USA - The Entertainment Technician Certification Program (ETCP) has announced the addition of Motion Laboratories as a Recognised Training Provider for ETCP Renewal Credits. This is the first listing that specifically addresses the area of portable power distribution.
Dave Herrmann, Motion Labs’ training develop manager, comments: “MLI Learning prepares Motion Labs employees and customers for work with Motion Labs equipment, primarily in the entertainment industry. The people that build and use our products are the greatest assets to their respective industries. It is because of them that touring productions, conventions, local shows and festivals, permanent event spaces, corporate and church events, and more can all function properly, and above all else, safely.
“Those involved in making event production possible are doing so because they are gaining the knowledge and expertise required. We intend to help them on that journey. Gaining ETCP recognition as a training provider was a natural step towards that goal, and we are excited to be part of the programme.”
Motion Labs will offer two courses:
16 ETCP Renewal Credits: Portable Fixed Speed Low Voltage Chain Hoist Control Repair Course - Hoist control repair training is ideal for entertainment riggers, electricians, user operators and repair technicians who use Motion Labs control products and want to diagnose or repair the equipment themselves.
Nine ETCP Renewal Credits: Portable Power Distribution Repair Course - Power distribution repair training is great for entertainment e
UK - The Prolight spotlight at PLASA Focus, Leeds was the release of the 2019/20 catalogue and numerous new products showcased including a moving head, IP pixel mappable fixture and some genetically enhanced truss. There was an extra element of fun on this year’s stand in the form of a gigantic sized catalogue, which drew in the crowds.
The event saw the official release of the 2019/20 catalogue The Big One – 2nd Edition, with visitors eager to pick up their copy. The marketing and purchasing departments have worked hard over the last few months to get the catalogue ready for its big release and features over 2,200 products. As a company, Prolight is continually adding products to provide customers with everything they need for installations and events from peripherals such as cables, connectors and cases through to high quality luminaries, along with staging and truss.
Along with key products lines, there was a multitude of new products on show. Professional moving heads from eLumen8 were amongst them including the 9RE Beam, an agile moving head powered by a revolutionary MSD 260R9 (8000K) discharge lamp, producing sharp 2.5° beams and focused gobos. Also on display was the Kudos 700 Beam which projects a tight 2° concentrated beam from its powerful 110W LED source.
One other key lighting fixture that was the focus of attention was the IP65 rated Spectra QX40 pixel mappable exterior panel from LEDJ. Equipped with 40 x 10W RGBW LEDs, the QX40 is suitable for illuminating event spaces, stages or facades, while the zone control
UK - Le Mark Group has announced the appointment of Jeff Demain as northern sales manager, UK.
Demain has worked in the entertainment industry for over 35 years. His experience has encompassed sound, lighting, sales and installation, and he has managed key projects in Russia, the Middle East and the UK. His history has included leading companies including Concert Light Systems, Playlight Hire, White Light North and most recently, HSL Blackburn.
“I have known Jeff for many years and have always been in awe of his industry knowledge,” said Linda Gibbons, joint managing director. “With Jeff now on the ground locally, he is perfectly positioned and readily available to meet with many more companies interested in our products and to expand our sales in the north of the UK. It is an important move forward for the company.”
“We are all delighted to have Jeff join us,” said Stuart Gibbons, joint managing director. “Jeff is exactly the right person to help take Le Mark to the next level. His experience is invaluable and his enthusiasm to succeed is clear. The sales team are eager to work with him.”
“I am really looking forward to joining the team at Le Mark,” said Jeff. “I’ve known Linda and Stuart ever since they began the business and have been really impressed with the company’s growth and innovation.”
Demain will provide sales and support for Le Mark’s leading range of consumable items, including the self-adhesive tape MagTape, Pro Tapes, Slipway and award-winning BlackTak. He will be the lead advisor in the nor
Europe - A4i.tv has released the first video of a four part series on truss connection systems. In this first video, Area Four Industries technical director Norbert Tripp addresses the conventional spigot connection system. He provides the main points on how it works, its advantages and the stresses involved.
Three more videos on truss connection systems are soon to follow. (https://www.a4i.tv/2019/05/14/spigot-connector/)
Europe - The Milos Corner Brace HD is a new, advanced roof corner reinforcement concept that eliminates the need for guy wires in small to medium-sized roof structures. Compared to guy wires, installation is greatly simplified, the total time for roof construction is noticeably decreased, and ballast requirements are reduced, says the company.
A strong (loading capacity of more than 30 kN), yet compact, all aluminium design provides the same strength and stability as guy wires, while giving staff and performers increased access to the stage due to the elimination of rear and side cross guy wires.
UK - A new Scaff Boom Arm will be debuted by Doughty Engineering at this year's PLASA Focus. Visitors to stand N-C25 can see the new piece of kit, which joins the existing Boom Arm range and has been designed in response to customer demand.
Mark Chorley, design engineer at Doughty explained: "The new Scaff Boom Arm is very much a 'get out of jail' item that we see as being an essential part of any took-kit. It will allow the user to make their own boom arm out of materials that they have to hand, in the event that they find themselves on site and suddenly needing a boom arm of a certain length."
The Scaff Boom Arm will take 48mm aluminium barrel or scaff tube which can be cut to size depending on the requirements of the particular project. While Doughty is unable to quote a safe working load for the product, each piece of kit will come with a chart, which is also available in Doughty's Little Blue Book catalogue and on the company's website.
Mark continued: "Because we cannot predict how the user will fashion their boom arm, we have tested several different tubes of different sizes and suggested a SWL. Of course if our customers have any questions, they can get in touch any time. We encourage people to come and see this new item for themselves on our stand and decide for themselves if this is a piece of kit that will make their working lives easier."
Doughty will also showcase its new Fifty Clamp on the stand. The bigger brother of Doughty's best-selling Twenty Clamp, the Fifty Clamp has been designed to take an additional 30kg. It has TUV app
Europe - ETC has given new roles for two of its employees. Jeremy Roberts has been appointed as regional sales manager for the UK and Mark White - as regional sales manager for Ireland, & UK rigging.
Roberts will support ETC and High End Systems’ dealers, distributors and customers across the UK and Sub-Saharan Africa sales territories and provide strategic and operational client management whilst continuing to identify sales opportunities across these regions. He joined ETC 20 years ago having previously worked as the head of light and sound at Nottingham Playhouse Theatre. He had experience working in theatre for 15 years before starting with ETC in the London office.
Mark White has worked for ETC for over 18 years. In his new position, he will focus on growing the business in Ireland whilst progressing ETC’s stage machinery offering across the UK. As the rigging sector continues to grow, White will concentrate on ETC’s exciting developments in this area whilst also continuing to build customer and dealer relations.
Prior to ETC, Mark worked at the Royal Opera House where he was actively involved in the redevelopment of the building.
Darren Beckley, sales manager of ETC, comments: “As ETC continues to grow and develop as a business, offering these new positions ensures that there is a sustained effort in driving the business forward. They have both been instrumental in the growth of their regions for ETC and High End Systems and their wealth of knowledge and expertise gives me huge confidence that they will be successful in their
UK - A.C. Entertainment Technologies (AC-ET) knowledgeable staff will be on hand to demonstrate a number of leading brands and technologies from its one-stop portfolio at PLASA Focus Leeds next week (stand N-E02).
Continuing Chroma-Q’s celebration of 15 years in LED innovation, the multi award-winning Color Force II will be on show to demonstrate stunning colour blending for a multitude of cyc, wash and effects lighting applications. The award-winning Space Force LED space/soft light will be illuminating the stand. It combines a powerful output with tuneable white control in a lightweight, internally ballasted design featuring low heat convection cooling. Using a homogenised LED source capable of delivering variable colour temperature, plus/minus green shift control and the ability to produce deep saturated colours when needed, the Studio Force II is specifically designed for TV Broadcast and film applications.
Showing at PLASA Focus Leeds for the first time, the Vista 3 by Chroma-Q lighting & media control system provides simple, visually-based programming and control which is scalable from small venue up to large concert tour applications.
Making their UK tradeshow debuts, a range of new Prolights fixtures will feature on the stand including the Panorama IP Spot, a powerful IP65 rated moving LED spot; the Pixie Wash XB, a 280W single source LED wash luminaire and the RA2000, a powerful, silent LED moving profile with high CRI ideal for theatrical, touring and broadcast productions.
First unveiled at Prolight + Sound, the Luminex Lumino
South Africa - DWR Distribution is now offering the Fenix lifting tower range to the South African market.
Valencia-based Fenix Stage manufactures lifting towers, trussing, stage platforms and accessories.
“We introduced the first telescopic tower in 1988 and then in 1992, when L-Acoustics launched their line array, customers were looking for a solution to fly the new speaker system,” explains Alex Bryan, export manager at Fenix. “As a result, the Fenix line array tower was introduced and there has been no looking back.
“We are delighted to be working with DWR Distribution,” adds Alex. “They have a very strong position in the South African market, being the exclusive distributor for many well-known brands, and we are happy that they have chosen FENIX as their lifting tower supplier.
“Fenix is a respected brand, and due to popular demand in Africa, we look forward to offering the industry professional wind up stands that are light-weight, easy to use and easy to carry,” comments Robert Izzett of DWR. “We would like to thank Fenix for this opportunity.”
Europe - The new Meat Rack from Milos provides a convenient transport and storage solution for light fixtures through the use of adjustable light bars or a hanging adapter for oversize lights. Height adjustable shelves can also be installed for storage and transport of a range of other items needed for a show.
The high quality 6082 aluminium frame features all welded construction for high strength and long-term durability. Built-in fork-lift pick-up points allow for convenient stacking, and its castor wheels and height adjustable handles on each rack end ensure easy handling. Its dimensions of 2.3m x 0.8m x 1.6m (L x W x H) optimize transport space to and from your events.
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.”
Europe - The last nine months has seen major changes at the new Prolight Concepts HQ with the openning of a larger warehousing and office complex allowing for an even greater stock holding and more efficient dispatching.
Now the company has introduced a new catalogue, listing This, in turn, has allowed expansion of the product range, hence the requirement for the new catalogue.
The marketing and purchasing departments have been working hard over the last three months to get the catalogue ready. The Big One just got even bigger, with over 2200 products featured and the introduction of multiple distributed brands including LDR, Lynx Pro Audio and The Confetti Maker.
The new 2019/20 catalogue has arrived and will be officially released at PLASA Focus Leeds.
Andrew Jeffrey, managing director comments, “Our 2019/20 catalogue contains over 2,200 stock lines; this along with our new distribution facility and increased inventory of over £4.5m allows for immediate same-day dispatch of customer orders.”
All products are now also online to view as part of the company’s e-catalogue - visit the company’s website for more information.
EMEA - Production Resource Group (PRG) is integrating its global research and development efforts into a new operating group, PRG Innovation.
Joining under PRG Innovation will be PRG Projects, PRG Research and Development, and the VER product development initiatives. The new operating group will encompass operations in Belgium, China and the USA, which include facilities in Dallas, New Windsor, New York and Los Angeles.
Jere Harris, chairman and CEO of PRG, comments: “PRG Innovation brings all of our talent focused on product development into a single, global team, allowing us to anticipate market trends, move with agility and align product development with our larger strategic objectives. I believe that our investment and performance in market-driven innovation is one of the most powerful points of difference separating our brands from the competition. Now, that advantage will become even more significant.”
PRG Innovation will be led by Chris Conti in his new role as the company’s chief innovation officer. Conti has experience in concert tours, tradeshows, corporate events, TV shows and special events like the Olympics and Super Bowl Half-time shows. As product manager for PRG proprietary luminaires, he led the development of the highly successful Bad Boy Spot and Best Boy Spot fixtures, as well as PRG’s Emmy-award winning GroundControl Followspot System.
Additionally, Clay Powers will become chief operating officer of Innovation, overseeing all financial and logistical aspects of both proprietary product development and custom show s
UK - Penn Elcom has launched UltraFlite, a new 100% recyclable flightcase panel material.
Utilising this in a building project will dramatically reduce the weight of flightcases, adding to all the positive consequences this brings in a tough and highly durable solution, says the company.
The UltraFlite has been developed after two years of extensive R ‘n’ D coupled with Penn’s considerable experience in the field.
Around 80% lighter than traditional wood-ply flightcase panels - approximately 1.6kg per square metre - it will be of interest to anyone in the rental, staging, installation and venue sectors who has kit needing to be flightcased for touring or transportation as well as for installations where (light) weight is crucial.
The UltraFlite panel’s skin features a honeycomb structure that makes it tough, light, durable and resistant to liquids and weather.
It has been created to meet the needs and demands of contemporary and future flightcase builders, who can dramatically reduce case weight by an impressive 30 - 40 percent on average by utilizing UltraFlight in a case design.
Any contribution to reducing deforestation and climate change – however small it might appear – is worth instigating and switching to UltraFlite will mean less wood is needed globally across the flightcase industry.
UltraFlite maintains the ultimate utility and strength expected from premium flightcase products, it is stable, and the panels can be cut, drilled and punched just like traditional flightcase panels!
The hardened skin i
South Africa - Eilon Engineering Weighing Systems, the brand synonymous with Ron StageMaster and Ron load cells, crane scales and dynamometers, has appointed DWR Distribution as their South African distributor.
“We are happy to begin our cooperation with DWR for the distribution of our Ron StageMaster systems in South Africa,” said Noga Eilon-Bahar of Eilon Engineering. “This cooperation with DWR, who are the country’s leading supplier of all entertainment industry equipment, is an important addition to the Ron StageMaster distribution network worldwide. I am sure that together we will make live events in South Africa even safer, and I have no doubt that this collaboration will be successful.”
While Eilon Engineering was established some 40 years ago, it was in 2006 that the company decided to harness its extensive knowledge in advanced wireless communication, as well as its proven load cell technology for the development of an advanced multi-point load monitoring and overload prevention system. This was the inception of the Ron StageMaster system, which shortly after its launch gained international recognition, as well as innovation awards, at both LDI and PLASA.
With their slogan ‘Safety Above All’, the company is made up of individuals excited about their product and the significant impact it makes on the hoist market. As stage products have grown in size with tons of equipment often suspended above the audience, Ron StageMaster is continually coming up with products, such as the load monitoring system, to ensure safety first.
USA - Prolyte Group continues expansion in the North American market with the announcement of Keith Bohn as general sales manager North America.
Keith Bohn is a seasoned veteran in the entertainment industry with over 25 years in design, manufacturing, and use of structural rigging solutions ranging from simple span truss applications to complex permanently installed structures worldwide.
Keith has served as a principal voting member in the Rigging Working Group of the ESTA Technical Standards Programme since 1998 and has chaired the task groups creating and revising ANSI E1.2 (aluminium truss and towers) and ANSI E1.21 (temporary outdoor structures). Keith is also a founding contributor of the Event Safety Alliance and a co-chair of the rigging task group within the Event Safety Working Group. Keith’s experience includes instructing courses on the safe use of truss and outdoor structures worldwide and has authored multiple articles on safe rigging practices. He is also an ETCP Certified Rigger and ETCP Recognized Trainer.
“I am very excited about joining the Prolyte team,” states Keith, “The attention given to user training and safety is impressive, not to mention the breadth of the product line covering very light applications to clear truss spans over 180' in length. I am eager to introduce more of the US market to Prolyte's solutions, especially the innovative tool-free Verto line of truss.”
Australia - After eight years of Handa Opera on Sydney Harbour (HOSH), Opera Australia presented West Side Story, the first musical to be performed on the harbour-side stage.
Boasting a stage that is almost two and a half times larger than any indoor stage in Australia, the Handa Opera on Sydney Harbour series is one of the biggest outdoor theatrical events in the country, and a highlight of the Australian cultural calendar.
The stage and venue are constructed from the ground up in just 25 days by a crew of approximately 150 people for an exclusive four-week performance season. The West Side Story set, designed by award-winning designer Brian Thomson, is an urban New York City-inspired stage design that features a highway overpass that weighs approximately ten tonnes and soars 15m above the stage, three custom-built subway cars and the West Side Story letters spelled across the back of the stage.
Cranes positioned the 80-tonne foundation of the stage onto nine pylons in the water to create a seemingly floating stage which can support up to 150-tonne in weight. Throughout the performance, the stage is accessed via a floating walkway that connects land and sea.
The custom-built venue includes the expansive stage which sits above the Harbour, an orchestra pit, which is hidden in the ‘underworld’ directly beneath the stage, plus on land there’s site and crew offices, dressing rooms, and grandstand seating for approximately 3,000 people. Along with the grandstand, there are multiple bars, food outlets, a restaurant and ver
Italy - Sixty82 has recently appointed Audiosales s.r.l. as the new representative in Italy for its full trussing and staging product line.
Effective immediately, Sixty82's Italian customers "can rely upon the qualities of a dedicated and enthusiastic team, to meet their requirements," says the manufacturer.
Date Jonkman, Sixty82’s executive account manager, comments: “We are delighted to be working with Audiosales. They have a well-established position in the market, and a strong team of experienced people. So we are very pleased they joined the Sixty82 family.”
Stefano Rocchi, owner of Audiosales, adds: "Sixty82 is a team composed of professionals that have contributed in a significant way to the development of the staging and trussing market in the recent decades. Their payoff “The New Original” describes in the best way who the people behind Sixty82 are. They are furthermore providing versatility, knowledge, and innovation, like the new Sixty82 RFIDtag.”
Germany Pop rock group PUR is known throughout Germany for their string of #1 hits from the 1990s and 2000s. They’ve ridden this wave of success for decades and still maintain a strong following with a constant touring schedule throughout the country.
For their latest tour, the band wanted to get even closer to their fans, so they decided on a set design with a centre stage. The extreme amount of lighting and sound equipment required for their concert in Dortmund´s Westfalenhalle had to be hung in the centre of the elliptic building, which measures 118m long, 98m wide, 29m high. Unfortunately, the almost 60 year-old venue did not have enough loading capacity to support the equipment needed for the concert.
Production company Satis&Fy contacted the German rigging structure company Malecon, which was tasked with overcoming the limitations of the Westfalenhalle structure and delivering an acceptable solution for hanging the lights and sound. Malecon are known across the country for their ability to provide extreme support structures for the biggest and most demanding concerts in Germany, and gladly took on the challenge.
Malecon was the first customer to invest in the new steel truss line from Milos, so it was natural for them to turn to this truss to help solve this problem. The resulting solution used Milos 145REC S-RTW Steel Truss to create two 42m spans that were each rated for a total load of 9,000 kg.
In addition to providing the steel spans, it was also necessary to ask the Area Four Industries Direct office to provide a design so
USA - Lighting and video rental specialist 4Wall Entertainment has invested in new Kinesys automation equipment with the purchase of 36 x Elevation vari-speed chain hoists, 36 x LibraCELL load monitoring shackles, two K2 control consoles and numerous Kinesys Vector control systems.
This substantial purchase is for general stock and reflects the growing trend and demand for automation systems as part of shows, events, touring lighting and video systems as well as set element motion.
The decision to go with Kinesys was made by Brett Puwalski, vice president of operations, a key catalyst in this move to boost the automation resources available for 4Wall’s diverse roster of clients.
Kinesys was selected because the brand has a “great track record for reliability and service, and due to its longevity in this specialist area. Kinesys has proved time and again that it is rock solid,” states Brett.
“The current generation of visual and production designers use automation to move both lighting and video elements to WOW audiences and create amazing drama and stunning stage environments” he added, highlighting how video, in particular, has become a huge part of so many production designs in the last decade.
4Wall’s crew received training at Kinesys’ Atlanta facility at the end of last year and again in 2019, and their general feedback has been that the kit is safe, dependable, easy to install, programme and use - all aspects that are key to a smooth tour.
The first project for the new 4Wall Kinesys kit was an iHeartRadio ALTer E
UK - Stage Electrics has appointed a new technical sales consultant for rigging, trussing and staging solutions. Nick Key joins the sales team with over 30 years’ experience working hands-on as a rigger, and being NRC-qualified for nine of those years.
Keys new role will focus on promoting the Prolyte brand and rigging accessories. “Having someone to concentrate purely on rigging sales is a new role,” comments national sales manager, Paul Roughton. “Nick’s experience in the field will allow us to offer rigging solutions to customers and benefit them enormously as they will be able to tap into his knowledge.”
UK - Unusual Rigging has been brought on board to handle the rigging for All About Eve in London's West End. Currently enjoying a 14-week run at the Noel Coward Theatre, the production which has received positive reviews stars Gillian Anderson and Lily James.
Production manager Anthony Newton comments: "The original plan was for Unusual to join the project and do all the rigging. This consisted of a U shape of walls which were to be dead-hung above the stage surrounding the central performance space."
He continues: "Very late in the day, we changed this to a fully automated system that would allow for the walls to rise and fall several times during the performance. Luckily for us, Unusual's Simon Stone and his team aren't phased by such last minute changes. This was my first time working with them but their reputation is so great, I felt confident we were in safe hands . . . and they didn't prove me wrong."
Taking on board the revised brief, Unusual added the automation function with relative ease, designing a system that would run quickly, but relatively silently to accommodate the theatre environment. They also assisted with some additional rigging points (flown LX trusses and ladders on stage and an advance FOH PA truss).
Newton adds: "The great thing about Unusual is that they adapted to the new parameters very quickly. The system was installed and commissioned in an amazingly quick way which was great, given we only had four days to fit up this new show. They handed it over to the house crew to run and we’ve had no issues with t
UK - Colour Sound Experiment collaborated with lighting designer Miles Weaver as the lighting supplier for the intimate soul-y funk sounds of UK singer/ songwriter Nao, who has just completed the first UK and European leg of her Saturn tour following the release of her second album last autumn.
The tour was project-managed for Colour Sound by Alex Ryan, who comments: “It’s the first time we’ve worked with Miles as a supplier and it was an excellent experience. His design was original and interesting, and it is always exciting to be involved with an LD and artist with a great future ahead.”
Miles took a floor package on the tour, stepping up to a full rig for the London showcase at Brixton Academy.
The floor package had to offer max versatility yet pack down into a trailer, so Miles chose 12 x Robe Spiider LED wash beams for this. He wanted to achieve some specific effects like creating walls of colour but was keen to use a fixture other than an LED batten.
His specials design also had to be infinitely scalable depending on the available stage space, and the 12 Spiiders were a great solution on this front as well as working with whatever venue house or top rigs were available each night.
For Brixton, it was a complete ‘own show’ scenario, but they had to step up seamlessly to over 4 times the size of rig with no rehearsal or tech time!
The Spiider count expanded to 36 for Brixton, with 18 of the additional 24 units rigged on two overhead V-shaped trusses - one slightly higher than the other – mirrored – footp
UK - Event design and technical production specialist Maestra Group, run by Justin Hammond (London) and Tom Clements (Dubai), has doubled the size of its UK and European operation ready for a busy 2019.
The east London HQ was bursting at the seams of its Victorian industrial building in Woolwich, where the Maestra mission started in January 2016. When the opportunity to take over the warehouse next door arose, it provided a convenient solution.
Parts of the walls have been knocked through and the interiors completely re-designed so the two spaces operate as an efficient and continuous workspace.
There are now new prepping and dispatch areas for projects leaving the warehouse, greater space for truck loading as well as enlarged storage and maintenance sections for all the different equipment sections. The extra space made available downstairs has been taken up already with new kit investments.
On the first floor, the original Maestra open-plan office space has also been dramatically expanded and made into one large integrated space that traverses the two units.
“With considerably more space, we have an excellent set up to continue growing our European business,” commented Justin. “We all really loved the building, so when the chance came up to move sideways – literally – it was a fantastic lateral manoeuvre.”
Celebrating its third full year of operation, the company finished 2018 with substantial equipment investment – including sound, lighting, video and rigging.
This includes a number of white products includin