Production News Headlines
The Worker & Kolkhoz Woman and Astera Titans
Russia – Astera’s wireless LED Titan Tubes helped the action come alive on stage in Moscow for performances of The Worker and Kolkhoz Woman a comic opera by Pavel Kaplevich which stunned and amazed critics and the crowds alike during performances at the Zaryadye Concert Hall.
The opera is dedicated to the history of one Russia’s most famous monuments The Worker and Kolkhoz Woman, a 24.5 metre high sculpture by Vera Mukhina, renowned globally as an example of socialist realism and art deco. Two figures – male and female – are leaning forward holding a hammer and sickle above their heads. The work was designed for the Soviet Pavilion at the 1937 World’s Fair in Paris and was subsequently moved to Moscow. It is instantly recognisable as a powerful Soviet-era symbol.
2019 marks the 130th anniversary of Vera Mukhina’s birthday and the 80th anniversary of the monument’s ‘home’ at the Exhibition of Achievements of the National Economy (VDNKh) in Moscow.
In the opera version, Worker and the Kolkhoz Woman come to life as two real workers who get packed up and sent to Paris for the Fair, where they reassume their poses and engage in a series of bizarre and surreal adventures and encounters, including with Marlene Dietrich and Pablo Picasso.
Lighting designer Alexander Krasnolutsky created a distinctive look and style for the show utilising a conventional lighting rig, LED screens and the 60 Astera Titan Tubes that were a central element to the performance.
Alexander explained that he could not work with traditional beam lights as the Zaryadye Concert Hall itself has high ambient light levels and the use of haze is prohibited, so lighting designers cannot use popular techniques like beam technology.
However, contending with such challenging conditions plus the LED screens upstage, he saw nothing but new possibilities, which fired him up to take a different path in maximising the scenic background created with the Titan Tubes.
“The Titans conveyed the mood of the moment as well as highlighting the images of specific characters throughout the opera," he explained.
The Titan Tubes were placed inside a black cabinet mounted about two metres off the floor which wrapped around the back and two sides of the stage in an arc.
The black cabinet provided maximum contrast and gave the impression the Tubes were floating in the air. Inside the cabinet, the Titan Tubes were fixed equidistant to each other, resulting in a broad strip of bright, colourful, symmetrically positioned vertical lines.
This striking geometry worked brilliantly as a visual treatment.
Alexander worked closely with video designer Ilya Shagalov to create overall moods and ambience as the different scenes unfolded. Ilya set the general tones while Alexander worked on lighting the many details in each scene and also on drawing in the audience and making the viewing experience more immersive.
“Using the Titan Tubes in this way solved several issues,” he explained. “The units are very bright and don’t get lost in the luminosity of the screens. They provide another layer and dimension of visuality, and sometimes I even had to dial them down!”
Prior to working on this production Alexander had used Titan Tubes on various projects and loved all the features and the general versatility.
He appreciates the high CRI and “great range of colour temperatures” which also make them ideal for television and film applications.
He thinks the colour palette produced by a combination of the RGB plus amber and mint LEDs is “beautiful”, and this was very handy in setting some unique backgrounds to accent parts of the plot.
The bright blue sky of Paris was continued by pale blue Titan Tube lines; different colour white stripes reflected the monochrome gloominess of the Nazi era during World War II. The Titan Tubes also supported the figurative red lights of the Kremlin walls and even the goldish-orange shimmering of the ruby stars; all of these detailed effects were fluid and effortless using the fixtures.
Alexander notes that the “well-thought-out functionality” and battery power supply of the Tubes is a great tribute to the practical and realistic thinking of Astera’s product developers, and having the option of both battery or wired operation doesn’t compromise the brightness and quality of the light in any way.
“Even during a show or event lasting several hours, when the battery charge is lower, the tubes don’t deteriorate, and for this production they performed flawlessly just as we planned.”
The Worker and Kolkhoz Woman received rave reviews for its excellent cast including Sergey Mazaev as Stalin and the legendary Ilze Liepa who brilliantly delivered the Marlene-Picasso dance sequence in a human split-screen style.
21st January 2020
Memories of NYE with Maroon 5
USA – Anyone enjoying Maroon 5’s New Year’s Eve special shows at Mandalay Bay Arena in Las Vegas this year will have witnessed the cool and elegant geometric lines of Brian Jenkins’ production and lighting design for which he utilised over 200 Robe moving lights.
The band have frequently played this slot – 30-31 December – at this venue in recent years, and the objective is to present a completely new and fresh visuality for the occasion which is different from any of their touring shows. This year the New Year shows were ahead of an upcoming album release and 2020 world tour.
Brian had wanted to “go geometric” as a design concept for some time, and this presented him with the perfect opportunity, together with the relative luxury of two days for the get-in and set up.
Knowing the band’s video content also helped fuel Brian’s thought process. The upstage LED screen was a triangle 50ft wide at the base and 30ft high, and this was flanked by two angled lighting pods either side at the top in a diamond orientation, with a third pod over centre stage, also at 45 degrees to keep the triangular / diamond architecture. These three trussing pods were each filled with 49 Robe Spiider LED wash beams in a 7x7 matrix format.
Brian needed a lightweight fixture for this that he could source easily in quantity, and that had some degree of pixel control. Spiider was “a robust fixture and a great fit.”
Fifty-six MegaPointes were on the plot as they are among his current favourite beam lights. Describing these fixtures as “reliable and with plenty of tools”, 30 MegaPointes were positioned along the sloping edges of the LED screen with the remainder on a V-shaped truss in between the pods.
“They work well for big graphic looks and sometimes cutting across the video imagery,” he commented, adding that if they develop this design in the future, he will add some wings with MegaPointes for additional filling.
He positioned 13 Robe BMFL WashBeams on an upstage truss, used for powerful silhouetting of the band and to outline them without getting too beamy. They were also used to fly out into a cool fan focus that framed the whole visual stage picture.
The band prefers to use video sparingly. Around a third of the show features playback content, a third IMAG and the other third has no video content on screen, so lighting was used to produce much of the visual mood and styling.
These Robes and other lighting fixtures, including LED profile moving lights, tilting LED battens and bright LED strobes were all programmed and run by Brian using a grandMA2 full size console supplied by Delicate Productions the lighting and video vendor. His account handlers there, Jason Alt and Angelo Viacava, “were brilliant.”
The biggest challenge of shows like these says Brian was delivering a product to meet all expectations; after management have approved the budget and the crew have worked so hard to hang it. “I strive to be a good steward of people’s time and money,” he states, “the pressure is on me to make the design work, be diligent in programming and put in the extra effort.”
Brian has worked with Maroon 5 for some years and enjoys the creative freedom they offer and working with a talented and excellent team of good people including production manager Alan Hornall and tour manager Fred Kharrazi.
Delicate lighting crew chief Paul Mundrick was also an essential part of the human equation which helped deliver these shows so successfully.
photos: Brian Jenkins
21st January 2020
Joe Ellis Makes Toys for Tots Fun with Chauvet Professional
USA – Behavioural scientists call it “habituation.” It describes what happens when people tune out an image after seeing it over and over again. Joe Ellis isn’t a psychologist, but he understands how habituation works, and so he diligently avoids repeating looks when creating his light shows. He demonstrated this in convincing fashion in December at the Toys For Tots concert at Wausau’s historic Grand Theatre, as he supported a procession of performers with a continuous flow of fresh, original looks, complete with vivid colour changes and distinct light angles.
It was an impressive achievement, especially considering that Ellis had to light 22 songs in just over 100 minutes of show run-time. He succeeded in meeting this challenge thanks to a carefully crafted lighting design, and some help from a collection of 50 Chauvet Professional Rogue, Strike and COLORado fixtures supplied by JEM Productions.
“I was committed to not repeating looks,” he said. “A key to doing this was to spread my fixtures over large vertical, horizontal and lateral planes. It really helps if you ‘stretch’ the audience’s eye. When you do this, you can even repeat an effect occasionally, because the odds are that the audience will catch a different part of the rig the second time around.”
Creating subtle shifts in a soft colour palette helped Ellis continuously renew looks on stage.
“I asked of my programmer, David Rusch, to to avoid primary colours as much as possible,” he said. “When you use pastels, the colour combinations become infinite, so it’s easier to vary looks. Also, I think that in general, primary colours carry less emotion, so it’s a double win.”
A collection of eight Rogue R2 Wash, eight Rogue R1 Wash, eight Rogue R2X Spot and four Rogue R2 Spot fixtures, along with six COLORado 1-Quad Zoom Tour units, gave Ellis and Rusch ample opportunities to create subtle colour shifts. Most of the washes and R2X Spots were flown on upstage, midstage and downstage truss. A pair of the R1 Wash units were flow on vertical extensions for fill in light. Additional R2 Wash and R2X Spot fixtures were flown two-feet above the truss sections. Other R2 Spots were positioned upstage on a short riser, and some R1 Beams were placed on custom carts.
Also, in the Toys For Tots rig were eight Strike 4 units. These high output warm white fixtures served as blinders, audience lighting, and soft washes.
“With the combination of fixtures we had, we were able to envelop the stage, while creating truly massive looks,” said Ellis. “Our Rogues and Strike 4 fixtures filled a variety of roles. The main mission of the COLORados was to create side lighting and provide a general wash on the performers from the stage.”
Working light angles in unique ways and creating silhouettes also contributed to the visual variety in the Toys For Tots show. “Dynamics are super important in audio, which is where I come from, and I think carrying that concept into lighting execution can exponentially accent the ups and downs of music,” said Ellis. “Just as it’s important for an audio engineer to create quiet moments and make the audience really “lean in” and listen, I think the back/side lighting creates the depth on stage that makes the audience really focus to see the performers, and pulls the audience right on stage!”
Ellis also explained why he incorporated silhouetting into his show. “Few things make performers seem larger than soaking them in silhouette,” he said. “I like silhouetting and sidelighting. My view is that too much front or down lighting makes even the best professional show feel like an assembly in a high school gym. Like anything, though, balance is key, so there have to be moments of clarity in the set.”
By keeping his looks balanced, but continuously evolving them, Ellis was able to create a sense of engagement for the almost two-hour show. That seems like a perfect cure for the ho-hum doldrums of habituation.
21st January 2020
Light Design Make a Mark with Claypaky Sharpy Plus
UK – Event production services and hire company, Light Design has supplied Claypaky Sharpy Plus Moving Spot Lights for the recent 2019 UK Festival Awards, hosted at the Troxy in London.
Light Design works across several of the key areas in entertainment production, covering the dance, live and corporate event industries, supplying professional production solutions to its clients.
A long-time user of Claypaky products, Terry Lewsey, managing director of Light Design was very keen to add the Sharpy Plus fixtures to his rental stock.
He commented: “For us as a rental company, the Sharpy Plus is the perfect fixture and exactly what we were looking for. As a beam spot hybrid, it does both jobs very well.
He continued: “We already stocked a number of fixtures from Claypaky’s range and have years of trust in the brand. The Sharpy Plus’ versatility, combined with how rider-friendly it is and the strong appeal of Claypaky products as rental items, made it a logical decision for us to add it to our portfolio.”
The fixtures will be available across all three key sectors of Light Design’s hire business: dry hire, production rental and fixed venue installation. One of their first outings was for the 16th edition of the UK Festival Awards.
Since its inception in 2004, the UK Festival Awards has been dedicated to recognising and celebrating the collective accomplishments of the nation’s most beloved industry. Wanting to make this year’s ceremony the best one yet, the organisers turned to the Light Design team.
Having invested in 18 Claypaky Sharpy Plus fixtures, Terry knew the hybrid light would be ideal for the awards. During the ceremony the luminaires produced sharp beam lights as well as visually stunning spotlight effects.
Jonathan Walters, UK sales and purchasing director of A.C. Entertainment Technologies, Claypaky’s UK distributor, provided the fixtures to Light Design.
Terry commented: “It’s always great to work with Jono and his team at AC-ET. They are always so helpful and knowledgeable, especially when it comes to supporting us with both new purchases, and existing product support.
He continued: “As soon as we found out they had taken over product distribution for Claypaky, we phoned them straight away and gave them our order for the Sharpy Plus the same day.”
21st January 2020
Hippotizer Heightens 2020 Celebrations in China
China – New Year’s Eve presents a broadcaster battleground in China as the main networks compete for the most viewers crown. Satellite channel Hunan TV rose to the challenge, commissioning a countdown-to-2020 live show featuring big-name artists backed by party-enhancing lasers, lighting effects and video content.
Shanghai-based Honest AV was brought in to deliver a video solution for the ambitious programme, specifying ten Hippotizer media servers to drive visuals for more than 50 acts and events during the evening. The content was a mixture of live feed to IMAG screens and pre-made content by NDIMENSIONS.
“Two Boreal+ and four Boreal DVDL media servers were used to play the video material, three as the main output and three as hot backup,” explains Fei Zheng from Honest AV. “A further three Boreal+ machines were used on the VJ elements of the show.”
There were three stages on site: the main stage, a water curtain stage, and a small stage. The main Boreal+ and Boreal DVDL servers output 21 signals to all LED screens on site, a huge total of 4000 square metres of screens.
“The NDIMENSIONS designers used the real-time rendering function of Hippotizer to simplify the time and cost of content production, using PREP to program in the early stages to improve work efficiency,” Zheng continues. “Before the performance, all content fed into the Hippotizer software was rendered and outputted through the After Effects component of FlexRes. Using this tool can greatly improve the efficiency of uploading materials on site, and protect copyright more effectively for designers.
“For us and for the production team, every function of Hippotizer is very practical; it provides a very stable platform, which is very important for such live programmes.”
Hunan TV’s all-star line-up included performances from singers Wang Yibo, Huang Zitao and Hua Chenyu. The strong line up and visual spectacle helped the channel achieve high ratings on New Year’s Eve.
photos: Honest AV
21st January 2020
MLA Provides Clarity and Control for Idles’ Ally Pally Show
UK – Bristol punk band IDLES have enjoyed a heavy 2019 global touring schedule, and this continued into the UK right up to the end of the year.
It was the band’s first full production tour in support of the A Beautiful Thing: IDLES Live at Le Bataclan CD recorded a year ago. And so their long-serving FOH sound engineer Chris Fullard requested Martin Audio’s award-winning MLA loudspeaker array as his PA of choice, supplied by Capital Sound.
This was rigged at the 1,900-capacity Barrowlands in Glasgow, but more notably at Alexandra Palace’s Great Hall (capacity 10,250), which has been the graveyard of many PA systems over the years with its heavy glazing.
Capital project manager David Preston, a self-confessed IDLES fan, had first met Chris Fullard when he was house engineer at the Scala in London, and was aware of his love for MLA.
“MLA had sounded really good at the festivals I had done,” confirms Fullard, “and so I called David at Capital. I had a choice of two PA’s but I knew exactly what I wanted. I chose MLA firstly because it sounds great, but also because I knew the coverage it would give.”
At Barrowlands production featured eight MLA Compact per side, four Martin Audio DD12 as front fills and six SX218 subwoofers, in L/R stacks on either side of the stage.
But at Ally Pally they upgraded to the full-size MLA, with ten MLA enclosures underpinned by two MLD Downfill elements per side. L/R delays comprised eight MLA Compact, while a further 12 MLA Compact provided a beefy front fill component, along with four DD12. Equally beefy was the sub frequency reinforcement, provided by 18 MLX in a cardioid broadside array across the front of the stage.
“Because of the volume the band plays at (peaking at 105dB(A) ) I knew we would need a lot of front fill power,” noted David Preston. “With MLA we would be able to control the sound, and Liam Sexton, the production manager, was extremely happy.”
And so was the house acoustician, as the tour’s experienced system technician Ben Turnbull reports. “He was very relaxed when he saw that we were flying MLA. He admitted that he had seen IDLES previously and was concerned about keeping within the limit, but knew immediately that we would be fine having worked with other shows using MLA.”
Of his optimisation, Turnbull added: “It’s all about having the right boxes to keep the energy exactly where the audience is going to be at Alexandra Palace. Any spill on to the walls and roof and even empty audience areas can add up to some horrible sounding reflections, so it’s always a good thing when a great band such as IDLES packs the place out. MLA provides the control to avoid all the other surfaces.”
His prediction ensured the main array was kept physically off the back wall, with the energy focused on the audience area. “I used the delays as an overlap, and to cover the area closer to the back wall with a hard avoid to minimise reflection. This meant that the audience at the back had just as loud a show as the people at the front. I used the cardioid broadside sub array to minimise the low end bleed behind the stage, the main off site problem, whilst still keeping it punchy in the audience area.”
Chris Fullard was full of praise for the skill of Turnbull, with whom he was working for the first time. “Ben is amazing,” he said. “He asked me what I wanted out of the mix and gave me a basic ‘rock’ EQ curve which translated the mix well in the space.”
The latter reciprocated by saying: “Chris was great to work with. His only concern was even coverage and level from front to back which MLA achieved easily.”
The FOH engineer says that the fact the venue responded so well was entirely due to MLA. “I am always nervous about that place, I have mixed there before but with another system and the experience was very different. But the clarity and coverage provided by MLA was amazing.
“When we go out again doing shows of this size or similar I would definitely request the same system again.”
With David Preston responsible for designing the system and managing the project, other technicians involved included Tim Paterson (crew chief at Ally Pally only), Olly Fallon, PA technician, Sergio Maschetzko (monitor technician) and Luca Consonni (monitor / stage technician).
photos: Ben Turnbull
20th January 2020
Adlib supports Snarky Puppy Immigrance Tour
UK – Adlib supplied full audio production to the Glasgow and Manchester gigs on the recent UK leg of Snarky Puppy’s Immigrance world tour, plus a control package comprising two Yamaha CL5 consoles for FOH and monitors, a line system and all the associated cable and distribution infrastructure for the other UK and European dates. These included one night at London’s Royal Albert Hall.
Grammy award-winning, Brooklyn New York-based multi-genre ‘jam’ band Snarky Puppy embraces a lively mix of jazz, pop, rock and world music. The Immigrance album dropped in the Spring of 2019 and this was part of a seven-month world tour to support the work.
Adlib was asked onboard by the Band’s production manager Rosanna Freedman who has enjoyed a long, strong and very positive working relationship with the Liverpool-based company.
Rosanna first met Adlib in 2006, when she was managing popular Manchester live music venue, Band on The Wall. The production manager there at the time asked Adlib to design and install the new house PA system, for which they did “an amazing job,” she recalls.
When she then started stage managing various festivals around the UK and Adlib was the audio provider the audio, she was always confident that “We would have a smooth weekend and that our artists would be well looked after.”
Snarky Puppy is a group of constantly rotating musicians (with a core of six or seven), so they need a reliable sound company that “understands the nature and needs of a large improvisational group,” and this, plus that excellent history are two major reasons she asked Adlib to be involved in this section of the tour.
Adlib’s Phil Kielty project managed from the office, working closely with Michael Harrison mixing FOH for this leg, and Matt Reccia on monitors.
The two full audio production shows supplied by Adlib were Manchester Apollo and Glasgow Barrowlands.
Rosanna has worked with the band for six years, and advances all the shows herself, working to detailed production and technical requirements and a preferred equipment list drawn up with Mike and Matt’s input and experience.
L-Acoustics K2 systems were deployed for both gigs, with 12 K2 a side plus eight ARCS front fills, four X8 lip fills and 12 KS28 subs in Manchester and six K2 a side in Barrowlands together with eight ARCS front fills, four X8 lip fills and 12 KS28 subs.
In both cases 12 L-Acoustics X15 wedges made up the monitor system.
Adlib’s James Coghlan and Sam Pearson were the systems engineers. They rigged and fine-tuned the PA to ensure that everyone on the Snarky Puppy team was happy and were generally “fantastic” states Mike.
The two CL5s received a 64-channel Dante input from Adlib’s two Rio D3224 digital stage boxes driven by an analogue split and signal distribution, with multi-pin sub-snakes for quick set-up on stage.
While Matt and Mike sharing the Rio input stages between FOH and monitors made the analogue split largely redundant, it saved the day several times throughout the tour when having to interface with third-party broadcasters.
Michael has worked with the band since their first European tour in 2012 when he was the in-house engineer at their Glasgow show. Impressed with his skills, passion for sound and personality, when they returned later that year for another European tour, bandleader Michael League asked him to mix their FOH and he’s been with them ever since.
Matt joined in the autumn of 2013. He and his friend Lewis Brown first heard the band at a local music festival in 2009, then became obsessed with their YouTube videos for Tell Your Friends! Matt was interning at The Melting Point in Athens Georgia at the time, and Lewis was booking small shows around the city. In 2012, they staged a Snarky Puppy show together, Lewis covering the booking fee and Matt the hotels, dinners and all technical aspects of the show. Michael League asked Matt onboard after their second show at the Melting Point (now The Foundry) in 2013, but was he already touring with another artist and busy with the re-opening Georgia Theatre. However, when Michael [League] asked a third time, it was lucky timing, all the stars aligned and Matt has been with them ever since!
Michael Harrison and Matt swap places between mixing monitors and FOH.
In the US, Matt produces the FOH mix and Michael does monitors. When they are in Europe and other parts of the world, Mike takes on the FOH mix, while Matt handles monitors and stage manages, so there is never a dull moment!
The swap-over working method is mainly to give both a change from each position.
It started because when they each had a 'territory' effectively, in that Harrison was the European engineer and Matt covered North America. When Matt was invited to Europe in 2014, they needed a monitor engineer, so he jumped in there. The same happened this past year when Mike came to the USA.
“It is a natural way for us to see and understand what the other is doing in each ‘world’ and has also become a way to spice up long tours,” commented Matt.
To Matt, the two roles go hand-in-hand with this band.
“With so many configurations [of musicians], you learn everyone’s preferences and adapt the stages to make all comfortable.” Aspects like riser heights and angles, keyboard positioning, pedal placements and considering sightlines so each member can see one other – or not – as they prefer are all crucial details when setting up the band's equipment.
For Mike, who describes his mix as ‘ascetic’, there are three essential elements in his ‘stay out of the way’ philosophy: initial capture and clean up, gain structure / dynamic control and ambient space.
At the heart of the initial capture and clean-up are microphone choices and placement, in tandem with frequency-filtering (and expansion / gating where required) at the console to achieve the desired clarity and separation.
When it comes to gain structure / dynamic control, all the musicians express a huge range, so those dynamics need containing so the subtler nuances aren't lost, while the louder moments don't kill the audience with excessive sound levels, especially when everyone gets excited on stage!
He finds that “the sensation of a really ‘loud’ sound is often more satisfying and comfortable to listen to than sound that actually is really loud.”
Another major challenge for Mike and obstacles to sonic separation, is the fact that the instrumentalists like to group together quite closely on stage. With a dozen monitor wedges and approximately 40 open mics in close proximity, the process of separating and balancing is an intricate process requiring complex planning.
L-Acoustics is high on Mike and Matt’s list of favourite brands, so they were delighted to be using it for the two Adlib shows.
Mike likes it for a FOH system because the mid-range frequencies are very well reproduced, specifically the low-mids, which massively assists intelligibility when instruments and environments are challenging. He also finds the upper mids less aggressive than in some speaker designs.
Matt comments that Adlib is: “A great company for us! They treat us extremely well, are always available for any questions and there’s always a solution for whatever it is we need.”
Lighting for the tour is designed by Francis Clegg who has been on the tour for three years.
Adlib client manager commented: “Dealing with Rosanna over the last few years has been so easy. She is very organised, quick to supply information and vital to ensure the smooth running of the tour. The band are so well loved and so cool, it really is a pleasure to work for them.”
photos: Justin De Souza
20th January 2020
Claypaky Lighting Fixtures Help Unveil Ferrari’s F8 Tributo at Gala Event in Sydney, Australia
Australia – Fusion Entertainment provided the technical production for the gala unveiling of the Ferrari F8 Tributo in Sydney, Australia using a complement of Claypaky fixtures to illuminate the car’s debut at the black-tie event.
The glittering evening marked the first Australian appearance for the new, half-million dollar mid-engined supercar. It has been called the pinnacle of Italian excellence, and its V8 engine seen as the epitome of sportiness and driving pleasure.
More than 300 guests gathered at Sydney’s White Bay passenger terminal for an immersive Ferrari experience. The 2,000-square metre space was filled with classic cars in Ferrari’s iconic shade of red and speeches paid homage to the luxury brand’s history and the debut of “the best eight-cylinder in the world.”
Some 200 Fusion staff members worked continuously across 36 hours to install and prepare for the event. They put together 5.1 tons of rigging equipment, 6,000 metres of cabling, 158 metres of black drape and a total of 236 lights to create a 348-square metre staging structure standing 1.5 metres high.
The evening began with guests watching a five-minute AV spectacular on the F8 Tributo, dotted with archival footage from Ferrari’s vault, in the pre-function area. When it was time to reveal the new vehicle the function area went to black and a 60-metre kabuki drop showed an astonishing collection of Ferrari V8s, on display for the first time outside Italy. The F8 Tributo emerged from under the stage through fog and lasers and past its predecessors to take its position on the podium.
Fusion mounted Claypaky Sharpy fixtures on either side of the podium; several more were used for the moment of reveal with Oracle Laser’s Laser Sharpy attachment.
“We also used quite a few Claypaky Mythos 2 in this area; it’s such a versatile fixture that allows us to do a wide range of effects,” says Fusion’s technical director for the event, Paul Walton. “On this job we were most impressed with how well the Ferrari logo projection looked with the output we achieved.”
Five Claypaky Stormys provided a general wash in the area as well as high-energy strobe effects moments before the blackout and kabuki drop.
The event was designed and produced by Flare Creative Experiences. Show Technology Australia is the Claypaky distributor for the region.
20th January 2020
First production run of Brompton Technology’s new Hydra sells out
Following the phenomenal success of Brompton Technology’s LDI Dynamic Calibration showcase, its first production run of the new Hydra measurement system has already sold out with Fuse Technical Group, WorldStage, Creative Technology Group (CT), and Production Resource Group (PRG) amongst those immediately putting in orders, citing it as the perfect solution for advanced measurement of LED panels.
“Hydra unlocks the power of Dynamic Calibration and, consequently, Brompton HDR, but is also much faster than legacy calibration systems, saving time and money for any company that invests in the system,” says Brompton’s managing director, Richard Mead. “It can be used to calibrate any panel fitted with a Tessera R2 receiver card, allowing Brompton users to upgrade their existing inventory to unleash its full potential.”
“At PRG/VER we’re extremely excited to continue our partnership with Brompton by investing in its new Hydra system,” adds Troy Boudreaux, strategic asset director (LED) at PRG/VER. “We’ve always taken pride in providing top-notch quality and solutions to our clients, so it was not a difficult choice for us. Brompton is and has been a company that always pushes the envelope of what can be done, balanced with the desire to provide quality products to their clients. It’s a privilege to work with such an incredible company.”
The Hydra is an advanced measurement system custom-designed for LED panels fitted with a Tessera R2 receiver card. Panels must be measured with Hydra to benefit from Dynamic Calibration, the ground-breaking technology that enables Brompton HDR, unlocking the full potential of LED panels so they can achieve brighter whites, higher contrast ratios, more saturated colours, and true-to-life colour accuracy for a previously unattainable level of image quality and realism.
“WorldStage is recognised for our consistent leadership in LED displays by offering a wide range of top-of-the-line products,” says WorldStage President and CEO Gary Standard. “It’s essential that we maintain our LED fleet at superior levels. High Dynamic Range (HDR) is the gold standard in LED display quality that very few can offer. Brompton Technology is a great partner and their new Hydra System will enable WorldStage to provide our customers with the highest quality LED displays in the industry.”
Investors in the Hydra system benefit from the system’s minimal set-up time, comprehensive error checks and its ability to generate reports in multiple languages to give an objective assessment of panel performance, making it straightforward to confirm that each new batch of panels meets individual specifications and reducing the potential for user error.
“CT deals with a wide network of great companies, and our association with Brompton spans several years, during which time we have worked on various high-end projects together,” says global president NEP Live Events and CEO Creative Technology Group, Graham Andrews. “What we value most in the company is reliability and their second to none tech support.”
“We pride ourselves on using the latest technologies in order to give the edge to our customers, so being able to offer Brompton HDR for the first time among our other exciting tech innovations fits very well with our corporate strategy.”
“We’ve been previewing Brompton HDR throughout 2019 and the customer reaction has been amazing from the outset. We are excited to finally be sharing how that stunning performance is achieved, using the ground-breaking Dynamic Calibration technology and the advanced Hydra measurement system,” concludes Mead. “We are delighted that valued partners Fuse, World Stage, CT, and PRG have immediately recognised its benefits and are so perfectly placed to maximise on its success.”
Learn more about Hydra, Dynamic Calibration and HDR on Brompton’s Stand 12-C117 at ISE 2020 from 11th to 14th February 2020.
20th January 2020
Robe Dreams Big at Puy du Fou España
Spain - Award-winning independent French theme park, Puy du Fou, unveiled its first venture in Toledo with an epic night-time immersive spectacular “El Sueño de Toledo” (The Dream of Toledo), creatively directed by Nicolas de Villiers and the team from Puy de Fou with lighting designed by Koert Vermeulen from Belgian creative visual practice, ACTLD.
At the heart of Koert’s lighting spec are 74 Robe BMFL WashBeam and 20 MegaPointe moving lights.
“El Sueño de Toledo” takes spectators on a high-octane condensed one-hour journey through history – from the Reign of Ricaredo in the 6th century to the arrival of the railways – touching on the battle of Navas de Tolosa and the discovery of America along the way! The 1500 years of history is represented by 185 actors and a plethora of special effects.
Koert and Nicolas have worked together on several previous full-tilt, seat-edge Puy du Fou live shows and projects in France. The company is well-known for its commitment to high production values and providing the very best guest experiences, so Koert was delighted to work in Spain with Nicolas and the team, with whom he enjoys a fantastic imaginative synergy.
The show is staged outdoors on a performance space approximately 125 metres wide by 100 metres deep, rising up towards the back. The set includes several permanent buildings and structures and a large lake, with the action taking place both on, in front of, and behind the water.
Nicolas briefed Koert on the historical narrative and Koert produced a lighting concept for the show which is played out by the large cast to a special soundtrack composed by Nathan Stornetta.
“The show’s essence was similar to some of those we have created in the French park, so some of the base principles and style needed to reflect a continuity, but it’s a fresh, new and completely unique dramatic tour de force which needed a lot of attention to detail” explained Koert.
One of the key Puy du Fou requirements was that the show was elegant and refined as well as providing lots of excitement. All of this had to be delivered in a classy collage of lighting, projection-mapped scenery and SFX.
With over 1,000 lighting fixtures in total on the show, the 75 BMFL WashBeams are undoubtedly the workhorses confirmed Koert together with some LED wash lights. Taking on this role, they needed to stand out from all the action and be a truly multi-functional tool.
Due to the site topography and the fact that no sky rigging was available for overheads, most of the lighting is shooting in from the sides, with some fixtures at the back and others scattered around the suite at ground level plus numerous smaller concealed luminaires and footlights.
Koert auditioned several products in a shoot-out for the job (initially in 2016 when the project was first confirmed and budgeted) and from this extensive trial, the BMFL WashBeam emerged as “easily the best choice”, especially for the 40 – 100 metre throw distances for which they needed something with serious power!
Another shoot out to find the best lights for aerial effects was won by Robe’s MegaPointe. “It’s the nicest beam I have seen for a long time,” commented Koert.
The BMFLs are positioned mainly at the sides of the performance area with a few around the front, while the MegaPointes are all hidden in the hills at the back.
The MegaPointes blast out into the night sky from behind set pieces, slicing through the haze, fog and general natural atmosphere with their piercingly bright beams. They are rigged at different heights to give a variety of positions and some interesting angles.
With any show of this scale, lighting is a smart combination of creating mood and ambience and lots of big statements as well as with highlighting and accentuating story-related details and complexities. Koert worked on the general environmental lighting treatments first, and then on illuminating more specific performers and action.
He worked closely with the PDF video team and with video content creators, Cosmo AV, so that lighting elements merged seamlessly and harmoniously with video-mapped onto some of the buildings adding a further layer of texture to the bigger picture.
He found the BMFL’s frost options helpful in blending lighting into the projections.
The big challenge on this project was the time.
Koert and his own programming team of Christopher Bolton and Luc de Climmer had three weeks on site overall to get everything into the grandMA3 console, but out of that there was only one complete week of lighting programming.
Construction was ongoing for the whole period, adding extra pressure on all technical departments.
While the basic building blocks can be visualised to some extent, real time in situ is vital to focus on more complicated cues like the proper illumination of Olivier Beriot’s impressive costumes, all resulting in a truly breath-taking show for the public who are flocking to see it.
The show is currently breaking for the winter and will be back in full force in April to be enjoyed by thousands of visitors through 2020.
17th January 2020
Benson’ Audiovisuel Reflects Spirit of Grands Moulins de Bordeaux with Chauvet DJ
France – Opening the wrought iron gates and entering the estate of Couhins-Lurton is akin to walking into a dream world of timeless beauty, as one is greeted by a green expanse of manicured lawn leading up to a magnificent château that stands resplendently against the sky as it has for centuries. Playing a rich and colourful role in the history of its region’s wine making (it was once owned by legendary vintner, the late André Lurton), the estate was prominently featured in the recent 100th anniversary celebration of the Grands Moulins de Bordeaux.
Accentuating the intricate architectural qualities of the château during this event was a collection of wireless, battery powered Chauvet DJ lighting fixtures installed by Benson’ Audiovisuel. Casting their evocative glow on the building’s exquisitely detailed cornice and majestic façade, the energy-efficient LED fixtures endowed the iconic setting with a vibrant energy that made history come alive for the visitors who gathered there on this festive occasion.
The Benson’ Audiovisuel design team, under the direction of Benjamin Faure, positioned 12 Freedom H1 par units below the ornate cornice to highlight its details. Thanks to its compact size and wireless properties, the 10W fixture was able to fit unobtrusively on the site without distracting from its aesthetics. Drawing on the fixture’s RGBAW + UV colour mixing engine, the design team was able to create a wide and varied palette of hues during the event.
Bathing the building’s façade in an array of richly saturated colours were 24 Freedom Flex H4 IP uplighting fixtures. With their intense output, these units were able to send smooth, even fields of light high up the exterior walls of the château.
A group of 16 free-standing Freedom Stick RGB LED linear fixtures was used to enliven the estate grounds, as well as provide a colourful setting on the dance floor inside during the party. Also generating excitement on the dance floor were a Derby X effect light, a Line Dancer that projects intense strips of colourful light, and two mini Kinta beam units.
Ironically, the indoor party that rocked the château might never have taken place had not Mother Nature interfered. Originally the party was scheduled to be on the terrace, but deteriorating weather conditions forced a change of plans, and the party was moved indoors only five days before the event was scheduled to start. Quick thinking by Faure and the Benson’ Audiovisuel team, along with some flexible wireless fixtures, allowed the transition to indoors to take place without any issues.
This resourcefulness was in keeping with the history of the region. In 1956, after the worst frost in over 200 years destroyed most of the Bordeaux’s vineyards, vintners like André Lurton, who would one day purchase this estate, grew cattle feed to keep their business alive until new grapes could be planted. Ultimately, they came back with grapes that were better than ever. It is a spirit worth celebrating, which is precisely what happened at Couhins-Lurton under the LED lights during Grands Moulins de Bordeaux.
17th January 2020
Version2 support award winning Light Designer Tim Routledge at Riverside Studios
UK – Lighting rental specialist Version2 has supported The Brits Are Coming at the newly re-opened Riverside Studios. Working with award winning lighting designer Tim Routledge, the Version2 team supplied a comprehensive lighting package, including a healthy selection of recent additions to the company’s growing inventory.
The Brits Are Coming TV special is the highly anticipated, exclusive reveal of the nominations for the prestigious BRIT Awards 2020. Hosted by broadcaster and presenter Alice Levine, the show featured special guest performances by nominated artists including Liam Payne, Aitch and Mabel.
Recorded for ITV in front of a live audience, this was one of the first and one of the largest productions staged within the newly opened Studio 3 at Riverside Studios. Following the extensive re-development of the historic west London site, Riverside’s hosting of the show conveyed a clear message that the production centre is back open and ready for business.
The show’s look was created by multi-award winning lighting designer, Tim Routledge. Having been acknowledged by, amongst others, The Royal Television Society, TPI and Knight of Illumination Awards, Tim is one of the industry’s most renowned LDs. Having supported him on a variety of previous projects, the team at Version2 are proud to have forged a strong working relationship the LD.
Commenting on working with Version2 at Riverside, Tim says: “I use V2 a lot for my broadcast work as they always go the extra mile and have a want to make a great show every time. This was also only the second show in the all new Riverside Studios which was a blessing, a fantastic new studio with a saturated overhead grid of lighting hoists and the ability to patch data anywhere, it was a really easy studio for this show to move to and it worked for us brilliantly.”
Over the past year, V2 has been steadily growing its inventory to increase both the scope and range of available products. Ahead of the Brits show the company made significant investment in a fresh stock of Robe equipment, including the revolutionary new RoboSpot system which allows follow spot operators simultaneous remote control of up to 12 fixtures.
Making full use of the Riverside lighting grid, V2 provided over 50 Robe Spiider plus an additional 60 Robe Spikie LED wash fixtures, allowing moving light operator James Scott a huge amount of flexibility to deliver colour and shape to the show. Additional automated versatility was delivered using a mixture of Robe MegaPointe and new Robe T1 Profiles which were managed via the RoboSpot system. A mix of Pro Lights Arena Cob, Astera Titan Tubes and GLP JDC1 LED Strobes provided additional creative effects throughout the studio.
The stage set featured a huge upstage video wall flanked with waves of colourful LED along with a number of giant chrome globes suspended throughout the studio. Creating a design that complemented the set, Tim made fantastic use of the selection of Robe fixtures on offer to create powerful beams and vibrant colours, adding artistic highlights to the performances without distracting from the overall look and feel of the show. The lighting also allowed for the highly polished surfaces of the globes, using the shapes to form stunning covex images rather than reckless flares that could potentially impact on the recording.
Tim continues: “The Brits Are Coming set gave me the basis for the design; Bruce French’s undulating flowing LED curves in the walls and routed in the floor plus his huge chrome balls were the starter. With such a flowing curved set I didn’t want to overpower what he was doing so a real simple but powerful grid of lights both along the walls and overhead which sat behind the set and give it real depth and a structure to the show.”
Showcasing the new studio space, Tim’s design delivered a variety of highly creative, individual looks to perfectly match the mix of performances, which ranged from Freya Ridings’ intimate acoustic version of Lost Without You to R&B sensation Mabel with her pulsating rendition of ‘song of the year’ nominated Don’t Call Me Up. Throughout the broadcast, the atmospheric washes and intense beams delivered an illuminating performance that danced, sang and held its own against the vibrance of the accompanying video imagery.
The LD adds: “On the main stage there is a huge 16:9 video screen which takes up most of the real estate and so with a gap top and bottom this gave me positions to add strobes and beams to fill out the design. The first things on my plan are the keylights and this show was predominantly lit with V2’s brand new Robe Robospots and new LED Robe T1 Profiles which are perfect for keying in a studio of this size and with a number of setups for different bands where traditional keys would be prohibitive.”
Version2 managing director Nick Edwards says: “We’re proud to have supported Tim on a number of previous broadcast projects. Our experience working with him has allowed us to develop a good understanding of his approach. He always gets incredible results from the fixtures he specifies and I’m delighted that he’s been able to make put our newly acquired ROBE kit to such fantastic use. In particular it was great to see our new RoboSpot system in action. The whole team delivered a stunning show; a fitting launch to the 40th BRIT Awards.”
Tim concludes: “V2 was the perfect choice for this show with their attention to detail and cutting edge inventory of brand new fixtures, you know it will all work first time.”
photo: John Marshall – JM Enternational
17th January 2020
Light and Shadow chooses Ayrton Ghibli for Broadcast Convention
USA – When CMI Communications supported the stage production for a multi-faceted event at the Minneapolis Convention Center in August, they utilised a large complement of Ayrton Ghibli LED spot luminaires illuminating the sessions that are broadcast internationally, and over 1,800 attendees of the event. The fixtures matched exactly in output and colour temperature even though they were supplied by three different vendors.
AV service provider CMI Communications of Rochester, New York asked Light and Shadow, LLC of Winter Garden, Florida to provide turnkey lighting design for the convention as the company has in the past. During the three-day event the daily morning Mass and business sessions were broadcast on EWTN, CatholicTV and other outlets. The convention hall featured a 120-foot-wide stage with a 115-foot projection screen as a backdrop.
“We needed a high-quality broadcast light that we could also use for the opening dinner,” says lighting designer, Shawn Seithel. “We were looking for a replacement for our previous go-to fixture, and a Ghibli demo by ACT Lighting sparked our interest.”
During the demo: “Ghibli did everything our usual go-to fixtures did and did it better. Ghibli was brighter, had a nice flat field and its framing shutters were a huge plus. It looked like a well-rounded light for every kind of event we do,” Seithel says.
For the convention Seithel rented 78 Ghibli fixtures from three vendors placing them on mid-stage and downstage truss and on two trusses running the length of the hall. The fixtures did stage and procession washes and served as face lights for the Mass, business sessions and opening night dinner. The Ghibli units also provided wall textures for the latter.
“The Ghiblis delivered a great stage wash and room lighting, we were able to cover more area than usual because of a few degrees more of zoom,” Seithel explains. “We liked their flat even field for the Masses and meetings, and the fixtures’ textures and patterns were also really nice for the gala dinner.”
He notes: “With our previous fixtures we spent three hours or more dialling in colour before we even got to intensity. With Ghibli we just brought them up and spent about an hour getting the temperatures and colours right, then everything was the same across the board. Despite using three different vendors who supplied Ghibli units of different ages, the fixtures matched exactly in output and colour temperature. That was a huge time saver, and I was thoroughly impressed.”
Seithel says the Ghibli fixtures “performed beautifully” during the convention and have become “our light of choice” going forward. “It’s the one we’ll request for all of our events.” As Light and Shadow expands its own equipment inventory, Ghibli will also be under consideration for future purchase, he reports.
photos: Tamino Petelinsek © Knights of Columbus 2019
17th January 2020
Significant Investment in CODA Audio by ESP and TES
USA – CODA Audio has confirmed the sale of a range of systems, including its flagship AiRAY, to two leading production companies in the USA. Eastern Stage Productions (ESP) of New York and Technical Entertainment Services (TES) based in Florida, have both made significant investments in CODA’s next generation technology, that delivers exceptional audio from the most compact, lightweight and powerful enclosures on the market. The two companies enjoy a close relationship, often working together on major productions and combined to provide a CODA system for the Stereo Bloom Stage at the recent EDC Orlando.
When Bill Danilesyk of ESP first heard CODA at InfoComm 2019, he was immediately sold on the concept and more importantly, the sound: “The high fidelity of the sound is amazing with the real game-changer being the DDP driver. You get the same amazing fidelity from the CODA system as you would from the highest quality hi-fi systems, getting that at much higher outputs blew my mind right away. You listen to music you’ve heard one thousand times and all of a sudden you hear new things. These kind of intricacies and this level of sonic detail is something that was totally missed before and it translates to the live stage. And the low end? Well, the impact of the bass is phenomenal. Everyone at EDC was blown away by the sound.”
Luke Jenks, Managing Director of CODA Audio USA comments: “We’ve witnessed a sustained growth in the sales of both live and installed systems across the US, confirming that the CODA message is being heard loud and clear throughout the industry. We’re very proud that our next generation technology is becoming the choice of more and more audio professionals, who, like TES and ESP, are taking full advantage of the benefits it can deliver.”
16th January 2020
Winkler Livecom invests in 200 Elation KL Fresnel Series Luminaires
Switzerland – Winkler Livecom of Switzerland has added 200 Elation Professional KL Fresnel series luminaires to its inventory, a purchase that gives the full-service event production company an enhanced ability to highlight client brands for maximum impact.
Winkler, based in Wohlen, near Zürich, is one of the largest full service companies in Switzerland, handling virtually all aspects of exhibition, corporate and public events from initial idea to execution. Since its founding in 1996, Winkler has often employed Elation lighting in its broad portfolio of projects, but the KL Fresnel acquisition marks the company’s first purchase of Elation gear.
“We continue to replace our bulb-based static lights with LED versions and invited several distributors to a shoot out here at our facility,” recounts Frank Burghardt, Head of Sourcing at Winkler Livecom. “Elation’s Swiss distributor Cast came with the KL Fresnel 4 and Kl Fresnel 6 and in the end it was the price vs performance ratio of the KL series that was the best.”
The KL Fresnel Series is a line of warm-white or cold-white LED Fresnel lights available in 50W, 150W and 350W models. Winkler acquired the 50W KL Fresnel 4 CW (50) and 150W KL Fresnel 6 CW (150), cold-white LED Fresnel lights with a 5,600K Cool White LED engine. Both luminaires include manual zoom, manual and DMX controlled dimming, and silent operation mode. Barndoors and gel frame holder are also included.
“We decided to invest in the cold-white version and then we can add full CTO or half CTO filters when we need a warmer look. It was a smart solution and gives us the flexibility to cover a wider colour temperature range,” states Burghardt, adding that they also preferred the KL Fresnel’s manual dimmer knob on the back of the fixture, which was important as it allows Winkler to employ them more easily as a stand-alone light.
Useful for a variety of purposes including keylight, washes and front light, Burghardt says the quality of light was also impressive. “The output was excellent and the light was very homogeneous, also at the sides of the beam where it appeared very uniform and without a green or red tint. I should also mention the build quality. When you handle the lamp, you can feel that it is solidly built. There was really nothing on it that we would have changed.”
In picture: Frank Burghardt, Reto Engler and Roni Huber of Winkler
16th January 2020
Bandit Lites Makes Large Purchase from Chauvet
USA – Bandit Lites is launching into 2020 with a sizeable purchase from Chauvet Professional including Maverick MK3 Spots, COLORado Solo Battens and Rogue R2X Washes. With the year already engaged with an extensive number of events and tours, the team at Bandit Lites knew the inventory additions would be necessary to meet the growing demands of clients.
The Maverick MK3 Spot has already proven itself to be a pillar in designs as it has been featured on Mark Carver’s design for the 2019 Dove Awards, Seth Jackson’s design for the Hillsong Worship/Casting Crowns/Elevation Worship Tour 2019, Jason Aldean Kitchen and Rooftop Bar special show, Julien Reux’s design for the 2019 Sasha Sloan Tour and Jerry Holcomb’s design for the 2020 Winter Jam Tour.
“When I learned Chauvet was building the MK3 series, I was very excited to see them jump into this market,” said Bandit Lites director of technical services Jake Tickle. “The Chauvet Maverick MK3 Spot has all the horsepower needed to take full advantage of its full feature set. This fixture will be a workhorse in our inventory!”
Bandit Lites also supplied Chauvet COLORado Solo Battens on Mike Marcario’s design for Tenth Avenue’s North tour, the Dove Awards, Erik Parker’s design for Jack Daniel's Music City Midnight: New Year's Eve in Nashville and the 2020 Winter Jam Tour.
“With its unique lensing, excellent output and IP rating, the Chauvet Solo Batten ticks and lot of boxes that I could ask for from a batten style fixture,” added Tickle. “One of my favourites in that category.”
The Chauvet Rogue R2X Wash has already been seen at the 2019 NASCAR Sprint Car Awards, LUMINA DESIGN’s rig for the 2020 YoungLife Conference and the upcoming Crescent Productions Conference.
“Building off the wildly successful Chauvet Rogue R2 Wash, the R2X adds the output I was looking for in a fixture of its size,” finished Tickle. “From keylight to backlight and everything in between, I’m excited to have the Chauvet Rogue R2X fill our clients’ needs.”
16th January 2020
KLANG finale for last Soul Survivor Festival
UK – Leading UK production company, SFL employed the ground-breaking immersive 3D mixing technology from German in-ear monitor specialists, KLANG, on the main stage at the last ever Soul Survivor festival, which took place last summer at the East of England showground.
SFL has been the event’s technical partner for the last 16 years and wanted to provide the best and most innovative equipment for the finale of this incredibly popular festival. Part of the package was a KLANG:fabrik system, a rack-mount monitoring mix engine, which connected to the DiGiCo SD12 monitor console via Dante. The system sends binaural 3D monitoring mixes to radio transmitters or headphone amps via XLR, which can be controlled from the monitor desk, or via an app.
The Soul Survivor festival has been running for the past 26 years, gathering up to 32,500 youth worshippers each summer, with the main tent attracting around 10,000 people.
“I’ve been mixing monitors at Soul Survivor since 2013. We have been using in-ears for many years but this was the first year that SFL had brought KLANG,” explains Soul Survivor’s monitor engineer, John Gale. “I’d heard really good reports about the system from industry colleagues who said it was game changing, but this was the first time I’d used it. I was reticent about launching in with a new piece of kit at a festival, but I know that that SFL’s team are consummate professionals and that I would have some rehearsal time with one of the main bands, whom I have worked with for many years, so it was a great scenario to try it out on.”
The festival itinerary involved daily morning and evening worship meetings led by worship leaders, and throughout the day the eclectic line-up would vary from the house band to an Irish worship band, punctuated with appearances from guest speakers.
“Straight off, KLANG was really easy to use. The software, which I was operating using a touchscreen, is very user-friendly, making the system simple to set up, and I had a mix going in a couple of minutes,” explains Gale. “The major benefit for me is the integration with DiGiCo, it’s remarkable how the technologies work seamlessly together. I was particularly impressed with the Snapshot integration, where I’d change a Snapshot on the desk and the KLANG system would mirror it precisely.”
The festival’s monitor system provided stage mixes for up to five key people, which normally included a keynote presenter, and then pivotal band members, such as the keyboard player, singer and guitarist.
“In all honesty, I was surprised that the system lived up to the hype, but it certainly did! The band was really positive about it,” adds Gale. “Normally wearing in-ears is tiring but I noticed that as there’s more space in the mix, a lot of the presenting worship leaders left their ear-pieces in for the duration of each session, and they even appeared to be enjoying the listening experience.”
"Throughout the festival, musicians, even the ones who were not that comfortable with in-ear technology, were astonished by KLANG’s sonic clarity and easy user interface. It gave them huge independence on stage as well as reducing the feeling of isolation, which is so often associated with in-ear systems,” concurs SFL’s managing director, Tom Jeffery, who mixed monitors alongside Gale. “We were very proud of this final event and delighted that they trusted us to use new technology. We think it was the best sound, for both artists and audience, that the festival has ever had.”
photos: d&b audiotechnik
16th January 2020
RIVAGE PM7 Is The Progressive Solution For Haken
Europe – Far from being an ‘uncool relic from the 1970s’, nowadays progressive rock has a sizeable following and is becoming more popular. There are a number of artists following the likes of Muse and Dream Theater into the mainstream, none more so than Haken, a multi-national six-piece recently returned from a European tour mixed on a Yamaha RIVAGE PM7 digital mixing system.
Haken’s most recent album, Vector, took the band into harder-edged ‘progressive metal’ territory. Getting the heaviness of the music across, while ensuring audiences also hear the intricate musical phrasing, needs an audio system that puts equal emphasis on exceptional audio quality and high end features.
Front of house engineer Adam Bonner has used Yamaha digital mixing consoles for 15 years, mixing the band’s last three tours in Europe and the US on a CL5.
“I really wanted to see what we could achieve with the FoH mix when using Yamaha’s flagship system, effectively removing any processing limitations. I knew that RIVAGE PM7 was the perfect fit for this tour,” he says.
Adam contacted Steve Davies at London-based Subfrantic Production Services, who supplied the system including an RPio622 I/O unit, and provided the company’s new rehearsal facilities for Adam’s tour pre-production.
“Having everything under one roof was a huge help, saving time and money on the logistics of transporting the control package from supplier to rehearsal space and so on. It also allowed me to relax and ensure that I didn’t forget anything,” says Adam.
“Walking up to the PM7 for the first time didn’t feel daunting at all. I started with some multi-tracks from a previous tour, converted my CL5 file to give me a starting point for input EQ and channel naming. Everything felt familiar and I didn’t have to search for anything. It was easy to get a decent mix going quickly,” he says.
“The biggest difference is that, due to the frame size and the amount of dedicated encoders on the surface, you find yourself moving away from the more touchscreen-based mixing of other consoles and back to a more analogue style workflow.”
Impressed by the many high end features included as standard on the RIVAGE PM7 system, Adam found the DaNSe noise suppression a particular help.
“It’s an amazing plug-in, with no amps on stage, the only noise coming from there is drums and DaNSe really helped me to tame cymbal spill into the lead vocal and drummers backing microphones. It meant I could happily leave the microphones open, even when not in use. It’s so simple to set up and most of the time it only requires an adjustment to the threshold to achieve the desired result,” he says.
“The delay compensation was also very useful. I use a fair bit of parallel compression, so never having to worry about whether everything was in phase when hitting the master bus was really great, no matter how many plug-ins I was using in the signal chain.”
Above all, though, it was the sonic quality of the system that stood out for Adam.
“Everything was so clean, clear and transparent. It’s a totally effortless console to mix on. And that’s coupled with the endless choice of high quality EQ, compressors, FX and more I/O than you’d ever want,” he says. “I believe that it was the best tour for me sonically and several fans commented that it was another step up in the quality of the live sound. This was largely down to RIVAGE PM7,” he says.
He is also very complimentary about Subfrantic and their commitment to supporting him and their Yamaha systems. “They were fantastic. Everyone is friendly, helpful and Steve worked hard to give me the package I wanted within budget,“ he says. “It’s been a pleasure working with them on this tour.”
He continues: “I love the RIVAGE PM7 system. I’d love to use it on the band’s US and Canada shows in February and March. As long as space is available at FoH and the budget allows, I would happily spec it for every show I do from now on. I just wish there was a small version that I could take on fly-in shows!”
CL and QL series user interface and to investigate product features, rather than teaching generic mixing techniques.
16th January 2020
BLØF Get High with Hippotizer
The Netherlands – Visual design studio Tenfeet’s long-standing relationship with Dutch rockers BLØF resulted in some dazzling effects as the much-loved band played two sell-out gigs at Rotterdam’s 16,000-capacity AHOY Arena.
Tenfeet video programmer Pim Elberse specified and supplied two Hippotizer Boreal+ media servers – one main and the second as a full live backup machine – to handle pre-made content mixed with multiple effects and live feed blend. The content ranged from sweeping landscapes to computer-graphics, lyrics and pictures.
“We needed a system that could cope with various live feeds and feed a variety of content that was mixed with live, as well as control an SDI-matrix with ten cameras on stage surrounding the band,” explains Elberse. “The Boreal+ provided total flexibility in combination with our Hog4 lighting console.”
Despite the large venue, BLØF’s stage was only ten metres wide, designed for an intimate feel. The stage floor was transparent, with lighting fixtures beaming up from underneath. Behind the band was a large LED screen, rising from the stage to a height of 16 metres: almost to the ceiling. At each side of the stage, multiple trusses held the lighting and worked in collaboration with an LED strip around the LED wall to enhance the sense of height.
“The staging and rigging structure gave us the freedom to create unique looks for every song, and unite set, light and video,” Elberse continues. “During shows, besides running the programmed cues, I’m always controlling content and effects to integrate the video with the show and make it more dynamic and intense. With the Boreal+ machines and Hippotizer, it’s quick to program multiple cues for each song and adjust and control in real-time.
“In addition, it’s easy to build your own personalities, to design what you want to control in Hippo and how. And because it’s so simple to make the ZooKeeper interface look how you want it, it all gives you a very flexible and clear view of what you are programming and playing back.”
Working alongside Elberse was stage design and video content creator Bart van Rooy of BigVis, lighting designer Patrick Kramer and lighting operator Andre Beekmans from Art of Light.
BLØF played the duo of gigs to celebrate 25 years of hits in their homeland.
photos: Andre Beekmans
16th January 2020
Martin Audio WPC Delivers for Sam Fender and Nub Sound
UK - When they set out to replace their flagship PA system, West Country-based Nub Sound underwent an exhaustive process of research into all the premier league contenders, with a view to making a decision in time for the 2020 Festival season.
“We have been evaluating systems for six or seven months,” explained Nub Sound system technician Josh Small. “We needed to step up to a bigger, eco-system that is also rider friendly and offers ease of rigging. It has to be sufficiently flexible to work in a number of ways, be tourable, perfect for festival use and above all, it has to be a complete system.”
Tough criteria indeed. But when one of the systems they auditioned – Martin Audio’s Wavefront Precision Compact (WPC) – was fired up recently for a Sam Fender gig at Plymouth Pavilion, a venue he describes as “a nightmare” and “notoriously challenging”, the system ticked every box.
The company, run by directors Adrian Sunderland and Rob Simpson, was already familiar with Martin Audio’s signature sound, having run LE1500 wedges in their hire fleet and also installed CDDs over the years. For the company, with facilities in Plymouth and Cornwall, is a versatile operation specialising in rental, sales and installation. While the former division is headed by Simpson, his partner oversees the installation business.
For the Fender gig, Martin Audio provided valuable onsite technical support in the shape of Simon Purse, as Josh Small explained. “Simon spent a morning showing us DISPLAY and VU-NET and then Ben Tucker did the application support, assisting with the set-up.
“As a result,” he said, “we were able to make the system sound great. It overcame a lot of the inherent problems of the venue and [Sam Fender’s] sound engineer Matt Walch was extremely happy.”
Tucker took care of the optimisations with the WPC run in 2-Box resolution (powered by iKon iK42 amplifiers). The design comprised 12 WPC per side for the 4,000-capacity sold-out show, and Rob Simpson himself mixed support band Brooke Bentham.
The top boxes were run in conjunction with 12 SHX218 in a cardioid arced array for coverage in the width. Eight WPM were deployed as front fill and eight ground-stacked for out fill.
So what magic did Tucker need to work? Josh Small explains: “At the rear of the balcony is a hard back wall and the sound reflects back and slaps the lead singer in the face. As a result you have to run your monitors louder. By using Hard Avoid on the back wall, and reducing the reflections back onstage, the monitoring could be run quieter. There was an audible attenuation on the back wall’s hard avoid area and it sounded great.”
It had a cascading effect, he said. “ There was still a great sound at the back of the balcony – the best I’ve ever heard – with the best rejection on the back wall.”
Another benefit of WPC, he said, was that it allowed them to stay within the weight limit. “There is only a single point half-ton weight limit at the Pavilion but because WPC is so light we could comfortably run a 12-box hang. This was a big advantage,” confirmed Josh.
“Also, we had restricted load-in time which meant we had to deploy the PA quickly; the WPC rigging allowed that and it gave us more time to work on the optimisation and not on the load-in.”
A further positive comment was in respect of the MA rack. “This was also nice, and there was a DX4.0 system controller at both ends of the multicore, all run down Dante straight into the amps.”
In conclusion, Josh Small appraised that: “The system sounded one of the most natural I’d ever heard, unprocessed and open. It doesn’t sound digital at all.”
Also registering their satisfaction were TM/PM, Ollie James, who was said to be extremely happy with the system, while the venue’s client services manager Ben McEntegart said he would like to hear systems such as that in the venue more often.
photos: Tom Boulden/Nub Sound
16th January 2020
Smooth Sailing on Welcome to Jamrock Reggae Cruise for Nesta Garrick with Maverick Storm 1 Wash
USA – As someone who “grew up in reggae,” Nesta Garrick takes special pride and pleasure in lighting the Welcome to Jamrock Reggae Cruise, an annual December excursion that showcases many of the genre’s leading stars. But every year, the Jamaican-born LD disembarked from the floating festival’s ship with the same unfulfilled wish: he wanted an outdoor rated moving wash.
“I have been working on Jamrock for five years, going on six, and in that whole time I’ve asked myself ‘why can’t someone make a moving wash that’s IP rated?’,” he said. “This is a five-day cruise, and every night we’d have to take our washes down, because it rains a lot at sea. Then, the next evening, we’d have to focus them manually, which was difficult given the short amount of time we had to set up.”
The owner of RAS Visuals & Lighting, Garrick was visiting LDI in 2018 when he came across the Chauvet Professional Maverick Storm 1 Wash. “Right then I knew I found my answer,” he said. “I called Abbas Ritscher from The Design Oasis and asked if he had the Storm 1 Wash. He told me he did, so here we are!”
When the stately Independence of the Seas set sail in the Caribbean on Welcome to Jamrock Reggae Cruise 2019, reggae stars like Stephen “Ragga” Marley, Buju Banton, Popcaan and Taurus Riley were on board, so too were 12 Maverick Storm 1 Wash units, which like the rest of the fixtures in Garrick’s rig, were supplied and installed by The Design Oasis.
Although the issue of having to take down non-IP rated moving washes every night was resolved, Garrick had to contend with other challenges on board the vessel. Being a cruise ship, the Independence of the Seas had a large permanent video wall on its deck in the area where the festival stage was to be set up.
This configuration meant that Garrick and The Design Oasis team couldn’t build a rig with truss going across the stage, since this would block the video wall. Instead, they had to hang six Maverick Storm 1 Washes at a 45° angle on each side of the stage. The intense output of the fixtures allowed them to show up vividly against the big video wall as well as during performances that took place before sundown.
“We decided to build our rig around the stage and the video wall,” said Garrick. “Angling the fixtures, playing with their zoom, and relying on their output, allowed us to get some great looks.”
Directing light from the Maverick Storm 1 Wash fixtures in different directions, Garrick, who also programmed the show with Justin Casey, wove richly textured patterns of light behind the performers, providing an evocative background for their music. For some songs, washes from the Maverick units criss-crossed one another on stage to create a heightened sense of energy. To provide variety during the cruise, the patterns and coverage areas created with the Maverick fixtures were consistently changed.
Colour was also critical to changing looks and moods on stage during the cruise. Garrick and his team relied on the RGBW LED Maverick Storm 1 Wash to cover the stage in a variety of hues, not only to provide visual variety, but also to reflect the spirit of different artists and their music. A collection of 16 COLORado 2-Quad Zoom Tour fixtures, hung on the ship’s balcony and used as key lighting, also aided in colourising the stage.
“For the Stephen Marley and Buju Banton’s sets we used a lot of warm colours that went with the vibe that their brand of reggae music brings,” said Garrick. But because of the many different amazing reggae artists, from dance hall, reggae and roots, and R&B that appeared, we used a wide variety of colours to express the vibe and music from each performance. There were no limitations to creativity!”
15th January 2020
Ukrainian pop star turns to Quantum for Russian stadium gig
Russia – Ukrainian pop star, LOBODA, recently visited Moscow’s new US$1.5 billion VTB Arena stadium as part of her latest European tour, upgrading to DiGiCo’s premium SD7 Quantum console to create studio quality sound for the 100 channel orchestra-based production.
Known by the stage name LOBODA, Svitlana Serhiivna Loboda first came into public view in 2009 when she represented her country in the Eurovision Song Contest. Her latest tour, entitled ‘Superstar’, comprised dates across Europe, with the Moscow concert in the city’s new 45,000 capacity stadium marking the sixth date in the series.
“I have been working with LOBODA since 2015, first as her monitor engineer and then as her FOH engineer,” explains Alexander Hutsol. “I’ve tried several console brands during my career but for the last two years I have only specified DiGiCo. The first DiGiCo console I ever tried was the SD9, but I use SD10, SD7, SD12, SD8 and SD5 depending on the gig, with the SD10 being my ‘go to’ for most regular shows, and the SD7 for anything on a larger scale.”
Facilitated by DiGiCo’s Russian distributor, Aris Pro, the SD7 Quantum was supplied by Live Sound Agency, one of Russia’s leading pro audio rental companies.
“The new Quantum console has been causing shock waves through the industry and I had been waiting for a chance to try it out, so I was really excited when the opportunity arose to use one in the new arena in Moscow,” continues Hutsol. “Historically, I have deployed a regular SD7 for a concert of this magnitude as it offers me full insurance in case of any unforeseen circumstances. Quantum offered me these assurances, but with even more opportunities to implement the artist’s creative ideas. I simply converted the show file from the previous concert and adapted it to encompass all of these new possibilities.”
The Superstar show’s 100 channel input list comprised one half for the band, including drums, bass, guitars, keys, playback and vocals, and the other half for the accompanying orchestra. Outputs amounted to 27 to cover the stadium wide PA rig.
“LOBODA wanted the live show to reflect the studio production, so working alongside her recording engineer, we were able to adopt several studio approaches and alternatives during soundcheck, which would have been impossible without Quantum, especially the console’s snapshots facility,” says Hutsol. “The offline editor was also a great help in preparing the show, which contained a lot of channels and complex routing.”
The production was meticulously planned before the two-hour live show, with a team of 20 musicians, dancers and singers performing on stage, supported by the orchestra and key playback material.
“Thanks to Quantum, many parameters are automated, which helps me to focus on the finer details during the live performance,” concludes Hutsol. “One of the major plus points for me is Quantum’s FX suite, as I like to use different EQ parameters on some input channels for a mix into the hall. Also, I like to provide several submixes from FOH for different areas, where I assign groups and matrices, and the console’s processing power and capacity is phenomenal. Quantum is sonically remarkable, super easy to operate, and I was surprised at the processing speed. What a great experience!”
15th January 2020
Gabisom Expand Outline Newton Inventory to World’s Largest Stock
Brazil – São Paulo-based Gabisom Audio Equipment, one of the world’s largest and most well-respected audio hire companies, has just made a major investment in Outline’s unique 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 are also the go-to choice for international artists touring Brazil, whose productions rely absolutely on the company’s unique knowledge of their country and its challenges. The list of artists who have relied on Gabisom is a veritable Who’s Who of stars, a random sample from the past includes David Bowie, The Sex Pistols, Duran Duran, UB40, New Order, Sting, The Ramones, James Brown, Metallica, Ed Sheeran, Bryan Adams, Iron Maiden, Hall & Oates, the Rolling Stones and many more. In the last year their projects include João Rock Festival (featuring Brazilian national artists), Rockfest 2019 with the Scorpions, Whitesnake, Helloween and Europe, Muse, Shawn Mendes and the Prevent Senior 360º corporate stadium event.
Outline’s Newton processor has been taking the pro-audio industry by storm since it was launched at Prolight & Sound in Frankfurt in 2017. Its unique combination of features has, in a very short time, made it an indispensable tool for audio providers globally, being used with sound systems from every major manufacturer. Gabisom’s latest investment in this unique technology from Outline extends an initial purchase made in mid-2019 and means that they now have the largest Newton inventory of any company in the world.
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.’
What specific technical advantages does Newton offer Gabisom’s crews? “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 audio sources; that’s the best thing in the world! Also the EQs are so precise and smooth with their phase response.”
Moura continues with some recent examples of their Newtons in use: “We recently supplied a 360º stadium show for a corporate event, feeding AES out for eight hangs of Martin MLA with MLX subs and MLA Compacts as front fill. For the delays on the upper level we connected a second Newton via Dante and sent another four outputs via Dante for 12 hangs of L-Acoustics K2. Elsewhere at Shawn Mendes’ concert we had the Newton receiving L/R, Sub and Front Fills from their system and matrixing the signal for 270º stadium hangs of Martin MLA, MLX subs and MLA Compacts for front fill, plus seven hangs of L-Acoustics K2 hung on the stadium roof doing the upper levels, again fed via Dante from the Newton.
“At Rockfest we used the Newton to matrix in LR from four desks plus sub and front, some on AES, some via analogue, plus the festival desk with video and MCs in on the Aux input. The Newton AES outputs fed the d&b DS10 to drive the GSL main system and outfills with SL subs and Vs as front fills plus four delay towers of ten d&b Js each.”
Gabisom’s latest investment comes shortly after Outline appointed a new Brazilian distributor. São Paulo-based Audio Systems are one of Brazil’s most respected pro-audio distributors, handling numerous other world-class brands. Outline’s business development manager Fernando Rey Méndez comments: “This important new order was achieved thanks to Audio Systems’ excellent reputation and professional on-site support. Their commercial and logistical expertise is of significant value in our relationship with Gabisom.”
15th January 2020
Portman Lights Wows Fisher Hires with P1 Mini LED
UK - Leading 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 immediately 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.”
Baker sees the P1 mini as a product with almost limitless application potential. He lists everything from parties, weddings and shows to conferences, presentations and TV, adding: “It looks fantastic with a retro appearance and no compromise on output and effect. It has made some notable TV appearances, which gives an indication of the wow factor it commands.”
It would appear that if, as seems likely, the P1 mini continues on its current trajectory, Entedi can expect a busy 2020 in terms of the Portman brand. Cally Bacchus, managing director is also upbeat: “Fisher Hires investment in the P1 Mini LED is a clear sign of its versatility and attractiveness to a wide range of productions. They know the market inside out and acted swiftly to be the first UK company to add it to their inventory. Portman Lights has quickly established itself as a high quality brand with some very exciting and innovative products and we’re very happy to be in partnership with such an outstanding manufacturer.”
15th January 2020
Adlib Helps Big it up for Overtones Tour
UK – Liverpool-based production specialist Adlib continued its excellent working relationship with popular vocal harmony group The Overtones, supplying lighting equipment and crew to their latest UK tour, supporting LD and set designer Neil Holloway.
Adlib has been an equipment supplier for the band since their career took off in 2010, and it’s been a great journey for all involved to see the band’s success. Neil, now a busy freelance designer working internationally for a diverse range of clients, was working full time for Adlib back in 2010, and that’s also where his association with The Overtones started.
Ahead of this tour he got together with The Boys: Mike Crawshaw, Darren ‘Daz’ Everest, Mark Franks and newcomer Jay James Picton and they all tossed thoughts and ideas around, each one of them leading to a ‘big band’ look and style for the stage.
Understated elegance and a gentle symmetry defined the set which comprised of a central staircase flanked by two risers each side for the band, plus four signature big band art deco set pieces, which all were constructed by the very talented backline crew.
Other parameters pertinent to the design included it having to fit the budget and into one truck shared with PA and backline, as well as being scalable to fit and look good in a variety of different sized venues.
There was no video on the tour, but a super-slick Overtones LED sign at the back – custom built by Light Initiative – set the scene, positioned just in front of a spectacular silver lamé Austrian curtain from Adlib’s drapes inventory.
Every lighting fixture on the rig had to be multi-purpose and work hard in several different contexts to earn its place on the tour.
Robe Spikies for the beams and Martin MAC Auras for the LED washes were the core moving light fixtures and were selected for their small size, power, and functionality.
Twenty-four Spikies were distributed on the back and mid trusses, 12 on each, while six of the ten Auras were on the floor, three per side, for low level cross stage washes, with the other four on Manfrotto stands for cross lighting the band standing on the upstage risers.
They were joined by 12 GLP X4 Bar 20 LED battens. Four Oxo Pixyline 150s, another RGBW LED batten fixture, were used to graze up the fronts of the four deco ‘bandstand’ set pieces.
Upstage on the deck, sitting on bespoke plinths made for the tour, was a row of seven Ayrton Bora S wash / FX moving heads which Neil used to create high-impact gobo effects.
He loved the 64-degree zoom and the scope and versatility this brought to the visual picture. Using a single Bora, he could silhouette all four Overtones against a kabuki cloth which dropped at the top of the show, and the stunning and intense gobo effects using all seven units impressed everyone.
He also utilised 80 one-metre LEDBLADES, a new mappable 16mm pitch LED strip product developed by a Budapest-based AV and rental company that is steadily becoming popular. These were used to outline the set risers and central steps, together with 13 three-metre sections on the mid-truss that produced a roof effect.
They were another fixture that Neil maximised fully in the show with colourful geometric chases and cool architectural looks. “They brought a completely different dynamic to the stage and I will definitely be using them again,” he stated.
Eight Portman P2 Hexaline bars were rigged vertically across the stage standing on tank-trap bases, bringing some cosy flourishes of tungsten to an otherwise all-LED lighting rig.
This carefully chosen and well-placed collection of very different fixtures thoughtfully programmed and intelligently used brought all the dynamics and depth that Neil envisioned, and – not that this was an issue – it pulled absolutely minimal power!
For front lighting, they hooked into the house profiles at each venue, typically between 12 and 20 classic ETC Source Fours, which were used to light the forestage, The Boys, and the band.
At the essence of this design was the ability to adapt and fit the basic shape and essential look into all the venues on the itinerary for full visual continuity, a plan that worked practically and seamlessly.
Neil ran all the lighting from a grandMA2 light console.
Adlib sent Tom Webber as the head lighting technician, whose vast experience and knowledge helped ensure that everything was meticulously prepped before they hit the road, and he was assisted by James Britten. “We were a great team,” commented Neil, “and everything I achieved creatively was enabled by and a reflection of how hard they worked each day to get everything in.”
He added that his and the band’s relationship to Adlib was a key to making the tour run smoothly, look great and represent great value. He lives quite close to Adlib’s new warehouse and office complex in Knowsley and comments: “The facilities and the kit they have now are world-class and truly fantastic. As someone who started off working there, it’s a great feeling to see the company grow and develop so successfully and still retain all the personal touches and relationships.”
Adlibs Jordan Willis (account manager) commented: “It is always a pleasure helping Neil to bring his creative vision to life and this was absolutely no exception. We look forward to a continued working relationship and hopefully bringing more of his projects into fruition.”
photos: Neil Holloway