UK - Scheduled to open in Summer 2021, Andrew Lloyd Webber’s Cinderella features a new score by Lloyd Webber, lyrics by Oscar-nominated David Zippel, with a script from Killing Eve’s Emerald Fennell, recently multi-Oscar nominated for Promising Young Woman.
But before Cinderella can go to the ball, the Gillian Lynne Theatre in London’s West End needs to be transformed to host the spectacular production. And, with Cinderella’s fairy godmother currently shielding due to COVID restrictions, Unusual Rigging was called upon to work its magic instead.
Jeremy Featherstone, design engineer, Unusual Rigging explained: “Unusual was brought on board by production manager Paul Hennessy to provide all the rigging for the new show. This involved modifying the flying system that’s already there, adding an additional 60 drop pulleys onto the grid in order to fit in all the portals and big set pieces, as well as installing 2 x false prosceniums and a big back wall weighing 10 tonnes.
The back wall, a timber construction, had to be hung before the floor went in underneath. Jeremy continued: “We put in a 70ft runway beam system to construct the wall. It all had to come up in a lift (in 50+ pieces) then tracked across the stage and fitted together. In total we installed over half a kilometre of truss and ladder beam – over two thirds more than we’d normally install for a typical show in another West End Theatre. However, the Gillian Lynne is not a typical theatre and everything that’s a part of the house system is either too wide or to
USA - Registration is still open for the New World Rigging Symposium (NWRS), produced by ESTA and USITT, which takes place online 6-8 April. The cost is $99 and the symposium carries up to nine ETCP education renewal credits for re-certification.
The event brings together a wide group of industry experts for a series of panel discussions and live Q&As on video wall rigging, automation and motorisation, performer flying and rescue, and types of ropes.
In addition, a case study will look into how the installation of a tension grid is working in a major facility, a group of structural engineers will answer your questions, rigging pros from the world of motion pictures will talk about some of their toughest challenges, and mental health professionals and advocates will discuss how to be aware of and address the mental health impact of the pandemic. Visit www.esta.org/nwrs to see a complete schedule and session descriptions.
The keynote speaker will be Jeanette Farmer who specialises in theatre infrastructure design, project management and construction supervision for intimate entertainment and educational facilities as well as technologically advanced purpose-built live performance venues.
A Rigging Cornucopia Happy Hour will close each day’s sessions. During the 6 April Happy Hour, Roy Bickel will receive the ESTA Lifetime Technical Achievement Award which will be presented by Rocky Paulson and Chris Schmidt.
Event sponsors are Stage Rigging,
Saudi Arabia - Noor Riyadh is a citywide annual festival of light and art that showcases individual artists and talent and promotes creativity. The event produced by Balich Worldwide Shows (BWS) brings together artists from all over the world.
Star in Motion by renowned lighting designer Koert Vermeulen, is a powerful focal point in the middle of the city of Riyadh - a shining star, suspended from the top of the famous Kingdom Tower more than 300m in the air. Balich Worldwide Shows has worked with Unusual Rigging on other events in the past, and as such they were the natural choice when it came to rigging this spectacular installation.
Steve Porter, director at Unusual, explains: “Having worked with BWS on several projects in the past, when they approached us to hang the centrepiece for the festival, it was a pleasure to collaborate with them again. We were approached by Ollie Green, BWS technical director, to hang a lighting feature or star in the space at the top of the building. We loved the idea but never really thought permissions would be granted so we were thrilled when BWS overcame many difficult hurdles to secure this.”
Unusual’s design team and production rigging department worked in conjunction with Ollie green and BWS’s independent structural engineer Rasti Bartek from Cundall. “We had to work quickly and efficiently in the design and fabrication process of all the heavy-duty bracketry and Dyneema which was supplied by Marlow Ropes. Load cells were also an issue due to short notice in order to make the freight shipment dates a
UK - With a plan for continued business growth across North America and Europe, Ultratec Special Effects has announced two additions to its sales team. Young-Hoo (Aaron) Dengra Ju has joined as the European sales lead for both special effects and pyrotechnics, while Kevin Allinder comes onboard as the newest sales representative serving the North American market, dedicated to special effects.
Dengra Ju is a seasoned event specialist with 15 years of experience in the industry, not only in sales and project management, but also from a strategic operations and process planning perspective. He has managed and executed an impressive list of events of all sizes within Europe and internationally, including Asia and the Middle East, spanning from major sporting events to local festivals. His ability to speak multiple languages fluently, including German, English, French, and Spanish, will also be beneficial in connecting Ultratec Special Effects with existing and future customers across the continent.
With over five years in the industry, Allinder has an extensive technical background, primarily in stage and live event lighting design and production.
“Prior to the shutdown, our company was experiencing tremendous growth, we are eager to build on the strength of our current sales team with a continued focus on our customer relationships”, says Adrian Segeren, president of Ultratec. “Both individuals bring specialized expertise that will be an asset to the organization as we continue to penetrate existing markets.”
UK - Rigging Team is celebrating its 10th anniversary in the delivery of specialist rigging and technical training services to the entertainment production industry.
Over the past decade, the company has enjoyed steady growth to become recognised a respected provider of rigging equipment and support services. Working across the full spectrum of entertainment production, including theatre, TV, film and live events, Rigging Team has built a reputation for creating “safe, bespoke solutions to projects which others may consider impossible”.
Commenting on the milestone, Rigging Team managing director Adam Searle comments: “We are immensely proud of our achievements over the last ten years. From humble beginnings, we have created a significant resource which supports productions of all size and genre, all around the world.”
Formed in December 2010 as Adam Searle Ltd, the company originally operated from what Searle describes as “a 35sq.ft cupboard”. In 2013, it rebranded as Rigging Team and has since grown to a 10-strong full-time workforce, occupying a 15,000 sq.ft custom warehouse facility.
Having relocated to a new premises during 2020, Rigging Team is currently busy modifying the space to incorporate a 2,500sq.ft dedicated training facility complete with classrooms and a multi-level structure for practical courses in rigging, work at height/rescue and rope access.
Along with the delivery of rigging and automation solutions, the company maintains a particular focus on safety and the provision of industry specific training. Seni
UK - When London’s Adelphi Theatre re-opens later this year, it will do so with a new flying system. The refurbishment – stage one of three has involved a complete replacement of the fly tower hemp sets and a new front loading 42 set double purchase counterweight system.
With all theatres across the country having spent the last 12 months in the dark, LW Theatres and Nederlander who jointly own the Adelphi, has taken the unprecedented circumstances as an opportunity to carry out a programme of work across several of its venues. And with no shows or audiences, this has allowed for refurbishment to take place uninterrupted so that once theatres can open their doors, they can do so freely and start recouping lost revenue immediately.
Martin Skelton, technical and building services manager at The Adelphi said: “Phase one has seen the Unusual team come in to initially remove the old system, make good the structure of the wall behind and put in a new, easier to use structure and flying system in the same position. The old system had evolved over time with half of it being one shape and design and in amongst it were some other cradles, three different types of flying weight, two different styles of loading, a huge variation in capacity across the system and not evenly spaced.
“Over the years shows have got progressively heavier so we needed to look at updating the system to be able to accommodate that. Staff safety is also of paramount importance and we wanted to overhaul the system which saw us using very heavy weights to achieve capacity which we
Ireland - MTN Shop, an E-commerce platform offering workwear, safety products, and rigging & lifting equipment is following in the steps of some of the world’s largest companies by accepting cryptocurrency as an online payment method. Through Coinbase, the cryptocurrency exchange, customers will now be able to purchase products from MTN Shop with the likes of Bitcoin, Ethereum and Litecoin.
Speaking on the company’s decision to accept payment via cryptocurrency, Ron Rose, MD, stated, “Creating a crypto friendly shopping experience is just another step forward in catering to the unique needs of our global customer base. At MTN, we pride ourselves on being a first mover and are keen to support the continual progress of the industries we serve as we help bring them into the digital age.
“MTN understands that cryptocurrency is still a relatively unknown method of payment for many. However, one of the main benefits to paying via cryptocurrency is that it limits the amount of personal information an individual must provide. When making a transaction, individuals will simply be required to enter the payment amount and the vendor’s public key (similar to an email address) via a Wallet app. Therefore, the only personal information required by MTN will be the individual’s name and shipping address.”
UK - Bill Harkin, designer of Glastonbury Festival’s iconic Pyramid Stage, passed away on Sunday 7th March. He was 83.
Harkin grew up in Liverpool, attending secondary school in Sefton Park before embarking on painting and 3D construction studies, “with the occasional lunch time Beatles gig for 1 shilling at the Cavern.” Soon, Harkin was showing his work at The Liverpool Academy’s shows at the Walker Art Gallery as well as in art and architecture exhibitions for Liverpool University and The John Moores Painting Prize. “Then, somewhat briefly, I started a course in architecture,” he revealed in memoirs on the Pyramid Stage Glastonbury Festival website. “The tedium of course work was more than I could take, I was much more excited by the theatre and the new fabric structures of Frei Otto in Stuffgart.”
Having purchased two of Harkin’s constructions, choreographer and director Bill Harpe invited him to design the stage set, lighting and projection for a production of Stravinsky’s The Soldiers Tale at Liverpool’s Bluecoat arts centre. He went on to work with Graham Frood on Merseyside Unity Theatre’s in-the-round production of Boulevard Durand at St George’s Hall.
Harkin then “left Liverpool for London and the world” before returning to England in 1970 where a moment of meditation whilst helping a friend relocate to Swanage lead him to Glastonbury Tor. There he met a group of kindred spirits, including Tony Andrews (now of Funktion
Europe - Chroma-Q has launched the Hang Force, a new accessory designed for use with the Color Force II and Studio Force II (48” and 72” models).
Restrictions with where you can hang the fixture on the truss due to the crossbar-section is now a thing of the past, thanks to the Hang Force bracket which allows fixtures to be hung from trusses where the position of clamps might not align with the original fixture clamp position, says the company. A series of slots allow the clamps to be re-positioned to fit anywhere on the truss pipe.
For added flexibility and speedy mounting, the Hang Force uses rapid ¼ turn locks so it can quickly be installed and removed from the fixture. A centred carrying handle also means it can be moved easily.
The bracket also enables all the fixture sizes in the range (12”, 48” and 72”) to hang equally side-by-side when rigged on to the truss.
The Hang Force comes with the necessary hardware to upgrade existing fixtures for use with ¼ turn locks. The Hang Force can also be used on the floor thanks to a set of plates to stabilise the whole assembly.
Chroma-Q’s Global brand manager Paul Pelletier comments: “We are excited to release the new Hang Force. We are always looking to develop new accessories that add additional versatility and flexibility to our products to enabling them to exceed the high levels of creativity required by our customers.”
UK - Unusual Rigging has welcomed the outcome of yesterday’s Budget and what it means for theatres and other arts venues. The chancellor’s pledge to give an extra £410m to the arts is intended to help the sector recover as lockdown eases.
The funds are earmarked for theatres, museums, galleries and live music venues. But, says Tom Harper, managing director at Unusual, for the funds to be used most effectively, the industry should be regarded as an ecosystem, echoing the National Theatre’s Rufus Norris’ idea that the funds should be pumped into productions and not venues.
“The Chancellor has acknowledged that the culture sector will be a ‘significant driver’ in the UK’s pandemic recovery. While theatres are aiming to open from 17 May with social distancing in place, and with full capacity performances to be allowed from 21 June, there are still months ahead as we prepare for this big relaunch. Unlike other sectors theatre cannot simply fling wide its doors and resume trading at a sustainable level in the same way as other businesses might be able to. Ringfencing the money for productions will go further in supporting the entire supply chain, especially freelancers, an alarming number of whom have not been eligible for any financial support.”
Tom continued: “We cannot just support the cultural infrastructure and ignore the individual and teams who make the venues come to life. The artists, entertainers and all those working behind the scenes are really what makes the industry tick. If used wisely, these funds could go a long way t
UK - SensorSpace is a new cloud-based platform designed to ‘revolutionise’ the way riggers can access and manage data from Broadweigh's wireless sensors. Launched this month, SensorSpace can be used to remotely monitor the status of any Broadweigh sensor - load or wind speed -and help site managers and rigging managers make decisions or take action before, and during a show.
Elliot Van Laere, product specialist at Broadweigh, explains: “SensorSpace is a game-changer. It not only provides a way to visualise load cell or wind speed data in the cloud, so anyone with access can log in on a desktop or mobile device, but can easily be set up to automatically send SMS, email or app-based alerts in the event of unexpected change. A whole team can stay connected to a dashboard keeping them on the ball and informed wherever they are located.”
SensorSpace is fully customisable which means dashboards can be as simple or as complicated as they need to be, from numerical display of sensors, to in-depth overlays, charts and graphs showing live and historical data. With a SensorSpace plan, users can store up to three years’ data should post event analysis be required.
Elliot Van Laere, continues: “In the case of an outdoor festival, for example, where wind is a major concern for temporary outdoor structures, SensorSpace can give live data on the average speed and maximum detected gust. This can give a very good idea on site for when to go ahead with a build or not, coupled with weather forecast data. It can also allow for constant monitoring of ongoin
South Africa - DWR Distribution will present Basic Rigging Training in Cape Town, a two-day workshop presented by Robert Izzett which covers basic rigging hardware and calculations according to SANS 10366. The course, limited to 20 delegates, will be held at the on 15 & 16 March 2021 at the Cape Audio College in Observatory.
With a focus on safety, delegates can look forward to gaining a better understanding of the rigging laws applied in South Africa, and on a practical level, the handling and use of rigging hardware, shackles, steel wire ropes, trussing, endless rounds and chains.
“The main emphasis of the course is for technicians to familiarise themselves with the technicalities of hardware,” said Robert Izzett. “Not every shackle is a shackle and not knowing the difference can have serious consequences. There is also a misconception that there are no laws governing our industry in South Africa. Our goal is to make everyone aware of the correct technique and rules to follow.”
The cost is R1 700.00 and includes a Certificate of Attendance. Due to the Covid-19 restrictions, the class will be limited to 20 students, and does not include catering. Delegates should wear masks and adhere to the necessary Covid-19 safety protocols. Registration is via https://forms.gle/Et5bri9EGDKpnDy4A
USA - Registration is now open for the New World Rigging Symposium (NWRS), produced by ESTA and USITT, which will take place online 6-8 April, 2021. The NWRS provides a virtual opportunity for riggers and those interested in the entertainment rigging industry to network, discuss current issues and new technologies, and help shape the future of the industry. The cost has been reduced to $99 and the symposium carries up to nine ETCP education renewal credits for re-certification.
Participants will be given a range of opportunities to further their technical knowledge in sessions on video wall rigging, automation and motorization, performer flying and rescue, and types of ropes. They’ll have a chance to learn about how the installation of a tension grid is working in a major facility, to get their questions answered by a panel of the industry’s most knowledgeable structural engineers, learn about working in cinema rigging, and how to be aware of and address the mental health impact of the pandemic. Visit www.esta.org/nwrs to see a complete schedule, session descriptions and presenters.
The symposium has been expanded to three days to allow more time for discussion and virtual networking over lunch and during the Rigging Cornucopia Happy Hour that will close each day’s sessions. During the 6 April Happy Hour, Roy Bickel will receive the ESTA Lifetime Technical Achievement Award which will be presented by Rocky Paulson and Chris Schmidt.
The keynote speaker will be Jeanette Farmer, whose career spans three decades of professional theatre technical
USA - Roy Bickel will receive the ESTA Lifetime Technical Achievement Award on 6 April, 2021, at the virtual New World Rigging Symposium.
The ESTA Board of Directors and Technical Standards Council created this award in 2017 to recognise individuals whose technical contributions have had a significant impact on our industry. The criteria include significant and sustained technical contributions for at least 25 years. The 2021 award will be presented by Rocky Paulson and Chris Schmidt, who have made the following statements about this year’s winner:
Rocky Paulson writes of Roy’s storied career, “Roy was a circus rigger and performer prior to being hired as the head rigger for the first Disney on Parade show in 1969. He continued until 1974 when he left for Broadway to work for Pete Feller. After a time there, he went on to do the Rolling Stones tour in 1975. That was the beginning of a long career as a ‘rock & roll’ rigger. Roy currently lives in Las Vegas where he has been a fixture in the trade show world for over two decades.
“As the first head rigger on the Disney on Parade shows, he trained people like me in climbing techniques, rigging procedures, and physical fitness regimens to keep us in great shape. Though my direct experience of working for him was limited to a year in the seventies, I know his techniques were taught to many of the first-generation entertainment riggers. This training very much helped the rapid expansion of the industry during the rock & roll explosion. More recently in his career he was
UK - PLASA, the association for the live entertainment technology industry, and the ABTT (Association of British Theatre Technicians) are pleased to announce a collaboration that will bring the 2021 editions of both the PLASA Show and the ABTT Theatre Show under one roof from 5-7 September at Olympia London.
For 2021 only, this partnership between the two established associations aims to reduce pressure on the exhibition calendar as the industry’s eco-system recovers from the impacts of the pandemic and will bring the broad sector together for one landmark event.
As previously planned for 2020, PLASA Show 2021 - for this year with the ABTT Theatre Show - will debut at Olympia’s largest hall, the Grand. The ABTT Theatre Show will run in its own defined space, retaining its unique identity, and celebrating the ABTT’s 60th anniversary. The spacious Grand hall will also make room for more inspiring stands, more show features, and perhaps most importantly, extra aisle width for visitors to move around freely and safely.
It is with regret that PLASA Focus Leeds, due to take place from 11-12 May at the Royal Armouries Leeds, has been postponed for a second year. Following careful consideration of the uncertainty around the UK’s lockdown restrictions and the complex challenges facing the industry, PLASA has made the decision to only present the London-based PLASA Show this year and is very excited to be able to work with the ABTT in order to collaborate with the ABTT Theatre Show. By consolidating the trade show calendar to a single date line, bo
UK - PLASA, the lead association for the entertainment technology industry, is running a free webinar on Wednesday 24 February to help attendees better understand the basics of the new UKCA marking which is now required for certain products being placed on the market in Great Britain.
Following on from a series of webinars covering business, trade and HR, this session will explore terms and definitions that relate to the new UKCA and CE UKNI markings. PLASA will be joined by expert host Rob Hine, head of commercial partnerships at BSI (an approved body for UKCA), who will break down what these terms mean in the context of UKCA and what this means for those placing products on the market. Rob will also take the time to answer any questions.
This webinar will prove essential for both UK and international businesses who sell products in the UK. Following the session, attendees will be given additional resources to help them navigate the new marking procedures.
‘Understanding the basics of UKCA’ will run from 11am-12:30pm (UK time) on Wednesday 24 February. Pre-registration is essential via: https://us02web.zoom.us/webinar/register/WN_FLEok3ZiQWikUpqNDa8AMg
UK - To mark the centenary of Stephen Joseph’s birth and the 60th anniversary of the founding of ABTT, the ABTT Stephen Joseph Committee has announced an award to commemorate the life and work of the influential theatre practitioner and pioneer of theatre in-the-round.
A statement from the ABTT says: “Stephen Joseph was one of the most influential theatre practitioners of the last century. He was one of the founders of the ABTT and the Society of Theatre Consultants, now the Institute of Theatre Consultants. He promoted new writing, architectural standards and technical excellence, and was an inspiring university teacher. His pioneering work has given rise to the use of myriad forms of theatre and open staging in current practice. At the heart of his philosophy was the close and fundamental relationship between performer and audience. Above all, he established theatre-in-the-round as a legitimate theatrical form in the UK.
This award honours Stephen’s wide-ranging legacy which continues to influence many aspects of theatre practice. The first ABTT Stephen Joseph Award will be presented in June 2021.”
ABTT Stephen Joseph Award specifications:
There are three categories from which one recipient of the award will be chosen. For the sake of clarity, there will be just one award in 2021 presented to the most deserving nomination drawn from any one of the following categories:
1. A living individual whose work or body of work has created an exemplary and adventurous relationship between performance and audience.
USA - The Entertainment Services and Technology Association's (ESTA's) Technical Standards Programme (TSP) has announced the 2020 recipients of the annual Above & Beyond Awards.
The TSP exists because hundreds of individuals from across the industry volunteer their expertise and significant amounts of time to write and improve standards that increase safety, provide interoperability between different manufacturers, solve problems, and make life easier. The awards are a chance for volunteers to celebrate those of their peers whom they feel have made a significant contribution to the advancement of the programme.
The 2020 Above & Beyond Awards were presented to:
Ethan Gilson, Entertainment Rigging Services, LLC (Rigging Working Group). Ethan was praised for his expert knowledge of rigging and his unique approach to both analysing rigging challenges and coming up with their answers. His method of evaluating the relevance of a subject and converting it into an ANSI accredited rigging standard is extraordinary. Ethan's enthusiasm about the TSP has also inspired many people to volunteer, which has helped the program flourish.
Wayne Howell, Artistic Licence (Control Protocols Working Group). A long-time consistent contributor to the CPWG, Wayne was lauded for being a task group leader on the E1.20 Remote Device Management (RDM) revision project. Working late hours across international time zones, Wayne has demonstrated exceptional leadership in guiding the task group and has exhibited an admirable determination to make certain that every voi
UK - MTN Shop EMEA, an E-commerce platform offering workwear, safety products, and rigging & lifting equipment, has proved popular across Europe since entering the international market in 2017. Building on this success, MTN has recently launched its exclusive UK website, shopmtn.co.uk, to provide their UK customers with a Brexit-proof shopping experience.
UK visitors will now experience seamless navigation across multiple collections, with over 5,000 products from over 20 industry-leading brands available from a one stop shop for businesses and consumers alike, says the company.
“Over the past five years in the EMEA market, MTN Shop has adapted based on our customers’ needs. Launching a UK based site with a Brexit friendly purchasing process for our UK friends and colleagues is an essential part of our constant evolution to service and support our valued customer base,” says MD Ron Rose.
China - The team at French seating manufacturer Quinette Gallay was a contributor to a major project in China recently – the Shangyin Opera House in Shanghai.
The Opera House is part of the Shanghai Conservatory of Music – an institution which has been at the forefront of musical education in China since 1927. It has strong links to musicians and musical institutions worldwide.
In 2019, the Conservatory began work fitting out the new opera house, intended as an unmatched resource for both students and teachers. The venue would provide a place to practise and perform opera which would match the quality of a world-class opera house, with the very best interior, equipment and acoustics.
Embracing the concept of an opera house as a musical instrument, architect Christian de Portzamparc worked together with acoustician Albert Xu on this stunning space. The design was based on a classic U-shaped model, but was enhanced to improve visibility and acoustics for all audience members.
With its reputation for providing seats to the cream of international venues, Quinette Gallay was chosen as the seating supplier. Quinette Gallay worked with the architect, acoustician and client to produce 1230 very special versions of their Dune BI seat. The wave-form design of the chairs visually evokes the ethos of “the space as an instrument”. The acoustic perforations on the wooden seat shell, meanwhile, help to bring that instrument to life. In addition, translation screens on the back of each seat are key to the Conservatory’s spirit of international co
UK - Artists including Sir Elton John and Radiohead are putting pressure on the government to resolve the problems around post-Brexit EU touring. UK artists will face red tape and fees for visas to play in some EU countries.
Sir Elton John told The Guardian: "Either the Brexit negotiators didn't care about musicians, or didn't think about them, or weren't prepared."
But Culture Minister Caroline Dinenage said the government had "pushed" for a solution and the door was still "open". She told MPs on Monday that the government had put forward a "very straightforward" plan to allow musicians to travel without work permits, drafted "in consultation with experts from the UK to creative sectors". She added: "Quite simply the EU rejected this proposal."
Brussels has previously argued the opposite, saying it was in fact the UK that turned down its offer.
Meanwhile, a growing number of MPs and Peers are rallying behind Tim Brennan’s petition and call for visa free travel for touring artists and professionals
Brennan’s Carry on Touring campaign seeks to secure free EU movement for touring artists and professionals. Carry on Touring is calling on the Prime Minister and the UK Government to take action and re-open negotiations.
Tim’s petition which has almost 300,000 signatures. asks the UK Government to negotiate a free cultural work permit to allow touring professionals visa free travel throughout the 27 EU states and to secure a Carnet exception for touring equipment.
“Support for my petition has been phenomenal,” says
UK - Mad Dogs Television is a facilities house supplying camera equipment and crew for TV productions. When it was asked by its client Round World Studios to build a new kitchen studio for their regular cookery shows, Martin Huntley,founder of Mad Dogs TV turned to Doughty Engineering to supply some of the key equipment.
Martin explained: “Round World Studios regularly hires kitchen studios in London but had the desire to have their own studio. Through a pre-existing relationship, the company linked up with the Carbis Bay Hotel and Estate near St Ives in Cornwall, which has just been announced as the location for this year’s G7 Summit, to create a permanent television production space available for hire by television producers and other content creators.”
The studio, which is located in a shop front on the beach promenade, has been built as a box within a box consisting of three solid walls and a front glass wall. “The box is essentially the set,” explains Martin. “We built a stage, fitted a kitchen and added blackout/ green screen, sound insulation etc. To the ceiling we fitted Doughty Studio Rail 60 for the lighting rig which covers a 5.5m x 5.5m area. We also used a selection of Doughty’s rails, dollies, clamps and cable safety chains. And on the perimeter, we used the same system to put up a curtain track and hung a sound dampening curtain.”
Doughty’s Studio Rail 60 proved to be the perfect piece of kit for the studio. “A LOLER pull test can hang up to 300kg of lights on the Studio Rail easily. With today’s modern tech, lig
USA - The Behind the Scenes (BTS) Mental Health Initiative wants language about mental health and respectful workplaces “to become a part of every toolbox talk or safety briefing because psychological safety is as important as physical safety.”
BTS says: “It’s not always an easy subject to talk about, so to make it easier for those delivering these talks we are suggesting topics and providing sample language that can be used as is or tailored to fit individual needs.
“It is important to acknowledge the mental and physical stressors and challenges faced by all of us in the entertainment industry and offer your team tools to help them better manage and respond to these challenges. We know that the last months in particular have been very stressful and returning to work is bringing a new set of concerns for everyone. Many people are struggling with anxiety, grief, feeling overwhelmed, inability to concentrate, changes in appetite or sleep, changes in drinking or substance use patterns, or other issues affecting daily functioning.
“In addition to the sample language provided under each topic, we also offer a selection of brief pre-scripted talks. This information is meant to be incorporated into existing safety or toolbox talks and is not meant to replace other safety briefings.
“For those needing to gain management approval to incorporate language about mental health into their talks, we offer some key reasons why it is important to talk about mental health and psychological safety in the workplace.”
BTS has collaborated wi
Germany - Prolight+Sound, along with a number of other trade fairs planned for April and May in Frankfurt this spring, has been postponed until April 2022.
A statement from the organisers says: “Back in September 2020, a decision was reached by Messe Frankfurt and the industries involved to forgo any physical events at our home base in the first quarter of 2021. Now, following close consultation with customers, it has become necessary to postpone the international physical trade fairs planned for April and May – Prolight+Sound, the International Consumer Goods Show, Heimtextil, Techtextil and Texprocess – as a result of the regulations and travel restrictions that have been imposed.
“There is currently no end to the pandemic in sight. Events are effectively banned in Germany, and ongoing international travel restrictions mean that it is impossible to make any trade fair plans for April or May 2021.”
“The coronavirus pandemic has taken centre-stage, and our plans have not escaped its impact. In light of the current situation, it would not be possible for us to satisfy our customers’ requirements for international trade fairs in April or May,” said Detlef Braun, member of the executive board of Messe Frankfurt.
“The ongoing shutdown of retailers in our visitor countries has made relevant up-to-date information and solutions essential, and we are satisfying this demand with our digital offerings during this volatile time. As you know, we are also continuing to do everything in our power to make safe and successful trade fairs po