Logic System Pro Audio has announced the first sale of their new CS1296 arrayable touring system, to Atomic Sound Systems of Newark, Notts. The system, launched at PLASA 2000, consists of three boxes - a fully arrayable mid-top box with optional flying hardware, a twin 15inch cabinet and a single 18inch cabinet (although a twin 18inch enclosure will be added to the range in the near future). Delivery of the 30-box system took place in early October, in time for the busy run-up to Christmas.
Essential Lighting has appointed Peter Feeney, Toby Hughes and Martin Lubach (pictured) to its board of directors. This appointment recognises the long-standing commitment and contribution they have made to the business, and will add a broader base of experience to the board for the future development of the company. At the same time, Simon Clench will be joining Essential as production electrician to provide support and a resident client link for the company’s project managers.
Those Nigerian businessmen are at it again - another round of letters has gone out inviting UK companies to provide them with bank account facilities into which they can deposit large sums of money earned illegally. The latest letter comes from Dr. Sule Ahmed, a civil servant, who advises that he has been a key player in the deliberate over-invoicing of a government contract to the tune of $21.5million US dollars. Overlooking his own shortcomings on the integrity front, he also refers to a previous transaction with one Patrice Miller in New York, who did the dirty on Ahmed and his mates and made off with the money. As so often in the past, PLASA members are being targeted heavily and we have already fielded a large number of e-mails and phonecalls on the subject.
The Broadway Lighting Master Class has lined up an eclectic programme for this year's event which takes place in New York from December 6-10, 2000. Tony Award-winning lighting designer Don Holder will present an in-depth look at his acclaimed lighting for Disney's The Lion King. BLMC has obtained a block of hard-to-get tickets for this sold-out Broadway musical as one of two major performance elements in this year's programme. BLMC attendees will also get to see Radio City Music Hall's Christmas Spectacular at the magnificently renovated home of the world-famous Rockettes. The visit will also feature a one-hour guided tour of Radio City and a technical discussion of the lighting after the performance with LDs Ken Billington and Jason Kantrowitz. The BLMC programme will feature some of the leading names form theatre. Joining creative consultant Jules Fisher (the upcoming Jane Eyre) will be Peggy Eisenhauer (Cabaret), Beverly Emmons (Jekyll & Hyde), Wendall K. Harrington (The Who's Tommy), David Hays (founding artistic director, National Theatre for the Deaf), Don Holder (The Lion King), Vivien Leone (associate designer, Sunset Boulevard), Chris Parry (Not About Nightingales), Clifton Taylor (LD for Alvin Ailey American Dance Theater and others), and Richard Pilbrow (Showboat). Additionally, BLMC will feature two special panel discussions: the Lifetime Achievement Panel led by moderator Steve Terry, president of Systems Group/Fourth Phase (see below); and an exclusive discussion with members of The Lion King's creative team, moderated by Jules Fisher. The event will also feat
Vari-Lite has now completed the sale of its operations in Belgium, The Netherlands, France and Sweden to First Events BV, an investment company that owns Focus Showequipment BV in Amsterdam. According to Vari-Lite chairman Rusty Brutsché, the sale will allow the parent company to concentrate its attention on the development and sale of its Vari*Lite automated light which until recently was only available for rental. First Events will build on the reputation of production companies Focus Showequipment (Amsterdam) and EML (Brussels/Utrecht) which were acquired in the transaction. Together with operations built by Vari-Lite in France and Sweden, First Events intends to develop a branded international network of professional full service companies in northern and western Europe.
Skyhigh Stage FX has designed a new range of pyro detonating systems - the PDS Range. The company claims that this new range is one of the safest pyro firing systems commercially available. As soon as the PDS firing key is turned to arm the system, not only does the fire button illuminate, making it perfectly clear the system is armed, but also an LED is illuminated on the Smartpod, informing anyone at the business end, that the system is now armed. The LED is bi coloured, and serves two purposes. It not only warns personnel on stage that the system is armed, but it also informs them whether or not the pyro in the Smartpod has a circuit through it.A Smartpod will only pass an electrical signal to a pyro once. If a pyro fails to go off the first time, the system has to be re-set, before that pod will receive a signal again, thus eliminating a possibility of an unexpected explosion. Currently the PDS range consists of two channel, four channel, plus 12 and 24-channel systems. Plans are in place to manufacture all but the two channel as ready flightcased packages, with space in the case for pods and cables.
Ready or not, the music industry as we know it is rapidly changing. As MP3 and digital distribution technologies gain momentum, every facet of the industry, from the artist to the label to the retailer, is feeling the impact. At Access' B2B Music Online 2000, which takes place from 30 November to 1 December 2000 at the Mandarin Oriental Hyde Park, London, the conference will examine how these changes are affecting the traditional business-to-business music models and what the new opportunities are for both traditional players and new players in the industry. This forum includes a selection of expert speakers from the global music industry. Several US speakers will analyse the current and future state of online music in their country where the impact of the Internet is more advanced. Players in the British and European music industry can therefore see what opportunities and developments are just around the corner.
The International Live Music Conference (ILMC The 13th) has announced that it will return to the venue for the 2000 event - the Royal Garden Hotel, Kensington, London - on the weekend of March 9th-11, 2001. A new team has been assembled by ILMC organiser Martin Hopewell to produce the Conference and create both its discussion agenda and the series of social events that surround the conference sessions themselves. Conference producers for ILMC 13 are Alia Dann and Lynn Curtis, with Mike Lethby and Sarah James at Gasoline Media responsible for media and sponsorship. Registration and sponsorship details are available from the ILMC office on 0207 833 8998.
Scar Audio - part of Audio Industries Research - has introduced a range of baffle-only speakers available direct from the factory, which enable the user to create state-of-the-art sound systems at a fraction of the normal cost. These 'ready to play' baffles range from 2-way 12" systems, to 2 x 18" sub-bass bins, surround speakers and studio monitors, are fully wired and tested with drivers, horns, crossovers and tuning ports. All that is needed is a simple box (or flightcase). Alternatively, they can be built into the room/stage structure, under stage or seating for even better performance. The range is aimed at contractors, system installers, hire companies or overseas customers wishing to reduce the cost of UK products.
Osram Sylvania has launched a new interactive website, intended to be an on-line lighting workplace for its commercial partners and end users. The company has created a virtual lighting community where visitors can get all the news they need, from information on products and industry trends, to specifically tailored promotions.
PAI held a demonstration of exterior lighting techniques at Llanelli's Diplomat Hotel, on Thursday 26th October. With product from Griven, Studio Due, Martin, Enliten and Pulsar, The PAI Group (consisting of PA Installations, Vaughan Sound Installations and PA Technologies) demonstrated a wide range of exterior lighting effects that can be produced to highlight buildings and draw attention to the 'Brands' in residence. Technical Manager Andy Bonehill commented: "With the range of product on show we can demonstrate how even small buildings can benefit from an exterior lighting installation. The Mini City's from Studio Due are excellent value for money colour changers, whilst the Griven 'Kaleido' provides real punch from a relatively small unit. We are also using Martin Professional Mac 500 for moving image GoBo Projections mounted in an ECO Dome and a Martin Professional Ext 600 floodlight. The Enliten Callista provides a powerful static profile projector to complete the basic effects platform. The entire demonstration was be controlled by a Pulsar Masterpiece desk.
Autograph Sound Recording has announced the promotion of Andy Brown to operations manager, a role that will engage him in leading the company's established sound rental business into a new era. His new role will involve liaising with the in-house sound designers, production sound engineers and hire department. Further to Brown's appointment, two new production sound engineers - Alex Apthorpe and Ken Hampton - will be joining the Autograph team. Apthorpe has spent three years working in the sound department at the National Theatre and will look after Autograph's audio software library and installations whilst Hampton will be bringing with him excellent sound engineering skills particularly in the specialist field of large-scale theatrical touring production. Chairman Andrew Bruce has also signalled Autograph's intention next year to strengthen the team further with additional engineering personnel.
Keith Dale has announced that he is to represent Group One's Elektralite brand of lighting control products outside the US. Dale, who recently left Celco, has a long association with Group One, who were previously the US distributor for Celco products. Group One, based in Farmingdale, New York, is the US distributor for Clay Paky and Pulsar, Celestion, XTA Electronics, Cadac and SPL of Germany. Elektralite manufactures universal lighting controllers for live and fixed installations, including the CP100, the CP10XT and the new CP20. Dale will develop the brand awareness of the Elektralite product outside of the US. More news on the venture is expected in the near future.
Continuing its free upgrade philosophy, Pulsar is offering all users of its Masterpiece control desk the latest 'Chase Generator' software free of charge. The 'Chase Generator' allows the creation of complex chase sequences from just a single scene memory, making programming quick and easy. The upgrade is supplied as an EPROM and is simple to install. To obtain the free upgrade software, contact Pulsar on 01223 366798 or your nearest Pulsar Reseller.
At the LDI 2000 exhibition in Las Vegas last weekend, Vari-Lite introduced the Virtuoso DX console, the latest addition to the Virtuoso system, intended for those who wish to purchase their control system. The Virtuoso DX, which uses the same operating system as the Virtuoso, supports up to 2,000 luminaires and contains eight built-in DMX universes in a smaller, more compact package. A 3D graphical interface provides real-time status from all Vari*Lite luminaires and simulated feedback from all other devices. The console provides easy and consistent programming of Vari*Lite luminaires, DMX moving lights and conventional lights. The console supports up to 26 DMX universes and is equipped with an off-line editing program that allows 2D and 3D programming of all show data. The Virtuoso DX provides manual control functions including three hard encoders dedicated to intensity, pan and tilt controls, and six soft encoders for all other parameter functions. Vari-Lite say the console will be available for purchase in the first quarter of 2001.
Presentation Services Ltd (PSL), the corporate and exhibition event specialist, has launched a new e-commerce internet site called PSL Direct. Visitors to the site will find everything from the latest video/data projector to plasma flat screen technology.
The contents of the world famous Hacienda nightclub in Manchester - scene of early shows by Madonna, Oasis, U2, Take That, Boy George and the 'Madchester' bands - are going under the hammer at a unique auction for charity. The lots include the revered DJ booth and interior designer Ben Kelly's hazard-striped steel columns. The venue for the auction, which will take place on Saturday November 25 at midday, is the nearby Richard Conrad building. Viewing will run from 10am to 4pm on Friday 24 and from 10am to midday on the day itself. In addition to the auctioned lots, pieces of the dance floor, coloured tiles and even bricks from the building, will be sold off at nominal sums. All proceeds from the event will go to the Greater Manchester Community Foundation which works with disadvantaged young people in the city. New owners Crosby Homes are redeveloping the Haçienda site and two neighbouring buildings into apartments.
Hayden Laboratories Ltd, UK distributors for Rolec hard drive background and foreground music systems continue to supply these machines for a massive variety of venues and installations. Le Petit Blanc in Oxford, a lively restaurant now has a Rolec DHD-200C onboard, supplied by Installation Technology. Recent retail environments with Rolec systems include Boots stores in Milton Keynes and Kensington, both via Reflex Systems and fashion store Envy at the Bluewater shopping experience in Kent, via Music Marketing Services. Birmingham-based Hocken Sound and London-based Music Marketing Services are installing Rolec hard drives into Litten Tree pub venues for Surrey Free Inns. Jim Thompson's Oriental Bar, Restaurant Bazaar is a Chinese restaurant roll-out, expanding rapidly in the Greater London area, owned by Taipan Taverns. All sites are benefiting from Rolec hard drives for music, installed by HTL from Blackpool.
Yamaha has introduced the UW500 'Personal Studio System' - an all-in-one solution for audio and MIDI recording. The UW500 system provides everything for the computer musician including comprehensive analogue inputs, digital in/outs and multi-port MIDI capability. A comprehensive software package for sequencing, editing and tone generation is also included. Connecting via a single high-speed USB cable, the UW500 system will transform a computer into a fully equipped, easy to use home recording and music production studio.
Autograph Sound Recording has announced the promotion of Andy Brown to operations manager, a role that will engage him in leading the company's established sound rental business into a new era. His new role will involve liaising with the in-house sound designers, production sound engineers and hire department. Further to Brown's appointment, two new production sound engineers - Alex Apthorpe and Ken Hampton - will be joining the Autograph team. Apthorpe has spent three years working in the sound department at the National Theatre and will look after Autograph's audio software library and installations whilst Hampton will be bringing with him excellent sound engineering skills particularly in the specialist field of large-scale theatrical touring production. Chairman Andrew Bruce has also signalled Autograph’s intention next year to strengthen the team further with additional engineering personnel.
This was the request given to Vertigo Rigging by production company Action Time TV for a special edition of Celebrity Auctions recorded at London Weekend Television! The chosen three - hard to pick from Vertigo's team of suave, slick, and ultra cool riggers - were Ken Mehmed, Paul Darby and Dave Brierly. Donning DJ', bow ties and an air of sophistication, they descended onto stage via a smooth, stylish abseil from the studio roof - half way through the show - which was presented by Sean Bean. Earlier in the day, the Vertigo Bonds - more practically clad, rigged their abseil lines in the roof, plus some custom-fabricated 'Boson's' chairs, constructed in the Vertigo workshop. The latter were fixed up in the roof to enable the Bonds to sit and wait for their cue in comfort. The feat was performed flawlessly, followed by a round of Martinis - shaken not stirred to ensure the Bond myth was faithfully adhered to. No-one is commenting on who got the beautiful girl!!
London is to have its first new producing theatre since the National Theatre opened in 1976. Hampstead Theatre has won a major £9.85 million capital grant from the Arts Council of England for a new landmark development, the total cost of which will reach £15million. The Theatre's currrent building, a portakabin erected in 1962 to last 10 years, is nearing collapse and work on the new venue, which will be sited close to the existing theatre, is about to commence. Designed by Bennetts Associates, the new theatre, which will open in late 2002, will be translucent, with an adaptable elliptical aditorium.
During the recent PLASA Show, Zero 88 held a competition to win special 'silver edition' versions of its Elara and Alcora desks. The winner of the Alcora was ex-Rose Bruford college student, Ianto Guy who correctly identified that Zero 88 was founded in 1972. He was one of a number of students who benefited from using the desk during his studies. Zero 88 has supported the college's lighting design course through the donation of control desks since 1998, and is continuing its commitment by donating its latest Illusion 240 console in November. Guy now runs his own company in Powys where he provides education on lighting issues to amateur groups, small theatres and schools. He also acts as a consultant to National Lottery Grant winners. Ianto Guy is pictured receiving his Alcora desk from Claire House and Cheryl Ryan of Zero 88.
The Ministry of Sound is to stage a 12-hour New Year's Eve Party at the Millennium Dome. The event will take place in the buildings around the Dome including the adjacent Skyscape structure dubbed by many the Baby Dome. Just under 40 DJs will be there on the night alongside chart act Artful Dodger. In preparation for the event, the Dome itself will close at 6pm on December 31 with a final performance of the Central Show.