USA - To bring the Tony Award-winning musical Hadestown to life on stages across the US for its national tour, lighting designer Bradley King implemented a versatile lighting rig featuring Martin Professional LED fixtures, provided by Christie Lites.
Written by singer-songwriter Anaïs Mitchell and directed by Rachel Chavkin, Hadestown is an American blues and folk-infused version of the Ancient Greek myth of Orpheus and Eurydice. Mitchell first premiered Hadestown in 2006 with a DIY theatre group in Vermont and recorded a concept album based on the show in 2010 before the final version debuted on Broadway in 2019 at the Walter Kerr Theatre.
This year, Hadestown embarks on a national theatre tour that debuted at the Kennedy Centre in Washington, D.C. Lighting designer Bradley King, who won a Tony for his work on the Broadway production of Hadestown, wanted a rig that translated the Walter Kerr’s natural and intimate lighting to venues of all sizes while accommodating the limited gear capacity and setup times inherent to touring Broadway productions. To meet these requirements, King implemented versatile and powerful Martin solutions including the MAC Ultra Performance, ERA 800 Performance, and MAC Encore Performance and Wash fixtures.
“On a very practical level, the task at hand was to figure out how to take a show that barely fits in the Walter Kerr and then squeeze it into six or seven trucks and be able to set it up and take it down in 14 hours,” said King.
“The Broadway production is nearly all Martin
UK - Like many public events, the outlook for the Edinburgh International Festival in 2021 was a little different. With restrictions limiting the use of indoor venues, the festival looked to d&b Soundscape - and its acoustic shell - to unite the disparate worlds of classical music and sound reinforcement; to recreate the comfort and quality of the concert hall in a temporary open-air environment.
On the grounds of Edinburgh’s Junior Academy and the city’s Old College Quad, two custom built pavilions, a hundred metres long, were installed like giant bubbles, roofed, but open sided for free-flowing fresh air. Striking in scale and appearance and, as it turns out, entirely capable of the intimacy and focus essential to the arts.
Knowing they had a long-standing reputation for delivering exceptional classical performances, Edinburgh International Festival initiated an informal, exploratory, chat with sound design consultants, Sound Intermedia. With thousands of discerning listeners in mind, especially those accustomed to unamplified music, the necessary sound reinforcement would need to be imperceptible to the ears.
“At Sound Intermedia we’ve been embedded in the cultural world of classical artists and music for more than twenty years,” says founder, Ian Dearden. “Serving as a bridge, or translator, between the art and the technology. A PA often brings an element of anxiety to classical musicians. Of course, we’re always thinking about the audience experience, but you’re three quarters of the way there if you have performers who ar
UK - A daredevil walk the plank challenge which kicked off this year’s I’m A Celebrity Get Me Out Of Here on ITV, was designed and rigged by Unusual Rigging.
ITV bosses are no strangers to the feats that Unusual is able to pull off, having contracted director Robin Elias as crew chief on several stunts for various different shows. Robin said: “Pre-pandemic, ITV had brought me on board to work with them on the show in Australia. Then when Covid hit in 2020 and the show hurriedly relocated from Oz to Wales, none of the trials involved any rigging - there simply wasn’t the time to devise them. We fully expected to be back in the jungle in 2021, but because of the continuing pandemic, it was once again re-routed to Wales, and I was retained as a consultant.”
This year’s opening trial – the one which sees the celebrities first enter the camp was called Walk the Plank. The team on the show had a rough idea of what they wanted to achieve, basing it loosely on a similar trial that had been filmed from the top of a high rise building in Australia some years back. But, the landscape of North Wales is somewhat different to Sydney. So, Robin and crew chief Sam Carter, travelled to north Wales to conduct a number of site visits and came up with two locations and two different stunts.
The chosen location was Moel Tryfan - a slate quarry in Gwynedd. One of the biggest challenges faced by Robin and Sam, was how to overcome the complexities of the location, to ensure the trial was safe for the contestants and all those operating it.
UK - With his repertoire of music blended with comedy, Tim Minchin’s UK tour, which began back in 2019, resumed after lockdown with a further eight-week stint. Titled Back . . . Encore, this took him through a number of sold-out UK theatre shows, interspersed with a handful of arena dates.
The Australian was supported onstage by a seven-piece band - three brass players, bass, guitar, drums and percussion. Masterminding the sound production was Martin Audio’s rental partner, Capital Sound, with Dave Roden mixing once again to his favoured Wavefront Precision WPS.
Capital drew on their inventory of 32 WPS line array enclosures, but purchased six additional multi-channel, Dante-supporting iKON amplifiers for the tour, enabling the system to be driven in the optimum one-box resolution.
Explaining the need for the expanded WPS inventory this time around, Capital account manager, Martin Connolly, said that the additional elements had provided Dave Roden with increased horsepower when matching to the main hangs and outfills.
“The WPS system is perfectly matched for Minchin,” he said. “It was so successful last time and so Dave [Roden] requested it again.” Crucially, the restricted loading points at some theatres became another defining factor.
However, WPS was supplemented at the three larger capacity arenas - Nottingham Motorpoint, Leeds First Direct and Cardiff Motorpoint - where Martin Audio’s larger WPL took over main duties, moving the WPS out wide to function as side-hangs.
Providing low frequency extension we
UAE - Stage One Creative Services delivered stage engineering for the hero centrepiece at UAE’s 50th National Day celebrations. The show, which took place on 2 December, marked the country’s Golden Jubilee as the largest celebration to date.
The floating theatrical experience, designed by award winning artist, Es Devlin, is situated on Hatta Dam in the Hajar Mountains. Stage One engineered, fabricated, installed and operated the hero rotating stage which hosted the cast. The floating disc-shaped sculpture, which is 19m tall at its highest point, doubled up as a performance area and projection surface.
The key challenge was engineering a heavy steel structure that will remain balanced in a cantilevered state on a floating pontoon. This was achieved through judicious structural and marine engineering and a hefty serving of ballast. To allow the disc to revolve, it was constructed on top of three concentric track rings and is driven by four motors. The movement is controlled by Stage One’s proprietary automation system, Qmotion.
Starting work in July, the sculpture was designed, built and transported to the remote location in just three months, with teams arriving to install in early September. Once fully loaded on site with scenery, reflective water pool and performers, the disc weighs in at almost 300 tonnes.
This is the second consecutive year Stage One has contributed to the UAE National Day live event celebrations alongside artistic director and designer Es Devlin, technical designers Wonder Works and Official UAE 50th Celebration prod
France - Robe France enjoyed the buzz and excitement generated by the 2021 JTSE (Journées Techniques du Spectacle et de l'Evénement) expo staged over two days at Les Docks de Paris.
It was a welcome return to face to face - or mask to mask - meeting opportunities after the 2020 online event, and Robe’s French team also celebrated this landmark putting a special focus on the launch of the new T11 range of theatrical luminaires, a three-in-one LED lighting solution.
The eye-catching Robe booth in the main Pullman Dock building was designed as a stylish, contemporary ‘lounge’ meet and greet area, and became a social hub for those wanting to say hello and stop for meetings and discussions. It was constantly busy with a stream of customers, contacts and industry friends, and Robe France co-CEO Bruno Garros comments: “It was impressive - many came to us with a specific agenda - they wanted to negotiate and talk about deals. This is a great sign for business picking up again.”
His enthusiasm was shared by his co-CEO Elie Battah who underlined the “extreme importance” of being able to “network with such a diverse mix of people in one space, with so many very positive outlooks for the future after a tough 18 months”.
They and the team reported seeing numerous lighting designers, programmers, technicians, and others from the freelance community together with rental companies, venue operators and also students as well as aspiring young professionals eyeing a future career in production and entertainment technology.
USA - SoundSwitch, the provider of DJ lighting control solutions, has announced the SoundSwitch Control One - a professional lighting controller and dual-universe DMX interface with extensive connectivity with DJ and DAW applications.
Control One is compatible with professional DJ platforms from Engine DJ, Serato DJ and Virtual DJ, making it easy to integrate the tool into existing set-ups. In addition, performers can automate synchronised light shows and add live lighting effects via Ableton Link or by manually tapping in the BPM on Control One.
Control One provides tactile control over all SoundSwitch performance features, including triggering colour and position overrides, cycling between banks of automated light shows (Autoloops) or triggering the strobe. There are customizable RGB performance pads, parameter knobs, and a touch strip to create the perfect ambience for any event or venue.
The tool can be used without a computer by connecting it via USB to Engine DJ hardware (running v2.0 or higher). Once connected, the user has full standalone control over the entire performance environment, music, and lights.
“The Control One adds new functionally and improves the overall experience of controlling lighting while DJing. Following on from the release of standalone lighting control and the improvements made to the desktop software, a dedicated controller for SoundSwitch and Engine Lighting was the logical next step,” says SoundSwitchʼs product owner, Matt Watkins. “Control One takes the use of lighting in a DJ set to the next level.”
Europe - Lighting designer, director and programmer Marc Lorenz has joined Ayrton’s international team as designer relationship manager with a focus on Europe.
Lorenz brings to his new role over 30 years of experience as a freelance operator, programmer, lighting director and designer on many well-known festivals, arena shows, tours, television and corporate events, as well as being a respected trainer for lighting consoles and media servers.
His past festival credits include Paleo Festival Nyon, Out in the green Frauenfeld and the Open Air St. Gallen while his touring career has encompassed groundbreaking tours for artists - many with leading lighting designer Gunther Hecker - like Die Fantastischen Vier, David Garrett and Herbert Grönemeyer, amongst many others. Lorenz is also co-author with Roland Greil of Showlicht, vom Scribble zum fertigen Design.
“I am very excited to be joining Ayrton,” says Lorenz. “I know some of the team already, and I know and like how Chris (Ferrante, Ayrton’s CEO) is driving the brand forward.
“As a designer and programmer, I have worked with Ayrton products before, firstly with the Creative Solutions products like MagicPanel and CosmoPix, and latterly with Khamsin and other of their Classic fixtures. So I already know about the quality of the products, and this is what I want to bring to people’s attention. In my new role, my experience and knowledge will be a touchpoint for the designers and operators. We talk the same language because I have been in their shoes for a long time, so I know about
UK - Ross Robertson has joined Arena UK MEA as managing director of the structures division, based in Arena’s St Ives headquarters.
Arena chief operating officer EMEA Tom Evans comments: “Arena Group is taking on a new look as we bounce back from the pandemic, and I am sure that Ross is the right person to steer the structures division, bringing great experience to achieve ambitious expansion beyond our core events sector.
“Arena’s structures division is gearing up for an incredibly busy 2022 across a wide range of events, and we are investing in our team to support our project directors, managers and site crews’ delivery of amazing events on behalf of clients.”
Arena’s structures team is already well underway with the build for Europe’s largest temporary triple-decker hospitality structure for the 2022 Cheltenham Festival and next year will also provide temporary infrastructure to many projects including The Randox Grand National, Wimbledon Championships, The Open, and The Birmingham Commonwealth Games.
Ross states: “It is fabulous that my career pinnacle sees me return to Arena, where my temporary structures journey began. Arena is an amazingly well-respected brand with a fantastic team of event professionals who I’m looking forward to working alongside.
“Paul Berger (Arena EMEA CEO) and Tom Evans have shared their exciting vision for Arena, presenting a great opportunity to stretch myself and take on new challenges to develop and deliver their business strategy into the demountable industrial structures sector.
New Zealand - Dream Solutions has announced that its flagship product, LightFactory can now be purchased as a yearly subscription. The new pricing model greatly reduces the investment needed to use this control software. The new subscription system starts at $99 for the full one universes product, $149 for four universes and $199 per year for a 10 universe system. The scription includes all future software upgrades, free fixture library requests and monthly fixture library updates.
The existing one-time purchase model is still available for those who prefer to purchase the software outright.
The latest version of LightFactory is free to download from: http://www.lightfactory.net
LightFactory has seen considerable success in a variety of applications over the past 18 years of development, from running major stadium spectaculars with up to 150 DMX universes to local theatre pantomimes, to night clubs and events, museums and architainment applications.
Freelancers in the Dark - The coronavirus lockdowns have had a major impact on theatre freelancers, leaving them pessimistic for the future, says the leader of a study. Dr Holly Maples, of the University of Essex. said the "stops and starts" of the lockdown prevented freelancers from being able to plan ahead. She said many did not know whether they would be able to carry on in their profession.
The first part of the report, called Freelancers in the Dark, found 72.4% of respondents felt more pessimistic about their future as a theatre freelancers. Dr Maples, a senior lecturer at the East 15 Acting School at the Colchester university, said: "The closures of theatres greatly affected people's ability to plan and to carry on with the work they had been doing. A lot of people were kind of left high and dry, both by the organizations they were working with [that] couldn't pay them with the lack of ticket sales, obviously, and a large proportion, perhaps 60% to 70%, didn't get the government protection [of furlough payments]."
She said the project, which will produce a final report in 2022, had also found that many freelancers had found new skills. "Freelancers have also been networking and organising and built up a sense of solidarity as they felt the government and the public were not necessarily valuing what they do."
Mask Plea - Audiences visiting venues across the country are being urged to wear face coverings when seeing shows, in a push by the Society of London Theatre and UK Theatre to limit the spread of Covid-19 among theatregoers
Europe - Exhibitors are signing up in significant numbers to take part in ISE 2022 in Barcelona in February. Over 700 exhibitors have already committed, including Barco, Crestron, KNX, Kramer, LG, Panasonic, Samsung, and Sony. The show floor has been redesigned and will also feature new Discovery Zone, highlighting 40 new companies exhibiting for the first time.
Taking place at the Fira de Barcelona Gran Via, the large, modern facility features wide aisles, an easy-to-navigate layout and industry-leading brands showcasing technology innovations and more.
Mike Blackman, managing director, Integrated Systems Events comments: “It is very heartening to see that globally, events and exhibitions are returning to strength. We are delighted that we already have 700+ exhibitors confirming their presence at ISE 2022 and we expect more to confirm in the coming days. With a vibrant thought leadership content programme and inspiring show floor, we are very much looking forward to getting back to business in Barcelona in February next year.”
A regular highlight of ISE, Crestron has exhibited at every single edition since the show’s launch in 2004 and is a located in the Multi-Technology Zone. Brad Hintze, executive VP, marketing of Crestron comments: “ISE continues to be a vital connection point for our industry across the residential and commercial spaces. We are eagerly anticipating this year’s show as a platform to showcase the many award-winning and category-defining solutions that have been released since the last time we were all together in perso
South Africa - Idols South Africa 2021 underwent its most substantial visual transformation for a few years with a shift of venue, from the State Theatre in Pretoria to Studio 10 at the Urban Brew complex in Johannesburg. This moment was seized by the show’s long term lighting designer Joshua Cutts of Visual Frontier, for a radical re-think, and for the first time in 17 Idols seasons, he presented a lighting co-design created collaboratively with Andre Siebrits, also from Visual Frontier.
The pair relied heavily on Robe moving lights – over 200 were specified on the rig, plus two RoboSpot remote follow spotting systems – to assist with a fresh new aesthetic that takes the SA edition of the show production to “next level” status.
Owing to Covid regulations, a large live audience was still not possible this year, so Josh and Andre embraced this effective restriction by redefining the look and optimising it for the multi-camera direction of Gavin Wratten, who also had some clear ideas about visuality.
Taking a ‘bare stage’ approach was a bold and confident move that utilised lighting plus all the negative spaces in the room to create the drama, depth, and diversity.
“It had to look completely different from anything before but also very contemporary,” explained Josh, “and for this we needed multi-purpose fixtures to be at the core of the rig.”
The backbone of the slick modern lighting look was created with Robe Esprites and MegaPointes with 24 of each type.
The rig was enhanced by having the two RoboSp
Canada - Before any entertainer ever sets foot on its stage, Club Regent Event Centre is already equipped to put on a show with its computer-automated flexible seating system, which can adapt in minutes into over a dozen seating configurations for any kind of show: theatrical, concert, meetings, and more.
This 1,400-seat venue in Winnipeg, Manitoba, which is part of the larger Club Regent Casino features a new L-Acoustics K3-based sound system.
“This is a fairly complex sound system for a very flexible environment,” explains Martin Van Djik, senior consultant and partner at Toronto-based Engineering Harmonics, which designed the Solotech-integrated system.
The system comprises L/R hangs of eight K3 loudspeaker enclosures each, with six 12 KS21 subs per side, eight arrays of three Kiva II as delays, eight coaxial X8 frontfills, two larger X12 out-fills, four A15 Wide deck-fills, and one centre-fill consisting of one K3 plus four Kara II. Nine LA12X and four LA4X amplified controllers drive the system, which is connected to an audio network using six LS10 AVB network switches. For control, a DiGiCo Quantum338 console was also part of the new package, installed by integrator AVG.
“We had to design a system that would always provide excellent coverage, whether the room was configured for Broadway show-style theatre seating or as a flat, open ballroom-type floor for a trade event or fundraiser,” he says. “Each configuration has its own specific coverage needs, so we designed a sound system to accommodate all of them.” For instance, he s
Indonesia - A major new development at Universitas Katolik Parahyangan (Parahyangan Catholic University) in Bandung, West Java, has seen the inclusion of a high specification, multipurpose auditorium for choir performances, presentations and lectures. An Alcons Audio system has been chosen for sound reinforcement.
The university tasked design and build contractor PT Esa Sinergi Selaras Indonesia (PT ESSI) with delivering the audio in the new auditorium.
PT ESSI also chose Alcons knowing that the company’s pro-ribbon technology would ensure minimal ear fatigue for audiences. Jakarta-based KC Sound - Alcons Indonesian representative - would also be on hand to offer full support, including tuning the system to deliver its full potential.
The chosen system for the 1000-seat auditorium comprises compact hangs of two single 12” VR12/90 mid-size versatile monitors on each side of the stage, plus a central BF362i mkII double 18” high output subwoofer beneath the stage. Amplification and control duties are fulfilled by a single 4x 2.5 kW Sentinel10 amplified loudspeaker controller.
The system’s compact size ensures an unobstructed view of a giant video screen installed downstage, even at the back of the raked audience seating, and that there is no visual impact on the auditorium’s modern, attractive décor.
“Before the new building formally opened, we hosted five trial events, which included demonstrating the audio system,” says Hardy Nanda of the university’s technical support department. “University staff and audience members
UK - The full scope of the Faridabad, India-born Sonu Nigam’s talent was on full display this November at his UK shows at SSE Arena Wembley in London and Resorts World Arena in Manchester. On stage for over three hours at each venue, Sonu Nigam performed 37 songs and medleys that included his own compositions as well as songs from legendary singers Mohammad Rafi and Kishore Kumar.
Reflecting the vibrancy and versatility of the multi-faceted performance was a Roosevelt Dsouza-designed lightshow that featured Chauvet Professional fixtures supplied by DMX Productions.
The lighting followed the singer through every twist and turn of his performance, peaking at intense moments, then becoming gentle for softer songs, all while never repeating a look. This was no small accomplishment, given the all-encompassing nature of the multi-award winnings star’s work.
Helping Dsouza accomplish this feat were the 16 Rogue R3 Beams in his touring kit. Arranged in four vertical columns that bordered the video wall panels, the 300W moving fixtures provide Dsouza with plenty of firepower (208,000 lux at 15-metres) to direct beams across the stage. Throughout the concert, he reconfigured the shape, direction, and colour of those beams to create a continuous flow of new looks.
“The beam shaper feature of the Rogue R3 was fantastic,” he said. “At some points in the show when you could see the beams open up, it was really impactful.”
In addition to creating myriad patters over and on the stage, the Rogue R3 Beams were used to highlight Sonu Nigam and
Denmark - Vejle Musikteater, one of the busiest and liveliest multi-purpose live performance venues in Jutland, has reopened fully after the pandemic period, complete with a new Robe Esprite house lighting package comprising 32 x Esprites in total.
Sixteen of these have been added as front lighting to the existing over-stage rig of 16 in the Main Hall. Head of lighting Rasmus Wiberg explained that during the Covid closure they used the time constructively to activate various renovations and changes needed in the venue, including the complete removal of the ‘advanced’ lighting bridge – the one nearest the stage – above the auditorium to fit in a new PA system.
This also seemed an ideal opportunity to replace the old discharge profiles with new LED moving lights for greater versatility. Having had a great experience with the first batch of 16 x Esprites and the 100 plus other Robe moving lights in the venue, more Esprites was a “logical” choice, stated Rasmus.
They also needed a bright fixture as the FOH lighting position is now on another catwalk 20 metres out from the stage and higher into the auditorium ceiling, so the throw distances are substantially longer.
Many features on the Esprite impressed Rasmus and his team including the shuttering, the EMS stabilisation, the colours and Robe’s TE LED technology. The zoom range was also a factor as they needed a beam that remained sharp across the longer distances.
“Like all Robe fixtures, the Esprites have been super reliable and worked brilliantly for our needs,” commen
USA - Rapper and songwriter Nate Feuerstein, more commonly known as NF, embarked on a massive amphitheatre tour this past fall that showcased Martin Professional VDO Sceptron and MAC Quantum Wash fixtures with P3 system control, provided by Solotech.
Boasting several songs with hundreds of millions of streams - including the single Let You Down which recently crossed one billion streams - NF is a multi-platinum-selling artist who has gained a dedicated following for tackling themes like vulnerability, faith and mental health in his music. This latest tour featured just Feuerstein and drummer Rico Nichols onstage, leaving plenty of room for Feuerstein to move around and display his electric showmanship.
The tour’s lighting crew aimed to create a rig that enhanced and heightened Feuerstein’s energy for arena-sized venues while also maintaining an aesthetic use of shadows and darkness. To achieve this balance, creative director Chris Denholm and lighting designer Clay Joiner selected the versatile Martin VDO Sceptron LED video battens and the colourfully immersive MAC Quantum Wash lights.
“We tried to figure out how we could carry a show with just one guy on stage and how to put together a rig that would lend to Nate’s performing,” said Chris Denholm, creative director. “Nate's very physical onstage; he runs around and ping pongs from place to place, so framing him properly has always been an important thing to do. Also, he’s a no-front-light artist; it's all silhouette and sidelight with him. So we really needed a powerful fixt
The Netherlands - Located in the eastern Dutch town of Hengelo, the Metropool is a long-established live music venue featuring a wide range of acts and genres. It moved to its present home in 2009 and at that point its console stock was updated to include three DiGiCo SD8s and a large-format analogue desk, covering all its audio mixing needs across its Jupiler and Jack Daniels halls.
They were one of the first Dutch venues to invest in DiGiCo technology as Teun Zekhuis, their Head Technician recalls: “We chose the SD8 for its sound, interface, workflow and overall look and feel. Being one of the first stages in the Netherlands with this first series of SD8s we were really pioneering in a new world of digital audio. The SD8s proved to be a great choice and served us very well.”
Fast forward nine years to 2018 and through a series of events, Metropool found itself taking over the business of Atak, a venue for pop music, creating Metropool | Pop stages of Twente. “The audio equipment we inherited at Enschede confirmed that we made a good choice back in 2009; unlike ours, it had not withstood the test of time! So, one of the first things we did in Enschede was to replace the consoles,” Zekhuis continues.
“Having DiGiCos in Hengelo, the choice for a new series of DiGiCos in Enschede was obvious; why change a winning formula? But to be sure we checked a few competitors and concluded that there was no other brand with a product line so compatible with our business, both affordable and quantitative. So, in 2018 we chose an SD5 for front of house i
Denmark - Technical production and rental specialist Live Company, based in Skovlunde, Copenhagen, continues to invest in Astera wireless LED products at a pace to keep parallel with the “incredible demand” of the Danish market, states owner Peter Clausen.
They were the first rental company in Denmark to invest majorly in Astera, initially with AX1 PixelTubes in 2018, and the latest acquisitions include several sets of Titan Tubes and the newly launched AX9 PowerPAR all-purpose everyday LED lighting fixture – one of the three innovative products launched by Astera in 2021.
The AX9s were bought specifically for Dejlig er Jorden, an operatic recital tour around Danish churches by an ensemble of opera singers and classical musicians. Lighting designer Súni Joensen specifically wanted powerful, reliable, quick and easy to deploy wireless fixtures and 12 x AX9s fitted the bill.
“AX9s are excellent front lights,” says Peter, which was another reason for the purchase, together with the good battery life which easily covers the run-time of most events. He mentions that the consistency of the Astera lightsources and colours is impressive across all the product ranges.
Live Company’s Titan Tubes joined the general rental inventory based on the success they have experienced with the 100 plus AX1s, as they were keen to have Astera’s most up-to-date wireless Tube technology onboard.
The AX1s have been in use constantly, even during the pandemic period, when they were out every week for digital gigs and streamed events, he exp
Canada - Twelve Ayrton Domino-S fixtures, part of Ayrton’s IP65 multi-function luminaire family designed for intensive outdoor use, played a variety of roles at Les Francos de Montréal and the Festival International de Jazz de Montréal, staged back-to-back in September this year due to COVID-19.
Les Francos de Montréal is a large annual pop music and performance festival featuring French-language performers from around the world. It has been held for more than 20 years. The Festival International de Jazz de Montréal holds the 2004 Guinness World Record as the world’s largest jazz festival; every year it features about 3,000 artists in more than 650 concerts and welcomes 2m-plus visitors. This year’s 41st edition was reduced in size due to the coronavirus pandemic with all shows taking place outdoors. Both events were centred around downtown Montréal’s Quartier des Spectacles.
Solotech in Montréal supplied all the lighting, video and audio gear for both festivals. Nicolas Labbé, senior technical specialist, business development at Solotech and a lighting designer himself, had seen and tested the Dominos and knew they would fill the bill for Les Francos and the jazz festival. “I was really impressed by what they could bring to the festivals: their intensity and resolution, the richness of the colours, no hot spots at all, and no need for weatherproofing covers that destroy the look.”
Bruno Rafie, lighting designer for both events, hung the Dominos 35ft in the air on giant, arm-like mega-structures positioned on the street during th
Germany - The Riedel Group has announced an expanded management structure. Starting 1 January 2022, the Wuppertal-based company will be organised into three main divisions: The product division and managed technology business units will have Rik Hoerée and Lutz Rathmann as their respective new CEOs, with Riedel Networks and its managing director and CEO, Michael Martens, forming the group's third division.
This move allows Riedel Group CEO Thomas Riedel to devote his attention to driving business development and expanding global partnerships and networks. Together with group chief financial officer Frank Eischet, who is responsible for finance, HR and IT, Thomas will form the spearhead of the Riedel Group.
"The last year has given us time to take a deep breath and reflect on our setup. We realised that we would have to change some things to sustain the rapid expansion of our business," says Riedel. "These past few years, our company has seen tremendous growth, and 2021 is no exception. Now is the right time to broaden the management team to support this dynamic upswing. This reorganisation is the foundation to master current and future challenges to our business and to continue our strong organic growth."
Riedel chief sales officer (CSO) Martin Berger who has been driving this evolutionary step forward will withdraw from the Riedel management board.
"I take great pride in the fact that we have developed first-class leaders within our own ranks, who are now ready to take on greater responsibility for our next growth phase," said Berger. "It wa
UK - Home to a technically advanced film production complex, Garden Studios is a one-stop-shop for a wide variety of TV and film productions, designed specifically to support the latest technologies as well as decades of future innovation. Its in-house Virtual Production stage is driven by Brompton Tessera processing.
Launched this year, the facility boasts three traditional sound stages, totalling over 3,700m2, as well as an array of supporting spaces. The jewel in its crown is its Virtual Production stage, which allows filmmakers to shoot live action footage within a pre-visualised virtual world, using 3D CGI modelling and precision camera tracking to make it all look as real as possible.
“Whether our clients are looking to shoot a feature film, short-form promo, commercial or music video, Virtual Production can deliver a sustainable and cost, time, and travel-effective solution for their project,” says Garden Studios’ Virtual Production supervisor, Mark Pilborough-Skinner.
The 445m2 Virtual Production stage is powered by tech from Epic Games (Unreal Engine), Mo-Sys (Star Tracker tracking technology), ROE Visual (Diamond 2.6mm LED panels), and Brompton Technology (Tessera LED processing).
Additionally, the LED panels have been dynamically calibrated with Brompton’s Hydra measurement system, making them Brompton HDR-ready. This unlocks the full potential of each LED and allows the team at Garden Studios to take full advantage of exceptionally realistic-looking visual content and extra-wide colour gamut.
“Brompton is an integra
USA - On the south edge of Kansas City, a multi-story commercial building has been lighting its windows in special colours and patterns for decades. ETC’s Mosaic system, a pixel-mapping and show control solution, recently gave them a 21st-century upgrade to heighten the graphics and even provide a new revenue stream for the building.
“The building is right near the interstate. For years, everybody drove past it and loved the decorative touch of the special lighting,” says Autumn Nieland, business development at Mercer Zimmerman. The patterns started with a holiday wreath, then expanded into other designs like the Kansas City Royals or Chiefs logo. But the building wanted something better. They wanted a system that could handle bigger designs but needed less time and people power to make happen.
“They were still just using fluorescent strips lights, figuring out by hand what colours would go into what window, and having maintenance personnel change the colour of gel tubes. It was very labour intensive,” says Nieland. “The property manager came to me and said there’s got to be a better way. So of course, we introduced them to ETC’s Mosaic.”
ETC’s Mosaic makes it easy to paint with light on big canvases like buildings. With support for up to 1.5 million pixels, your designs can be as high- or low-res as you like. And it’s easy enough to use that the building staff have free rein to build and implement their own designs.
Mosaic’s design software has made their life much easier. “They used to plot out windows in Excel by s