax developers Out Board) I felt this was the perfect solution.”
The audio creative team included Sun Hee Kil, also associate sound designer, working with sound designer and composer Fitz Patton. This same sound team won the 2019 Tony Award for Best Sound for a Play, for Choir Boy on Broadway.
The set design created a stage that was wide and deep surrounded by animated video scenography. In addition, the set included a hanamachi – Japanese for flower path: a bridge that extends out into a segment of the audience area which formed an important part of the staging and direction.
A primary role of TiMax was to accommodate this additional area of stage, naturally localising sound in real time without the need for complicated programming. With the aid of a speaker placed at the far end of the hanamachi deep in the audience, TiMax simply facilitated the morphing of localised vocals fro
The Netherlands - Robe’s new Esprite LED moving lights made their live debut in The Netherlands at the high-profile AMF event staged in the Johan Cruijff ArenA, a showcase concluding five days of electronic music conference sessions, debates and live events related to the 2019 Amsterdam Dance Event (ADE).
The production design for AMF - with 40,000 visitors and high-energy sets from David Guetta, Armin van Buuren, Tiësto, Dimitri Vegas & Like Mike, Alesso, Don Diablo, Timmy Trumpet and many more - was created by Maarten Hoogland from organiser ALDA, who is also the overall production manager and Andre Beekmans from creative visual design practice, The Art of Light.
The look featured a series of ‘crosses’ and other large geometrically-shaped video pieces flown 360 degrees round the 40,000 capacity (for this event) Ajax stadium, and involved approximately 1000 lighting fixtures. Around half of these were Robe, supplied by a combination of Flashlight (the over-stage fixtures) and The Purple Group (lighting around the ArenA).
Andre and his team at The Art of Light have lit AMF from the very first edition in 2013, and in this time the show has developed a signature lighting design which is used as a base, with different variations and ideas introduced to make each year’s set up distinctive and different.
The centre of the arena was filled with eight long trusses (lengthways orientated) which were sub-hung with 40 x shorter moving trusses on 80 Cyberhoist axes, all rigged with lights. These flew in and out at strategic moments through t
Spain - Fantek International, a company that specialises in manufacturing tower lifts, trusses and stage platforms, played a key role in the success of this year's San Sebastian International Film Festival (SSIFF) by providing a custom-made truss frame for the festival's main projection screen.
Inaugurated in 1953 and held annually at the Kursaal Palace in Donostia-San Sebastian, Spain, SSIFF attracts numerous A list actors and directors whose presence brings star appeal and glamour to this week-long homage to celluloid. This year's top names included Penélope Cruz, Donald Sutherland and the director Costa-Gavras.
Over the course of the festival, approximately 200 films are scrutinised by judging panels who award different prizes in various sections. On the final night the winning actors and directors attend a closing gala at the Kursaal Palace, immediately followed by personal appearances at the Antonio Elorza velodrome where members of the public can watch the award-winning films on a massive screen.
In previous years, this screen was mounted on an old iron frame, but in 2019 the organisers asked Spanish installation company Loyola 21 to replace it with something lighter, more versatile and more functional. They, in turn, approached Fantek with an order for a 26 x 12m truss frame that could safely support the large screen and ensure that it stayed perfectly flat and smooth.
Carlos Verdú, from Fantek's technical department, says, "For this project we used a Fantek accessory that added a form of tubing that made it possible to lift a tarp wi
USA - Premier Productions’ stellar 2019 Worship Tour is running across the USA this fall. Earlier this year, Seth Jackson was approached by Josh Chambless of Premier Productions to create a unifying design for a tour that would feature three of worship music’s most prominent groups: Casting Crowns, Elevation Worship and Hillsong Worship. Multiple Dove Award nominees all, and in two case Dove and Grammy winners, each band has its own distinct look on stage, created by its own talented production team.
Jackson’s mission was to come up with a design that would pull together each band’s stage persona, while still presenting a smoothly flowing and harmoniously balanced look on stage.
Working with his partner Nate Alves, Jackson met this challenge, creating a sweeping panorama that embraces the visuals of each band, while also projecting a unified image that is unique to the tour. Included in the rig that he used to accomplish this feat are 21 Chauvet Professional Maverick MK3 Spot fixtures supplied by Bandit Lites.
“The MK3s are the workhorse of the rig,” said Jackson. “We are relying on them for illumination one minute, and graphics the next.”
Jackson is also using the high output MK3 Maverick Spot fixtures as follow spots. “It was terribly important to each artist to be able to see and respond to the crowd. Follow spots would be too blinding,” he said. “There was no way, short of just having everything turned on, that we could pull off this show without a legion of follow spots. The course we selected with the MK3s was muc
France - The French Open tennis tournament is held in Paris at Roland Garros Stadium, a complex of three main courts with a total capacity of over 30,000 spectators. The largest of the courts, Court Philippe-Chatrier, was rebuilt between the 2018 and 2019 tournaments and now accommodates over 15,000 spectators.
For the 2019 tournament, two Danley J3-94 Jericho Horn supported by four Danley THmini15 subwoofers covered Court Philippe-Chatrier’s seating cleanly and with unprecedented intelligibility.
“The sound reinforcement system at Roland Garros is used mainly for speech reinforcement for the referee, players and organizers, as well as for advertising and the national anthem,” explained Etienne Bérard, director of Demoa, a French AV distribution company. The AV consultant on the project, Creaprag, asked Demoa to find an efficient, high-intelligibility sound reinforcement system for the rebuilt stadium. Bérard modelled a Danley point-source system, relying on Danley’s full-fidelity, phase-coherent output to deliver the requested intelligibility.
“The client wanted a system that could fit into the relatively small niche that had been given for loudspeaker placement,” Bérard continued. “In addition, it had to be highly directional so as not to disturb the press room located just below the loudspeaker niche. I used Bose modelling software to propose a system using a Danley J3-94 Jericho Horn, and we offered proof-of-concept with a demo up against a high-end line array. The Danley J3-94 Jericho Horn showed vastly better intelligibility
Belgium - Painting with Light (PWL), working for television producers Dedsit, supplied lighting and video content design, creation and control for De Battle – a co-production between Belgium’s SBS and Netherlands broadcaster, RTL – which was recorded at the Pop Up Theatre in Puurs.
The TV series is billed as ‘the next level of studio entertainment’. Four celebrity contestants, divided into two Belgian and Dutch teams faced brain-teasing quizzes, gravity-defying stunts – from drifting cars to traversing a high wire plus a host of manual dexterity and physical exercise skill tasks – testing them to the max in front of a live audience.
Studio 100’s Pop Up Theatre includes eight moving seating tribunes to fit 1600 people and eight remote-controlled LED screens which can be moved into any position and configuration.
These large moving assets enabled the production team to build the multiple locations needed within the venue to stage the different challenges. The speed at which these turnarounds were possible enabled series director Kevin Houben to achieve the results he needed for all four episodes that were recorded during two intense weeks.
PWL’s creative director Luc Peumans designed lighting for each different scenario, utilising the substantial ‘house’ lighting rig in the Pop Up Theatre (also home of the 40-45 musical spectacular, as a base, and adding around 140 moving lights).
Luc’s extensive experience as a lighting and visual designer in television and theatre was a huge asset to the production as was
USA - Brown Note Productions, a full service production company based in Thornton, Colorado, has purchased a large fleet of Elation Professional IP-rated outdoor lighting fixtures and immediately had the gear out on a fall run of music festivals.
“We chose to go with IP rated fixtures to be part of the solution for our industry,” stated Ryan Knutson, president of Brown Note Productions. “With the changing climate and the desire to be outdoors listening and seeing your favourite performers, the stakes in the game have changed. The visual designs now call for non-traditional stage layouts to complement the artists’ performances. These visual platforms require lighting and other production technology to be directly exposed to the elements.”
Knutson says that Brown Note’s historical approach was to bag fixtures with bulky, expensive weather domes but that was not an optimal solution. “With the shrinking labour budgets and build times on these shows, adding in extra gear means more time, more trucks, more crew, more everything. We know that this is not sustainable.”
Brown Note’s acquisition includes Elation’s 50,000-lumen Proteus Maximus, a full featured LED profile framing fixture; Proteus Rayzor 760, a compact IP65-rated LED wash luminaire with SparkLED background illumination system; Protron Eclypse hybrid LED luminaires; and variable white DTW Blinder 700 IP LED blinders. “With this combo of lights we can do most events with an all IP-rated system giving our clients the full show rain or shine,” Knutson stated.
USA - Rock band Sum 41 embarked on their US and Canadian Order In Decline Tour with a JRLX touring lighting package onboard. Lighting designer Nick Stabile of Helm Projects specified a rig of Elation Professional Dartz 360s, ACL BAR 360s, Cuepix WW2 Blinders, and GLP JDC1 Strobes.
Nick Stabile Explains, “Sum 41 has moved past their pop-punk days. Their set is a lot of straightforward rock - quick and heavy songs with slow and beautiful moments peppered in. There is a lot of dynamism in the show, so I needed a lighting rig that was super punchy, yet able to accommodate the more theatrical points in the show.
“The fixtures I selected are small, yet powerful and multifaceted. The Cuepix WW2s have been my go-to for years now for stage blinders. The ACL BAR 360s can give me utter madness on stage for those crazy moments -and pixels. But it is the Dartz 360s that are really the workhorse fixtures for me. The options onboard the Dartz are a must for all of the looks and changes that this show requires and they are an incredibly reliable fixture.”
Jason Reberski, CEO of JRLX notes, “The Elation Dartz 360 has been a great addition to our inventory – It has the intensity to directly compete with (and in some cases even outperform) traditional lamp-source beam fixtures, but with all of the benefits of colour mixing, overlaying prisms, frost, and 360 rotation, and an LED source.”
Nick Continues, “The GLP JDC1s are intense. I use them as colour-blinders, strobes, and pixel fixtures and really get a lot of looks out of them.”
Taiwan - The 3201 Multi Hall in the Taiwan Traditional Theatre Centre (TTTC) at the National Centre for Traditional Arts (NCFTA) in Taipei became the first theatre in the country to use moving heads and be equipped with all-LED lighting with the installation of a complement of Claypaky and ADB products.
The NCFTA’s mission is to cultivate talents in the traditional arts and to conduct investigation, research, conservation, transmission and development of the traditional arts. The GuoGuang Opera Company, Taiwan Bangzi Opera Company, National Chinese Orchestra Taiwan and Taiwan Music Institute operate under its authority. NCFTA oversees the TTTC, which is also known as the Xiqu Centre of Taiwan.
The Multi Hall is a small venue seating about 130 people. It hosts traditional Chinese and Taiwanese opera and Palmadrama (Taiwanese hand-puppet theatre) as well as press conferences and speaking engagements. The Multi Hall offers performing groups and others a well-equipped, cost-effective theatre space with a reduced need for technical equipment rentals and technical staffing.
Taipei-based Acropro worked with Xiqu on the installation as part of a renovation of the Multi Hall. The new lighting complement featured five Claypaky Axcor Profile 400HCs, six Claypaky A.leda B-EYE K10s and an ADB Eurodim Twin Tech dimmer cabinet. Two years ago NCFTA purchased 40 Claypaky Scenius Profiles for the Main Hall of Xiqu.
“Claypaky lighting instruments are always stable, reliable and of excellent quality,” says Huai-min Jen, section chief of NCFTA. “They are a
South Africa - Olive Tree Church in Florida Road, Berea, established in 2008, has a vision not to build a big church, but to pastor a big city and they have various branches scattered throughout Durban. The church recently invested in a DiGiCo SD9 with D2 rack and an Orange Box, purchased from DWR Distribution.
Stephen Bagwell, technical director at Olive Tree has been with the church since 2014.
Kyle Robson of DWR recalls “When I started working at DWR Distribution in 2016, we did our first DiGiCo training sessions around the country and Stephen was there. He was so determined that he would one day have a DiGiCo console, and now his dream has become a reality.”
The new gear, consisting of an SD9, D2 rack and Orange Box, was initially sent down to Durban, where DWR’s Nicholas Barnes got the system up and running. It was followed up with training by Kyle. “Olive Tree seats around five hundred people and it’s a very family orientated environment,” Kyle describes. “From what I’ve seen, the band is incredible, and they have some really good musos. Stephen himself is a talented engineer. The DiGiCo system compliments everything the church already has in place and is trying to achieve.”
A former student at Performing Arts Technologies, and having worked in the entertainment industry before joining the church, Stephen could see how lighting, audio and AV played a major role in enhancing the worship experience. “Our worship experiences are honest and authentic, which was one of the things that drew me to Olive Tree,” Stephen no
UK - Warner Leisure Hotels owns a chain of 14 rural and costal hotels around the UK. It boasts luxury breaks in Grade I & II listed manors with bespoke packages that include famous faces from the stage, screen and radio in West End-quality performances at Warner’s venues.
With increasingly bigger productions, Warner’s focus is on providing an outstanding guest experience. To this end, it recently undertook a major upgrade to the sound system in the ballroom at its Cricket St. Thomas Manor Hotel in Somerset – reputed haunt of Lord Nelson and Lady Hamilton and the setting for much of 1980s TV comedy To The Manor Born - selecting an L-Acoustics Kiva II system to improve audio coverage and fulfil rider expectations for the venue’s busy entertainment programme.
“Billy Ocean, Aswad, 10CC and Jane McDonald have previously performed here, and we have an exciting line up for the coming months. All of these bigger acts, their engineers and production teams, expect to have a top calibre PA system. We used to hire in and ground stack systems, which served the purpose but as a temporary installation, you can’t cover the room comprehensively and there are aesthetic sightline issues with two big stacks of PA,” explains David Hall, head of technical at Cricket St Thomas. “We also always struggled to deliver even coverage throughout the room - with the house or hired system - to ensure all guests have the same audio experience.”
Hall appointed AVL specialists, Adlib, to carry out the refurbishment led by installations project manager,
UK - In 2009 the 11-mile stretch of the Pontcysyllte Aqueduct and Canal won the UNESCO World Heritage Status. Situated on the border between England and Wales is the Chirk Canal Aqueduct & Railway viaduct which is a part of the route. This aqueduct was finished in 1801 and has been an important landmark and way of transportation for the region ever since. To celebrate the 10th anniversary of being a UNESCO World Heritage Site the Welsh Canal & River Trust wanted to do something special.
Enlightened Lighting was commissioned through winning a competitive tender process put forward by those leading the project: The Glandŵr Cymru, The Canal & River Trust in Wales on behalf of the Pontcysyllte Aqueduct & Canal World Heritage Site Partnership.
The project formed an exciting challenge for Enlightened Lighting and for their lighting designer, Ben Dodds. He incorporated 36 units of the Showtec Helix S5000 into the setup.
"Enlightened’s continued investment in pro equipment such as the Helix S5000 Q4s enabled the team to fully realise their design at Chirk Aqueduct,” says Dodds. “The team chose the Helix because of their high brightness, ease of changing lenses and the range of beam shaping accessories that they come with out of the box. Some of the arches are almost 30m tall, so it was vital to have a fixture that’s bright enough, had the right lens choices and that could withstand the damp & muddy conditions on site."
Dodds’ decision to use the Helix S5000 fixtures paid dividends, lighting the 200-year old World Heritag
UK - Lighting designer Steve Cameron utilised Vista by Chroma-Q’s Vista 3 lighting & media control system to deliver full concert production values for the Wella 2019 TrendVision Awards, held at London’s Roundhouse.
The Awards are the pinnacle of the annual contest, which recognises some of the UK and Ireland’s most impressive hairdressing talent. Hosted by TV’s Vernon Kay and hairdresser Patrick Cameron, it was attended by 800 industry peers.
With the event putting creative talent centre-stage in a venue steeped in rock ‘n’ roll history, and music’s inescapable influence on the fashion world, the occasion called for a concert-style lighting rig to give it an energetic, theatrical look and feel, whilst at the same time still delivering for its corporate AV requirements.
As a long-time Vista user, Steve knew the control system would deliver his vision, and be able to produce both corporate and rock ‘n’ roll aspects.
He comments: “Vista’s creative visual workflow and graphical interface make complete sense. I can use my time more productively by getting the design into the desk quickly and, in combination with the fantastic FX Engine, keep my attention on the show itself.”
Taking advantage of the Roundhouse’s circular space, Steve’s design was based on the clock face, with 12 spines splaying from a circular truss above the stage and guests.
He utilised Vista 3 to provide lighting & media control for a rig of over 300 fixtures and over 16 universes. In addition to over 130 Martin VDO Sceptron 10 pi
Germany - Nature One, one of Europe's largest festivals for electronic music, celebrated its 25th anniversary in 2-4 August. Consequently the event, which has been based on the former Pydna rocket base in the Hunsrück mountain region since the second year, was simply dubbed ‘The Twenty Five’.
As always, at the centre of the festival site was the huge dancefloor, named Open Air Floor and as in previous years, Gerdon design was responsible for the entire production design. Here dancing takes place in the open air, while the majority of lighting technology - as in a real club - is above the heads of the audience, attached to a 26 x 26m truss construction which was raised to a height of 15m.
Although Nature One does not rely on a lush and decorative backdrop construction like many other EDM festivals, the stage, which measures 46m wide, 18m high and 16m deep, was y impressive, as DJs took their place under the stage roof, renowned from Genesis' 2007 Turn It On Again tour.
While the aim of creating something new every year has been upheld in recent years, the organisers of Nature One decided in this special anniversary year to develop a new design template, with a value that will be further developed in subsequent years.
An essential design element this year was the creation of 48 sheet metal pyramids (in 2 x 2m sections), which were directly attached to the Layher stage construction. These were clad with 25 x 100cm LED panels and equipped in the centre of each with a GLP KNV Cube.
"This gave the stage, which previously consisted
Europe - Philips Professional Display Solutions and Hutchison Technologies worked together to bring transformational change to a leading fitness club with a UK and European roll-out of high impact LED video walls and digital signage. Founded in 1982, David Lloyd Leisure operates David Lloyd Clubs, providing family orientated fitness and leisure facilities across 99 UK sites and a further 15 across mainland Europe.
Looking to meet the demand for HIIT (high-intensity interval training) and the explosion of boutique-studios, the fitness giant met the trend head on with the creation of Blaze. Housed in its purpose-built studio, the standalone instructor-led facility combines cardiovascular training with strength, boxing and martial arts skills to give an intense workout.
Available in 54 sites (with more being added throughout 2019 and beyond), David Lloyd Clubs required an innovative, premium quality Europe-wide display solution in order to create a more immersive and personalised experience for members during classes, whilst also maximising new marketing and engagement opportunities to attract new members and ensure a return on investment.
In order to not only meet but surpass expectations, AV integration specialist Hutchison Technologies - a long term partner of David Lloyd Clubs - teamed up with Philips PDS for the installation of a range of premium Ultra HD connected digital signage and video wall solutions both inside and outside every Blaze studio. Each display runs off a single secure network - bringing true change to David Lloyd Clubs.
UK - When John Legend and his 11-piece band performed at this year’s BluesFest for his only UK show of 2019, it was through a Martin Audio MLA loudspeaker array provided by Capital Sound at the O2 Arena.
Introduced to the event by production manager Neil McDonald in 2017, Capital’s crew won plaudits both from Legend’s own production manager, Chris Stinebrink, and FOH engineer, Paul Klimson (Theory One Productions).
“The MLA system caught my attention from the instant [system tech] Ben Turnbull started the tuning,” he explains. “Both he and [FOH tech] Dave Preston made me feel right at home, and even before Ben dug into the tuning, I noticed that the MLA rig was forward sounding. It didn’t sound like we were in the O2 but at an outdoor festival and I could only surmise that all the energy was coming out of the front of the array with very little spill off the back.
“When Ben was done with the tuning, there was nothing left for me to comment on. I actually peeled off a bunch of processing and EQing I had done on my file from past shows. It felt like a clean slate. The low-end down front was not oppressive but still translated well in the back and upper bowl. There was great transition from mains to side hangs and up to the top seats.”
Consequently, he said, mixing that night had been “a dream”. Of MLA he says: “It was a very forgiving box that I could lean into without any surprises. Our monitor engineer Jon Ostrin said it was a great show from the stage as well. He mentioned the energy coming back was perfect to connect
Germany - At the eighth Electro Magnetic open air festival , almost 60 DJs and live-acts performed on different floors in the UNESCO World Heritage Völklinger Ironworks, a large industrial compound, developed at the end of the 19th century. In 2019 and for the first time the Electro Magnetic Festival celebrated two nights at Völklinger Ironworks.
RCF audio-systems were used on all floors. German event company Triacs was responsible for the technical implementation of the main floor and implemented a RCF HDL 50-A system.
Triacs used several RCF modules on the main floor. Two 10 HDL 50-A line array modules (hanging) together with 16 SUB 9007 (Sub Arc Cardioid) were in place as the main PA. Additionally eight HDL 30-A were used as near-fill. Four TT 1-A covered the VIP zone. TT 052-A modules in combination with In-Ear acted as the monitoring for the control rooms (light, laser, video).
Further companies, involved in the festival included Laserfabrik (lasers), FOG (SFX), Provisuell (video) and Gebrüder Rende Gerüstbau (rigging), Lux and Fabula, Senad Deumic & Jan Eiserloh (planning) and Gerdon Design (lighting design).
USA - Chris Hoff, FOH engineer for rock band Styx, relies on JBL 7 Series Master Reference Monitors to help him dial in studio-quality sound during live performances.
Styx released The Mission, their 16th studio album and first original release in over 10 years in 2017. When the band began touring to support the new record, they enlisted the help Chris Hoff. In order to deliver consistent sound in a wide range of venues, including some with less-than-desirable mix positions, Hoff relies on JBL 7 Series Monitors to make sure his live mixes stack up to Styx’s studio recordings.
“We multi-track every show and I needed a way to compare the live mix I’m doing to the albums,” says Hoff. “The only way to really replicate what's going to be coming out of a PA is to have reference monitors in front of you. It makes it easier for me to bounce back and forth between the album and my multi-tracks to try to match up effects, balances and panning.
“The 7 Series monitors give me a great reference to what I'm actually sending to the PA. When I'm in a really bad mix position, I'm basically mixing off of these and trusting that what I’m feeding to the speakers is translating to the audience.”
Before each show, Hoff uses the previous night’s multi-track recording to tune the PA system. JBL 7 Series monitors provide him with the clear, detailed sound he needs to accurately identify and react to the subtle acoustical challenges of each venue - and according to the fans, Styx has never sounded better.
“One of the blessings, and pos