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Video Design Ignites Nitro Circus
Europe – Extreme sports excite the daredevil in us all; Nitro Circus Live, a touring spectacular, featuring world class athletes in FMX, BMX, skate and scooter visited arenas in Europe throughout November. Nitro brings that extreme within touching distance, you can almost feel the release of breath as each performer lands safely following a hair-raising aerial ballet. It’s not uncommon for rider and bike to be virtually detached mid-flight and, for what seems like, seconds.
Part of that perception is an illusion. As camera director William ‘Billy’ Robinson explains, it’s an illusion carefully wrought. “Nitro Circus is defined as a live extreme sport event. It is shot to fulfil a TV style production, yet in a touring environment. Fundamentally the show relies heavily on slow-motion replays both within the show in general, and throughout a number of competitions within the show.” Watch the thrill, then have the pleasure of examining it in every detail as they say.
“Video Design supplies our complete video package; for slow-mo’ they have provided us with an EVS version 14:0, three in/three out facility. That has proved to be a solid solution to a quite demanding and instant operational requirement. It’s a flightcased patch-and-go system and requires a very proficient operator and a thorough understanding by all video operators regarding replays and how they fit into the show. That is crucial to enable good acquisition and supporting vision. The Video Design crew have responded extremely well to that demand, especially given that touring is largely a music production environment.”
The package from Video Design comprises a team of seven to install and operate a four-sided central scoreboard display of ROE CB5 LED, each screen being 5.4m wide, plus six camera PPU, two long lens, two hand-held and two BR Remote robo-cams. “Since they were appointed as video vendor they have provided an excellent service,” comments Robinson. “My contact was Alex Leinster, the company MD, who personally handled the pre-production some weeks before the start of the tour. That’s important: he found solutions to Nitro's quite specific characteristics in terms of required equipment and operational methods.”
Robinson, a resident of Australia though originally from the UK, has a long career in video, starting on cameras in broadcast television eventually moving to director and freelance status. “Billy has been the video director at Nitro Circus Live for many years,” says Dov Ribnick, vice president of Nitro Creative. “He has improved the video experience for the fans since day one. Billy is always looking for ways to increase the level footage in the show, from different camera angles to new camera positions that were never thought of before. Since his arrival our show has improved significantly.”
Robinson is quick to deflect praise toward the crew: “They are very professional and experienced with a high skill level and enthusiasm throughout a very physically demanding schedule. They are proactive in finding solutions to challenges that are posed on a venue by venue basis in terms of specific arena heights and characteristics relating to equipment on the track and the set of the show. They can see the bigger picture and are considerate on how things effect other departments, attention to detail is very impressive. I can honestly say that I felt we were in good hands and was very confident, more confident on a first load in/production day than I have felt for a long time.” photos: Nitro Circus
12th December 2018
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