PSL has appointed Mick Ryder to the company's Concert Touring Division, which is currently co-ordinating a number of high profile tours throughout the UK, Europe and the US, including Ricky Martin, Leftfield and Oasis. Ryder arrives at the company following four years as event director for Fulham-based Cube TV, but it is his previous 20 years experience as freelance production manager for bands such as UB40, Robert Palmer and Black Sabbath, that singled him out to PSL.
One of the longest-established names in specialist tour and corporate event freighting has a new identity this month with Phil McDonnell's launch of Horizon McDonnell Entertainment Cargo. McDonnell's 30-year career in the music production business has embraced production management for such luminaries as Van Morrison, Fleetwood Mac, The Cranberries, Clannad and many more. The company will focus specifically on the music touring, corporate event and exhibition markets.
An all-new website for the Low Power Radio Association (LPRA) has just been launched. Features of the site include a database will full details of all member companies, a section devoted to the LPRA's Radio Solutions exhibitions and conferences and useful links to regulatory bodies and organisations across Europe.
The UK's first ever media industry census takes place today. Backed by major employers, trades unions and the government, Britain's first broadcasting census is the culmination of a major consultation exercise by the cross-industry group examining future training needs in the media industries. The initiative is part of a programme of work developed by the Audio-Visual Industries Training Group (a joint venture between the Department for Culture, Media and Sport and Skillset) and is chaired by Roger Laughton. Our industry has long been hindered by the lack of accurate available information and the Census should provide reliable estimates of how many people work in the industry, and a picture of what they do and who they are. If you are a company working in any sector of the industry you can complete the census form online.
Marketing and sales consultant Nick Dimes has joined forces with journalist Sue Sillitoe to launch Dimes & Sillitoe Ltd, a communications management company. The company offers a range of marketing services and has already attracted a number of key clients including Fleetwood Mobiles.
The International Association of Lighting Designers (IALD) has awarded seven lighting projects with Lighting Design Awards of Merit. These went to The Albert Memorial in London designed by Graham Phoenix and Michael Sampson of London-based Lighting Design Partnership; New York's Radio City Music Hall Restoration designed by Paul Marantz and Scott Hershman of New York-based Fisher Marantz Stone Inc; New York Public Library's Rose Main Reading Room, designed by Barry Citrin and Richard Renfro while based at Fisher Marantz Renfro Stone Inc. Samsung's Rodin Museum in Seoul, South Korea, by Thomas Thompson, Christine Sciulli, Jonathan Plumpton and Russ Burns of New York-based Thompson & Sears Inc; Northeastern University Multi-Faith Spiritual Centre in Boston, designed by Paul Zaferiou and Glenn Heinmiller of US-based Lam Partners Inc; Zollverein Kokerei in Essen, Germany, designed by the Lighting Architects Group of London and Edinburgh; Downtown Helsinki Master Plan, Finland, designed by Ross de Alessi Lighting Design, Eero Metso of Helsinki Energy and Erkki Rousko of Cadvance, Helsinki. The IALD also offered two special citations to Plantation Place Marketing Suite Beacon, designed by David Hymas and Haico Scheppers of London-based Arup Acoustics and the UBS AG headquarters in Stamford, US, designed by Stephen Margulies and Stephen Szynal of New York-based Cosentini Lighting Design.
Mike Lowe, managing director of ETC Europe, has announced strategic changes in the management team. After nearly three years of commuting between his home in Copenhagen and ETC's European headquarters in North Acton, Tim Stokholm is returning to live permanently in Denmark. He will assume the role of manager, Northern Region, with responsibility for territories north of and including Belgium, Germany, Austria and Slovenia, while Fulvio Cotogni continues as manager, Southern Region, including South Africa and Middle East. Erik Larsen, previously sales manager for Northern Europe, becomes product manager for ETC Europe, a new role designed to provide two-way communication between ETC Europe and its customers for both existing and future products. Finally, Peter Ed now formally assumes responsibility for marketing as marketing director, ETC Europe.
Jimmy 'JR' Chai has been promoted to regional sales manager for High End Systems Singapore. JR will continue to be based out of the Singapore office and be in charge of all sales and marketing activities throughout Asia. He was formerly account manager at High End Systems Singapore for selected Asian regions. In related news, Adrian Oh is leaving his role as general manager of High End Systems Singapore to seek other employment opportunities outside of the lighting industry.
Vari-Lite Inc has relocated its Las Vegas office recently after the operation outgrew its former 5,600sq.ft facility on McLeod Drive. The new Las Vegas office, on E Maule Avenue, has tripled the location's warehouse space.
Hanover-based full service production company Rocksound will be providing all audio requirements for the Hanover EXPO 2000, which begins in June - catering for 153 days and nights of theatre, dance, music and cinema over 11 stages site-wide. Rocksound's head of sound Lothar Strunk said: "As it's such a long-running event that requires a huge amount of equipment both in use and as permanent spares, we've invested in a lot of new stock to maintain an appropriate inventory for the rest of our work. For example . . . we've just placed an order with Telex/EVI for an XL-4, a Heritage 3000 and four Heritage 2000s, with an option for a further two XL-4s and two Heritage 3000s." Two Heritage 2000s and two Heritage 3000s are permanently located in Hall 11, the rock and pop venue at EXPO 2000. An XL-4 will remain in permanent warehousing as an alternative board should the need arise. There will also be a further two FOH/monitor sets comprising an XL-200 and an XL-250 for use wherever they are required.
Strengthening the team at the Sound Dept is Andy Simmons, who has recently been appointed as sales director. Best known for his management of the Crest Audio UK operation before taking it to the Sound Dept two years ago, Simmons has recently finished a stint working with XTA Electronics as international sales and marketing manager. The Sound Dept is the distributor for many leading pro audio brands including Community, Crest Audio and, until recently, EAW. However, it has recently been announced that after the acquisition of EAW by Mackie they have decided to strip the Sound Dept of their distributor status preferring instead to put it with the RCF/Mackie UK office.
Presentation Services Ltd (PSL) have successfully defended a claim brought against them by former employee, Chris Mounsor. Mounsor had been employed as PSL's manager of Concert Touring, UK and Europe, from July 1996 until November 1999. Following his departure he alleged breach of contract and unfair dismissal. These claims were denied at an Employment Tribunal hearing in North London where PSL successfully maintained that Mounsor had resigned. In the circumstances the Tribunal held that Chris Mounsor's claim for establishing a fundamental repudiatory breach of contract fell at the first hurdle; the breach of contract and unfair dismissal claims both, therefore, failed.
OmniSistem Lights & Effects has been appointed the exclusive worldwide distributor of LPD laser products. The agreement adds to the company's already extensive line up of products which includes Programmi & Sistem Luce lighting & effects products, COEF intelligent lighting and moving yokes, Amabilia DJ cases and fibre optics. LPD, a pioneer in the development of laser projectors, is the name behind the Q beam laser and for the past five years it has also built components and systems for many laser show companies. Jim Hardaway, formerly national sales manager at LPD, has been recruited by OmniSistem to head its laser division.
London's Royal Albert Hall is undergoing its first comprehensive building development since it opened in 1871. Scheduled to complete in 2003, the £66.3m programme originally began in 1995. AC Lighting's Special Projects division has completed the upgrade of part of the lighting cabling and control system at the venue. The RAH's deputy technical show manager, Mark Jones, designed and specified the system. AC has upgraded the circle rail with new power and control wiring for the front of house circuits. All existing trunking panels were replaced with customised 2m front panel sections, each containing 12 16Amp sockets for six dimming channels, along with two independent power circuits for moving lights and colour scrollers. 12 DMX connectors, covering two DMX 512 universes, were also installed around the circle rail for additional DMX fixtures. On stage, AC installed three six-way stage boxes, and continued the new DMX wiring with a series of outlets at ground level. These then extended out to FOH, where more ground-level DMX connection points were also installed. AC was assisted on site by Scott Nielson, the RAH's assistant technical show manager.
Following the departure of Ian Woodall to launch is own multimedia installation venture, Steve 'Bunty' King will take on the role of sales manager at LMC's London branch. With over 20 years experience in the professional audio industry, including touring FOH and monitor engineering, PA hire management, project management and technical sales, King has a complete understanding of the level of service the industry demands.
Chris West has joined Avolites as training manager. The position was created to capitalise on the potential of product training and support, both on-site and at Avolites HQ - in the last two years alone, Avolites has trained over 2,500 people. West will be co-ordinating all training schedules as well as overseeing the demo room in Park Royal, West London. He has just completed a BA Honours degree in Theatre Studies (Stage Management option) at the Welsh College of Music and Drama in Cardiff.
Entertainment Design and Lighting Dimensions magazines have announced that the eighth annual Broadway Lighting Master Classes will be held from December 6 to 10, 2000 in New York, with Tony-award winning lighting designer Jules Fisher as creative consultant and faculty head. A new scholarship programme has been introduced to increase participation by university students interested in professional lighting design.
Andrew Bruce, who started the Autograph group of companies from a stable in Camden 27 years ago, has announced his decision to step aside as managing director and take on the role of chairman. This will allow him to focus on his career as international sound designer and consultant. Terry Jardine, who joined the company 11 years ago, will take his place as managing director of the group. Accompanying Jardine in his new role is Duncan Bell, who has been appointed group financial director. Duncan has worked in numerous technical areas of the company over the past 15 years before becoming involved in the commercial side of the business.
Sarner International has designed and produced 'Our Finest Hour' - a 13-minute multi-sensory film depicting events of the Battle of Britain, at the RAF Museum in London. The show has been designed to incorporate the now static, but original WWII aircraft in the museum's Battle of Britain Hall. Sarner's creative director Mike Bennett said: "Our brief from the museum was to create a visitor experience that would engage visitors of all ages and backgrounds in the Battle of Britain story. Using a combination of static exhibits, digital video and 3D transition techniques, Sarner has created a multi-level interactive show that generates a more theatrical effect than simple video projection."
Mackie Designs has announced the promotion of Jay Schlabs to the position of national sales manager for all Mackie product lines, including Mackie, Mackie Digital Systems, and Mackie Industrial Contractor Products. Schlabs joined Mackie in 1994 as a technical sales trainer and in 1996 was promoted to western regional sales manager. Jay comes to the national sales manager position with an extensive background in music retail, live performance production and recording technology knowledge.
ETC Europe held a series of technical training seminars for ETC dealers in early May, covering Unison and Sensor dimmers, and Light Manager and Unison Control products. This was the second in a series of ETC Focus 2000 certification courses allowig dealers to update product and installation knowledge, enabling them to work alongside ETC as the company's services and product range continue to grow. 22 dealers from the UK, denmark, South Africa, Turkey, Iceland, Austria, Portugal, Sweden and Ireland attended the three-day course at Heathrow, which was coordinated by ETC's Liz Cecil.
The Production Services Association (PSA) has announced that Her Majesty's Commission for Charity for England and Wales confirmed full charitable status for the PSA Welfare & Benevolent Fund on May 8th. The Fund is the only one in the UK live event production industry set up specifically for people working in the industry and their families, and this news means the Association's efforts to establish the Fund have been officially recognised by the Commissioners.Another excellent piece of news for the Fund is the confirmation of two new Patrons - legendary bassist Herbie Flowers and the equally legendary broadcaster John Peel. They join Founding Patron Sir Cliff Richard and his fellow Patrons Sir Sydney Samuelson CBE, Willie Robertson and Neil Warnock.
Australian company LSC Lighting Systems has just announced the release of the iPRO dimmer , following on from the launches of their ePAK, ePRO, and e24 dimmers in recent months. The iPRO features 12 amps per channel, 100% duty cycle rated operation, hard-firing of the dimmer channel and temperature-dependent fan speed. With the same core structure as the ePRO, the iPRO incorporates a unique mounting system which allows the iPRO to be bolted to a solid wall or a 19" rack frame or resting on flat surfaces such as benches, floors or table tops. Utilising the same user interface as other LSC dimmers, the iPRO dimmer provides quick set up of the DMX512 address, individual drive control over any channel, scene storage and a choice of a six fade curves per dimmer channel. Five models are available offering a choice between 12 channels of 12 Amps, 6 channels of 25 Amps and a choice of output connectors. The iPRO is due to commence shipping at the end of June 2000.
Lee Frankcom has joined the Coe-Tech sales team. Frankcom, one of the rock and roll industry's most colourful characters, originally launched his lighting career at the immortal Rainbow Theatre in Finsbury Park. Since then he's made his way made through a plethora of top lighting rental and production companies before becoming concert touring guru at Vari-Lite Europe/VLPS. Recent Coe-Tech projects have included the supply of Coemar lighting fixtures, via Lumenation to NMEC Lighting for the Millennium Dome and to top UK rental house Neg Earth Lights for the acclaimed Ben Harper European Tour. Soon to be available in the UK are the much talked about Coemar CF7 HE and WZ spot and wash zoom lighting fixtures.