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Take That goes Global

Take That goes Global

Worldwide – As the cliché would have it, ‘from tiny acorns mighty oaks do grow’. So it is with concepts and their fruit, not least in the world of concert spectaculars. “Mark Owen came to our first meeting and before discussions had even begun proposed we use the spherically rendered Take That logo from the cover of the new Odyssey album for the stage show.” This was how the band’s long-time tour director, Chris Vaughan of CV Productions, revealed the kernel of the concept. “No idle thought, Mark’s idea was a fully formed vision, with a huge panoramic screen behind it, and video adorning the total surface of the sphere; this would come to be the defining image of the tour.”

Images are one thing, fulfilling them another, Vaughan quickly called upon the technical prowess of Video Design, who had supported Take That’s previous outing in 2016 and the engineering skills of Brilliant. Was this possible? “The key is knowing how to respond to extreme conceptual design,” was Vaughan’s assessment. “That, and the willingness to do so. A ten-metre diameter rotating sphere covered in high definition video is not commodity based, you don’t rent it off the shelf like sound and lighting equipment.”

The final result, supervised by CV Productions engineering point man Nick Evans, is 47 tons of steel, aluminium, motion control, and a virtually seamless skin of video tiles. “It took us almost a month, working closely with Nick and the guys at Brilliant just to solve the issues of fixing 2,500 12mm WinVision flat square video tiles to a spherical surface without the appearance of visually unacceptable gaps between tiles,” explained Video Design’s CEO, Alex Leinster. “A fantastic painstaking job headed up by Jack Middlebrook who now leads our team to assemble the sphere on tour. At the same time, Luke Collins, a man who likes a challenge, resolved the task of how to manage and map content from the Disguise servers to the sphere. That’s quite an achievement in itself, he likened it to playing 3D chess in your head. Funnily enough, all that has made building almost 430 square metres of back screen and assembling a six camera PPU for Paul Eggerton to capture some great IMAG shots on a daily basis seem easy by comparison. This has been a mighty task.”

Vaughan is delighted with the effort. “On tour we have to get it up and working in eight hours and that has been achieved by the willingness of everyone involved, from Stu Fish through Nick Evans, down to Brilliant and Video Design. It is a phenomenal achievement. It works, it moves, it looks fantastic and it arrived pretty much on time, that’s a testament to all involved.

The great achievement is you come up with these ideas and then people work out how it can be done; that’s when you start to believe in it. The amount of effort Alex Leinster put into getting this over the line was immense, he owned it from the moment we started and has delivered.”



Take That goes GlobalTake That goes Global

20th May 2019

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