Powersoft ramps up training initiativesPowersoft ramps up training initiatives
Wednesday, 1 April 2020

Europe - In order to keep up with the demand for more e-training courses, Powersoft, the Italian manufacturer of professional power amplifiers, has ramped up its capacity to deliver online training courses worldwide, with over 30 new sessions covering various subjects directly of interest to Powersoft customers and users.
Each course will last for one hour and will be conducted in English, Spanish, and Italian by experienced trainers and application engineers from Powersoft.
This week, Powersoft will offer insight on its new Mezzo amplifier range. During the sessions, attendees will learn about auto setup, power sharing, and remote control, as well as a number of other ground breaking features offered by the new half rack amplifier platform.
Next week’s sessions (beginning 6 April) will focus on ArmoníaPlus 1.4 and explain how to set up and programme a basic audio system with groups, monitoring, and remote control.
On 14 and 16 April, in the session entitled Powersoft products network connections and Dante/AES67 integration, trainees will learn how Dante and AES 67 protocols are integrated into Powersoft amplifiers and how they can be connected to networked environments using the set up and management tools.
Finally, on 21 and 23 April, Powersoft trainers will provide insight on ArmoníaPlus’s latest feature: Health Plus, system monitoring and remote control using third party control plug ins, including Powersoft ‘live impedance monitoring’ and cloud-based remote monitoring of all vital functions of a system. Informati

DAS Audio continues to suspend operationsDAS Audio continues to suspend operations
Wednesday, 1 April 2020

Spain - DAS Audio has said its operations will be suspended until 14 April due to law changes in Spain arising from the Covid-19 outbreak.
The company says in a statement:
“At DAS Audio, we would like to thank you for all the signs of affection and support you have shown us, which we would sincerely like to send back to you. Without you, our family, this dream that began in 1971 would make no sense - thank you very much. During this unsettling period, our family must stick together, and we want to be there for you, then, now and always.
“Two weeks ago, at DAS Audio headquarters, we started to take all of the necessary steps against Covid-19 following government recommendations. However, due to the latest measures adopted by the Spanish, we inform you that from 30 March we will continue to work remotely from our homes to support you when you need us.
“Our operations in Spain are suspended effective immediately from 30 March until 14 April - by law.
“At DAS Audio we have already adopted all the necessary measures so that our colleagues, distributors, suppliers and family can continue with their lives and agendas without putting your health and ours at risk. You can reach us by phone, email and video-call platforms, so we can keep in touch and share our passion for this industry.
“These are challenging times, but the priorities are clear. People are our number one priority. Our industry only makes sense if the people at the other end can listen, dance, sing, laugh, hug or feel. Now it´s time to take care of our love

 
 
Avolites to unleash Q-Series media serversAvolites to unleash Q-Series media servers
Wednesday, 1 April 2020

UK - Avolites will launch its full range of Q Series media servers, along with the Ai v12.1 release.
Designed as the ideal hardware to complement the Ai software, the Q Series line-up includes the Q3, Q3pro, Q4 and Qgen.
“Seeing the projects and shows Ai has been used on made us realise we needed to provide servers powerful enough to meet the creative vision of our users,” explains Ciaran Abrams, Avolites, Ai lead developer.
The Q3 Pro is a portable server for the more demanding shows, with two 4K outputs and one HD along with EDID managed HDMI outputs.
The Q4 offers the power to deliver even more detail thanks to four 4K outputs and flexible input modules, so users can spec a server to meet the most demanding needs. With the rise in use of interactive realtime generative content providers like Notch, the Qgen is designed to deliver stunning graphics with three 4K outputs and a powerful Nvidia graphics card  that can deliver approximately 30,000 Notch marks + two-year Notch playback licence.
Paul Wong, Avolites MD, comments: "We worked with our customers to understand what technology and features matter to them, seeing these now developed into the new Q Series range is very exciting, and is just the start for where we see future of the Q Series.
Meanwhile, key feature updates in Ai will include:
- 64 bit architecture, allowing Ai to support the latest Notch blocks. Ai v12.1 will only work on 64-bit Windows and support 64-bit Synergy and USB Expert.
- AMD Texture Upload which will allow additional layers w

 
Stage Electrics wins Brixtonhouse contractStage Electrics wins Brixtonhouse contract
Wednesday, 1 April 2020

UK - Stage Electrics has won the contract to complete the technical fit out of production lighting, sound, video, comms and stage engineering systems at the new purpose built, fully accessible, Brixtonhouse Theatre (formerly Ovalhouse Theatre) which forms part of the Somerleyton Road Project in the heart of Brixton.
The new building will have two performance venues and seven multi-use accessible studios and a whole new inventory of equipment and is set to at the end of 2020.
Stage Electrics will again be working with main contractor Galliford Try with who they previously completed the Southampton New Art Complex.

 
 

Florida church livestreams with ChauvetFlorida church livestreams with Chauvet
Wednesday, 1 April 2020

USA - Community Christian Church in Tamarac, FL, has been livestreaming Sunday services for over two years, but until recently, they always were conducted before a room filled with worshippers. When concerns about Covid-19 prompted the church to hold services inside an empty building, its tech team, which includes media pastor Bill Kelly, director of communications Vinny Cesar and visual arts director Kevis Mulchan, began revising its streaming strategy.
“We felt that not having people in the church would necessitate some changes,” said Mulchan. “Our initial thought was that it would not be good to show a room full of empty seats on our online broadcasts. However, by the second week of doing this, we reversed course, coming to realise that it was actually a good thing to show the vacant space, since this emphasized that the church is not the building itself, but the individual people out in the community.”
The Community Christian team continues to tweak their livestreaming strategy to account for the absence of worshippers at services. “Since we are now lighting exclusively for an online audience it is different,” said Mulchan. “We’re lighting only for the camera, so I’ve been intentionally looking at new ways to position lights and camera in relation to the band and vocalists. Conveying energy on camera has been a focus of mine.”
Helping Mulchan convey that energy are the eight Chauvet Professional Maverick MK2 Spot and 14 COLORdash Batten Quad-12 fixtures in the church’s rig. Drawing on the output of these fixtures along wi

 
Eric Laanstra joins Rigging CommandosEric Laanstra joins Rigging Commandos
Wednesday, 1 April 2020

Europe - Area Four Industries has announced that Eric Laanstra is the latest expert to join the Rigging Commandos, a group of specialists who present the latest developments happening in the industry.
Laanstra has been product manager at Prolyte for the past 10 years. He states: “I hope I can continue as Prolyte product manager for many years and have lots of fun with my new colleagues at Area Four Industries.”
Rigging Commandos is a group of respected experts who take an in-depth view of topics exciting interest within the industry. They identify closely with riggers and technicians and are constantly looking at ways to increase safety and efficiency at work by offering an extensive range of educative and informative videos that can be watched via A4I.tv on PCs, laptops, and mobile phones anywhere, anytime.

 
 
Genelec announces 1235A active monitorGenelec announces 1235A active monitor
Wednesday, 1 April 2020

Europe - Genelec has unveiled the 1235A Smart Active Monitor, which fuses the sound and heritage of the 1035 main monitor with 96kHz processing and the ability to adapt to any space through its tight integration with Genelec’s GLM calibration software.
The 1235A is designed as a main monitor for large music, film and post-production studios that demand high SPL and neutral, stable imaging that can be optimised for the room’s unique acoustic environment.
Launched in 1989, the original 1035 became an industry standard throughout the world, fulfilling the need for a wall-mountable full-range monitor that could deliver true reference performance at high SPLs and over long listening distances. Legendary studio designer Sam Toyoshima was an early evangelist for the 1035, and as a result it was quickly adopted by many of the world’s finest studios, including Metropolis and Olympic in London and JVC and West Side in Japan.
The new 1235A shares all the characteristics of its forerunner. With a short-term SPL of 130 dB and low-frequency extension down to 29Hz, the 1235A also delivers “staggering power”, but its uncoloured performance ensures the listener can still make accurate mix decisions.
Through its integration with GLM software, the 1235A can be configured, controlled and calibrated for any type of acoustic environment, allowing the user to tailor the frequency response, level, distance delay and more, to provide a truly optimized listening experience - and mixes that translate perfectly to other rooms and systems. GLM allows users of

 
Calibre scaler addresses distance learningCalibre scaler addresses distance learning
Wednesday, 1 April 2020

UK - Calibre UK has announced that its HQPro1000 switcher/scaler now benefits from a number of enhancements.
Many of the new features found in HQPro1000 make it now even more suitable for remote interaction applications, a market that Calibre sees as growing rapidly as businesses and organisations look to minimise travel and face-to-face contact.
“Distance learning, cloud meetings and medical display are typical of the remote applications that have become increasingly popular as organisations look to reduce cost, increase productivity and minimise their carbon footprint,” said Willy Tsai, managing director, Calibre UK.
“Now, they have another reason to evaluate the solutions available from Calibre to facilitate video streaming and remote interaction - and the new functionalities we’re introducing for the HQPro1000 further enhance its ability to deliver the optimum response.”
Offering those features typically only found in higher priced high-end rental products, the HQPro1000 is also a suitable seamless scaler/switcher for fixed installations. It features a modular architecture, true seamless switching, support for multiple sources and layers, plus a confidence monitor output. Scaling is provided by Calibre's best-in-class low-latency proprietary HQUltra technology.
Of particular relevance to remote interaction/distance learning is that the HQPro1000 now has the ability to create a virtual classroom. It can be set up in a chroma key studio and transmit four layers of educational material, with a camera used to capture the teache

 
 
Warsaw Grand Theatre updates with KivaWarsaw Grand Theatre updates with Kiva
Wednesday, 1 April 2020

Poland - One of the most spectacular and well-equipped theatres in Europe, with a seating capacity of over 2,000, The Grand Theatre - National Opera (Polish: Teatr Wielki - Opera Narodowa (TW-ON)) is a ‘must-visit’ cultural hub in Warsaw, housing a theatre complex, museum, opera company, and the Polish National Ballet all under one roof.
Most recently, its Młynarski Hall, also known as the Chamber Music Hall, has been updated with an L-Acoustics Kiva II system, offering “unparalleled sound” versatility to the venue’s extensive programme of concerts, ballets, operas, and special events.
When it was time to upgrade this notable venue's PA system, the team invited the top AV suppliers to participate in the tendering process.
The team consisted of the theatre's Zdzisław Staszewski, Łukasz Baska and Michał Polański. They were responsible for conducting the tender for the Młynarski Hall, and developing a detailed listening procedure which the team presented to Polish equipment supplier and L-Acoustics certified provider distributor, Audio Plus, among two other AV candidates.
"TW-ON's listening committee included a technical team of sound engineers, a robust artistic team consisting of a conductor, singer, musician, representatives from both the Academy of Opera and the Impresariat; and people from other units associated with the artistic work of TW-ON," Audio Plus marketing director, Paweł Kuhn eplained. "It's a testament to their commitment to getting the sound right, for technicians, for artists and for the audience."
Comp

 
Eat to the beat with Amate in RotterdamEat to the beat with Amate in Rotterdam
Wednesday, 1 April 2020

The Netherlands - Jack-Rotterdam is a restaurant where 30 years of dance music and fine food coalesce.
When former techno DJ-turned restaurant and hotel concept developer Jack planned to open to his own house concept eatery, Amate Audio’s Benelux distributor, Imagination AV (also based in Rotterdam) was charged with specifying and installing a sound system throughout the long beautifully arched venue, that would meet the demands of both dining and dancing with equal measures of quality.
Power and performance on the dance floor come courtesy of eight Nítid N6P 2-way systems and a pair of N12WP subs. The most compact Nítid series model, the N6P’s frequency response and high SPL output is astounding for cabinet of its size, due to a combination of advanced design and components that includes a 6” carbon fibredriver that enables the N6P to deliver a response akin to an 8” system.
Providing the same full range, high intelligibility sound, at considerably lower SPL’s, throughout the dining area is accomplished with a centrally ceiling mounted, left / right side firing arrangement of 10 lower profile Amate Audio B8 2-way systems, down the length of the elegant arch room.
The power and control rack for the entire installation comprises a combination of Amate Audio’s high power-to-weight ration HD2000 and HD1200 power amplifiers, and a single DSP608 6-in / 8-out, 1U high resolution, DSP loudspeaker management processor.
Proclaiming himself “well happy” with the resultant audio quality throughout his entire venue, Jack is espec

 
 
White Light picks Powersoft T SeriesWhite Light picks Powersoft T Series
Wednesday, 1 April 2020

UK - Technical services provider White Light (WL) has taken delivery of a number of Powersoft’s T Series amplifier platforms from the company’s UK distributor, CUK Audio.
The purchase, which took place between July and October of last year, included 31 T604s and three T602s, and was made after the company had a chance to get some hands-on time with the products at WL’s warehouse.
WL’s senior audio technical project manager, Harry Saxton McCann, says: “CUK’s product demos were brilliant, and the training was ideal to bring our freelance and full-time staff up to date with Powersoft’s latest offerings. A lot of the engineers have commented on how clean the PA sounds when being driven by Powersoft amplifier platforms, and the ability to keep everything digital over Dante and AES has been very beneficial.”
Available in both 4-channel and 2-channel versions, the T Series is designed to deliver cost-effective, high-quality performance loudspeaker processing. Both versions of the amplifier platform support channel powers from 750 W to 3,000 W.
In addition to analogue, the T Series includes AES3 and Dante by Audinate inputs, which are optimised for daisy-chained distribution of 2-channel audio to multiple amplifiers with no need for external switches or splitters. The T Series also allows remote control and advanced signal processing abilities through Powersoft's ArmoníaPlus, plus onboard DSP.
“It’s the all about the amount of flexibility the T series offers,” McCann explains. “The power output on offer in such a small

 
AES Vienna convention cancelledAES Vienna convention cancelled
Tuesday, 31 March 2020

Europe - With the health and safety of our attendees, membership, exhibitors, and staff being of utmost concern during the global Covid-19 pandemic, and following weeks of discussions with the host Austria Centre Vienna, the Audio Engineering Society has officially cancelled the live, in-person components of the AES Vienna 2020 Convention scheduled for May.
AES leadership, the convention organising committee and headquarters staff members are working to organise the logistics of a virtualisation of the convention technical programme into “an engaging, compelling, educational and productive online experience”.
“Details on the virtual convention, which are being developed to include video presentations of papers, workshops, tutorials, tech tours and other technical programme content along with live- and forum-based dialog with presenters, will be shared as they become available. We appreciate your patience and understanding as the myriad of options and details are finalised.”

 
 
InfoComm 2020 cancelled due to Covid-19InfoComm 2020 cancelled due to Covid-19
Tuesday, 31 March 2020

USA - Pro AV tradeshow InfoComm 2020 has been cancelled as a result of the Covid-19 pandemic.
The event was due to take place on 12-18 June at the Orange County Convention Center in Orlando.
AVIXA, InfoComm's organiser, says in a statement: "Like many, we had remained optimistic that the show would go on and we continued to monitor recommendations from the local health authorities, the WHO and CDC, but the extreme circumstances of today’s reality have led to a different path forward. While we explored the option to postpone the event until later in the year, this was not realistic given InfoComm’s size and the lack of possible venues. Both the current and likely future environment of economic hardships, travel, spending freezes, and uncertainty with the Covid-19 virus made it clear to us and our partners that not proceeding with InfoComm 2020 was the best decision at this time."
AVIXA is looking into delivering some of its seminar programme in "alternative ways", adding:
"We are exploring all possible alternatives to deliver the high-caliber education, product information and engagement that InfoComm normally offers. We realize that while it will not be the same as experiencing InfoComm in person, we are committed to serving our industry and our members by working hard to help cover the void left by a cancellation. We ask for your patience during this unprecedented and still rapidly evolving period as we explore new programming." The organiser has issued a Q&A for attendees and exhibitors, answering questions about refunds, travel arra

 
Light The Sky over Curaçao inspires hopeLight The Sky over Curaçao inspires hope
Tuesday, 31 March 2020

Curaçao - Reaching 56.4m above the crystal blue waters of St. Anna Bay, the Queen Juliana Bridge - the highest such structure in the Caribbean - affords spectacular views of this nation’s capital city, Willamsted and its beaches. On the evening of Sunday, 22 March, it also offered an inspiring view of the future, when it served as the centrepiece of Light The Sky in Curaçao.
Initiated on the island nation by Ian Sillie, the project, which originated in The Netherlands, was built around the theme Let’s Inspire Hope Together. With beams from a collection of Chauvet Professional Maverick and Rogue fixtures cutting through the dark sky, the display served as a reminder to all that the creative spirit that runs through Curaçao will continue to shine brightly long after the coronavirus has faded into history.
Massive Productions was contacted by Sillie to light the famous bridge. The company’s Izichiel Cocalves coordinated the project, overseeing the placement of 16 Maverick MK1 Hybrid and 16 Rogue R2 Spot fixtures on the bridge’s slope. Although the bridge was open to traffic during the event, the Massive team was able to complete its work smoothly thanks to close cooperation from the police.
“Here, as in the rest of the world, the entertainment industry was brought to a temporary standstill,” explains Jimmy Lo-A-Njoe, director of Massive Productions. “The entire entertainment lighting community in Curaçao came together on this to light up the sky here. Most companies did this from their warehouses; we did this as well, b

 
 
EM Acoustics & Out Board host demosEM Acoustics & Out Board host demos
Tuesday, 31 March 2020

UK - SARM Music Bank rehearsal studios in London recently hosted a major series of demos from UK loudspeaker manufacturer, EM Acoustics and Out Board, immersive spatial reinforcement and performer tracking specialists.
In the spotlight was the y Reference Series R10 point source loudspeaker from EM Acoustics - seen for the first time anywhere at ISE 2020 - and the HALO-B medium format line array. Out Board showcased the new HARDCore FGPA processing for the TiMaxSoundHub and the all-new TiMax TrackerD4 precision stagetracking for live performer vocal localisation and multimedia effects control.
Held from 3-5 March, EM Acoustics’ Mike Wheeler deems the event to have been “a huge success” with high attendance figures and, more importantly, positive reactions from the industry.
Renowned sound designer, Sebastian Frost, whose credentials include plays, musicals and operas the world over as well as live events and installed visitor attractions, was very taken by what he heard: "I was so impressed by the R10, I’ve already specified 10 of them for a major new production that will take place later in the year."
Bobby Aitken, another award-winning West End and Broadway theatre sound designer, was equally impressed with the new Reference Series loudspeakers: "The new R10 point source loudspeakers sounded great and I'm really looking forward to spending some time with the upcoming R8s. The combination of a rotatable horn and the ability to swap the horn between two different included versions will make it a really interesting loudspeaker for the

 
Ayrton launches Boredom BusterAyrton launches Boredom Buster
Tuesday, 31 March 2020

Europe - As the industry is facing an unprecedented down-time as a result of the Covid-19 pandemic, French lighting manufacturer Ayrton wants to help break up the monotony by offering an opportunity for creatives who are self-isolating.
“Let’s channel that creative energy into something positive and fun," says the company. "Show us what you can do by participating in the Ayrton Boredom Buster!”
To get involved, create a show to the song of your choosing using your favourite pre-visualisation software and an ‘Ayrton only’ virtual lighting rig, and submit your video, mailing address and shirt size via email to bb@ayrton.eu with the subject Ayrton Boredom Buster.
In return, you could receive swag and an opportunity to be featured on Ayrton’s social media pages.
Ayrton is also urging people to follow its social media pages for the latest information on the initiative at #AyrtonBoredomBuster.

 
 
ADJ to host Stay Connected live video seriesADJ to host Stay Connected live video series
Tuesday, 31 March 2020

USA - Over the next few weeks, ADJ will host a series of live video broadcasts that will provide educational content and in-depth product overviews. Each installment of Stay Connected will have a specific focus and provide an opportunity for lighting and event professionals to upskill from the safety and comfort of their own homes ready for when the covid-19 pandemic is over.
This is the season that ADJ, like many in the industry, would usually be exhibiting at trade shows around the world, demonstrating its latest products to new and prospective customers. In lieu of these industry events, which have all been cancelled or postponed due to the coronavirus outbreak, ADJ wants to offer something of the tradeshow experience but in a way that can be accessed safely in these times of social distancing and home working.
ADJ wants to serve the industry by providing free education to help event professionals prepare for returning to work. Each Stay Connected session will be packed with practical ideas, tips and insight designed to teach, equip and inspire. broadcast via Facebook Live, each video will also feature interactive elements allowing viewers to ask questions directly to the product specialists on camera.
“We are living through unprecedented times,” comments ADJ USA’s national sales manager, Alfred Gonzales, “and our hearts go out to everyone who has been affected by the worldwide coronavirus pandemic, especially within the lighting industry that we love and serve. We are also sad to be missing out on the opportunity to meet wi

 
TiMax 3D immersive audio for Tool tourTiMax 3D immersive audio for Tool tour
Tuesday, 31 March 2020

Australia - Progressive metal band Tool have just completed the southern-hemisphere leg of their extensive and technically ambitious arena touring schedule, supporting the launch of the album, Fear Inoculum. As they headed to Australia and New Zealand, it was confirmed that the tour’s TiMax SoundHub-driven 3D surround sound system - that started out as something of an experiment - would continue for the rest of the tour as it had ‘become part of the show’.
The system design - a distributed d&b arrangement of main left and right, plus overheads focused vertically down forward and back, rear surround hangs and upper seating ‘front’ channels - is the result of extensive research by the band’s system engineer, Liam Halpin, to realise the suggestion of FOH engineer, Alan Hopkinson, that their audience would love ‘sounds to appear from different places around the room’.
Liam’s research took him towards TiMax. He explains: “Keeping abreast of what TiMax can do over the years I thought this might be an ideal use for it: to create something that is not quite what everybody else is doing.”
A key element of the success of the TiMax-rendered “effects system” was that it avoided blocking sightlines for the highly video-intensive production design, in addition to offering spatial mapping across multiple subsystems so that almost every seat in the house would experience spatial placement and panning of individual or groups of mix elements. It was also vital that it could be readily adapted for different arenas.
Liam took

 
 
Martin & Focusrite join Battle of the BandsMartin & Focusrite join Battle of the Bands
Tuesday, 31 March 2020

UK - This year’s Buckinghamshire Music Trust (BMT) Battle of the Bands (BOTB) contest for young aspiring musicians saw two leading pro audio manufacturers provide a top tier concert touring spec. By being able to broadcast their sound through a premier touring PA, on a Dante backbone, will have taken the 12 bands competing in the final into new territory.
The two High Wycombe-based manufacturers concerned were Martin Audio and Focusrite Pro, both now under the umbrella of parent company, Focusrite plc.
It was Stephen Button, Focusrite’s EMEA channel marketing executive, who established the relationship with Buckinghamshire Music Trust (BMT) several years ago. It started when he helped them out as a local musician with their monthly event Guitari Lounge, an open mic night created for under-18-year-olds.
BMT evolved from teaching young people ‘traditional’ instruments such as trumpet, flute or violin to now providing a programme called Hi-Gain - an after-school activity for musicians in bands, or self-taught musicians wishing to gain experience of playing in a group. The programme offers young people the opportunity to develop their performance, song-writing and music technology skills on a weekly basis. The jewel in the crown for these students is the annual Battle of The Bands event, now in its sixth year, which is held at the Wycombe Swan Old Town Hall. It is an opportunity for these young musicians to experience a professional setup with large stage and big audiences.
In recent years, Focusrite’s interest has increased as a sponso

 
Port Lighting & Elation at First Night BostonPort Lighting & Elation at First Night Boston
Tuesday, 31 March 2020

USA - Boston is a town with many traditions and one festive custom that Bostonians have enjoyed since 1975 is First Night Boston, New England’s biggest New Year’s Eve celebration. Produced by Conventures, Inc., this past season’s festivities were lit by Port Lighting Systems using Elation weatherproof luminaires. First Night Boston is an event the New Hampshire-based lighting specialists have worked for many years.
As veterans of First Night Boston and other outdoor events, Port Lighting Systems knew the secret to its success would be carefully selecting equipment and crew. “We tapped team members with experience lighting in all weather conditions, and chose a combination of outdoor-rated fixtures, equipment designed to protect fixtures from the elements, and back-up gear should anything fail,” says Port Lighting’s Graham Edmondson, who served as production manager on the project.
Port Lighting Systems also designed all the lighting looks for the event, which included a light show in Copley Square along with illumination of the Ice Pavilion, the mainstage in front of Trinity Church Boston, the facades of the surrounding buildings, and the midnight countdown clock. “In the past, we’ve projected patterns onto the Fairmont Copley building in Copley Square and the Boston Public Library,” Edmondson explains. “This year we wanted to add a base colour layer to the buildings as well.”
With the express goal of bringing energy and excitement to the New Year’s revelry, no matter the weather conditions, Port Lightin

 
 
Robe lights Véronic DiCaire Showgirl datesRobe lights Véronic DiCaire Showgirl dates
Tuesday, 31 March 2020

Canada/Europe - Montreal-based visual design practice Luz Studio, headed by Matthieu Larivée, created the eye-catching production design at the core of French-Canadian singer and impressionist Véronic DiCaire’s Showgirl tour, which had a very successful launch in Canada in December 2019, then toured arenas in Europe, before the coronavirus pandemic took hold and curtailed all live events.
The Showgirl concept saw the artist delivering material written / performed by around 50 female vocalists - from Dua Lipa to Celine Dion - in their style and voices, backed by six dancers and four musicians.
Matthieu proposed a harmonious and integrated set, lighting and video design which featured Robe moving lights at the centre, with 28 MegaPointes and 12 Spiiders, plus six BMFL Blades and two BMFL Spots being used with a RoboSpot remote follow-spotting system.
The stage architecture was defined by five distinctive LED columns onstage, a central flat-plane LED surface flanked by four three-sided columns with the four musicians in the middle, which allowed them to be concealed and revealed as desired. This highly effective visual trickery also preserved the form and structure of the performance space.
Working closely with the artist herself and her creative team including show director Josée Fortier, choreography / stage director Geneviève Dorion-Coupal and artistic director Patricia Ruel, Matthieu developed the lighting and video content together into a coherent aesthetic treatment for each segment of the show.
“Véronic was e

 
Unusual Rigging goes Back to the FutureUnusual Rigging goes Back to the Future
Tuesday, 31 March 2020

UK - Back to the Future The Musical arrived in 2020 at the Manchester Opera House on 20 February. The 1985 movie and pop culture phenomenon has been transported to the stage by the film's original creative team of Bob Gale and Robert Zemeckis. Sending audiences on a ride through time with a hit music score, and featuring the famous DeLorean, production manager Simon Marlow, brought Unusual Rigging on board to handle the complex rigging requirements of the show.
Unusual Rigging was contracted to supply all the rigging - both for the load in and the run of the show. Marlow explains: “Unusual's Emily Egleton has been at the helm; we have a great relationship, having worked closely on a number of shows together including Bat out of Hell the Musical and And Juliet. She was tasked with designing all the diversions and the hanging plot for Back to the Future and yet again squeezed more than would seem possible into an extremely tight space.”
The show relies on some complex auditorium rigging as well as a challenging onstage rig as Egleton explains: “Front of house, we've created an environment around the audience in the form of giant circuit boards that extend into the auditorium. To do this, the proscenium was extended so that the audience is almost enclosed by the circuits. This in itself was quite a challenge because the capacity of the roof in Manchester is pretty good – but hidden within the circuit boards is a significant amount of equipment – LED lighting, speakers etc. In the venue, the capacity changes across the roof so

 
 
Point Source Audio boosts mic hygienePoint Source Audio boosts mic hygiene
Tuesday, 31 March 2020

USA - As a way of helping to enhance microphone hygiene in these challenging times, Point Source Audio has added extra windshields into every microphone it sells.
Standard mic packages that had typically included one windshield have been upgraded to six at no additional charge to address stricter hygiene measures brought about by the Covid-19 pandemic with respect to shared equipment.
“While it is always important to keep your microphones clean, this is particularly important now,” reasons Yvonne Ho, VP of sales and marketing at Point Source Audio. “We hope that supplying these extra windshields will be a reminder to users on proper mic cleaning and etiquette now and into the future.”
Point Source Audio has also created a new video dedicated to cleaning microphone systems. The video demonstrates the techniques needed to clean a microphone system using alcohol wipes.
“We have been receiving a lot of questions over the last few weeks about how to keep microphones clean and an old article we put together demonstrating this has been one of the most popular pages on our website recently,” explains Ho. “At the moment, the best thing that anyone can do is to stop sharing microphones. However, for those who can’t, we felt the best solution would be to make this demonstration video so our global family of customers can learn the best techniques for keeping safe with shared microphones.”

 
Pioneer Pro Audio supplies XPRS for DJ EZPioneer Pro Audio supplies XPRS for DJ EZ
Tuesday, 31 March 2020

World - Challenging times call for extraordinary responses and for DJ EZ, a man not unfamiliar with marathon sets, what could be better to put smiles on faces than to set up, plug in and play for 24 hours on the spin?
DJ EZ’s response to the current unprecedented worldwide circumstances, was to team up with the My Kind Deed website to lift people’s spirits whilst they observed social distancing and self-isolation due to the Covid-19 pandemic. From 6pm GMT on 28 March through to 6pm GMT on 29 March, DJ EZ streamed a 24-hour set via Boiler Room TV. My Kind Deed is a project that encourages positivity and kindness as a way to promote better mental health and general wellbeing in society.
It wasn’t the first time that this hugely respected DJ has put himself out there to give something back to his community. Four years ago, DJ EZ raised £60,000 for Cancer Research UK by streaming a 24-hour show to thousands of supporters. 
Pioneer Pro Audio supplied an XPRS system for the booth, comprising two XPRS12 tops and a pair of XPRS115S subs. DJ EZ was familiar with the brand, having enjoyed using an XY-Series system for his last Boiler Room set.
Pioneer Pro Audio’s Mark Grotefeld, General Manager comments: “This was a brilliant initiative by DJ EZ which can only spread a massive amount of positivity and joy during these very difficult times. Sharing music to bring people together is fundamental to every culture in the world. We’re pleased we could supply the system for this event - matching DJ EZ’s staying power is a tall orde

 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 

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