The show featured its largest and most ambitious technical production to date (photo: Scott Wright)
UK - Robe lights were right there at the hub of the action for the UK's largest student show and the world's biggest Bhangra competition, Bhangra Showdown, which this year seriously upped the ante, moving to the SSE Arena, Wembley, London for the first time, reflecting the success and popularity of the event now in its eighth glorious year.

The show - organized by Imperial College Bhangra Society also featured its largest and most ambitious technical production to date to accompany the eight top student teams who strutted their talent in the battle for The UK's Best Student Bhangra Team.

Kudos AV, based in Middlesex, have sponsored the event for many years and this year were also the main technical production provider. With the move to the larger venue, they asked High Wycombe lighting rental company Siyan to supply some of the additional kit needed and also assist on the lighting design for the high energy show.

For moving lights, the design utilised 28 x Robe Pointes, 16 x LEDWash 600s, 16 x MMX Spots and some other fixtures - supplied by Kudos and Siyan. Robe fixtures were spec'd because it's the primary moving light brand stocked by both companies and also - irrespective of this - because they were the best choice.

The actual lighting design was a collaboration between Kudos LD Vitalijus Kybartas (Vits) and Siyan's Tom Grant. A major consideration was that it had to be practical to rig and get up-and-running very quickly, as the time-frame was so tight. Due to the venue layout for this show, the stage was not directly underneath the house grid, making rigging a little more complex than usual, which Vits & Tom kept in mind when conceiving the initial design.

The solution revolved around three straight trusses - front, mid and back - with drop-pipes on the mid and back creating extra depth and dynamics and allowing the positioning of Pointes at different heights all around the performance space.

The 60ft front truss was rigged with four MMX Spots used for key lighting and some 700 Wash fixtures.

The mid and back trusses were both 50ft wide and loaded with six Pointes each on the pipe drops, four MMX Spots and eight LEDWash 600s together with more blinders and strobes.

On the floor, in addition to the Pointes on the vertical stands, were another eight wash fixtures and the four remaining MMX Spots.

Vits programmed and ran the show using an Avolites Sapphire Touch console. Winners of the 2015 Bhangra Showdown were competition founders Imperial College who were given a close run by runners up, UCL.

(Jim Evans)

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