blacklinex-powered-1Martin Audio launches BlacklineX Powered
Thursday, 23 May 2019

UK - Martin Audio has announced BlacklineX Powered, bringing new active options to the BlacklineX family.
Comprising the 12” XP12 and 15” XP15 full range enclosures plus the compact but powerful 18” XP118 subwoofer, BlacklineX Powered integrates acoustic, DSP and amplifier technologies to achieve clarity, precision and richness of tone. The range’s debut follows the international success of the passive BlacklineX Series of portable enclosures, the fastest-selling portable series in Martin Audio’s 48-year history.
In addition, BlacklineX Powered offers optional Bluetooth control, streaming and a built-in three channel mixer, placing increased flexibility and features within easy reach of every user, from live venues, DJs and corporate events to permanent installs, particularly houses of worship. Users will also recognise the road-ready construction, quick set-up and adaptability of this range developed by one of pro audio’s founding brands.
“BlacklineX was the first series the team developed and launched after I became Managing Director,” recalls Martin Audio MD, Dom Harter. “It’s become the fastest selling portable series the company has ever launched and a significant contributing factor in Martin Audio’s rapid success over the last three years. The introduction of a self-powered series makes perfect sense and by leveraging our engineers’ expertise in acoustic, DSP and amplifier technologies, we have crafted a very forward-looking portable range with a classic Martin Audio sound.”
BlacklineX Powered will begin ship

weatherfestival3Weather Festival gets immersive with EPIX
Thursday, 23 May 2019

France - Creating an immersive environment at a music festival starts with the stage, but it by no means ends there. This was the guiding philosophy that Vincent Rautureau and his team at Giglam SA followed when lighting the Weather Festival, which returned to Paris’ La Seine Musicale on 27 April after a two-year hiatus.
Rautureau and his associates certainly endowed the stage with dynamic looks to support the pulsating sounds of international EDM and alternative music stars like Daniel Avery, OKO DJ and Ciel, but their creative vision also extended beyond the immediate performance area. Seeking to engage the festival crowd on multiple levels, they turned much of the event’s island venue into a vibrant panorama with help from 140 Chauvet Professional EPIX Strip IP fixtures, supplied by Alive Events Angers.
“We positioned the EPIX Strips on all of the festival site’s bridges,” says Andreas Monschauer, lighting engineer at Giglam. “This turned the bridges into graphical elements, which really integrated the whole festival into one panorama. Using the strips this way gave our design a whole other dimension.”
Adding to the impact of the EPIX Strip IP fixtures were the stunning video images and patterns that Giglam pixel mapped on the one-meter RGB LED strip fixtures, using a ChamSys Magic MQ500 console.
“Displaying the graphic effects on the ÉPIX Strips was very important to creating an overall look that tied the festival together,” says Monschauer. “The ChamSys console made it much easier for us to create these looks. We c

 
 
verizonmedia4Verizon upgrades studios to IP with Lawo
Thursday, 23 May 2019

USA - As part of on-going upgrades and developments to its studio facilities, Verizon Media has taken delivery of three mc²36 audio production consoles and a Nova37 Hybrid IP/MADI Plug&Play Audio Router for its studio facilities from German IP broadcast technology pioneer Lawo.
Renamed Verizon Media Studios (formerly Oath Inc) early in 2019, the renovation and new buildout to the facilities will serve all Verizon Media brands, including Yahoo Finance, Yahoo Sports, Huffpost, Yahoo News, RYOT, Engadget, Tech Crunch and Makers. It encompasses live broadcast and pre-tape studio content with shared resources across different locations.
With DSI/Blade Media acting as the main contractor, the upgrade covers three studios; Control Room 1 and Control Room 3 are used for a daily eight-hour live Yahoo Finance broadcast and ancillary shoots, while Control Room 2 is a general-purpose studio for all other of Verizon brands. These have been equipped with three Lawo mc²36 consoles and a Nova37, accompanied by four Lawo A-mic8 microphone interfaces. The intention is to add two further A-mic8s in the near future.
With work begun in 2018, these studios are currently operational with Stage 2 of the project to follow, bringing additional live studio spaces into play.
“We are scaling globally and the ease of interconnectivity, strong system engineering team and customer service that Lawo provides has made planning for the future exciting and easy to understand,’ says Dan Brantigan head of audio at Verizon Media Studios. “I’ve been exceedingly impress

 
dot-trainingDWR hosts dot2 training in Cape Town
Thursday, 23 May 2019

South Africa - After a successful dot2 training course created, hosted and taught by DWR Distribution in Johannesburg, there was a demand for the same training to take place in Cape Town. The training was brought down to the Cape by Olebogeng Boinamo from DWR.
“It was booked out with 12 people and it filled our Cape Town offices,” says Olebogeng. Each student had access to the system as there were three dot2 consoles from DWR, three of those in attendance had their own dot2s and the rest worked on dot2 on PC. This illustrates the different levels that exist in the field and the impact of the dot2 console, with avid users and newcomers both attending the course to develop their skills, because the console and related PC platform are being used so frequently in the industry.
“The students reflected the Capetonian relaxed attitude as they were eager to talk and ask questions which usually requires an ice breaker but right from the word go they were participating.”
The students were also keen to provide feedback and one noted the dot2 training was the most complete and professional training he had received so far, reflecting the dot2’s importance and Olebogeng’s passion.
(Jim Evans)

 
 
ethercatEuropean EtherCAT Plug Fest success
Thursday, 23 May 2019

Germany - The latest EtherCAT Plug Fest welcomed 57 participants from eight countries and four continents.
The event, conducted by the EtherCAT Technology Group (ETG) in cooperation with acontis technologies GmbH, was held in the middle of May in Ravensburg.
Besides testing their own EtherCAT devices in a shared network with those of other manufacturers by using the EtherCAT Conformance Test Tool, the participants could exchange knowledge and ask for advice from the EtherCAT experts on-site. The different masters and lave products led to a balanced ratio of devices and real-life network conditions.
Christoph Widmann, managing director at acontis technologies GmbH, comments: “The EtherCAT Plug Fests are the perfect opportunity to test devices and applications in a large network together with other manufacturers. For that reason, acontis has participated in many Plug Fests in the past. As a long-term member of EtherCAT Technology Group, we’re extraordinarily happy to host an EtherCAT Plug Fest ourselves.”
Florian Hammel, one of the on-site EtherCAT experts, adds: “This Plug Fest met the customary high standard, the atmosphere among the participants was good and the location was perfect to connect the huge number of devices and work efficiently. The positive feedback from the participating device manufacturers confirms the event’s continued success.”
ETG hosts EtherCAT Plug Fests all over the world several times a year to provide practical support for its members during EtherCAT device development.
(Jim Evans)

 
gustav-vasa-swedenGustav Vasa Kyrka refurbished with d&b
Thursday, 23 May 2019

Sweden - One of the largest and most beautiful of Stockholm’s churches, the Gustav Vasa Kyrka, in the city’s Vasastaden district, has carried out a major refurbishment and technical upgrade.
The Gustav Vasa Kyrka was designed by August Lindegren and completed in 1906, with a capacity of up to 1,200 worshippers, generations of whom have no doubt marvelled at the lavishly decorated marble surfaces, and soaring arches. They also can’t have failed to notice the remarkable reverberation time.
Jacob Julin of Soundcop, the company brought in to solve the church’s intelligibility woes, says, “The acoustics was the biggest challenge. When we started, the hall had an acoustic reverberation of six seconds, so that was of course an issue.”
Later however, following the building’s refurbishment, including new treatments to the floor and walls, that reverb time had risen to seven-and-a-half seconds. Julin continues, “The worst of the reverberation is between 300-500 Hz, so it is possible to improve it with a little bit of system trim, but the reverberation is very long in full frequency as well.”
Representing Svenska Kyrkan, facilities manager Urban Paulander says: “What we wanted was a system which would make speech and music as clear as possible for all the listeners in all areas of the church.”
d&b xC-Series column loudspeakers, which SoundCop had used successfully in Stockholm’s Maria Magdalena church the year before, were well suited to the task. Purchased via ARVA Trading, the d&b audiotechnik distributor for Swe

 
 
lochal-credit-arjen-veldt-photographyYamaha helps signal return of LocHal
Thursday, 23 May 2019

The Netherlands - For 77 years the locomotive repair facility in the Dutch city of Tilburg was a vital part of the Nederlandse Spoorwegen (NS, or Dutch Railways) network. Employing hundreds of local people, its 2009 closure had a profound effect on the area. But now the building has been reborn as a major cultural and learning centre, where Yamaha audio systems are helping to drive the train of new innovation forward.
Originally opened in 1932, the impressive 90m by 60m steel and glass building was a busy workplace, playing an important role in local employment. When it closed, rather than demolish it there was a strong desire to ‘return the building to the Tilburg people’. It was decided to use it to form the centrepiece of a contemporary, fashionable new ‘railway zone’ in the city.
“Impressed by the enormous size of the space, the design team realised that it is more than just a building,” says Dennis van der Vleuten, owner of Klundert Audiovisueel, who was commissioned to install AV solutions in the redeveloped facility. “It is a part of the urban fabric of the city that, with its heavy construction and internal ambience that gets lighter the further up you go, would provide a fantastic spatial experience.”
Reopened in 2019 and renamed LocHal (short for Locomotive Hall), it has been converted into a modern, sustainable art and cultural centre, featuring a relocated Tilburg Central Library as well as spaces for meetings, education, hospitality, artistic and cultural development, a cafe and more. Each space has been carefully desi

 
joe-lycettLED Creative supports Joe Lycett series
Thursday, 23 May 2019

UK - LED illumination specialists LED Creative supported scenic designer Andrew Gates, lighting director Stuart Pring and the team at Joe Lycett's Got Your Back.
Filmed in front of a studio audience at h Studio, London, the series features comedian Joe Lycett serving up a healthy dose of consumer justice as he exposes a variety of scams, appalling customer service and unacceptable consumer standards on behalf of the people of the UK.
Helping to acheive the show’s bright, playful look, LED Creative provided their Pulse Wands, Alpha 60 and Byte System to deliver vibrant colour and optimum control over the set illumination.
In building the boldly coloured design, the scenic designer cleverly integrated LED Creative Alpha 60 throughout the structural components and backdrop. Additional runs of Alpha 60 were concealed above and below the raised stage area to create a halo effect around its perimeter.
LED Creative Pulse Wands were also applied to the installation dynamic shape and form.
Lighting director Stuart Pring says: “The plug-and-play nature of LED Creative’s Pulse Wands make them ideal as a simple to rig, highly controllable solution. The ability to manage the colour and intensity of the output allowed us to add some interesting effects to the set.”
The LD continues: “The design featured semi opaque perspex lightboxes which were rigged with Pulse Wands to form abstract illuminated shapes. We also positioned them behind the windows that flanked the stage and behind the audience adding a further dimension to the wi

 
 
wakefield-hangsTheatre Royal Wakefield upgrades to Halo-C
Thursday, 23 May 2019

UK - Built in 1894, Theatre Royal Wakefield is a Grade II listed traditional proscenium arch theatre in the heart of Yorkshire’s cathedral city of Wakefield. The design and vision of the famous British architect, Frank Matcham and one of the smallest remaining Matcham auditoriums today, Theatre Royal Wakefield is a good example of his ability to create a beautiful theatrical environment within a very tight space.
The time had come to replace the theatre’s old and failing PA with a new, modern system that would provide high quality, even coverage across all the seats in the auditorium. Theatre Royal Wakefield’s technical manager, Ms Di Clough, turned to Huddersfield-based systems integrator, Sound and Light Concepts, who supplied and installed a full Halo-C compact line array system from EM Acoustics.
Despite its bijou proportions, Theatre Royal Wakefield nevertheless has a capacity of 499 seats and the old system was no longer providing the level of service required for a theatre of this calibre. As well as producing around half of its performances, Theatre Royal Wakefield is also a receiving house, so Ms Clough invited several local hire companies and independent sound engineers as well as the theatre’s own sound designer to be present for a number of demos from well-known manufacturers, including a comprehensive demo of the Halo-C line array.
“We were looking for a high quality system with excellent intelligibility and sufficient reserve power to meet the wide range and styles of performance we have here,” explains Clough. “Budget wa

 
calrec-viutv-studio-1Hong Kong’s ViuTV adds Calrec consoles
Thursday, 23 May 2019

China - Hong Kong free-to-air broadcaster ViuTV is preparing for an audio-over-IP future with the purchase of an Artemis Light console, a Brio12, a Brio36 and AoIP interfaces from Calrec.
“The consoles are incredibly user-friendly, vital when being used by a range of operators across a variety of outputs,” says Mike Lau, assistant vice-president of production and facilities at ViuTV. “They are very reliable with great sound quality. We also wanted to be able to satisfy our current networking requirements while also preparing ourselves for an IP future as that transition occurs across our wider infrastructure. Calrec’s technology and after-sales service gave us confidence in making this change.”
The Artemis Light is housed in Studio 1, which is used for general entertainment content as well game shows and live performances. The Brio36 is being used for talk shows in Studio 2 with the Brio12 in Studio 1 acting as a backup. MADI and Dante are used by the broadcaster: the former for intercom connectivity and the latter for connection to a live PA mixing console, for multi-track recording and wireless mike connections.
Commissioning, consultation and additional support was handled by Calrec’s official Hong Kong distributor, Jolly Pro Audio.
“As a new customer, ViuTV was looking for a fresh and modern audio setup that will help them transition to an IP-based environment,” says Calrec international sales manager, Anthony Harrison. “Helping broadcasters make that transition has been central to our product roadmap for some considera

 
 
Motion Labs joins ETCP initiative
Thursday, 23 May 2019

USA - The Entertainment Technician Certification Program (ETCP) has announced the addition of Motion Laboratories as a Recognised Training Provider for ETCP Renewal Credits. This is the first listing that specifically addresses the area of portable power distribution.
Dave Herrmann, Motion Labs’ training develop manager, comments: “MLI Learning prepares Motion Labs employees and customers for work with Motion Labs equipment, primarily in the entertainment industry. The people that build and use our products are the greatest assets to their respective industries. It is because of them that touring productions, conventions, local shows and festivals, permanent event spaces, corporate and church events, and more can all function properly, and above all else, safely.
“Those involved in making event production possible are doing so because they are gaining the knowledge and expertise required. We intend to help them on that journey. Gaining ETCP recognition as a training provider was a natural step towards that goal, and we are excited to be part of the programme.”
Motion Labs will offer two courses:
16 ETCP Renewal Credits: Portable Fixed Speed Low Voltage Chain Hoist Control Repair Course - Hoist control repair training is ideal for entertainment riggers, electricians, user operators and repair technicians who use Motion Labs control products and want to diagnose or repair the equipment themselves.
Nine ETCP Renewal Credits: Portable Power Distribution Repair Course - Power distribution repair training is great for entertainment e

 
cukbuildingexteriorCUK Audio expands into new premises
Wednesday, 22 May 2019

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.”
(Jim Evans)

 
 
ld-heida-supervising-ld-trainee-louise-on-the-ma3grandMA3 in the mix at SPOT festival
Wednesday, 22 May 2019

Denmark - SPOT, an annual music festival in Aarhus showcasing up-and-coming Danish and Scandinavian talents, saw 300 artists and bands perform across 25 stages throughout the city.
Lighting designer and programmer Heiða Kristín Ragnarsdóttir used a grandMA3 light console to run lighting on her stage, reserved for WILM (Women In Live Music) a European non-profit organisation that supports women working behind the scenes and backstage. For the first time, this stage was run by an all-female tech crew.
Ragnarsdóttir reports: “The MA system is my first choice for everything from theatre to concerts. It is very important for me to be able to personalize the setup to fit my needs of the moment which the grandMA2 software does easily. It is highly reliable, has intuitive controls and a lot of flexibility in programming which makes it ideal for ‘busking’ festivals.
“For a stage with a very varied genre of performers it was important that each performer had a lighting design to fit their aesthetic. A play on warm and cool along with dramatic side and backlighting gave us a good foundation to accommodate everything from Greenlandic metal to reggae for children.”
Lighting trainee Louise Bagger adds: “Being a self-taught lighting technician and coming from a different type of console I was excited and a little bit nervous to try out the grandMA3, but thanks to Heida, I quickly gained an understanding of the console, and of how easy it is to personalize a setup to your exact needs. The console design offers a nice straightforward outlook of

 
ascotBose named official supplier for Ascot
Wednesday, 22 May 2019

UK - Ascot Racecourse has announced Bose Professional as its official technology supplier for sound.
The partnership will bring an audio solution to enhance the event-day experience at Ascot.
Integrator SSE Audio Group has led the process to design and specify an audio system that utilises the latest loudspeaker and amplifier technology developed by Bose. Products have been selected based on their ability to form a robust system that delivers best-in-class vocal clarity and consistent, intelligible sound for every listener across the entire Ascot site.
George Vaughan, head of technology at Ascot Racecourse, comments: “Sound is an important facet of the event day experience and having Bose join us as our official technology supplier in this department, will introduce a new level of audio excellence to our venue. Becoming one of the global reference sites for their latest ArenaMatch speakers will not only elevate the audio experience for the hundreds of thousands who visit Ascot every year but also demonstrates our desire and determination to continue to deliver the very best innovation to our customers.”
Andy Rigler, UK sales manager for Bose Professional, adds: “We believe we will truly enhance the audio experience for Ascot’s guests, showcasing our latest technologies, including the new ArenaMatch speaker range. This ties in fantastically with Ascot’s own aspirations to become recognised as a technology leader within the racing world. Once again, we have had the pleasure of collaborating on the project with SSE, as Ascot’s pre

 
 
technic-consultstefan-schwarzlTechnic Consult upgrades with Picasso and Paladin
Wednesday, 22 May 2019

Austria - Event technology provider Technic Consult has been a satisfied customer of Elation products for years, relying on products like the Platinum Beam 5R and FS 15R followspot.
The company has recently opted to upgrade its inventory, adding the new Artiste Picasso LED moving heads and multi-functional Paladin effects.
Technic Consult has been active in event technology for over 25 years. Located in southern Austria, near Klagenfurt am Wörthersee, the company manages lighting, sound, video and staging for live events of all kinds, including theatre, handling everything from planning to implementation. “We have been working with Elation products since 2013,” says Stefan Schwarzl, head of lighting at Technic Consult. “The reliability and quality of the equipment and personal support provided by Karl Lager have made our decision to invest in Elation much easier.”
Commenting on Technic Consult’s decision to add the Artiste Picasso to inventory, Schwarzl says: “We wanted a universal fixture that we could use as a spotlight for live concerts but also use in the theatre area. The combination of high-quality spotlight with shutters was decisive for the purchase and the price:performance ratio is very good.”
Technic Consult also sought to replace some aging wall washers and chose the multi-functional Paladin with zoom, an IP65 effect that can function as a wash light, blinder or strobe. “The performance and size of the Paladins were key in their choice but also the fact that they are outdoor rated. We look forward to using them f

 
robe-north-america-charlie-hulmeHulme joins Robe North America team
Wednesday, 22 May 2019

USA - Robe North America has announced the appointment of Charlie Hulme as business development manager. He will focus on advancing systems sales and the coordination of installation projects.
Robe North America co-CEO Lorienn Cochenour comments: “As business development manager, Charlie will be a perfect partner with Tal Janowitz in managing the Robe Anolis architainment brand and representatives, and he will also liaise with our Robe regional sales managers on permanent installation projects.”
Hulme is based in Austin, Texas and will be travelling extensively in his new role. He has been involved in entertainment lighting for around 30 years, including working for two high profile American moving light brands in this time. He brings extensive experience to the Robe equation.
Josef Valchar, CEO of Robe s.r.o. states: “We offer a warm welcome to Charlie. He already has a great synergy with many of his ‘new’ colleagues and we look forward to his energy and commitment adding another dimension to our already fantastic, highly motivated and very successful team in North America.”
Robe North America has also just relocated to a new 32,000sq.ft purpose-built office and warehouse space in Davie, Fort Lauderdale, Florida.
(Jim Evans)

 
 
chroma-q-space-force-jwa-fashion-show-credit-4friends-film-pic1-pressChroma-Q Space Force on the catwalk
Wednesday, 22 May 2019

UK - Lighting designer Stuart Pring has used Chroma-Q Space Force LED soft lights to illuminate the JW Anderson February Autumn/Winter Fashion Show.
Pring has previously worked on The 2018 Teen Awards, a variety of television studios including for NBC/ESPN’s Wimbledon Studio, and TV series John Bishop in Conversation.
The JW Anderson Fashion Show was hosted on an 11m square catwalk, which required Stuart to deliver an even coverage of light across the entire area. For this, Version 2 - lighting rental specialists for the Television, Broadcast and Event industries - provided Stuart with 36 Space Force tuneable white LED soft lights.
Pring comments: “I needed to achieve an even wash of daylight white light, to faithfully reproduce the colours of the models' clothing. The fixture's output was flawless in creating a seamless coverage across the entire catwalk area. In addition, being LED there was minimal heat emission, which was perfect for the room's low 5m high ceiling with 300 attendees.”
He also praises the quality of the light for photography applications: “The output of 5,600K gave the perfect colour temperature for the photographers, and the adjustable PWM, flicker-free operation ensured the live stream on the JW Anderson website and Facebook page rendered beautifully on camera.”
(Jim Evans)

 
elumeneLumen8 moving beam draws the crowds
Wednesday, 22 May 2019

Europe - eLumen8 has continued to expand its range of professional moving heads with the introduction of the 9RE Beam. This moving beam is powered by a MSD 260R9 (8000K) discharge lamp, allowing users to create sharp 2.5° beams and gobos.
Showcased at the recent PLASA Focus Leeds tradeshow, this latest addition by eLumen8 has been designed with the lighting designer in mind as it not only has top quality optics and motorised focus, it also features two prisms that can be used simultaneously, giving the user a host of options to create stunning light shows.
Andrew Jeffrey, Prolight Concepts Group managing director,comments: “This is the first of several new movers aimed at the rental and installation markets to be released in the coming months. The 9RE has been over 12 months in development but well worth the wait.”
Additionally, this moving head features 12 colours (plus 5600K, 3200K and open) and 17 fixed gobos (plus open), along with an on-board six-push button menu with 1.8” LCD display, and selectable 16 bit pan and tilt with auto correction. Combining its high output and perfectly focussed beam the 9RE boasts all the fundamental features you would expect from eLumen8, making this a n ‘event ready’ luminaire designed to “unleash creativity in lighting designers and installers alike in the theatre, television and touring sectors”.
(Jim Evans)

 
 
dpacal-baptist-4School of Music meets live challenge with DPA
Wednesday, 22 May 2019

USA - As technical director at the Collinsworth School of Music at California Baptist University, Matthew McConnell holds the equipment he purchases to the same high standards expected from the school’s students.
When McConnell recently found that he wasn’t satisfied with the sound he was capturing on the string bass and cello instruments during performances, he turned to Jeff Suchy at Apex Audio to find the best solution. After testing various clip-on mics and pick-ups, the duo ultimately selected DPA Microphones’ d:vote 4099 Instrument Microphone as the right tool for the job.
Though these have now become a staple at the school, the use of the d:vote 4099 wasn’t McConnell’s first foray into DPA mics. “I initially discovered DPA a decade ago, when I was trying to close-mic a grand piano, with a closed lid, through a PA system,” he explains. “DPA’s d:screet 4060 Miniature Omnidirectional Microphone helped me get the sound I was looking for, for that application. Soon after, I used a d:screet 4060 on a solo violin (with the included string mount) with similar success. From that point on, I was a big fan of DPA.”
More recently, McConnell turned to DPA after having a tough time finding a good mic position for string bass and cello performers who moved around the stage while playing. “I heard about the d:vote 4099 and purchased three of them, based mainly on my previous experience with the brand,” he says. “It was better than I could have hoped. The microphone stayed in place while the musicians performed. After that, I bought

 
passion-playSFL helps Passion Play come to life
Wednesday, 22 May 2019

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

 
 
getPR goes for total integration at GET
Wednesday, 22 May 2019

China - PR Lighting took a fresh approach to their 558 sq.m. booth design at this year’s four-day GET Show at the Poly World Trade Centre in Guangzhou.
The company’s CEO Dave Liang reverted to an idea originally floated at the 2017 edition where they presented a united booth with other suppliers, in order to show customers a completely integrated, ‘finished’ solution. This year they collaborated with experienced Chinese LED display company, DGX, as well as laser company, Magical Laser and acoustics specialists, Lianhui Acoustooptical.
“These are all necessary facilities in most projects, particularly events, tours, club installs, and customers like to be able to see how a full project solution will look,” says international director of sales Ernie Armas.
On the other side of the booth, in anticipation of a strong international presence, there were three function areas - a product showcase for each company at the front of booth, a bar in the centre of the booth and a ‘dynamic’ stage for lighting the show at the rear of the booth.
Into this backdrop, PR presented the 580 Series, which debuted at Frankfurt Prolight+Sound earlier this year. This included two waterproof units (Aqua 580 BWS and Aqua 580 Beam), as well as two indoor units, XR 580 BWS and XR 580 BEAM. “The all-new IP66 moving heads are already being extremely well received by our customers,” Armas confirms.
(Jim Evans)

 
leedsPLASA Focus Leeds hits high notes
Tuesday, 21 May 2019

UK - PLASA Focus Leeds returned to the Royal Armouries from 14-15 May for its 11th edition. With an 8% increase in visitors, the show once again proved to be a key social and business event in the entertainment technology calendar, welcoming professionals from across the industry over two days.
With a popular capped stand format, the show provides a relaxed and friendly atmosphere, as Davie Bell from Stage Electrics explains, “That’s where PLASA Focus Leeds is particularly relevant – with smaller stands you can get close to all sorts of people. As a result, we have been fantastically busy.”
Peter Condron, UK sales manager for Martin Audio confirms this sentiment: “It’s been a great show, due to the family feel which the show is known for. It’s just the right size and the fact it’s spread over two halls also makes it feel more spacious and relaxed. It has been really busy with both valued clients and potential customers coming by our stand. The show has been very positive.”
The show floor spanned two halls, offering products and solutions from a mix of audio, AV, lighting, staging and rigging brands, with several new faces who were keen to capitalise on their debut.
“As we are new to PLASA Focus Leeds we tried to do things a little differently” says 2B Heard’s director, Sam Nankivell. “We achieved this by installing an immersive audio system at our stand which included twenty speakers for a full 3D soundscape. This surprised many visitors and we had a number of new enquiries.”
Following their debut appearance

 
 
robe-bob-shacherlRobe’s Bob Schacherl steps down
Tuesday, 21 May 2019

USA - Bob Schacherl, co-CEO of Robe North America, has announced that he will be stepping down from his post on 30 June 2019.
“After nearly six fabulous years working with one of the most innovative and inspiring moving light manufacturers, which has included amassing a sales ‘dream team’ covering all regions, helping to take the brand to the very top of the entertainment lighting industry, it is time to spend more time with my family and in developing several ongoing projects,” he stated.
Bob joined Robe at the end of 2013, just prior to the launch of the BMFL range of powerful high brightness fixtures that have become one of the Czech Republic based brand’s signature products.
His career began in the 1980s with Blackstone Audio-Visual also based in Bob’s hometown of Austin, Texas.
This became Blackstone Productions / Lightwave Research and then High End Systems. His career continued with a stint at Vari*Lite.
Robe’s CEO Josef Valchar says: “It has been fantastic working with Bob – he has brought a lot of energy and we have all learned and benefitted from his vast knowledge, his great personality and commitment which has been very enriching. We wish him all the best in the future.”
Robe’s sales director, Harry von den Stemmen, adds: “Bob has really delivered during his time at Robe: He has built and coached an excellent sales team, and with his expertise in intelligent lighting, has helped place Robe firmly on the map in North America.”
(Jim Evans)

 
koiAdditional names join KOI judging panels
Tuesday, 21 May 2019

UK - The Knight of Illumination UK (KOI) Awards, which celebrates the creative and technical talents of video and lighting designers, welcomes a number of new judges to each of the panels across the three disciplines of Theatre, Television, and Concert Touring & Events for the 2019 Awards.
The Awards boast three panels comprised of arts critics and industry experts, with specialist knowledge of their sector, to ensure well-rounded coverage and expert insight during the judging process.
In the Theatre category, each judge serves a two-year term on the panel, which is chaired by critic and broadcaster, David Benedict.
"Given the breadth and depth - and length - of the annual judging session for the Theatre KOI Awards it is essential that our judges, all critics viewing work live in performance, are as passionate as they are articulate about their specific art form," says Benedict.
"It's a particular pleasure to welcome back Louise Levene, now dance critic for the Financial Times, to re-join the panel. Louise was a founding judge in 2007 and has since been a tireless advocate for the role of lighting in dance. By contrast, it's great to be harnessing the fresh perspectives of Tim Bano, joint lead critic for The Stage, to judge musicals and plays, and Neil Fisher, classical music editor of The Times, for the opera award. I look forward to all three joining the returning judges Zoë Anderson, Michael Billington and George Hall for a typically fiercely fought round of discussions."
Levene says, "Even the most bread-and-butter lighting will

 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 

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