Europe - Saïd M’Roumbaba, better known by his stage name Soprano, combines music, politics and urban poetry with edginess, meaning, accessibility and superlative showmanship. His live shows are selling out and he is currently touring French-speaking Europe.
Young French lighting designer Victorien Cayzeele is an integral part of the creative team bringing the Phoenix touring show to life, a task he is doing spectacularly with the help of around 150 Robe moving lights which are at the core of an innovative and emotive visual experience.
Victorien has worked with the artist for six years, each tour seeing the shows getting bigger and bigger as Soprano’s influence and popularity grows. The 2019 touring schedule is action packed with a mix of own shows - including five stadiums in September - and festival headline slots as well as over 40 arena gigs.
Soprano’s reputation as a live performer and the special connection he has with audiences is also fuelling the demand for concerts.
When they decided on five large moving and tracking 10mm mesh LED screens with 80% transparency as the essential digital scenery and stage architecture, this presented some unique challenges for Victorien.
The all-axes tracking system - up / down, onstage / offstage and left and right - meant a roof filled with tracking trolleys and motors.
Before he’d even drawn a light on the plot, the team went through a series of essential screen moves and plotted each song in terms of the stage dynamics, which then dictated the exact positioning of the automat
USA - Christie has introduced the Christie Core Series and the next generation of Christie CorePlus. Core Series is designed for applications such as shopping mall kiosks, airport and public transit signage, and select corporate installations with budgetary constraints.
“We were, and still are, so excited to launch our Christie MicroTiles LED last February, which got a phenomenal response from our customers,” says Ted Romanowitz, senior product manager, Christie. “MicroTiles LED are best-in-class but there are occasions when customers don’t need those advanced capabilities or don’t have the budget, so we wanted to bring certain advanced capabilities to the ‘value’ space - and that’s where Core and CorePlus fit. Both CorePlus and Core Series deliver enhanced benefits and design flexibility typically offered only on more expensive products from the competition.”
With pixel pitches from 1.2 to 2.5 mm, redundant on-board power and ADA-compliant mount system; Christie Core Series installs directly onto any wall without a costly mounting frame, saving setup time and money for integrators and end users, says the company.
“Core Series makes LED video walls affordable for even small budgets without sacrificing quality and the high-value design delivers all the key features in a package that is easy to install and maintain,” says Romanowitz.
“Christie CorePlus has been very well received and we wanted to kick that up a notch and so we updated the product line in two important ways. “First, we’ve improved optical performance
USA - Brompton Technology reports that LED screen manufacturer digiLED will feature its Tessera SX40 LED processor and XD 10G data distribution unit on its booth at this year’s InfoComm.
As well as displaying the SX40 and XD units on a dedicated plinth, an SX40 will also be running digiLED’s new digiTHIN HD screen. This 1.5mm pixel pitch LED screen offers a true 16:9 ratio, native HD resolutions and is designed as the replacement for fixed installations that would traditionally be serviced by high end projection screens. The 1.5m x 0.85m screen section on display at InfoComm will sit on digiLED’s new Squashed Frog plate, which adds extra versatility users of the HD panels by allowing it to be used on temporary mounts and stands.
“We’ve been keen to work with Brompton for a long time,” says digiLED technical director Tom Mudd. “We’ve always been customer driven and recent enquiries for digiTHIN that need extremely accurate colour reproduction have prompted us to add Brompton to our processor offering. We know Brompton processors have the right capabilities and, along with highly accurate screen calibration, gives us the confidence that our clients will get a VIP processing solution on a VIP screen product.”
“We’re delighted to be working with digiLED and it’s a real pleasure to see our products on their booth at Infocomm 2019,” adds Brompton’s business development manager Rob Fowler. “They were one of the first companies I spoke with when I joined Brompton and I know there has always been a desire on both sides to work t
UK - LED screen, drapes and special FX specialist S+H Technical Services supplied its Glux 10mm LED screen to the recent UK tour by 10cc.
The tour’s production manager, Dave Cobby, also looks after the video elements on the road, and he specified the screen, returning to S+H, the Ilfracombe, Devon based company which has supplied previous 10cc tours including the 2016 40th anniversary celebration of seminal album Sheet Music.
Dave has worked with the band since 2006, and this time around took on both roles. “It’s always a pleasure doing business with S+H’s Terry (Murtha) and the team. We get a great deal and the 10mm screen is exactly the resolution and quality that we need.”
The screen was configured as a continuous 8m-wide by 5m-high surface upstage. The requirement was for a lightweight and easy to rig solution that was adaptable and practical for a variety of venues on the itinerary, that could be rigged quickly and easily.
“It is one of the most handle-able and reliable screens I’ve encountered,” says Cobby, who was assisted in the rigging and positioning process by LD Martin Bell.
Used only in three songs, the screen had maximum impact, and the rest of the time was absorbed into the background. “This is another great advantage of this type of screen” comments Cobby. “You can get a proper blackout.”
The band’s video content was designed and created by 10cc founding member Kevin Godley (who was not on the tour). It featured during the intro Son of Man and Somewhere in Hollywood, w
USA - Barco has agreed in principle to sell the Medialon brand and Show Control activities to 7thSense Design.
The team behind 7thSense Design has led the acquisition to form a new company, Medialon Ltd., which will acquire the Medialon brand and Show Control activities from Barco. The sale is set to be completed by 1 July.
The transfer does not include the Overture product suite, which will continue to be owned by Barco.
Eric Cantrell, product manager for Medialon within Barco, will lead the new Medialon business as vice-president of business operations. He comments: “The decision by Barco to transfer the Medialon show control activity is driven by Barco’s continuous effort to focus on core activities, comprising of display and image processing technology, in conjunction with strengthened partnerships across the value chain in the entertainment market.
“This transfer will allow Medialon greater agility to further enhance its product offering and expand its scale - we are excited to bring a highly focused range of solutions and services to attractions and theme parks as part of the 7thSense Design family.”
Matt Barton, CEO of Medialon Ltd. and 7thSense Design, adds: “7thSense Design’s products and technologies are often integrated into theme park and attraction installations alongside Medialon show control products.
“Medialon Ltd.’s acquisition of the Medialon show control product, and new place in the 7thSense Design family, allows the two businesses to offer complementary media serving and show control solutions
UK - Creative technical event production company Hawthorn has appointed Jolene Price, who has joined the company as business development manager.
Price will support the development of new business for Hawthorn’s live event technical production service. Before joining Hawthorn, she held the position of sales, events and marketing director at Rail Media and brings with her over 19 years of experience in sales and events.
Scott Rooney-Ashby, account director at Hawthorn, comments: “We’re delighted to welcome Jolene to Hawthorn. She brings a wealth of experience to the position and with her previous experience in the industry, I believe she will be a great asset to the team. Investing in our people is vital to developing the service we provide to our clients and maintaining the extremely high-standards we are renowned for delivering.”
China - Absen LED products have been used to create a large DOOH display that towered 15m high above the exterior of the Hua-Yang Plaza Hotel in Luoyang, where the month-long Peony Culture Festival took place. The festival, which occurs each year from mid-April to mid-May, sees the peonies in full bloom and various folk performances staged around the gardens.
The Hua-Yang Plaza Hotel is situated in the middle of Luoyang National Peony Garden, Luoyang National Flower Garden, Wangcheng Park and the Peony Square, which made it a suitable location for the billboard to provide warm welcome to all of the visitors that journeyed from across the globe.
The display itself - made up of Absen’s A1699 product - measures 730sq.m and offers a pixel density of 6760 x 420, making it the highest resolution OOH LED screen ever seen in the city.
Absen’s A1699 is an updated version of the A1688, which is one of the most successful outdoor LED products in the company’s portfolio. Nearly 200,000sq.m of the A1688 has been used in more than 120 countries and regions over the past 12 years.
“With such a gigantic LED display, the power consumption is, on average, around 63 KW/H,” says Landy Liao, Absen product manager. “Thanks to the Absen-encapsulated LEDs, this DIP product is very energy-efficient without compromising the high brightness levels - even in the direct sunlight. These factors, among many others, are what helps Absen to stand out among its competitors.”
Europe - Universal Pixels provided video packages for Spice Girls in Dublin, Snow Patrol in Bangor, and The Chemical Brothers in London across an action-packed Spring Bank Holiday weekend. The video specialist supplied over 1,450m2 of LED screen, multiple 3G camera packages, disguise GX2 servers, and a total of 26 crew over the three shows.
When it comes to big shows like this, the devil is in the detail, explained Universal Pixel’s Phil Mercer: “We know from many years of experience in delivering large-scale shows and tours that pre-planning and the correct preparation before equipment and crew get onsite is fundamental. We pay close attention to each project and simplify things wherever we can, so that everything runs as smoothly as possible.”
Kicking off on Friday 24 May, the hotly anticipated Spice Girls comeback show at Dublin’s Croke Park welcomed an audience of 75,000 people. Universal Pixels worked with creative director Lee Lodge, set designer Jason Sherwood, content designer Kate Moross, and video director Jon Shrimpton to create the double-sided video ring in the centre of the stage, two large screens on the wings, and a header of video across the entire width of the stage, including the wings. All of this was achieved with over 700m2 of 5mm LED panels. The video specialist also supplied a 14 camera 3G PPU, Disguise GX2 servers, and 16 video crew.
The same evening, The Chemical Brothers’ headline performance at All Points East Festival in London was enhanced with over 130m2 of ROE 18mm Vanish and two crew. Under the direction of
UK - A.C. Entertainment Technologies (AC-ET) will demonstrate its extensive and exclusive portfolio of leading theatrical technologies - including new lighting, audio, rigging, and video products - at the ABTT Theatre Show 2019, taking place on 5th - 6th June at London’s Alexandra Palace.
Highlights from AC-ET will include Chroma-Q's multi award-winning Color Force II cyc, wash & effects and Inspire house lighting LED fixtures, featuring colour-mixing homogenised optics. Showing at ABTT for the first time will be the Vista 3 by Chroma-Q lighting and media control system.
Prolights fixtures on stand will include the Pixie Wash XB, a 280W single source LED wash luminaire and the Jetspot4Z, which features full CMY colour mixing and a custom optical system.
Meanwhile, the Luminex Luminode Ethernet & DMX processor, first unveiled at Prolight + Sound, will also debut, and visitors to the show will also be able to take a closer look at. Spotlight's Hyperion series, designed for large installations such as theatres, with a performance comparable up to a 2000W halogen fixture but with a more compact size and reduced heat production.
Also making its ABTT debut will be the StageSmarts C24 power distribution unit alongside a number of LSC’s intuitive power & dimming control product range, including the Mantra Lite, and the GenVi.
D.A.D Audio’s flagship point source Touring Power Series of affordable loudspeaker solutions are purpose-engineered for live applications. Also on display will be the new Midas M32 R Live digital mixing co
UK - Calibre has announced a further set of features to its recently-introduced AiO (All-in-One) LED display.
“From an image quality point of view, it can be difficult for customers to choose between one LED display and another,” explains Willy Tsai, managing director at Calibre UK. “With the development of the new AiO LED Display, we chose to focus on functionality that is less visible - but that is no less important when it comes to the practicalities of deploying videowalls. The result of that development work is an LED display that not only features outstanding image quality, but that is easier and faster to install than alternative solutions - and is also significantly safer in operation.”
The AiO LED Display features an integrated power control system with low standby power consumption and an efficient power supply - minimising long-term cost of ownership as well as being more environmentally friendly. Critically, however, the power consumption of the full screen body is clearly marked and is consistent throughout.
This is in contrast with a typical LED wall which is regulated by the LED modules: the power consumption of these modules after assembly is not clear, meaning that incorrectly assembled units may cause overload or even fire. With the AiO, the specifications and warning signs are clear to the user at a glance, thus avoiding any electrical hazards and making it safer to use.
Ease and convenience of installation and ongoing operation and maintenance were also key design goals for the AiO. Its all-in-one architecture - Ca
USA - Audinate has announced its CEO Lee Ellison is retiring in September, with the company’s CTO and co-founder Aidan Williams (pictured) set to replace him in the role.
Ellison is to retire on 13 September following the release of the company’s 2019 full year financial results.
David Krall, Audinate’s chairman, comments: “Lee has been a key contributor to the growth of Audinate, and the results speak for themselves. Under Lee’s leadership as CEO over the past 11 years, Audinate has become the global market leader in audio networking for the professional AV industry. Lee led the company through its successful IPO in June 2017, and since its listing, Audinate has consistently delivered strong results and record growth.
“Together with Lee and the Board, we developed a succession plan over the last year to ensure a smooth transition of the CEO role. Our plan was for Aidan to follow Lee into the CEO role, and we are delighted that this will occur. Having co-founded Audinate, Aidan has been a guiding force in its product innovation and strategy and will continue to do so as CEO. With a talented team in place, we are confident of a smooth transition and continued growth.”
Commenting on the transition, Ellison said: “I am most proud about the passionate team at Audinate that has contributed to our overall success and is brilliantly executing on the growth strategy that has been put in place. I am comforted in my decision to enter retirement, believing the time is right to hand the leadership over to Aidan. Aidan, and the rest of ou
UK - Wakefield-based Backstage Academy recently presented a graduation showcase, which saw third-year students assessed across five presentations.
The students were assessed in a project-based environment, with each team working under a project manager. The event was supported by many industry partners, some of whom had arrived fresh from attending PLASA Focus Leeds.
Vice-principal Rachel Nicholson explained the idea of designing real world concepts - effectively transforming black box studio/stages into coruscating jewels - had grown out of the Live Visual Design & Production course. “It’s the first time we’ve presented the work in this fashion,” she confirms. “The team looked back at last year and decided they wanted more scope to visualise. Our live visual design course has always been project based, so we adapted that to the other courses - which seemed the most natural thing in the world to do.”
All shows had come entirely from the imagination of students, she said. “They are exploring the cutting edge of new technology and what can be done, but at the same time, it’s also a validation of the confidence placed in the students by the lecturers. Neither could we have done it without the support, passion and enthusiasm of our industry partners. The Graduation Showcase is just one day but it represents three years’ hard work.” In fact, many of those industry partners had already set up training days for students in advance, in order to build operational skills with the platforms.
The five distinct concepts, staged by s
UK - London-based technical event specialists Light Fantastic Production Services supported Voxburner with a full design and technical solution for YMS London.
YMS LDN is Europe’s largest youth marketing festival, part of a series of global events demystifying the changing trends, habits and attitudes of the consumers of the future.
Held over two days at the Old Truman Brewery, YMS19 LDN was the largest Youth Marketing Strategy event to date, welcoming almost 2,000 delegates and over 150 speakers.
Working closely with Voxburner to deliver an engaging visitor experience, Light Fantastic Production Services provided a comprehensive equipment and support package covering all technical elements, including lighting, audio, video, set and staging.
Commenting on the show, LFPS project manager Andrew Maxted says: “Handling all aspects of the technical requirement at YMS allowed us a good amount of creative freedom. Working with Voxburner we devised a bright, semi-industrial look for the show which complemented perfectly the venue’s sparse interior, allowing the strong colours of the event branding to come to the fore.”
The event required the design and build of three stages, each featuring full audio, video, lighting and scenic designs and all following the ‘industrial’ theme applied throughout the venue.
The main auditorium, with capacity for 1000 delegates, featured exposed scaffolding around a central LED wall contrasted with the creative application of LED lighting in bold colours and eye-catching large format graphics. A
USA - AV Stumpfl will present its new AT64-SHIFT system for large mobile projection screens and the new PIXERA mini media server at this year's InfoComm in Orlando.
With the AT64-SHIFT, it's possible to assemble a large mobile projection screen and to adjust its height in a matter of minutes, says the company. No extra measuring is needed to ensure that the frame is level, due to a clearly marked height scale.
Based on the same principles as the T32-SHIFT, the AT64-SHIFT projection screen legs can be used for much larger mobile projection screens and are compatible with all mobile AV Stumpfl screen systems.
Another highlight of AV Stumpfl's InfoComm booth will be the new PIXERA mini hardware. PIXERA mini is an ultra-compact media server, perfect for digital signage and multi-display applications.
The PIXERA mini is a 1U and ½ 19“ product. Two PIXERA mini servers can be installed in a 1U 19“ rack.
PIXERA version 1.2 will include the ability to export videos from the workspace, either containing the entire venue or the content of a specific screen. Another of the many new features is a set of pixel patching tools seamlessly integrated into the UI. They allow users to reposition content pixels on the output as needed and to patch the result to DMX channels, making it possible to drive all forms of LED processors from PIXERA.
For those InfoComm visitors interested in show control solutions, there will be a sneak peek presentation revolving around AV Stumpfl's upcoming AVIO 3 software, a distributed, highly modular and extensible
UK - This April, competitive gaming platform FACEIT partnered with the PUBG Corporation to host the first global event of PlayerUnknown’s Battlegrounds’ 2019 Esports season.
The multi-stage tournament held at London’s ExCel saw 24 teams battle for the championship. Bluman Associates were commissioned to provide full video display solution and management.
The FACEIT platform is home to 12 million registered users, hosting 34 million monthly games with up to 90,000 gamers playing at any one time. The summit included teams from North America, Europe, Korea, China, Japan, Southeast Asia, Latin America and Oceania.
Streamed to registered internet and television viewers, the tournament started with three days of broadcasted heats, followed by three days of finals as the players competed for a $400,000 prize pool in front of live and broadcast audience.
The system provided by Bluman Associates comprised of 12 front project double stacked units, displaying onto a 10k pixel x 1080 high screen. The system also included 16 LED Screens, exhibiting the six individual teams battling it out for the title.
The gaming aspect of the project heavily relied on HTML5. This allowed player information and stats to be projected on to the wide screen display. The team sent a 2 x 2k HTML5 Rasta over a pre-rendered wireframe, programmed with data such as pod sizes and video screen layout. This allowed team logos, scores, stats and maps of different scenes to be routed to the relevant pod, enabling the audience to keep up to date with competition information
Australia - The Star Casino in Sydney has unveiled its immersive indoor light and water display, featuring a crescent-shaped video screen based on Black Onyx LED panels by ROE Visual.
The Grand Foyer experience at the Star Casino in Sydney, combines LED screens, aquatic water fountains, lasers, light and live performances to offer an interactive arrival experience for its approx. 20,000 guests that pass through the foyer every day.
Big Screen Projects were commissioned by Ramus Illumination to supply the LED equipment for the refurbishment of the Grand Foyer, the total immersive installation amounting to a 22m dollar investment for the Star Casino.
For this project Big Screen Projects have been working together with lighting specialists Ramus Illumination, who specialise in the design of grand-scale theatrical experiences that encourage public engagement.
The screen showcases the works of Australian artists, university students, cinematographers and animators, the content reacting dynamically to the real-world environment and human movement, encouraging guest interaction. “Creating an installation that combines architecture, contemporary art and technology, states Dino Mezzatesta, the Star Sydney chief operating officer, inspiration behind the artworks was drawn from The Star’s proximity to the busy Sydney Harbour shoreline.”
“With The Star Sydney Grand Foyer experience, we wanted to design an experience full of compelling encounters that enrich the journey,” comments Bruce Ramus, who heads Ramus Illumination, we envisioned a
India - QSC is celebrating the inauguration of its new SAARC headquarters in Bengaluru. The new 9,270sq.ft office serves as a business development, management and support hub for QSC systems, live sound and cinema businesses in the region. It also acts as a training and demonstration area and includes a 13,760sq.ft terrace for customer events.
“Over the last few years, QSC has been dedicated to growing its international presence, and this new entity is a crucial piece of that strategy,” says Markus Winkler, SVP, EMEA South Asia, & managing director QSC EMEA GmbH. “As we continue to experience tremendous growth in SAARC year-over-year in all our business units, this dedicated facility will allows us to accelerate our growth trajectory in the coming years.”
“Our business partners in SAARC have been instrumental in our success and will continue to be our main focus as we work together to develop new opportunities in all vertical markets,” says Rajesh Mittal, managing director, QSC India and SAARC. “The ability to offer in-region support resources in addition to our comprehensive solutions portfolio allows us to better equip our partners with the right tools to grow their business and deepen customer relationships.
“In addition, we can give customers a first-hand experience of QSC solutions, as well as local training, including the Q-SYS Architect training program, enabling our customers and partners to understand the QSC difference.”
Winkler continues: “In addition to this new office, we are excited to announce the promoti
UK - On the three days before Good Friday, the streets of central Birmingham were taken over by The Birmingham Passion Play 2019, an ambitious, contemporary retelling of the Easter story, organised by Christian charity and theatre company Saltmine Trust, with support from The Passion Trust. To help bring the creative vision to life, Saltmine partnered with UK audio visual production supplier SFL.
The Saltmine Trust Theatre company puts on regular public, partner, and education tours, as well as one-off shows, all inspired by the Christian faith. Even for Saltmine though, The Birmingham Passion Play 2019 was an ambitious undertaking as it was delivered on the move - a travelling street performance that started at Birmingham Bullring, progressing along New Street to Victoria Square, and finishing inside St Philip’s Cathedral - effectively making the stage over half a mile wide. It required a team of around one hundred community actors, musicians, and stewards alongside the core theatre company’s cast and crew, as well as extensive technical support and planning.
AV specialist SFL supplies and supports a wide variety of events across the UK and internationally as part of SFL Group, as well as being the official AV partner of The Royal Albert Hall and UK sales partner for d&b audiotechnik. SFL project manager, Mitch Jones comments: “This production was only possible with an incredible effort by all the Saltmine and SFL team members spreads across six locations - each telling the next part of the story as the cast performed through the streets betwe
UK - CUK Audio has announced plans to move into new premises in East Kilbride.
The new building, which is currently being fitted out, is situated in Peel Park around 10 miles from the company’s existing Glasgow HQ. It will provide space for the distributor’s expanding back office, sales and technical teams and also house five training suites and a distribution centre with over 750 pallet locations and 1000 small item locations.
CUK is expected to move in on 5 June.
Stuart Thomson, CUK MD, comments: “When we moved to our current Glasgow location back in 2010, we thought there was more space than we could ever need. However, since then, we have delivered year-on-year growth which has accelerated since a change in ownership and the restructuring of the company in to four divisions two years ago. Over the past year, it became apparent that we were very near the limit of what our building could accommodate, and the search was on for a new property that would allow us to continue on our steep growth trajectory.”
Simon Druce, sales director, adds: “The move is not just for practical reasons; it is part of our strategy to invest in enhancing the service we provide our customers. The first benefits customers can expect are improved delivery times and better facilities for our educational events but that is just the start.”
USA - Wiz Khalifa’s Coachella performance was filled with dramatic moments. But for the Grammy-nominated star’s long-time lighting designer Jason Bullock, the real drama started about 24 hours before the show began.
It was then that the New York-based LD received the ChamSys MagicQ MQ500 desk from Upstaging that he would use to run his 90-universe show. “Coachella is a very important festival for all artists involved, so there was some pressure,” acknowledged Bullock. “I didn’t see the ChamSys desk until I arrived at the festival. I built the patch and show file in a Viz room on the site. Being able to build a show with a few hours and only get on the lighting system for three hours made time of the essence. ChamSys was the ideal tool, given that I was in a crunch.
“The Sahara Tent at Coachella was primarily EDM acts,” said Bullock. “Since Wiz brought the entire band with him, I decided to make the show completely different than the other acts by going in the direction of a more classical rock show. Our beautiful set, which was designed by the team from Nimblist, made it easier to create this kind of look with its band risers and large center gate. We also had a powerful video display from Screenworks NEP that covered the front of the set and added to the intense vibe.”
Bullock controlled a universe of Catalyst to send multiple outputs to the massive amount of video surfaces on the set. His show was extensive (his patch had 21 pages of paperwork), and impressively, he punted throughout its entire length.
“My whole show w
Qatar – The world’s largest permanent video projection installation has opened at the new National Museum of Qatar (NMoQ). Inside 21 billion pixels are being processed every second by nine Avolites Ai Q3 servers, alongside another 163 Ai Miami software licences, running on 1U 8K media servers custom designed by the London-based visual technologists, RES.
The video projection aspects of the project involve a series of ‘Art Films’, which were produced by the Doha Film Institute (DFI) in collaboration with handpicked directors and videographers, to immerse visitors in a journey through Qatar’s past, present and future aspirations. The projections cover a vast area, co-created by RES, MAN Enterprise / EMPTY Joint Venture and the DFI.
“Avolites Ai is always our go-to software for demanding projects like this - the AIM Codec and Salvation Engine are both powerful and reliable,” says Mark Calvert from RES. “My colleagues Dave Green and Trey Harrison were of course the architects of the original source code for the Ai software, so we are very familiar with what it can achieve when a project needs to go big.”
The Avolites Ai Q3 servers and custom-designed 8K servers are feeding more than one petabyte of movie data to 112 Panasonic 4K projectors, which are beaming the content onto curved interior walls of the museum, known as the ‘cinematic display zones’. The data is shared via 50.6km of 3G SDI cabling and each video requires full motion image resolution as high as 25K by 4K, to cover more than 33,000 sq.ft. of space. The huge quantity
UK - “Mark Owen came to our first meeting and before discussions had even begun proposed we use the spherically rendered Take That logo from the cover of the new Odyssey album for the stage show.” This was how the band’s long-time tour director, Chris Vaughan of CV Productions, revealed the kernel of the concept. “No idle thought, Mark’s idea was a fully formed vision, with a huge panoramic screen behind it, and video adorning the total surface of the sphere; this would come to be the defining image of the tour.”
Vaughan quickly called upon the technical prowess of Video Design, who had supported Take That’s previous outing in 2016 and the engineering skills of Brilliant. “The key is knowing how to respond to extreme conceptual design,” was Vaughan’s assessment. “That, and the willingness to do so. A 10m diameter rotating sphere covered in high definition video is not commodity based, you don’t rent it off the shelf like sound and lighting equipment.”
The final result, supervised by CV Productions engineering point man Nick Evans, is 47 tons of steel, aluminium, motion control, and a virtually seamless skin of video tiles. “It took us almost a month, working closely with Nick and the guys at Brilliant just to solve the issues of fixing two and a half thousand 12mm WinVision flat square video tiles to a spherical surface without the appearance of visually unacceptable gaps between tiles,” explained Video Design’s CEO, Alex Leinster.
“A fantastic painstaking job headed up by Jack Middlebrook who now leads our t
UK - Maestra Group has made some major sound, lighting and video equipment investments recently in the London office, including white sound and lighting kit, which will ensure all its clients have the most flexible and dynamic solutions available for their shows and events.
The equipment is proving especially popular for car launches and other automotive events, fashion shows, corporates, industrials and expo stands as well as for art exhibitions, parties and architainment applications, where white equipment is often better suited to blend into the environment than traditional black.
The kit includes a substantial purchase of 30 x custom coated white Robe moving lights – 12 x LEDBeam 150s, 12 x Spiider LED WashBeams and six Pointe multipurpose fixtures which bring Maestra London’s total stock of Robes to over 100 including black versions of these three types and others.
In addition to these, there are over 100 other white luminaires in the inventory – a mix of Showtec Sunstrip Active Mk IIs, ETC Source Four Junior Zooms and Aria F1000 fresnels, all giving an excellent choice for different lighting designs.
On top of that, there is a selection of d&b audio speakers in white – currently a combination of Y7Ps, T10s, E5s and M6 monitors – which is expected to be expanded soon.
Maestra’s MD Justin Hammond highlights how the demand for white lighting and sound kit has dramatically increased in the last year in certain speciality sectors, and both Maestra Group’s London and Dubai bases have been proactive about addressing thi
Europe - Shawn Mendes chose the Netherlands to kick off his nine-month world tour. The set, premiering in the Ziggo Dome in Amsterdam, revealed a large circular video wall as the eye-caching center-stage piece, comprising of ROE Visual Carbon CB5 LED panels.
Based on the simple, yet visually strong light design by LD Louis Oliver a massive circular video wall looms over the stage, creating a dramatic setting. “We wanted to keep the performance space organic, allowing the technology to hide in the background,” Oliver says. “With the design, we wanted to craft bold environments for Shawn to perform within.”
The total stage set-up comprises of a circular stage with steps on the left and right leading to two 9m wings. This gives a wide 280-degree sightline for the audience, while the front seats curve around the stage to bring them as close as possible to the artist. Above the stage sits a large circular video screen with complementary curved trusses for the lighting, all of these being able to move and thereby creating different atmospheres for each song.
VSS is main video contractor for the world tour. Adrian Offord, director for VSS assisted Louis Oliver in the final choice for the overhead video wall.
“We selected the Carbon CB5 LED panels for their visual quality and high brightness. The panels are fitted with black face LEDS and masking with very slim faders. The mere 0,3mm size of these faders enables us to keep the best possible viewing angle. Using the screen most of the time in a tilted position this needs to be taken into acco