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AC-ET Supplies Stunning Projection for BRDC British Grand Prix Celebration

AC-ET Supplies Stunning Projection for BRDC British Grand Prix Celebration
AC-ET Supplies Stunning Projection for BRDC British Grand Prix Celebration

A.C. Entertainment Technologies (AC-ET) Ltd, one of the industry's leading entertainment technology suppliers, provided spectacular video projection for the British Racing Drivers’ Club's (BRDC) dazzling annual British Grand Prix party at Silverstone racing circuit.

Staged every year on the eve of the F1 Santander British Grand Prix, this year a party was held for the first time at the BRDC Farm, which is adjacent to the celebrated race track. The legendary event attracted high-profile members and personalities from the world of motor sport.

AC-ET, which is a Patron of the British Racing Drivers’ Club’s exclusive ‘Rising Stars’ Programme, worked closely with the BRDC events team to deliver the temporary video and lighting installation.

Although AC-ET has a long-standing relationship lighting the event, with the new Farm location this year, AC-ET’s technical manager, James Bawn, decided to bring the façade of the space's Georgian building to life. For this he used dynamic, high-speed racing footage from the BRDC’s own film archive.

“The brief from the British Racing Drivers’ Club was that they wanted a spectacular, jaw-dropping visual event,” explains James. “We decided to utilise cutting-edge video projection technologies, and add in some eye-catching outdoor lighting to set the mood around the grounds. Within ten minutes of my initial site meeting I knew that we had to project onto the Farm building itself – it provided the ideal canvas.”

BRDC's Stuart Pringle was delighted: “It was fantastic to see the BRDC Farm transformed into a dynamic, visually vibrant space full of light and video,” he says. “Video projection brought a new dimension to the site and the idea of projecting archive racing footage was inspired. Not only that, it looked stunning and genuinely set the mood for the evening.”

To achieve the overall look James specified a Green Hippo GrassHopper controlling Barco HD20K Projectors and TV One signal transmission for the projection.

To bring the surrounding site to life and further complement the projection he specified various cutting-edge lighting including eight Chroma-Q Color Force Compact fixtures, three A&O Falcon Beam 3K and six Robe Robin 300E Spots. All lighting was programmed and controlled on a Jands Vista S1 control surface connected to a PC laptop running the Vista v2 software.

“The Green Hippo GrassHopper was used to full effect - we blended two 20k projectors and used archive racing footage from the BRDC,” explains James. “The effects were stunning. Although the content was relatively straight forward, the ease and speed in which the GrassHopper was programmed on site made it a very easy set up for us.”

The site itself is pitch black at night, so James had to deal with various health and safety challenges: “However as there were so many trees in the gardens it gave me a fantastic opportunity to light them with a number of slow rainbow chases, he explains. “With the Vista S1's FX engine I quickly created the look I wanted, yet still managed to provide sufficient illumination to make safe walkways around the site.”

One major challenge for James was time restrictions as the BRDC Farm is used by members during the day to view the circuit activity.

“It went even better than expected,” James enthuses. “The Chroma-Q Color Force Compact units are a superb IP rated fixture, they have an eye-watering output for such a small unit. They were deployed around the entrance of the BRDC Farm and the in-built near far lenses enabled me to wash the walls seamlessly from floor to ceiling.”

Finally, to frame the whole picture the searchlights were placed around the entrance to the BRDC Farm. This attracted much attention once the sun had gone down. “They provided a great centrepiece for BRDC members to head to the evening, explains James. “It was all programmed on the Jands Vista S1, which is a fantastic little console. I managed to patch and pre program many of the looks and presets long before we went to site. Fine-tuning on site took a matter of minutes. In addition, the S1's compact size enabled me get around the site to quickly programme the finishing touches.”

12th July 2013

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