UK - Since its inception in 2015, Depot has become a leading alternative events space in Cardiff, originating highly successful experiences and events that have frequently been replicated across the UK.
For the last two years, Depot’s creative team has staged its own music and street food festival - in 2017, at the SWALEC cricket stadium, and at Cardiff Castle in 2018. Cardiff-based events services supplier 11th Hour played a prominent role in this year’s renewal having been invited by Depot to supply a number of key services.
Depot In The Castle featured an extravaganza of music and family entertainment, complemented by several artisan food outlets, that was in stark contrast to many of the summer’s more directly commercial festivals. Stiltwalkers and jugglers set the tone, in a relaxed, family-focused environment where an inspired music line-up, including afternoon DJ sets, was headlined by Sister Sledge and Scottish indie favourites The Fratellis.
11th Hour was responsible for project managing the entire production side of the day, supplying power and distribution for the site as well as staging, safety barriers, lighting, audio (in partnership with Protech) marquees (in partnership with Monnow Marquees) and health and safety (in partnership with JR Event Services).
A 12-strong 11th Hour crew took care of what was a trouble-free installation, obstructed only by the small entrances inside the castle. Heritage sites invariably possess their own unique challenges and in this instance all the kit had to be cross-loaded from an articulate
France - In its third successful year in France, the Download festival served as solid evidence that rock’n’roll is as alive and relevant as it was in 1980, when its direct predecessor – Monsters Of Rock – forced itself on the unsuspecting English market town of Castle Donington.
Launched in 2003 to showcase the best in rock, metal and hardcore, Download expanded in 2016 with Live Nation’s introduction of Download Paris, and Stageco France – as the provider of all five stages – has played a major role in the festival’s production since it began.
In fact, as long as Igor Dawidowicz steers the ship as production manager, Stageco appears to have a job for life. He comments: “Involving Stageco was a very easy decision. Who else could do it? We know a lot of staging companies, but I can’t imagine giving this responsibility to anyone but Stageco – they are the most professional and reliable provider, and their engineering processes are very rigorous.
“When you hire Stageco, you feel safe and can trust that everything will happen precisely how you want it, and you leave them to the job so that you can worry about other aspects of the production. It’s safe to say that even if this festival had as many as 10 stages, I would want Stageco to build them all.”
Previously hosted at the Hippodrome de Longchamp racecourse, the festival moved last year to a former French Air Force Base at Brétigny-sur-Orge, 17 miles south of the capital, where the 2018 line-up of more than 70 acts included Ozzy Osbourne, Marilyn Manson, Foo Fighte
Italy - Concerts by Italian megastar Vasco Rossi are usually an emotional experience, but the artist’s recent Non Stop Live summer stadium tour was ‘moving’ for a different reason - a large Kinesys automation system was used to dramatically change the architecture and shape of the stage through the show.
Lighting designer Giovanni Pinna, set designer Claudio Santucci of Gioforma, d3 operator Marco Piva and other key members of Vasco’s creative team including live camera director Peppe Romano were instrumental in the implementation of the Kinesys system to maximise the dynamic movement they wanted as part of the show aesthetic.
The hardware and control was supplied by PRG Belgium and operated on the road by Jimmy Johnson a UK based rigger / automation specialist.
The system comprised 16 x half tonne Kinesys ApexHOISTS complete with ApexDRIVES which were used to fly move four ‘satellite’ video screens / lighting pods immediately above the stage. These tracked upstage / downstage as well as flying up and down!
“Apex was selected for this task so we have the latest Kinesys technology with all the required safety features to fly above the performers,” confirms Jimmy. He mentioned that the 30-metres-per-minute run speed and zero speed ‘hover’ capabilities of the Apex hoists are also excellent, but above all they wanted the “confidence of knowing the system was absolutely safe that you get with a trusted brand like Kinesys”.
The four pods weighed 850Kg each and were tracked using eight Yale beam trolleys running w
UK - A group of industry representatives will cycle from Chippenham to London Olympia on Saturday 15 September to increase awareness of mental health within the entertainment and events industries. All donations will go to Backup, the technical entertainment charity which helps industry members and their families get back on their feet during times of hardship.
Starting at 7am, the cyclists will traverse 100 miles across the North Wessex Downs towards London in time for the PLASA Show. So far, eight cyclists have signed up to the challenge, including Peter Heath and Shane McGreevy of PLASA, John McEvoy and Bryan Raven of Whitelight, and Ben Tredwell of Autograph.
This bike ride is part on an on-going collaboration between PLASA and PSA to support the mental health of all those working within lighting, AV, live sound, rigging and staging. This collaboration continues during PLASA Show 2018 where a panel will discuss ways to recognise and improve mental well-being.
According to Mind, one in four people in the UK will experience mental health issues, and the live entertainment industry is no exception, where high pressured environments, anti-social hours and long periods of time away from home are often part of the job.
Last year, a team of industry representatives raised over £3,500 by cycling between Bath and PLASA Show 2017 at London Olympia. This year, they hope to raise even more.
Peter Heath, managing director of PLASA, comments: “We are looking forward to this challenging bike ride, and our hopes are high to raise a significant
Malta - Luxury cruise line Seabourn introduced its newest vessel, the Seabourn Ovation, with a naming ceremony in the harbour of Valletta in Malta in May. The ship is the fifth ultra-luxury vessel to join the Seabourn fleet over the past decade and the second of two ships designed by Adam D. Tihany.
The event was managed by Belinda King Creative Productions and saw the ship's Godmother, Elaine Paige perform to an exclusive audience on the cruise ship’s pool deck and a debut of the Seabourn anthem entitled We Sail to See the Lives of Others by Tim Rice was performed. The evening was capped with a fireworks’ display that lit up Valletta Harbour.
Belinda King Creative Productions brought Push the Button on board to handle the technical aspects of the project and they, in turn, asked Unusual to deal with the rigging elements.
Jim Dugan, production manager at Unusual, comments: "Ian Tregaskis, production manager for Push the Button, approached us to provide a truss structure for the main screen which was to be used on board the ship as well, as to assist with the crane operations. While a local crane company was employed in Valletta, the Unusual team was tasked with making sure that everything was lifted onto the ship and removed in a timely manner."
Jim and his colleague Tom Berry flew to Malta to work on the event. "It was an extremely tight schedule to get everything on board. We had a day of quay side pre production before The Ovation arrived at 7am on event day, we had only eight hours to install, then the naming ceremony took plac
USA - The ANSI Board of Standards Review has approved a revised version of ANSI E1.46, Standard for the Prevention of Falls from Theatrical Stages and Raised Performance Platforms. The standard has been revised to address changes to the OSHA regulations for fall protection, while keeping the document's useful guidance for preventing falls from stages into the orchestra pit or the house.
ANSi E1.46 – 2018 can be downloaded at no cost from the ESTA TSP website at tsp.esta.org/freestandards. The no-cost download is made possible by the sponsorship of ProSight Specialty Insurance. Alternatively, the standard may be purchased for $40 from ANSI and IHS at webstore.ansi.org/ and global.ihs.com/ respectively.
Portugal - Airstar, the French lighting balloon technology specialist, delivered a remarkable performance for the opening ceremony of the Eurovision Song Contest at the Museum of Art, Architecture and Technology (MAAT) of Lisbon, on the banks of the Tagus.
Before battling it out in Lisbon’s Altice Arena, one of the country’s largest concert halls, delegations from 43 countries gathered at the MAAT to walk on the ESC’s ‘Blue Carpet’, under the light of Airstar’s lighting balloons.
Airstar specified and installed 30 Crystal and Solarc lighting balloons.
Raphael Vaz, head of Airstar’s Portuguese subsidiary, explains: "We had lengthy discussions with the client, and we were able to come back with a solution that was a perfect fit for such a high-profile event, but also perfectly adapted to the constraints of the venue. We wanted to bring out the magnificent façade of the MAAT as much as possible while respect the imparted time and the limited space that was available, so we quickly opted for the Crystal range, since it brings a powerful and efficient light, and can be deployed very quickly and easily.”
The size of the balloons and their arrangement was also particularly important. In order to obtain the required striking visual aspect, the Airstar team worked closely with the ESC’s director of photography. Measuring 160cm in diameter, each Crystal was mounted on telescopic poles around the blue carpet, thus optimizing lighting as well as ground space occupation, while the Solarc lighting balloons – which boast an impressive
UK - Star Events redesigned the entire Great Oak Stage sub-structure and super-structure to accommodate Roger Waters’ Us + Them production, which opened the BST Hyde Park series last Friday.
With gags including smoking Battersea Power Station chimneys rising above the stage, graffiti strewn flying pigs and the surround sound effects synonymous with Roger Waters, Us + Them managed to set a new precedent, even for a Hyde Park performance.
The Pink Floyd-heavy two-and-a-half-hour show contemporised the politics from the band’s mid-70s/early-80s canon through a series of stunning visual sequences fitted to the songs.
The back of the traditional performance box was pushed up and film, cartoons and stills on the resulting 1,100sq m video wall focused on state-sponsored torture, refugees, human rights, Donald Trump and the singer’s support for Palestine.
Involved with the AEG Presents/Waters negotiation since last summer, Star Events had to demonstrate its capacity to stage the show, without compromise, before switching back to a more traditional format for The Cure the following night.
That changeover involved three cranes, six trucks for the kit coming out, including 10 Star structures from front of house used for Waters’ surround sound and projectors.
On stage, the Star Events’ team rebuilt the main floor deck and provided rigging support for the big screen move and lighting install, leaving everything ready for doors on Saturday.
Roger Barrett, special projects director at Star Events, comments: “T
UK - Unusual was the technical production company of choice for Artichoke when it staged the Processions march in London last month. The mass artwork took place on 10 June in Belfast, Cardiff, Edinburgh and London and saw thousands of women and girls come together and march, wearing either green white or violet – the colours of the suffragette movement - creating the appearance of a flowing river of colour through the city streets.
Jim Dugan, production manager at Unusual explained: “We’ve been working with Artichoke on its major events and art installations for some years now – Lumiere London and Durham, the Sultan’s Elephant, Great Fire 350 etc, so we were excited to get involved with an event that celebrated something so fundamentally important in our country’s history.
“Our role on this project was to facilitate all the technical elements – from the barriers, the marquees and the road closures to stage management, security, production management, sound, signage and also the toilet facilities. In addition, the truss gantry at the end of the march route was overseen by our senior rigger Leon Ingram.”
The processions in the other three capital cities were managed by other locally-based UK production managers and a small team of freelancers – but Jim explains it was vital they were all working in sync. “The event was filmed live by the BBC so we had to ensure we were all communicating clearly and effectively with each other as it was extremely important that imagery and timings were tied up together. While the job itself wasn
Germany - Penn Elcom GmbH in Germany has moved to a new 8,000sq.m premises in Elten, north Westfalen just 10 kilometres from the previous warehouse – and over double the size.
From this hub, the company distributes over 1,700 product lines and hardware including 19-inch racking, flightcase components and loudspeaker elements directly to B2B and B2C customers all over Europe.
The new facility will assist the busy operation in continuing – and streamlining - the efficient and fast delivery of products worldwide which are manufactured by Penn in the UK.
It was imperative to stay in the same regional location explains Dennis Marco Meertens, co-MD of Penn Elcom GmbH with Thomas Mostar. “Elten is perfectly positioned for expedient onward transportation and delivery to our local and regional sales teams – a very successful model devised to best understand specific cultural needs, demands and variations - which represent a variety of different market sectors,” he commented. This made finding suitable premises that bit more challenging, however this excellent opportunity then presented itself.
The new building, close to the Dutch border, was previously used for distribution, so already had substantial infrastructure in place that was of direct benefit to Penn.
The move to the new warehouse in Germany was completed in four phases over the course of eight working days and involved “a lot of improvisation and lateral thinking by all involved” says Dennis, as the full sales operation had to continue at full-pace throughout the period.
Europe - The PLASA Awards for Innovation are now open for entries. Product manufacturers and developers are invited to enter the annual awards by 17 August (Friday). Successfully nominated products will feature on the Innovation Gallery throughout the PLASA Show (16-18 September, London Olympia), with winners announced at a special ceremony on 17 September (Monday).
Entries will be judged by an independent panel of industry experts, with up to eight awards, including the possibility of Gold Award, set to be given to products and solutions that demonstrate a new style of thinking, improve technical practice and safety, introduce new technology, materials or techniques, or offer new commercial advantages. The PLASA Award for Sustainability may be presented to a solution that achieves significant power reduction, has a positive impact on the environment or makes an effective use of renewable energy.
The PLASA Awards are crowned by the prestigious Gottelier Award which celebrates the lifetime achievement of a pioneering professional working within live entertainment technology. PLASA members and pre-registered PLASA Show visitors are eligible to vote for this accolade which, in 2017, was presented to Wayne Howell, the founder of Artistic Licence.
For more information on how to enter a product or nominate a product developer, please visit: www.plasashow.com/awards
UK - Christie Lites UK has made a major investment in Kinesys automation equipment. The stage lighting company’s British operation has purchased 24 half-tonne Liftket motors with Kinesys Elevation 1+ vari-speed controllers, complete with LibraCELL load monitoring shackle pins and the brand’s powerful and flexible Vector control software package.
Christie Lites UK account handler Andy Strachan comments: “Kinesys is constantly appearing on riders and technical specifications - a strong sign of their success and that is across all sectors of our work - corporate and industrial, concert touring, television and theatre”.
Christie Lites CEO and founder Huntly Christie made the decision to go with Kinesys, together with Andy Strachan, Roy Hunt and Mathew Ilott who are all part of the Christie Lites UK’s account management team.
The Kinesys investment is an initial investment by the company with more expected in the future. “Kinesys is known for its quality, flexibility and robust engineering,” adds Strachan. “The Elevation 1+ and Vector products are well established and proven and have helped provide inventive and creative solutions to a multitude of productions and events.”
The Christie Lites UK system went straight out on a Queens of the Stone Age European tour where it was utilised to move 10 pods around the stage creating a series of different abstract looks at any given time. CL also used Kinesys on the 2018 Mercury Music Prize event at Hammersmith Apollo, on the recent James Arthur tour and many other cool and creative shows.
UK - Folkstone’s Magistrates Court sentenced Maidstone Studios Limited to pay a £30,000 fine and £6,487.76 worth of damages after a worker fell to his death.
Justin Newitt fell five metres through an opening on the roof at the TV studio on 23 September 2015 after using an unsafe mobile access tower to climb to the roof.
The Health & Safety Executive (HSE) identified a lack of planning with regards to the condition the tower, which had ladder sections the wrong way round, damaged bracing and inadequate guardrails. No formal planning had been recorded and there had been no supervision on how the work was being carried out.
HSE also highlighted that Mr Newitt had not been trained to erect the tower safely.
HSE inspector Stephen Green comments: “Had the work been properly planned with suitable access equipment, correctly placed and erected, by those with adequate training, the work could have been done safely and this tragedy could have been averted. Falls from height remain one of the most common causes of work related fatalities in this country and the risks associated with working at height are well known.”
PASMA, the Prefabricated Access Suppliers’ and Manufacturers’ Association, has said the case had been “a particularly distressing incident, as the Association goes to great lengths to promote the safe use of mobile access towers”.
PASMA chair, Gillian Rutter, comments: “This
USA - Celebrating its third year of exhibiting at InfoComm, Current RMS demonstrated its rental management software to all that came by stand C1510 over the three days.
Since last year’s show, Current RMS has released a number of new features, showing that it’s expanding as per the changing needs of the industry the cloud-based software was built for.
Do a Deal, the most recent feature update, was well received by booth visitors, providing users with the ability to set a round figure on quotes and orders they create for their clients. For example, if a job comes out at £6,453, it can be rounded up or down to create a neater price and much friendlier quotations. Deal prices are flexible, and can be set on product groups, or the entire job, distributing the change in revenue accordingly and allowing users to keep track of the profitability for each job.
Alongside this update, Current has introduced other features for the AV, lighting & staging industry, including Global Check-in. This additional feature makes it easy to get all kit returning from multiple jobs, checked in and back on the shelves as quickly as possible, simply by scanning or manually entering your way through the assets.
Current thrives off feedback from customers, with all updates to the system built with feedback from its open Customer Wishlist in mind. Users simply pitch their own ideas or add votes onto others with what they’d like to see in the system.
Europe/Asia - Milos held its annual product academies at its bases in Roudnice nad Labem, the Czech Republic (13-14 April), and in Guangzhou, China (10-11 May).
The two-day product academy has been designed to provide attendees with the knowledge and skills for working safer while carrying out rigging duties and constructing support structures.
The Czech Republic event brought together local attendees, but also visitors from Slovakia, Germany, England, Scotland and Australia. The product academy in China drew attendees from China, Thailand, Hong Kong, Singapore, India, as well as from Australia, New Zealand and Kenya.
Eric Porter, certified rigging consultant and internationally renowned rigging professional, gave rigging presentations and provided rigging consultations. Norbert Tripp, Area Four Industries technical director and structural engineer, held presentations that covered the ins and outs of static calculation theory. Both took questions from participants, going into deeper group and one-on-one discussions to provide answers and give practical advice on rigging procedures and working safely with various structures.
Michal Zykan, Milos sales coordinator, covered truss design, while brand manager Marek Zubor took workshop participants on tours of each factory. Key personnel from both factories provided attendees with a complete overview of products and carried out dedicated product demonstrations. On each evening, attendees were treated to a fun and exciting night of entertainment.
At the conclusion of each academy, attendees rec
Poland - Protec European Events partnered with their client Xerox once again to deliver the audio, lighting, video and rigging at the Xerox Forum 2018 held in Warsaw.
This event, held in the Doubletree Hilton from 22-24 May, included three days of presentations and 23 seminar sessions with the highlight being the Xerox International Operations Premiere of the new Xerox IridesseTM Production Press.
Xerox hosted 400 of their top graphic communications customers, resellers and business partners from around the world.
The project ran in a few separate spaces or scenes – a daytime conference, a pre-reveal with Kabuki curtain, the reveal element and finally, the conference and demonstrations on the new machine.
Sean Godefroy, HOD Protec video, chose three Barco 20k projectors, one for each side screen and one for a kabuki drop drape projection. He chose the Christie Spyder X20 due to its flexibility and reliability to cater for any instance.
The audio team chose the unobtrusive Nexo Geo M6 line array to cover the 6m high, long, wide room. The rig was designed by Simon King, PM at Protec, checked by Ben Waters HOD of Audio and operated on site by sound engineer Gareth Taylor. Everything was operated from a Yamaha QL5.
The main arrays were supported by four Nexo LS18 subs, all ground stacked which provided extended low frequency response. On stage for monitoring Waters chose to use d&b speakers, powered by d&b D series amplifiers.
Project manager Wayne Jackson explained why Protec Europe chose the Sennheiser FBG3 wireles
Switzerland - Verity Studios AG, an indoor drone technology specialist, has announced that it has raised $18m in a Series A funding round. Fontinalis Partners, a venture capital firm focused on next-generation mobility technologies, led the round. Other investors include Airbus Ventures, Sony Innovation Fund, and Kitty Hawk. Verity plans to use this funding to expand its live events business, with a heavy focus on US growth, as well as to expand into other commercial verticals.
“Verity has assembled an exceptional team, with credibility, valuable IP, and extensive technical know-how, all while building a fast-growing business in the live events market,” says Chris Cheever, co-founder and partner at Fontinalis. “Our firm was founded to invest in and help scale the world’s best mobility technologies, and what Verity has developed has broad applicability beyond entertainment, in the drone industry and in many commercial contexts.” As part of the financing, Chris Cheever will be joining Verity’s board of directors to support its expansion.
Founded in 2014, Verity was the first company to bring autonomous indoor drones to live events. Founder Raffaello D’Andrea, a leading robotics and AI expert, was a co-founder of Kiva Systems, which was acquired by Amazon in 2012 and is now operating as Amazon Robotics. “We worked hard to identify the right investors who share our vision for Verity. We are thrilled to work with our new investment team to accelerate our growth and expand operations,” says D’Andrea. “We will continue to deliver cutting-ed
UK - The winners of the Association of British Theatre Technicians (ABTT) Theatre Awards 2018 have been announced.
The awards ceremony took place on 6 June (Wednesday) at Alexandra Palace, London.
The five awards for sound, lighting, engineering, widget and stand were complemented by a special award to mark the retirement of Roger Fox, the theatre show's director, acknowledging his 40 years work on building and developing the event since 1978.
The winners, who were picked by an experienced jury of working practitioners and industry peers, are listed below, along with the jury's comments:
ABTT Sound Product of the Year
EM Acoustics for EMS-41
"This speaker features a compact design with a 4” driver and coaxial compression driver, producing similar output to the larger EMS-51, but at half the size, and below half the weight.
"This compact unit is ideal for placing discretely in positions where visual impact needs to be minimal, and the multiple connection options to the rear of the unit means it will integrate efficiently with existing infrastructure."
ABTT Lighting Product of the Year
Martin for Mac Encore Wash
"A suitable - and long-overdue - alternative to a discontinued tungsten moving head favourite, has been delivered with the Martin Mac Encore Wash.
"Both cool and warm output versions of the unit come complete with CMY colour mixing and fixed colour wheels, beam shaping and effects. These features combine with
UK - Flightcase Warehouse has acquired Production Park-based heavy-duty case company Box Clever Cases, effective 4 June.
The deal reflects an “ambitious growth strategy”, which has seen the Tamworth flight case manufacturer invest in “product, people and process”. Flightcase Warehouse is also launching an enhanced protective case service for Production Park businesses, including an on-demand delivery service, and is transferring all manufacturing to Tamworth.
Sam Austin, managing director of Flightcase Warehouse, comments: “The Flightcase Warehouse acquisition of Box Clever Cases complements our overall offering whilst strengthening our hand in the production and live events marketplaces through maximising the unique and exciting opportunities Production Park affords us. We’re an ambitious company continually leading the way in both exclusive services and product development, and we see our new relationship with a Production Park resident as representing a great growth trajectory.”
Box Clever Cases will continue to trade under its existing name and team. It has refreshed its logo to reflect the new alliance.
Graham Kearsley, managing director of Box Clever Cases, adds: “Through this purchase, businesses on Production Park and the wider industry alike will continue to enjoy the personalised service that they currently receive from Box Clever Cases, but with the added bespoke, manufacturing and speed benefits of Flightcase Warehouse. We’re passionate about delivering a professional, friendly and down-to-earth service and our cu
Europe - The MTN Shop, an e-commerce platform offering entertainment, manufacturing and recreational products from industry-leading brands, has updated its websites (shopmtn.eu / shopmtn.com).
Visitors will now benefit from seamless navigation across multiple industries, with over 30 brands available from one place. The shop offers more than 10,000 products across three categories - entertainment, industrial and rope access. One major change to the MTN offering is the addition of film industry rigging gear to service the full range of entertainment rigging professionals.
Apart from enhanced aesthetics and a more advanced navigation, the websites benefit from optimised filtering and search, a live chat function, and secure online payment options. ShopMTN.eu is fully compliant with EU GDPR data protection regulations.
UK - A.C. Entertainment Technologies (AC-ET) will demonstrate its extensive portfolio of leading theatrical technologies - including new lighting, rigging, audio and video products from Chroma-Q, Spotlight, Follow-Me, Sixty82, BroadWeigh, Tourmate, Sennheiser, Shure and Green Hippo - at the ABTT Theatre Show 2018 this week. Highlights include:
Lighting: Chroma-Q's premium performance Color Force II LED cyclorama & effects light, and Inspire XT RGBW LED house light - both multi award-winners - and new Studio Force II high output variable white fixture; ProLights' Eclipse LED Fresnel in a choice of white colour temperatures, plus various effects lighting models; a preview of Spotlight's Hyperion 6-colour LED Profile and Fresnel, alongside many other theatrical LED fixtures; Follow-Me's remote follow spot control system for harnessing multiple moving lights from any brand in any orientation, to replace old-school follow spots; LSC's Mantra Lite console; Luminex's range of high performance lighting networking solutions; and LumenRadio's wireless DMX and RDM lighting control products.
Rigging: The new original, Sixty82 brings a fresh innovative approach to trussing and staging systems through years of experience from the industry innovators who are behind the new brand; BroadWeigh's new BW-BSd wireless USB dongle for laptops and tablets, enabling users to connect to BroadWeigh shackles at a line of sight range of up to 500m; Columbus McKinnon Entertainment's Prostar electric chain hoists designed for smaller venues; and Tourmate's new Multilock Hoist, a n
UK - The PLASA 2018 Members’ Day and AGM took place on Thursday 31 May at the Royal College of Physicians in Regent’s Park, London to reflect upon a year of specialist projects, industry collaboration and growth.
Members and guests enjoyed a productive day with an insightful AGM, followed by a networking afternoon in the venue’s unique ‘physic’ garden. The lively guest speaker, Caroline Russell from The Ideas Centre Group, encouraged audience participation with her creative approach to problem-solving, then attendees were invited to stay for drinks into the evening.
PLASA Treasurer Mark Surtees presented the 2017 accounts and announced that PLASA is in a place of financial stability, highlighting an increase in profits due to commercial growth within Events and Media. Newly elected Chair, Adam Blaxill, added later that all profits funnel back into the Association, enabling PLASA to generate and implement more initiatives to directly benefit its members and the wider industry.
Managing Director Peter Heath described how the last 12 months has been ever-changing and that PLASA has been proactive in connecting and collaborating with its members. Blaxill bolstered this by encouraging members to get involved with the Association’s activities and work within specialist groups if they feel they have something to offer. Both Blaxill and Heath also noted that although Brexit is looming PLASA has continued to reach out to European members to help unify the industry and raise working standards.
There were several presentations f
UK - J&C Joel has announced the appointment of Alan Jackson as UK sales manager.
Jackson has more than 35 years’ experience in the industry including working for Hawthorn for 14 years, most recently as their installations director. He will work closely with the UK sales team to develop inclusive relationships with customers, drive a focussed approach to the UK market and raise awareness about the broad range of products J&C Joel provide.
Jackson comments: “As a Yorkshireman, it’s great to go back to my roots and work with a fantastic Yorkshire based company. I’ve had a long connection with J&C Joel and I’m really looking forward to developing the UK sales team, meeting customers and raising the profile of the team and the company’s products and services.”
J&C Joel CEO James Wheelwright adds: “Alan is a great addition to our senior management team. He brings many years of experience, has extensive knowledge of our products and services and is a well-known industry face. He was the ideal choice to head up our sales operation in the domestic market.”
Portugal - Ampco Flashlight played a major role as supplier of all lighting, rigging, video and motion systems for the 2018 Eurovision Song Contest.
Preparations started as early as October 2017. The dedicated team of commercial, technical and logistics specialists, working closely together with local Portuguese partner Pixel Light, laid a solid base for a flawless production in the Altice Arena. Build-up started early April and ended with a 60-hour speed load out.
Over 2500 fixtures, almost four kilometres of truss and a huge amount of, cabling, dimmers, distro’s and a state of the art data network was used in this massive TV production attracting over 350m viewers worldwide.
Marc van der Wel, project director, commented: “It was very exciting being part of the team, and seeing how our specialists put so much effort, experience and knowledge into this project. I am extremely proud of the way we handled this, and I am grateful for the opportunity and the great cooperation with RTP, head of production Ola Melzig, Tobias Aberg and their team.”