UK - Hoist UK has been UKAS accredited against the provisions of OSHAS 18001: Occupational Health and Safety Management. The OSHAS 18001 accreditation adds to their ISO9001: Quality Management and ISO14001: Environmental Management accreditation obtained previously.

Hoist UK director, Tony Dickson comments, "Achieving the ISO9001, ISO14001 and OHSAS18001 is a major milestone in our overall business strategy and reflects the responsibility that Hoist UK's management team and employees have always taken to ensure that we look after our customers, employees and our business at all times in providing safe, value for money products with an emphasis on health and safety. Tony Dickson adds "Achieving this accreditation perfectly captures Hoist UK's core values of safety, excellence, respect and commitment and is embedded within every aspect of our business."

Louise Dic

Italy. - Unipol Arena in Casalecchio di Reno near Bologna is one of the most important entertainment venues in northern Italy. Opened in 1993 and seating 11,000, the indoor arena hosts a variety of events from concerts and productions to all types of sporting competitions.

Eilon Engineering's Italian distributor Molpass Stage Engineering & Multimedia Systems, based in Bologna, has installed an Eilon Ron StageMaster (RSM) load monitoring system in the arena to monitor overhead loads and reduce the risk of rigging accidents due to overloads caused by unequal load distribution. Molpass, which has been an Eilon distributor since 2008, has designed and distributed high-tech multimedia systems, stagecraft equipment and safety solutions for all types of installations and events since 1995.

Molpass CEO and engineer Giorgio Molinari has taken upon himself the task of improving safety w

UK - Play Deep Studios - a brand new boutique recording studio in London's Kings Cross - opened its doors on April 17. The studio is the culmination of a two and half year project by owner and engineer, Canadian-British DJ Zachary Spider Brown-Smith (aka Spydabrown). Designed and built by Zach and his tech, he chose Van Damme cabling throughout, using a variety of types including Black Tourgrade, Blue Series, Green Digi Series and VD Video Coax. All supplied by VDC Trading along with assemblies and connectors. Uniquely, the studio features an Otari 54 Series 36 mixing desk, the only one of its kind in the UK.

Spydabrown commented on the cable choice: "I was recommended Van Damme cable, with everyone saying it is the best, and I must say I have not been disappointed. The team at VDC Trading did a great job of keeping me supplied."

Designed to be a cosy and chic record

UK -The Technical Theatre Awards' nominations close on Wednesday 13 May - so now's the time to ensure someone's outstanding achievements working behind the scenes are celebrated.

Anyone working in theatre industry can nominate their colleagues, crew members or favourite hire company. This is your opportunity to highlight why your chosen nominee stands out from the rest and deserves some recognition. It only takes a few minutes to nominate at www.technicaltheatreawards.com

Nominations will officially close during PLASA Focus in Leeds. Following this, organiser Ian Taylor will be inviting a panel of independent industry figures to shortlist the nominations. This is a new initiative for 2015, as suggested by TTA supporters as a way to improve the awards process.

Voting for the UK awards will open during the ABTT Trade Show on Wednesday 24 June 2015 at Alexandra Palace in London

Spain / UAE - After Prolight+Sound 2015 in Frankfurt, Guil confirmed their new distributor in the United Arab Emirates as Echo Beats Electronics - a company with a long history in distribution and installation of pro audio and lighting products.

Guil products will now form part of their high end portfolio, with emphasis on their lifting towers for line arrays and modular platforms for stages.

"Guil is delighted to start working with such a prestigious company and we are sure our products will be well received in their extremely conscientious market where high performance, safety and quality are the key to satisfying their customer's needs," says Eduardo Hinarejos, sales director of Guil.

Echo Beats Electronics will present Guil products at PALME Middle East Dubai from 11-13 May, at booth: ZC10.

(Jim Evans)

Europe - XLNT Advanced Technologies' new CyberHoist II made its touring debut with US nu-metal mega-stars Linkin Park when the band returned to head-banging basics on their sold out European tour, The Hunting Party.

Show designer Michael Fullman worked with event technology supplier, Black Box Music to transfer the show from the USA to Europe. As the show transitioned from the US specified automation system to XLNT's CyberHoist II for Europe, Fullman says he was keen to reinvigorate elements of the original design.

Black Box Music's Moritz Stockschläder worked closely with the production and says, "It was great to be the first company to supply a full CyberHoist II system in Europe and on such a dynamic and exciting tour. For many reasons CyberHoist II, with its silent, smooth, unrivalled accuracy, proved to be the ideal solution."

Fullman concurs, "We rehear

UK - Debuts are to the fore at this year's PLASA Focus: Leeds, with more and more exhibitors choosing it as the UK launch pad for new product releases, including Cadac's new CDC six and DiGiCo's S21 mixing consoles, Meyer Sound's Leopard loudspeaker system and Zero88's FLX lighting console.

At the entrance to New Dock Hall, Martin Professional is displaying its new VDO Sceptron indoor/outdoor LED strips, which come with a choice of diffusers, the 6mm Fenix panel video and Rush 650 and 850 smoke products. Also on show are the Quantum Wash and Quantum Profile, launched last year, as well as the Aura XB, which has 50 per cent more output than the standard Aura, plus extended colour mode.

"Out of all the shows we exhibit at, this is where you can spend proper time talking to people, so we've brought representative selection of our new and current ranges," says the compan

South Africa - For the first year, Blond Productions supplied the full technical for the Main Stage and second year at Kyknet Stage at ABSA Klein Karoo Nasionale Kunstefees (Little Karoo National Arts Festival - KKNK), with extra equipment and crew supplied by MGG Productions. The Prolyte grid, with the inclusion of 12 new Prolyft Aetos 500kg motors, was lit with Robe fixtures.

The festival, some 1,120 kilometres from Johannesburg and 400 kilometres from Cape Town, is now embraced by all the towns people as accommodation is booked up with people flocking in to see theatre on a big scale - some are hosted in the 'veld' - and to enjoy the big names on stage and wonderful Little Karoo hospitality. This year's festival was hosted from 3 -11 April.

Besides the main stage, which included a line up of the top Afrikaans names in music, the entire town of Oudtshoorn was transformed for

UK - The green generators of Film & TV Services are a familiar sight on many events and are responsible for powering the location shoots and OBs of countless TV shows and sports matches across the country and around the world. It was started by Eddie and Julie Fegan back in September 1977, their first job being the fire services annual conference in Bridlington, which they lit for BBC News. The work for the BBC grew and they took on two part time staff and a transit van loaded with a couple of redheads and blondes, which ran around doing reactive news and conference work all over the country.

Around 1995, during their early years of the European Golf Tour, Julie and Eddie had been in talks with Barry Johnson from Carlton TV about building their first broadcast twinset. In conjunction with specialist coachbuilders A Smith of Great Bentley and sales manager John Evans, they built

UK - Reachmaster is a robust, easy to use mobile scaffold tower, that is suitable for a whole range of jobs, from working on low ceilings or decorating internal walls, to maintaining the outside of tall buildings.

Available now, Reachmaster offers "more working heights than virtually any other aluminium scaffold tower in its class", from 2.5m to 8.5m.

Setting up the Reachmaster is made easy, thanks to its folding base frame, which can be wheeled into position even when it's closed. Opening out the base frame and locking the folding gate is quick and easy. Braces snap into place and are colour coded for identification.

Unlike many scaffold towers, Reachmaster includes a folding base frame (measuring 1900mm x 960mm x 360mm when closed), making it compact enough to store and transport easily.

(Jim Evans)

UK - Illuminate Design has announced that from 15 May they have become dealers for the GaffGun range of products.

The GaffGun, launched in October 2014 has seen massive sales throughout the USA. Now with GaffTech the company behind it looking to branch out into overseas markets, Illuminate Design has been chosen to help this development.

The GaffGun (patent pending) is billed as "a great advancement in floor tape since gaffer tape was invented". Saving over 90% of the time to lay tape over cables or rope, The GaffGun simplifies your job while saving time, money, and your back. Cables don't even have to be straight-the GaffGun uses a funnelling system to straighten and centre your cables and then lay tape over them.

GaffTech developed the patent-pending CoreLok tape to work in unison with the GaffGun, ensuring a consistent result with every tape run. GaffGun CoreLok

Spain - Jose del Arco has been appointed by Fenix Stage, reinforcing the company's Export Department, as export area manager. Throughout Jose's professional career he has always been involved with international business. He says: "I have always tried to contribute with effort and passion everywhere I have been working, as purchasing analyst, buyer or trade advisor in many industries. Now I have the chance to work on the other side, on the sales department, and Fenix Stage offers me the opportunity and the confidence to begin this new challenge . . . The complete trust in our products is a key point for me."

Fenix Stage is a relatively young company (as its name suggests, it was reborn from its ashes in 2005), with a team with more than 20 years of experience mixed with young professionals. "The result of this is a great combination of knowledge and dynamism, with

UK - 'Disruption agency' TBWA developed a floating house brand activation for accommodation marketplace Airbnb, to celebrate new rules on short-term lets in London, and event producer Andy Ashton called on Star Events for the delivery.

With no available barge capable of providing the required 'foundations' for a two-bedroom house, replete with kitchen, living room, bathroom and garden, Star Events built a bespoke floating structure, which was licensed by the Port of London Authority.

Star came to the event via a wave of other waterborne showcases, Jaguar and Cortana among them, and worked with regular collaborators, including Setsquare Staging and Livett's Launches, to bring it to fruition.

Taken from order to completion in just four weeks, the project was launched on the River Thames and sailed straight into a celebration of media coverage on Monday 18 May.

Star Events' p

UK - Award-winning temporary event power provider Power Logistics has secured a three-year contract to deliver the New Forest & Hampshire County Show with a site-wide power solution for their event.

The contract includes the provision of all generators, electrical equipment, distribution boards and cabling for the show and a complete project management solution. In addition they will also be supplying lighting for around the site and within temporary structures, from tower lights to fluorescents. This is the first time that the New Forest & Hampshire County Show has used one company to provide all their requirements and Power Logistics were chosen because of their impressive track record at large scale events.

Mike Whitehouse, Power Logistics' managing director said: "Power Logistics is honoured to have been chosen to support such a long-standing and highly respected even

UK - Fresh from the recent re-branding of Milos to Area Four Industries, the UK operation continues to strengthen its position with the recruitment of Adam Beaumont as UK Brand Manager for LITEC, JTE, TOMCAT & EXE Hoists & Controllers.

Beaumont joins from ACTUS Industries with a wealth of experience in Rigging & Automation. He explains: "For over 15 years I have worked closely with LITEC and most recently at ACTUS we assisted with the development of the new range of EXE Hoists & DST systems. To be finally working within the team is a great opportunity and I am extremely excited for the future with the strength of all our brands "

Sales & Marketing Director, Glen Brown adds: "The timing with Adam is perfect with so many changes in our organisation and industry. Our new motto is 'You know What, We know How' in reality our aim is to know HOW & WHAT with new experti

Germany - ETC is getting ready for its first appearance at Berlin's Stage Set Scenery show, 9-11 June, in Berlin. The company is set to make a big splash, giving Europe its first ever look at ETC Rigging, on stand number 208 in Hall 2.2. ETC will also have a second stand at the show - number 210 in Hall 1.2 - to demo its popular lighting products, giving show visitors a lot of new gear to experience.

Introduced in the US in 2009, ETC Rigging has made a deep impression on the industry, with some of the best quality and most versatile equipment available. ETC designed its rigging family with the user in mind, with dealers able to supply turnkey hardware packages tailored to the customer's unique needs, budget and venue size. ETC Rigging includes innovative controllers and motorized hoists that have sophisticated technical features - such as slack-line detection and live status fee

Germany - This year's Stage Set Scenery will provide the stage for J&C Joel's global project team to unveil a number of new acoustics solutions this June.

J&C Joel, one of the world's leading manufacturers of flame retardant fabrics and flooring for the entertainment and event industries, will also be celebrating its rich textile heritage at the Berlin show.

The theme of J&C Joel's stand - The inspiration behind the performance - will see the company showcase its new brochure, website and rebrand as well as a number of new product innovations. In addition, the company's global project team will be demonstrating products used on some of the company's most high profile projects, including The New York University in Abu Dhabi.

J&C Joel will use the show to present a collection of new products designed to maximise the acoustic properties of any space, including: acoustic

UK - Blackout installed a kabuki drop system to reveal Paul Cummin's latest sculpture to the national press and her Majesty the Queen, as it was unveiled at the RHS Chelsea Flower Show, 18th May 2015.

Inspired by the show's 2015 creative, the sculpture stands at 8m high and is covered in thousands of hand-painted ceramic tulips. Paul Cummins is well-known for the now-iconic Tower of London poppy installation.

Located in the 12,000sq.m Great Pavilion - filled with more than 100 beautiful floral displays - the sculpture was hidden from view by a large cylindrical drape, dropped via solenoid kabuki. Paul Cummins himself pressed the 'go' button, revealing his latest work to the crowds.

Blackout was contracted by RHS head of shows, Nick Mattingley, to design and build the system. Ian Moody, Blackout's installation technician, led the project and oversaw the all-important drop its

The Netherlands - Working for show designers BIND Film, Jurlights were tasked with providing a technical concept for the captivating launch presentation of Maasvlakte II Terminal, Rotterdam on 25 April 2015. On an unprecedented size and scale, the launch ushered in a new era in port operations at APM Terminals with a little help from BlackTrax real-time motion tracking solution from CAST BlackTrax Ltd.

The opening of the world's safest, first fully automated, zero emissions container terminal was attended by The Netherlands' Monarch King Willem-Alexander and 500 senior representatives from the global shipping industry and world governments.

"The only way to accurately track the Lift-Automated Guide Vehicles (AGV) across the 400 by 200ft area was by using BlackTrax," explains Menno Broere, creative director at Jurlights.

In describing the project workflow, Broere sa

China - Star Events will design and supply a world-class rigging system to STU Sports Park in Shantou, on the south east coast of China.

Set within Shantou University, the Sports Park includes a multi-use arena with incorporated hotel and conference facilities. Star Events is contracted to design and install two rigging mothergrids, which will cover three-quarters of the arena floor and can lift and hold production equipment weighing up to 70 tons. The company will also provide the perimeter rigging system that will hold 33 large format, high-definition projectors supplied by American company Obscura Digital. All 80 of the hoists will be controlled by Star's Active Roof Technology (The ART of rigging) system.

STU Sports Park general manager, Greg Turner, said, "We wanted a venue that could host a diversified event schedule and allowed promoters to move in and out as effic

Belgium - Engineering specialist WIcreations provided a complete automation solution for the 2015 live special broadcast of popular Belgian TV show 'Tegen de Sterren Op' (Against The Stars) which parodies celebrities, other TV stars and public figures.

This included the supply of two customised WI laser controlled wagons - now available from rental stock - which proved an ingenious method to ensure the lightening quick scenery changes needed for the fast paced show were realised.

Three live shows were produced at Antwerp's Lotto Arena over one action-packed weekend by producers Studio 100 and Dedsit for the VTM channel. Wi's project manager was Geert Stockmans.

WI also provided one of their suspended WItrack systems to move a large two-part video screen at the back of the stage, together with a flown tracking system with a moving winch to aid two aerial performers.

The sho

USA - J. R. Clancy is a lead sponsor of the Jay O. Glerum Rigging Master Classes, planned for a summer 2016 launch by USITT.

The series of classes honours master rigging expert and instructor Jay O. Glerum, author of the definitive Stage Rigging Handbook and one of the industry's most knowledgeable professionals and teachers of rigging use and safety. Glerum passed away in 2014.

"Many theatre technology professionals point to Jay Glerum as their teacher and mentor in the proper way to use rigging technology, from counterweight to automated systems," said Mike Murphy, J. R. Clancy president. "Naming a series of master classes after Jay is a fitting tribute to one of the most influential people in our profession. We at J. R. Clancy are honoured to have this opportunity to remember him."

The annual training sessions will be offered in different locati

UK - This year's Association of British Theatre Technicians (ABTT) show will see J&C Joel unveil a number of exciting new fabrics and drapes.

J&C Joel, one of the world's leading manufacturers of flame retardant fabrics and flooring for the entertainment and event industries, will also use the show to celebrate its rich textile heritage.

Located on stand C41, J&C Joel will be screening an exclusive film about the company's rich UK manufacturing history. The business - thought to have the longest tradition of textile manufacturing in the entertainment industry - has come a long way since its early days, which can be traced back to 1847. At the show the company will be exhibiting a new catalogue, website and rebrand as well as a number of new product innovations.

J&C Joel will use the show to present a fabric rack of new products, including: acoustic drapes, stage velvets, she

Germany / USA - Just in time for the first infoComm participation of Sommer Cable as an exhibitor in Orlando, FL, the German specialist for professional, high-quality cables and connector technologies has introduced a variety of new products in its Cardinal DVM electronics line.

The increasing demand for larger bandwidths and higher resolutions of AV products was the main driver behind the development of these products. All new devices are fully 4K compatible. The highlight in the new product range is the HDMI Engineers kit with HDMI 2.0 and HDCP 2.2 support.

Peter Rieck, key account & distribution manager at Sommer Cable states, "We look forward to our first-time participation at infoComm as an exhibitor, and will arrive with many new products in our luggage. Together with our North American colleagues Nina Jolly and Martin Ucik, I will be available to interested custome

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