USA - The historic Warner Grand Theatre in San Pedro, California, is an opulent art deco venue that is moving into a new era of performance excellence with the help of Kinetic Lighting and Elation Professional’s theatrical-grade Artiste DaVinci LED moving head.
Originally opened in 1931 and listed on the National Historic Register, the 1500-seat theatre features a vaudeville-size proscenium stage with T-guided fly system that makes it an ideal venue for concerts, dance performances, multimedia presentations, film screenings or any cultural event.
Great strides have been made in recent years to restore the theatre, with a lighting upgrade the latest in a series of on-going improvements. Kinetic Lighting worked with the Warner Grand and the Los Angeles Department of Cultural Affairs to convert the theatre from conventional lighting to an entirely LED-based system, assisted by Victor Prudeaux, master Electrician at the theatre.
Seeking to achieve the technical sophistication of a contemporary performing arts venue while maintaining its historic integrity, a highlight of the new lighting package are Artiste DaVinci LED moving heads, full-featured spot luminaires and the first moving lights the theatre has ever owned.
Spread across box booms, the deck and overhead electrics, the award-winning DaVinci is an energy efficient CMY and graphics luminaire with a 300W LED engine and 7° to 48° motorized zoom that powers out over 12,000 lumens. “They will be able to make more artistic choices now that they have not only the functionality of moving
Mexico - Drone light shows specialist Verge Aero has delivered Mexico’s first drone light show. Working with local partner Sky Precision, Verge Aero provided a system of 150 drone lights to create moving, colour-changing pictures in the sky to open the performance by Dutch DJ Martin Garrix, marking Mexico’s Día de Muertos (Day of the Dead) at the FIG19 hot-air balloon festival.
Founded in 2002, the FIG (Festival Internacional del Globo) hot-air balloon festival, which takes place each year in the city of León in central Mexico, has become one of the leading balloon events in the world. This year, organisers were keen to provide a cutting-edge visual treat for visitors and called on Sky Precision to deliver it. Taking up the challenge, specialists from Verge Aero and Sky Precision created custom choreography to accompany a set of four songs, including an opening number by Mexican guitar maestros, Rodrigo y Gabriella.
Escandra Salim Alle, CEO of FIG, says: “We are excited to have hosted the first drone show ever here in Mexico. The show content was amazing, Verge Aero did an excellent job. The enormous crowd loved the drone show and our social media had a blast.”
As with every public drone light show, safety was the primary concern for all involved. Emerging from their protected safe landing zone, the drones took to the air to create colourful, dynamic, pre-choreographed movements and shapes including guitars, balloons, flowers - and the grinning Día de Muertos skull - in the sky above the performance stage.
Israel Canino, CEO of Sk
USA - Bandit Lites most recent annual general meeting included a special celebration to mark the 40th anniversary of Eric ‘Rock’ Shafferman joining the Bandit Lites family in 1979.
Bandit Lites was just over a decade into its founding when Shafferman found himself with a summer off from college in East Tennessee. His brothers had been working with the company when they asked him to come to the warehouse and meet everyone. In what later could only be a destined happenstance, Shafferman found himself joining the team for a series of weekend warrior runs.
“We had two Shafferman brothers already, and in walks a third,” recalls Bandit Lites founder and chair Michael T. Strickland. “This guy was a high school all-state football player and looked the part. He was so tough, they called him Rock. Boy were they right! Eric was the toughest, hardest working guy at Bandit. Nothing stopped Rock. I was glad to hire him based on sight and the way he carried himself. It was one of the best hires we ever made! I love Rock!”
“Bandit was starting to really grow and was taking on the big names acts,” Shafferman shared. “We still didn’t have any chain hoists, but we had lights that were like little trees that went into the air, and maybe ten or twelve par cans on them. Once we got Kenny Rogers, we got all new equipment and after that it started to take off and we got to doing more bands. Alabama hit it big, and then I joined their tour a little after their first year out of clubs.”
While things in the industry have changed drastically, fr
USA - Previewed at Prolight+Sound 2019, the new Alcons LR24 pro-ribbon line-array system will be making its global debut at the NAMM show.
The LR24 is a three-way, bi-amped, mid-size format line-array system. Loaded with Alcons’ multiple-patented pro-ribbon technology for mid and high frequencies, the system features an unusually high dynamic range with a fast impulse response with up-to-90% less distortion. This results in an intuitive linear response, with optimal intelligibility and non-compressed identical tonal balance at any SPL.
The all-natural cylindrical wavefront of the purpose-designed RBN1202rs 12” pro-ribbon transducer and the acoustically and electronically symmetrical component configuration bring an industry-leading pattern control in both the vertical as well as the horizontal plane, up to the highest frequencies without any distortion-inducing horn constructions. The very-coherent vertical dispersion enables a non-destructive inter-cabinet coupling for maximum HF throw and wind-stability.
The RBN1202’s large 12" voice-coil features an unusual power handling of 2500W and RMS-to-peak ratio of 1:15, from 1,000 Hz to 20,000 Hz; This caters for a remarkable intelligibility combined with a virtually unlimited dynamic headroom reserve.
The patent-pending flying system facilitates both compressed and non-compressed suspension, while enabling angle-setting on the cabinets without lifting the array. It has a WLL of 24 cabinets under 10:1 safety.
Tom Back, managing director Alcons Audio, says: “The LR24 is filling the ga
Brazil - São Paulo-based Gabisom Audio Equipment, one of the world’s largest audio hire companies, has made a major investment in Outline’s Newton FPGA processor.
Gabisom celebrated its 35th anniversary in 2019. Owner and founder Gabi Ferreira has steered the company through the many changes seen in his homeland since 1984, building a multi-disciplinary operation employing 300 people that works in concerts, musical theatre, corporate events, fixed installations, tours and sporting events. Amongst much else, Gabisom is the audio provider for all the various Rock in Rio events worldwide and for the fabulous Rio Carnival which attracts two million visitors daily.
Gabisom is also the go-to choice for international artists touring Brazil, whose productions rely absolutely on the company’s knowledge of their country and its challenges.
Gabisom’s senior system technician Eder Moura commented, “I love to use Newton because it is no trouble, we can now have the festival matrix desks plus the festival desk with videos, DI and MCs without problems, we don’t need worry about clocking issues. Also, 16 outs with tons of processing power is amazing and last but not the least the Smaart integration is amazing.”
Moura continued, “Newton is the way to go now in the digital world, in a single rack space unit we can do a lot. We use our Newtons as system management, summing desks on festivals and output control for the system, linked via Dante to feed delay towers. Also, Newtons solve the clock sync issue when combining with different digital aud
Hong Kong - Prolights has announced the appointment of D&T Prolight & Sound as distributor for Hong Kong and Macau.
The company was established two years ago by two industry veterans, who had joined forces in order to deliver AVL solutions to the Hong Kong and Macau market.
“Our vision is to provide state-of-the-art professional lighting, audio and video solutions to our partners and users,” explains Dominic Cho, regional sales manager for D&T Prolight & Sound. “Analyse systematically our clients’ needs and facilitate them hassle-free by provision of one-stop world class solutions and services, as well as staying focus, are definitely our core valuable strengths.
We approached Prolights due to its impressive, broad selection and comprehensive market differentiation, which reinforces our ambitions to deliver top quality total solutions to different segments in our industry. Our recent visit to Prolights’ headquarters enabled us to see all its facilities and an energetic team.”
Paolo Albani, international sales manager for Prolights, says: “We’re thrilled about this partnership. Having D&T in our distribution network will help us to meet the needs of the Hong Kong and Macau market. I firmly believe they’re the perfect partner to succeed in this strategic country and I’m confident about our success there as well.”
UK - Women in Data, the UK’s largest female data professional event, pulls in over 1,000 attendees from around the world. Held within the surroundings of the InterContinental, London O2 on the banks of the River Thames, WiD features keynote presentations from a host of guest speakers.
Having worked with Light Fantastic Production Services on a succession of previous events, WiD once again called upon the team to provide a complete technical, equipment and logistics production solution, custom designed to cover all aspects of the prestigious conference.
Branding for 2019 Women in Data was characterised by red to signify confidence, ambition and drive. Following this theme, LFPS applied bold, crimson hues throughout the stage set and lighting design, emphasising the colour as a symbol of strength and vitality. Continuing the look, the team extended the lighting design into the auditorium to create a more intimate feel within the space.
With a limited time frame in which to build the event, LFPS worked throughout the night to transform the hotel’s Arora Ballroom, taking care of all lighting, audio, video, rigging and scenic elements ready for the 9am start.
At its focal point, the main stage featured a sharp, smart design conceived around a central ‘W’ concept and flanked with distinct WiD branding and sponsor graphics. Designed in-house and constructed by the LFPS fabrication department, the scenic elements added depth and form to the substantial stage area.
WiD co-founder Roisin McCarthy says: “Once again Light Fantastic deliver
UK - Event rental specialist Fisher Hires has confirmed an investment in Portman Lights’ recently developed P1 Mini LED. Launched at Prolight+Sound 2019 in Frankfurt, the units caught the eye of Fisher Hires’ head of operations, Rob Baker, who contacted Portman’s exclusive UK distributor Entedi, to secure stock when the products began shipping in June.
Portman Lights was established in Gdańsk, Poland in 2016 but despite its comparatively recent appearance, has already established an impressive global distribution network for its specialist, decorative stage lighting products. The company’s end-user list already includes an impressive array of concert, festival and TV settings.
With its tungsten appearance and retro style, the P1 Mini retains all the characteristics of Portman’s original and popular P1 Retro Lamp but is smaller, fully LED and weighs in at only 8kg, all of which made it a must for Fisher Hires as Rob Baker explains:
“At Fisher Hires our focus is firmly on combining the highest standards in service with the very best available products. With that in mind we’re always very closely tuned in to what’s going on in the market and take a keen interest in what lighting designers are looking for. It didn’t take long to identify the new Portman P1 mini as a product that was going to be in high demand from the word go. I know that the company enjoyed great success at Prolight+Sound with the launch and what we’ve seen since taking delivery certainly confirmed our instincts that it was a no-brainer to invest in stock.”
UK - The Taunton Amateur Operatic Society’s costumes for Cats provided the inspiration for Chris Sealy’s lighting design for their production of the musical at the Brewhouse Theatre.
“The costumes were amazing,” explains Sealy. “I was lucky because the cast wore them to the rehearsals. So when I went to watch, I was able to see them in the flesh, which aided me greatly in selecting colours for my lighting. Every cat in the play tells a different story, each with a different feel, and that of course is tied tightly into the different costumes.”
Helping Sealy accent the costumes and enhance the unfolding narrative on stage with light was a collection of six Chauvet Professional Maverick MK2 Profile fixtures supplied by Bright Production Services. Hung on overhead electrics, the 440W LED fixtures were used as as a primary light source.
Adroitly mixing colours, Sealy relied on the fixtures not only to light the play’s memorable characters, but also to bring out the unique personalities that lay within their costumes, using cool whites to accent the tuxedoed Mr. Mistoffolees, casting evocative hues on striped felines, and endowing Rum Rum Tugger with a radiant golden glow.
“The colour rendering capabilities of all my fixtures were especially important,” says Sealy. “Coping with the mood changes in Cats is a challenge. Oftentimes, I would get around this with a colour change, or a shift from front light to side light.
“Basically, all of the Maverick’s many features came into play. I created moods using
UK - PLASA and the Music Industries Association (MIA) are set to co-host a free event designed to offer advice and information on the incoming changes to the off-payroll working regulations (known as IR35) and Brexit.
Taking place on 30 January, Get your business ready: IR35 and Brexit will see business and HR experts take to the stage, including Nicky Gleadow, MD of The HR Point, who will detail how the IR35 changes may affect employers and contractors. More speakers will be announced soon, the organisers say.
IR35 is a piece of UK government legislation that aims to determine whether a worker is an employee or contractor, ensuring that the person carrying out the work is paid and protected in the proper manner and that both parties pay the relevant tax. The changes to IR35, which come into effect on 6 April, mean that all medium-sized and large companies will be responsible for deciding the employment status of their workers.
Get your business ready: IR35 and Brexit is taking place at the Victory Services Club, London on Thursday, 30 January, from 11am to 3pm. The venue is located two minutes’ walk from the Marble Arch underground station.
Professionals from across the entertainment technology and music industries are invited to RSVP as soon as possible to secure their place.
Germany - Optocore has appointed Dusseldorf-based United Brands GmbH (United B) as its new German distributors with immediate effect.
Tine Helmle, Optocore director of sales and marketing, comments: “With the expansion of our product portfolio such as Festival Box, AutoRouter and our Madi series United Brands was a perfect match. Due to their expertise and long-time experience in install and live events they bring huge potential in placing Optocore as the main sound distribution network on the market.”
United B’s Jens ‘Bubbes’ Steffan, who will largely oversee the Optocore account, adds: “We were familiar with Optocore technology through our distribution of DiGiCo [digital consoles]. So it was just a small step to contact Optocore. The company has a lot of very interesting products, which perfectly match our customers’ demands.”
Discussions had started back in early March, he reports. “We think Optocore is the only really professional solution for transporting audio in the digital domain. Based on our high standards with DiGiCo and Adamson, it is a perfect fit with all our other brands.”
United B has wasted no time in getting started. Having already received formal Optocore training, the company has purchased a demo system and stock comprising Festival Box Petit, AutoRouter, DD32R-FX, DD4MR-FX and X6R-FX in different versions.
“We will use all of these options to create awareness,” he concludes. United B will be systematically introducing clients to the new portfolio, with two key dates in January: Hamburg Open 2
Czech Republic - Audac has announced a partnership with Prague-based Audio Digital as the new exclusive distributor of its audio solutions in the Czech Republic.
Audio Digital’s managing director Michal Zeman comments: “I genuinely believe in the quality and innovation Audac offers and I am more than happy to be adding their products to our assortment. We at Audio Digital value a high performance/price ratio, and that is exactly what you get at Audac. I look forward to this partnership.”
Audac’s international sales executive Bart Vandermot adds: “It is always important to keep evolving as a business. By expanding our network and starting new partnerships, we can ensure that the clients all over the world can enjoy our innovations. We have the greatest confidence in our partnership with Audio Digital as we have seen first-hand the outstanding quality and service they provide to the customer.”
Europe - Following the release of the L-ISA Controller v2.0 software update, the Robert Juliat SpotMe 3D tracking device is now fully compatible to operate with L-ISA Immersive Hyperreal Sound technology, the lighting manufacturer has announced.
L-Acoustics recently revealed the January release of a significant software update for its L-ISA Immersive Hyperreal Sound technology that will enable users to monitor the positioning of any tracked object in a 3D view. With L-ISA Controller version 2.0, source parameters - including pan, width, height, distance, and elevation - can be mapped and scaled to all certified tracking systems.
In tandem with the L-ISA v1.10 update, L-Acoustics has announced that it has officially collaborated with tracking software providers whose technologies can now function within the L-ISA ecosystem, including Robert Juliat’s SpotMe tracking tool.
L-Acoustics executive director of creative technologies Guillaume Le Nost notes: “With our latest software and recent tracking system partnerships, the incredibly natural audio reproduction of L-ISA, paired with the smooth and precise real-time tracking of visual elements on stage is guaranteed to raise the Hyperreal Sound bar even further for our audiences.”
Robert Juliat managing director François Juliat adds: “We are happy with this new compatibility which brings together two of our industry’s leading, high-end brands to offer quality solutions to the market. SpotMe only requires a followspot with no extra peripheral devices and can be installed easily and quickly
UK - The Association of Lighting Designers (ALD) has announced the 2019 recipients of its Awards for Excellence.
The awards celebrate imaginative and creative lighting and video production and offer young designers a chance to showcase their talents and bringing their work to the attention of experienced lighting and video designers and the wider industry.
The event was rebranded for its 2019 edition, with changes to the prizes and the introduction of a new award category, The Fred Foster Award for Production Electrics, created to “balance the recognition of talent demonstrated across the membership profile”.
The Michael Northen Award for Lighting Design was awarded jointly to Lucia Sanchez Roldan from the Royal Academy of Dramatic Art and Rose Bruford’s Ryan Joseph Stafford.
Roldan’s work was described as “beautiful (…) with strong design, clear choices, and great angles” by the judges, whilst Stafford was commended for his ambition to create different looks for each piece, keeping only side light as the constant.
Johanna Town, ALD chair, presented Lucia with her prize, which comprised a copy of Northen’s book Northen Lights, a £500 cash prize and a 512 ETCnomad Package, a one-year Vectorworks licence, and a six-month mentoring scheme with a team of industry professionals. Stafford received the same prize but was unable to make the event due to pre-existing work commitments.
Meanwhile, LIPA’s Tracy Gibbs won the Blue-I Media Award for Video Design, presented by ALD president Richard Pilbrow. The judges we
UK - A.C. Entertainment Technologies (AC-ET) has been appointed as the exclusive UK distributor for Calibre’s HQUltra700 series of universal live events switcher-scalers with immediate effect. Sister Company, A.C. Entertainment Technologies Ireland will handle distribution in the Republic of Ireland.
British-based manufacturer Calibre has been providing image scaling technology for over 30 years for use with large LED videowalls, designed for concerts, award ceremonies, rental/staging, advertising, and for image scalers for professional projection applications.
Calibre’s HQUltra700 series, consisting of the HQUltra730ASV and the HQUltra770ASV, are universal live events switcher-scalers with the ability to drive flat panel displays, projectors or LED videowalls.
Stuart Burdett, video sales manager comments: “Being able to provide our customers with a reliable product that can cope with traditional projection or irregular pixel accurate LED wall configurations is crucial. The features of the Calibre HQUltra700 series give our customers the ability to switch and scale anything up to 4K both in and out, making it a real must have in their inventories. I’m very excited to have Calibre in our portfolio as it complements our existing brands from the source through to the end display technologies.”
Venezuela - Nexo has appointed a new sales manager for the Latin American nations. Hely Chirinos, formerly with Sun Music, Nexo distribution agent in Venezuela, joined the team in January.
Originally from Caracas in Venezuela, Hely Chirinos began his sound engineering career in 2003, and has worked for several touring companies, as well as advising on the design of projects in Colombia, Venezuela and the Caribbean islands. “I have used Nexo since the very beginning; I remember when we first heard the sound of the Nexo PS15, it was a life-changing moment!” he says. “In recent years, I have been lucky to work with Celso Papadopolous and Roberto Tschopp in the Nexo LatAm team, people that I admire who have contributed a lot to the growth of my professional career.”
As LatAm sales manager, Chirinos will work closely with Roberto Tschopp, one of Nexo’s top field engineers, collaborating on fixed installation projects as well as supporting an extensive base of rental companies.
“Nexo is considered one of the leading professional audio brands in Latin America, and we continue to have very interesting potential opportunities throughout the region. I look forward to encouraging our excellent distributors, strengthening the Nexo philosophy with our pro-audio users in the industry, so that our network continues to grow throughout the continent.”
Malaysia - Prolyte Asia Pacific (PAP) has joined forces with Doughty and Sixty82 to form Sixty82 Doughty Asia (SDA).
The move appears to be linked with the 2019 bankruptcy filling by Prolyte Group and the company's subsequent acquisition by Area Four Industries.
“For the past 15 years we have operated under the name PAP, however, due to recent events in the industry, PAP has decided to take a step forward and start a fresh chapter with new partners,” comments Menze van der Sluis, MD of PAP.
Known for its quality products, reliability, and education, along with a focus on safe working practice, customer satisfaction, and in-depth service, PAP has been a critical player in the Asian market for more than 15 years.
“Sixty82 was the best and only choice for catering to the high standards of the extensive PAP customer base,” continues Van der Sluis.
“To continue to support our customers in the way that we have been doing for so many years now, this was the only possible way forward."
SDA customers can expect to find the same team of experts, with a new name and “even better trussing, staging and rigging products and solutions”.
Sixty82 trusses are compatible with products previously supplied by PAP. In line with their existing policies, SDA guarantees full distribution coverage to all APAC countries.
“Our goal is to improve every aspect of our customers’ experience continuously. Expanding our sales n
South Africa - Astera distributor DWR Distribution will offer clients the first local demos of the lighting company’s full range of products during an open day programme taking place at the end of January.
Astera’s sales and marketing director Sebastian Bückle will carry out the presentations in Cape Town and Johannesburg, whilst DWR’s local product managers Marlene Riley and Jannie de Jager will do so in Durban.
Bückle, who has been a part of the Astera team for more than a decade, will demo the company’s complete range of wireless tubes and spotlights as well as the AsteraApp and wireless DMX that one can use to control the fixtures. He will be at the DWR Cape Town offices on Monday, 27 January and at the Johannesburg offices on 29 January. The local product representatives from DWR will lead an Astera open day in Durban on 31 January.
Duncan Riley of DWR Distribution comments: “Astera’s battery-operated LED fixtures have been a popular choice for those in the film and events industries for some time. With the appointment of a local distributor, clients no longer have to order fixtures online from abroad, and we are very pleased to have Astera’s full range on demo in Cape Town, Johannesburg and Durban for the first time.”
Poland - When production, lighting and multimedia designer, Pawel ‘Spider’ Pajak, and PERCEPTO [LAB] - the team responsible for creative visual production - were approached by production company, East Eventz, to design and deliver creative solutions for a one-off concert, they chose Ayrton MagicPanel-FX and Khamsin-S fixtures to provide contemporary, densely-coloured and dramatic effects for this very special evening.
The two-artist concert featured singer Dawid Podsiadlo and rapper Taco Hemingway, and was the first sold-out gig for Polish artists in the history of Warsaw’s PGE Narodowy Stadium, attracting an attendance of 60,000 people.
Spider chose Ayrton’s state-of-the-art technology - 64 MagicPanel-FX and 44 Khamsin-S fixtures, supplied by Transcolor - after many successful years using the brand: “I have also adopted Ayrton’s range of more classic, but still distinctive, moving lights, starting first with Ghibli, and this year added one of the latest releases, Khamsin-S, and I want the brand to become even more available in the Polish market,” he explains. “I’ve been able to rely on Ayrton fixtures for several years on so many different productions, from club tours and special events, right up to large scale stadium shows.”
The MagicPanel-FX units were hung in four groups of 16 pieces each on separate truss structures run by Kinesys motors and used for various truss looks, both as lighting effects and in combination with the video content as low-res screens.
The Khamsin-S fixtures were rigged on four straight trusses
UK - Lighting designer Jacob Gowler took the opportunity to use Robe’s new T1 Profiles and LEDBeam 150s for the first time on a Cambridge Theatre Company (CTC) production of the crime-and-passion fuelled musical Chicago (High School Edition), staged over six performances in the 337-seat Great Hall at The Leys School in Cambridge.
CTC was founded in 2015 by Louis Ling to offer a range of opportunities for performers - young and old - to participate in high-quality theatre, and it now performs to over 9000 people annually. Since 2017, CTC has developed its focus on the youth community, and by working with professional directors, LDs, choreographers and musical directors, enables its young performers to experience unique opportunities to develop their skills.
For this production, the professionals were Jacob, director Chris Cuming, set and costume designer Frankie Gerrard and sound designer Nick Hall. It was the first time that CTC had worked with a professional lighting and set designer as part of the creative team.
Jacob was asked onboard for this project by Louis Ling. Jacob specified the Robe elements, which were supplied by rental company CEG and used in conjunction with the Great Hall’s mainly LED-based house lighting rig.
Of the seven T1 Profiles, five were in the overhead rig, three for backlight and two as a top light over the set following its V shape. Two more were positioned out front in the house, all in high positions.
Two LEDBeam 150s were rigged on the circle rail and two in the ‘under slip’ positions beneath
USA - The Gaylord National Resort & Convention Centre in National Harbor, Maryland near the nation’s capital likes to celebrate Christmas in a big way. Set in the property’s 19-story glass garden atrium with its views of the river, Christmas on the Potomac is the hotel’s myriad holiday installation crowned by Cirque Dreams Unwrapped, a six-week-long, 25-minute Christmas fable combining artistry and showmanship from around the world with Christmas music, a dancing fountain, laser-light show and indoor snowfall.
Bringing this production sonically alive was the task of an L-Acoustics Kara system, designed and installed by Showtime Sound LLC of Frederick, Maryland. The system was split between the atrium’s lower and upper terraces: the former comprised a left-right design of one SB18 subwoofer ground-stacked with five Kara enclosures per side to cover the ticketed seating areas, and a flown LCR delay system of three hangs of one SB18 over seven Kara for standing and balcony areas.
Six LA12X amplified controllers powered the delay system while three LA12X were used for the ground-stacked enclosures. The system also used the L-Acoustic P1 processor for system management, routing, and time alignment, as well as for its AVB compatibility for long-distance signal transport. Audio came into the P1’s AES inputs and was sent as AVB over fibre to the amplified controllers.
Showtime Sound LLC had two distinct challenges on this project. “The atrium is huge,” explains Showtime Sound LLC director of operations and production Brian Li
UK - Rising British singer and rapper Little Simz played her flagship show at London’s Kentish Town Forum in December, making video a priority for the first time to enhance her show for the tour’s largest audience.
Production AV was brought on board by Little Simz’s production manager, Eric Wade of EZ Services, who was on the lookout for a new video supplier. Wade was keen to ramp up the visual effect of the show and capture quality footage, not only for live stage to IMAG screens, but also for use in promo material.
“We had a pretty tight schedule to implement the video aspects for the biggest show of the tour and going with Production AV made perfect sense,” says Wade. “We wanted to give everyone in the audience the same experience, regardless of whether they were on the balcony or tucked away some place where sight lines weren’t so great.
“Production AV were quick to meet, quote and crew the show. The efficiency of their work, the fluid nature of the crew and the fact that they were all stand up people made the overall experience very pleasant.”
Technical project manager Nathan Dunbar, who joined Production AV in 2019, oversaw the delivery and execution of the video solution, drawing on his experience on some of Europe’s largest AV projects including Glastonbury and the MTV Europe Music Awards and tours for artists such as Fall Out Boy.
“Production AV was brought on board because we understand the challenges of live music video in a demanding environment,” says Dunbar. “You only get one chance to make it per
Slovakia - Bratislava’s new year celebrations, held in the heart of the Slovakian capital at the Rázusovo nábrežie (the banks of the River Danube) were brought to life by a spectacular lightshow masterminded by Kvant Show Production.
The laser specialists, who are also PR Lighting’s distributor for Germany, Czech Republic and Slovakia, have been the event lighting contractors since the concept was introduced three years ago, and in addition to their own lasers, 24 pieces of PR Lighting’s Aqua 580 Beam helped provide a spectacular show as the city counted down to 2020.
Organised by Biela Noc (White Night), the artistic department of the Slovakia and Bratislava municipality, a crew of around 25 people were responsible for creating the infrastructure, including Layher structures, lighting, sound and lasers, and all programming.
This year’s event was based on an original design from Brano Bernar of Showmedia, with lighting and laser choreography and programming this year undertaken by Kvant’s Martin Gabco. The main timecode show lasted seven minutes and was designed as the countdown show for the midnight new year celebration.
The PR Lighting Aqua 580 Beam is an IP66-rated moving head. Stated Kvant CEO Michal Simkovic, “The main benefit of these fixtures is their IP rating; since they are waterproof there is no need for rain covers. In addition, the power of the beam is impressive, as is the price, while the prism is both visible and sharp.”
These lights formed an essential part of the timecode show, in combination with the l
UK - The Tony Award-winning Best Musical Dear Evan Hansen opened in London 19 November at the Noel Coward Theatre with video projection comprising the shows entire stage scenery.
Supplied by Stage Sound Services, three disguise vx 4 and four gx 1 servers powered projections for the show, highlighting the impact of social media on daily life and create an immersive social media environment on stage for the actors.
“The cornerstone of the play is Evan and his interaction with the real world through a social media lens,” says projection designer Peter Nigrini. “To successfully tell our story, social media needed to be a visceral part of the theatrical environment. After the set designer created a physical environment, my job was to bring this virtual world to life on stage and give it the emotional power that so many teenagers clearly feel in their day to day lives.”
Every surface of the playing space can be covered by content. Display surfaces include a front projection system, a series of portals and tracking panels, flat-panel LCD monitors and the stage floor. Eight projectors and 32 monitors are deployed.
Nigrini notes that, “every piece of scenery that moves in the design is automated, and we can track it in real time. In moving the show to London we were also able to pre-visualise the entire production in New York, make decisions about automation and scenery in response to the changed dimensions of the London production. We were able to feed this back to other departments so it could all be pre-programmed. Integration with