Colourblind on the road with Hog4 and Green Hippo
Posted on Wednesday, May 24th, 2017
Melbourne-based lighting and production company Colourblind are having a huge 2017, with lighting director Nicholas Beachen out on the road using High End Systems Hog 4 on the Hot Dub Wine Machine tour through March and April, and the company’s new Hippotizer Karst and Portamus media servers joining Melbourne hip-hop artist Illy as he traverses the country at the same time.
DJ Tom Loud’s genre-and time-spanning Hot Dub Time Machine has been a regular gig for Colourblind’s Nicholas Beachen for three years. But December 2016 saw the birth of a new concept from the artist – a curated, boutique festival that debuted at Serafino Winery in South Australia’s McLaren Vale. Gloriously named ‘Hot Dub Wine Machine’, the concept of combining a bill of bands and DJs with gourmet food and wine and a strictly limited number of tickets in an idyllic setting was a huge success. So much so that a mere two months later, a national tour was underway.
Starting in Tasmania’s Huon Valley on March 4 and ending in Western Australia’s Swan Valley on April 8, Hot Dub Wine Machine takes in five of Australia’s iconic wine regions, accompanied by party-starting acts like Pnau, Confidence Man, and Miami Horror, all culminating in a two-hour Hot Dub Time Machine set. Nicholas is running the whole light show on High End Systems flagship Hog 4. “I find the Hog 4 easy to use because of things like the Rate Wheel – that changes everything completely,” Nicholas reported. “I’m running the latest software with the new speed control ‘Batches’. Having two screens with the 48 Soft-Keys around them makes doing the things you need to do a lot easier. I will always try use a Hog 4 full-size console first.”
“I have a Hog4 show file I’ve been using on multiple different hot dub tours for the last year or so, every once in a while I will start this file again,” Nicholas continued. “Tom (Hot Dub) plays roughly 350 songs in his set. I’ve programmed the whole show before and it was actually quite confusing, but now I ‘busk it with intention’. It’s a heavy show to operate; he plays for two hours on this tour. When I get to a show, I know the things I need for Hot Dub cues, and I can create them very quickly with the Hog. People get too caught up in the tech and the tricks of consoles, and can lose sight of the end result. I try to focus on getting the lights looking good, and the Hog 4 helps me achieve that quickly and easily.”
When on tour, Nicholas is accompanied by Colourblind’s High End Systems Nano wing and MiniWing 4, the portable control unit that he connects to Hog 4 PC via USB. “I travel with it everywhere I go,” confirmed Nicholas. “So I can use it to do previs in my hotel room or use it to control smaller shows that I cant get a console for. Who really wants to be on site late at night programming anyway?”
Meanwhile, Colourblind have purchased Green Hippo Karst hardware media servers and Green Hippo Portamus software. Their first outing was on ARIA Award-winning rapper Illy’s ‘Two Degrees” Australian tour, kicking off in Fremantle 25 March, and ending five cities later in Brisbane on April 8. The 2-RU Hippotizer Karst includes two HD-SDI outputs and DisplayPort 1.2 connectivity, giving Colourblind the ability to drive 4K displays with a single cable. Green Hippo’s Portamus software is designed to run on an Apple Macbook Pro, with all the tools necessary to perform world-class events, and includes all the well-loved features from the Hippotizer V4 range. They were also then used on the Australian Logie Awards in April.
Colourblind enjoy a close relationship with Australian and New Zealand High End Systems and Green Hippo distributor Lexair Entertainment, back by their unbeatable pre and post-sales support.
Photos: James Hughes
Vesuvio RGBA creates atmosphere for Midnight Mafia 2017
Posted on Thursday, May 18th, 2017
Midnight Mafia, the indoor festival featuring 13 International and local artists returned in 2017 on Saturday the 13th of May at The Halls at Sydney Showground. The Sydney Showground venue allowed HSU Events to have the biggest ever production at this year’s festival, which was three times that of Midnight Mafia 2016 and as a result allowed more space for an amazing stage to complement the addition of pyro, flames and fireworks with a venue capacity of over 15,000 people.
A key addition to the festival was the use of the Vesuvio RGBA from CHAUVET Professional, supplied by Chameleon Touring Systems. Designed by Arian Yeganeh from Integratd, Arian incorporated 16 of the Vesuvio RGBA vertical fog machines which permitted the look and feel of the conventional Co2 at the third of the cost, however being on moving trusses this was the only solution. The CHAUVET Vesuvio RGBA features a quick heating 1.6 kW heater and a 2.5 L fluid tank for dependability in production, and features an incredible 40,000 cubic feet per minute output (CFM), which delivered a huge kick to the large and enthusiastic crowd.
The Vesuvio RGBA brings together high output LED washes to towering fog output with ferocious intensity. This allowed bursts of fog to disperse on the crowd at various stages of the festival with the Vesuvio’s used for the intros of the artists to create a visualising and exhilarating experience for the thousands in attendance. It allowed each artist set list to have its own unique feel to highlight the energy that each individual artist created during the event.
Midnight Mafia 2017 was a success with the audience enjoying an energetic and vibrant night of international acts showcasing their talents, with the use of the Vesuvio RGBA helping to shape the mood and feel for each of the artist throughout the night.
Dave Taylor runs ChamSys MagicQ MQ500 Stadium
Posted on Monday, May 15th, 2017
Empire of the Sun performed at the Coachella Valley Music and Arts Festival’s Sahara Stage with artistic flourishes that included glowing pyramids and a six-pronged stage element cradling a white orb. The light show featured a blend of bright white light and vivid colors, programmed and controlled by Dave Taylor, who used a ChamSys MagicQ MQ500 Stadium console.
Dressed in flowing, futuristic silky black outfits and backed by robot dancers, the duo performed on a stage adorned with glowing pyramids and a six-pronged silver statue cradling a primordial white orb. Illuminating the fantastical scene with brilliant white light and vivid colors was a lightshow that Dave Taylor programmed and controlled with the ChamSys MagicQ MQ500 Stadium.
Taylor used over 1,200 different light fixtures and 3,000 channels of LED tape in his 86-active-universe show. In addition to his ChamSys console, he relied on a SnakeSys R8 eight-universe Ethernet to DMX converter, a SnakeSys R4 multi-purpose network distribution node, and two SnakeSys B4 four-universe DMX to Ethernet converters to run his massive rig.
“There was no shortage of lighting on this one,” said Taylor. “Empire of the Sun is always pushing the boundaries, not just musically but visually. They’re constantly searching for images that move people in new ways. Our show continues to build and, as a designer, I’m constantly evolving with it. This is the first time I used the MagicQ MQ500 Stadium, since it’s new. This is really the next step in controllers for me, kind of a natural progression. It enabled me to create the ideal workspace for myself to program and control the show.”
The speed and flexibility of the ChamSys MagicQ MQ500 Stadium made it easier for Taylor to preprogram the intricately detailed show. “Doing your homework is 90 percent of the gig when you have a show like this,” he said. “The ChamSys platform makes this task simpler with the excellent speed that it has when patching and manipulating fixtures. When you pair the console’s internal morphing and cloning capabilities with features like multi-patch, quick offset options and powerful pixel mappers, you find it quick and easy to build a solid foundation that can be adapted to different venues.”
This preprogramming notwithstanding, there were also quite a few last-minute adjustments that had to be made to the Empire of the Sun show for Coachella, because of the band’s ceaseless quest to incorporate new ideas. “We all constantly push the envelope, so there were a number of new elements added in the lead up to this show,” said Taylor. “In fact, we were still building LED systems into the set pieces in the days just before Coachella. As is often the case, time is in short supply when the show approaches, so bringing it all to life at the eleventh hour was a challenge.”
The user-friendly features of the ChamSys MagicQ MQ500 Stadium made it easier for Taylor to meet this challenge. “This is a very efficient console,” he said. “I’m extremely impressed with the advanced power of the onboard processing. We were able to output a large number of universes directly from the console without the need for any external processing nodes.”
Video played a key role in Taylor’s design. He ran video content out of his rig on stage. “This method of running video content is a great way to approach our setup for Empire of the Sun, because the time available to us out the front is often very limited and changeovers can be very tight,” he said.
Although the video content for the show was all time coded, Taylor ran his ChamSys console live during Coachella. “I have a great deal of fun punting,” he said. “Empire of the Sun is constantly making changes to visual elements leading up to the show, so there are still a number of live modifications throughout the performance that must be made to account for these new twists. This is great, though, because as a lighting designer you want to be part of the live performance.”
Pro Light & Sound honour ANZAC Ceremony
Posted on Friday, May 12th, 2017
2016 saw a pre match opening the likes of which Australian NRL has never seen. For the first time ever, the ANZAC Ceremony was performed live to broadcast under a spotlight amongst a blacked out AAMI Park. The bright lights of AAMI Park were momentarily turned off, creating an electric atmosphere to honour the heroic men and women who have served for Australia and New Zealand.
The pre-game spectacle included a cultural performance on behalf of both countries, prior to the lighting of a commemorative cauldron honouring the 100th Anniversary of RSL, the Battle of Fromelles and the Battle of Pozieres as well as the 75th Anniversary of the Siege of Tobruk and the 50th Anniversary of the Battle of Long Tan. In a stunning display, Melbourne Storm’s starting lineup was projected onto the roof of AAMI Park prior to the teams entering the field together, with the traditional Ode, Last Post and Minute’s Silence capturing the attention of the jubilant crowd.
Stav Hatzipantelis, Creative Director and Lighting Designer at Pro Light & Sound in Melbourne, envisaged projecting the players onto the inside walls of AAMI Park Stadium in conjunction with the Audio Visual presentation of the opening line up. Going to black was a huge concern for Fox Sport producers, but a simple demonstration by the PL&S Team showed that 8 x Claypaky HPE700 were more than adequate to the task of lighting up the ceremony for Live Broadcast around the world. A total of 18 x Martin Professional MAC Vipers were used for the projection of the players during the opening show.
The event was a tremendous success and the Pro Light & Sound team were again invited to produce another spectacular opener for 2017.
Colourblind’s Hippotizers Serve Video at The Logies
Posted on Wednesday, May 3rd, 2017
The Australian TV industry’s biggest night, the 59th annual Logie Awards, were held at Melbourne’s Crown Palladium on Sunday 23 April 2017, broadcast live on the Nine Network. Always a great opportunity for the broadcaster to show off its tech capabilities, fantastic visuals were spread across three huge screens onstage, a wrap-around screen surrounding the audience, and pixel mapped to onstage fixtures and LED chandeliers. Helming the mission-critical media server and console operation was Lynden Gare, director of Melbourne-based lighting and production company Colourblind, who relied on Green Hippo’s Hippotizer media servers to ensure that the show went exactly to plan.
Green Hippo is no stranger to the world’s biggest televised events, with their media servers used on The Eurovision Song Contest and The Academy Awards. At the heart of Lynden’s set-up for The Logies were two Hippotizer Karst servers, Green Hippo’s 2RU, three-out, tour-ready workhorse. The first server fed an image canvas 4884 pixels wide via SDI to stage to be displayed across three screens, and handled pixel mapping to a range of LED fixtures. The second Karst sent a 1920 pixel wide image to screens wrapping around the auditorium, and a 192×160 output to LED chandeliers. Another server, kindly provided by Australia and New Zealand Green Hippo distributor Lexair, was on hand as further back-up, an essential requirement for any live broadcast.
Terabytes of graphics packages were provided by the Nine Network, design agency Visual Playground, and the touring teams of musical acts Jessica Mauboy and Andy Grammer. Content wrangler Andrew Howie also directed and animated the content for James Blunt. On the night, Lynden operated a flawless show from his console of choice at the FOH position. “Green Hippo is my, and Colourblind’s, choice,” Lynden confirmed. “We like to drive media servers with a console, and Green Hippo has the best DMX profile for that. It’s really easy to add a nice blur to content, slow it down, speed it up, or play it in reverse. Most importantly, the colour manipulation is perfect for TV. For example, if Lighting Supervisor Shane O’Dwyer needs me to remove 3% red from an image, or add 10% contrast, it’s far easier and quicker on Green Hippo than any other media server. Colour correction from CTO to CTB is very handy too.”
While the Logies are exhaustively prepared and rehearsed, Lynden and the video crew were ready for anything to happen on the night. “We expect the unexpected,” said Lynden. “We’re always ready for an eventuality where a performance differs slightly from rehearsals. Operating a media server from a console instead of a timeline works well for us. With a timeline, you’re fixed to what was done in rehearsals, but with a console, we can change timings or move a fader slightly slower or faster. If one of the presenters walks out on a different side, we can very quickly recall a preset, or push up another fader rather than be locked in to what’s rehearsed.”
With a huge live television audience looking on, video performance was paramount. “Hippotizer has smooth and reliable playback,” reported Lynden. “All of our video backgrounds are 50 fps and run for about 30 seconds. We know that Green Hippo won’t drop a frame. When someone’s accepting the Gold Logie, you don’t want something stuttering or skipping and attracting more attention than the award winner. We also rely on Green Hippo’s colour averaging in our pixel maps. We were mapping to fixtures one pixel wide, and we didn’t want a jagged image. Using Hippotizers’ colour averaging got us a much smoother result mapping a narrow image to that many fixtures.”
With all seats taken in the Palladium, and a full complement of live broadcast equipment, production real estate was tight. “All the video equipment has to live at the back of the room near FOH, and there’s only three or four metres by one metre to fit all of it,” observed Lynden. “With some other systems, we’d be looking at a far bigger footprint to get this number of outputs. The beauty of our Green Hippo set-up is that we’re producing five video outs and three pixel map outs in just two machines.”
It wasn’t just during the show that Green Hippo made Lynden’s job easier, but also in the preparation and rehearsal leading up to the event. “One of the beauties of Hippotizer is that we can just open up the front panel and slot in larger drives for a project like the Logies, when we’re expecting terabytes of image sequences,” he explained. “We know it’s infinitely expandable with consumer grade SSDs. And in rehearsals, in the multi-user environment of the Hippotizer software ZooKeeper, we can have two of us working on different things on the same show file, on the same machines, at the same time. Media server supertech, Chris Lewis, can work on a new pixel map for a music act for me without interrupting what’s happening on stage.”
In the end, the 59th annual Logie Awards went off without a hitch for all involved, but support was there if needed. “Lexair went above and beyond to provide support and redundancies in Melbourne in case we needed it,” said Lynden. “It was a broadcast gig, and we needed to be protected in case of multiple points of failure. That being said, all of our support queries to date have been hardware related, but not about Hippotizer hardware, mainly questions of compatibility with third party equipment. It shows that Hippotizer is a reliable, mature product.”
Eurotruss at the Melbourne Grand Prix
Posted on Monday, April 10th, 2017
The first round of the 2017 Formula 1 Grand Prix rolled in to Albert Park at the end of March. Along with the main race, there are various attractions during the weekend for race enthusiasts and tourists to explore, one of them being the unique Renault truss structure with a Renault F1 car rigged from it.
Renault last year showcased a vertically rigged F1 car on a 12m high truss “ramp” at the Grand Prix Event that amazed fans with the result being both spectacular and memorable. To create another significant attraction for this year’s event, Renault’s brand experience agency, Neonormal, again contracted Get Rigged who designed and constructed last year’s structure, to create another ‘wow’ factor installation.
To successfully rig the F1 Renault car on this year’s structure, Get Rigged had to consider various factors. After careful planning and preparation, Get Rigged concluded that once again the Eurotruss truss system was the only truss that could be effective enough to cover the entire installation without the need of internal supports and have the capacity to rig the F1 Car. To build the structure, Get Rigged used Eurotruss HD34 square truss supplied by Showtools International using 100 Eurotruss sections along with custom brackets for the roof pitch and Get Rigged’s adjustable leg height adaptors that bolt on to the HD connector pattern, allowing easy levelling of the structure on uneven ground. Sixteen millimetre Marine Ply covered the entire perimeter for signage and a black custom roof was manufactured to keep the area underneath dry.
The Eurotruss Brand was the perfect choice as it provided structural integrity other brands don’t provide, which was reinforced by Dave when he stated, ‘Get Rigged won’t go anywhere else for truss.’ The HD34 guarantees optimum load bearing capacity, with a 3mm wall thickness assuring durability and extra strength. Additionally, the Eurotruss system provides fast and safe conical connection that optimized the set-up from time of bump in. Dave finally commented “Now that the bar has been set so high I think we’ll be purchasing the HD44 truss so we can push the boundaries even further-watch this space!”
Thanks to the use of the Eurotruss truss system, Get Rigged has successfully created another amazing and memorable structure for Renault at the Australian Grand Prix.
Philips Lighting brings magical effects to Wicked
Posted on Tuesday, March 28th, 2017
In the role of both lighting designer and technical supplier was Gareth Kays of GK Productions, Tasmania’s leading performance technology consultancy. His brief was to create an impressive, Broadway-style production on a comparatively small stage.
“One of my main challenges was disguising the ground support system which allowed lead character Elphaba to take flight during the number Defying Gravity,” Kays explained. “I used Philips Showline SL BEAM 300fx moving head luminaires at full zoom for back lighting Elphaba as she rose into the air. Light radiated out from her, masking the mechanics and giving the impression she truly was flying. I used Philips Showline SL LEDSPOT 300 luminaires to light the downstage in a dappled gobo wash, which added to the radiating backlit look.”
Kays also used the Philips Showline SL LEDSPOT 300’s advanced effects system and CMY colour mixing to bring the staging to life.
“In a lot of the scenes I used very strong colours and large gobo effects to create a magical storybook feel. I found the stock gobos in the Philips Showline SL LEDSPOT 300 gave me plenty of creative options; I used the brick gobo for a not so subtle yellow brick road, and utilised the same gobo with a cyan for the interiors of the castle scenes to break up the stage floor. The framing shutter system is also fantastic for my theatrical work.”
Kays also selected Philips Selecon PLfresnel1 MKII high output LED Fresnel fixtures for front of house lighting from the ‘box boom’ position. He commented, “The fixtures provided a great colour palette from natural skin tones through to saturated deep colours.”
Colin Kavanagh, general manager Philips Entertainment Lighting said, “We are committed to leading the transition to energy efficient entertainment lighting and Wicked in Hobart was a perfect example of how our LED technology is a formidable match for tungsten in a theatrical environment, at a fraction of the power consumption. From precision shutter framing to sophisticated colour rendering, our theatrical LED luminaires offer designers true energy-efficient creativity.”
Wicked ran from 27 January to 11 February. The production also won several awards at the Tasmanian Theatre Awards on Sunday 12 March 12, including Best Production.
W-DMX™ extravaganza at White Night
Posted on Thursday, March 23rd, 2017
The team deployed over 25 W-DMX™ transceivers and receivers over the White Night weekend through several spaces, from the Royal Exhibition Building (R.E.B.) and surrounding gardens.
“Our control position was at the heart of the Carlton Gardens, where we had our new compact MA Lighting International grandMA onPC command wing systems, running two separate W-DMX™ networks, each with a BlackBox F-1 G4S transceiver, and an 19dBi directional antenna”, commented Mark Hopkins, of Resolution X.
The first receiving point was 80 meters away, on a roof, feeding DMX to IP64 ShowPro Quad PARs, Claypaky Mythos and Sharpys.
“The second system was the more impressive one” added Mark. “We placed 40 ShowPro Hercules, our battery-powered LED wash fixtures, lighting the trees along the path through Carlton Gardens and up the R.E.B. The system worked flawlessly over the 200+ meters, even with the antennae at only 1.8 meters high, and thousands of attendees all on their phones, creating a lot of noise in the 2.4GHz spectrum”.
In total, the team used a combination of BlackBox F-1 G4S transceivers, BlackBox F-2, and Micro R-512 G4S series, in a combination of transmitting and receiving to multiple locations, all interference and latency-free.
“We wanted to test how far we could go wirelessly, so we took a Hercules fixture and walked over 500 meters, without losing a frame”, Mark commented.
Show Systems Australia chooses Chauvet
Posted on Thursday, March 16th, 2017
Since 2013, Show Systems Australia has used 30 years worth of experience in the lighting, production and entertainment industry to specialise in bringing small to large indoor and outdoor events, installs, concerts, theatre shows, corporate events, wedding receptions and dinners alive. To continue to provide high quality lighting productions to their clients, Show Systems Australia recently upgraded their inventory with the purchase of 12 new CHAUVET Professional Maverick MK2 Spots supplied by Showtools International.
Show Systems Australia has chosen to invest into the CHAUVET Professional family due to the capability of the fixtures against those in the market. Michael Westcott, director of Show Systems Australia stated, ‘After deciding the time was right for us as to consider purchasing a quantity of high output LED Spot fixtures, we set about looking at different brands and price ranges in the market place. At the end of our search we found that the CHAUVET Professional Maverick MK2 Spot ticked all the right boxes and some extras as well.’
The features of the Maverick MK2 Spot really caught Michael’s eye, ‘’The Maverick MK2 Spots were chosen due to the 440w 4 driver LED engine, huge zoom range, CMY, variable CTO and variable frost. With two rotating gobo wheels feature all glass gobo’s which can also be layered to create unique effects as well as having SCANet, Artnet, and W DMX. Also, 5 and 3 pin DMX gives us a fixture that is versatile and future proof. The output from the fixture is blistering bright and the colour mixing system and optics is stunning in addition to the build quality of the fixtures.’’
The fixtures have been put straight into action for Show Systems with work on various shows from theatre to corporate events. One such show was the production of Wicked, the latest show from Encore Theatre Company held at the Princess Theatre. Jason Bovaird of Moving Light Productions designed and programmed the stunning looks with the new Maverick MK2 Spots. The Mavericks were used to highlight certain performers on stage as there were up to 40 cast members as well as for crossing aerial effects and gobo scenes.
The fixtures also created variable frost and variable CTO. Michael added, ‘Being able to frost out a gobo look and then fade back into a sharp focus gobo look is a great feature with these Mavericks. The LD was able to achieve some great aerial and set gobo looks from the powerful 440w LED source.’
Michael elaborated, ‘We have several Lighting Designers who are excited to put these fixtures on their shows and are impressed with the extra features on these Mavericks that are not available on some other fixtures.’
This acquisition has enabled Show Systems Australia to offer maximum production equipment for any scale event or install as evident by the successful Wicked Production. With the CHAUVET Professional investment, Show Systems will continue to bring their lighting and production experience to various events in Tasmania to open new design possibilities for all clients. Additionally, Michael has claimed the addition of more Maverick fixtures to their inventory a real possibility, ‘We are keen to be adding more of the Maverick range of fixtures to our lighting inventory over the next few months.’
Mandylights at the Mardi Gras
Posted on Wednesday, March 15th, 2017
Described as the party to end all parties, the Sydney Mardi Gras party attracts partygoers from all over the globe. It’s one of the biggest LGBTQI celebrations in the world and it is the only place to party after The Parade.
Lighting for the event this year was designed by Richard Neville of Mandylights, with Clint Dulieu, Mike MacDonald, Jean-Pierre Jammaers and Francesco Calvi operating, and gear supplied by Chameleon Touring Systems.
It was a massive Show Technology showcase with Martin MAC Vipers, MAC101’s, MAC Auras, LC Panels, Clay Paky Sharpys and Stormys, and even some ChromaBanks. Control was via an MA Lighting MA2 and a Martin M6 console.
“Every year Mardi Gras give us a creative brief and this year the idea was all linear and minimalistic,” said Richard Neville of Mandylights. “So I designed six huge pods that moved around the space with simple lines of lights and blocks of colour.”
The six pods housed Martin LC Panels that delivered geometric and big, bold colour looks. It was less about using them as video panels, but rather large block light sources framed by truss and MAC101’s.
“The MAC101 is Martin’s most under-rated light,” remarked Richard. “In raw mode they have an amazing output for their size plus they are so fast, the colours are instantaneous and they are super reliable.”
The Sharpys provided a cluster of beams effect, while the MAC Vipers were the overall workhorse providing a set of fast features.
Whilst most dance parties focus on the DJ, with the rig over the stage at the end of the room and all the lights pointing out into the house, Mardi Gras parties are all about lighting the party goers in the room. The focus is on an immersive room design with most of the firepower above the people’s heads.
“No matter where you stand on the dance floor you get this awesome experience of being surrounded by lights as opposed to looking at everything at the end of the room,” commented Richard.
An ArtNet merge in the Royal Hall of Industries from the Martin M6 console into the MA2 meant that both Francesco Calvi and Clint Dulieu could program at the same time. At the push of a button, consoles could be seamlessly switched.
Photos: Danyon McCue, Kineysis operator extraordinaire.
Harry the Hirer choose Eurotruss for fashion launch
Posted on Monday, March 13th, 2017
Set next to the world-famous St Mary’s Cathedral in Sydney, David Jones’s Autumn Winter Collections Launch has a way of inspiring the fashion industry Australia wide every year. In early February 2017, this was the case as David Jones held its annual Collections Launch at the forecourt of St Mary’s Cathedral to showcase the new fashion trends for the upcoming year, with the star-studded event presenting models such as Jesinta Franklin, Karlie Kloss and Jessica Gomes. To effectively hold the fashion show at the forecourt of the iconic church, a structure needed to be created to adequately house the large attendance for the evening and showcase the various models as well as the haute couture throughout the night.
As Australia’s leading provider of rigging, staging and production services to the events & exhibitions industry, Harry the hirer Productions was contracted to create the structure for David Jones. After careful planning factoring in the requirements needed for show, the decision was made to utilise the Eurotruss HD44 Square Truss and Nivtec Stage Modules, with truss and staging supplied by Showtools International. The choice to use Eurotruss was made by Harry the hirer Productions due to the superior strength and durability of the HD44 truss thanks to its excellent load capacity, with a massive 15x50m roof structure put in place. In addition, the ease of use with the fast-conical system allowed Harry the hirer Productions to create the perfect solution for what was needed and therefore was an essential factor in using the Eurotruss system.
Likewise, The Nivtec staging modules were installed for its ease of use, the effective Nivtec hook on system provides strength with a high load capacity as well as providing a quick assembly process. These factors made Nivtec the best solution for staging in addition to being secure and safe.
The famous David Jones autumn winter collection launch was a successful evening for all those involved with the latest fashions showcased, with the result being simply amazing. Thanks to the use of the Eurotruss Truss system and Nivtec staging modules the event went smoothly for all those involved from the fashionista’s in attendance to the models on stage. With another successful event on its books, Harry the hirer Productions remains the industry leader in providing rigging and staging services to the events and exhibition industry.
Firefly FloppyFlex LED Neon for Adele
Posted on Monday, March 13th, 2017
TMB, distributor of Firefly FloppyFlex LED neon products, noted that 285 meters of the product was incorporated into Woodroffe Bassett Design’s looks for Adele on her current tour of New Zealand and Australia. Tait supplied the product for the tour leg, an extension of Adele’s Live 2016 trek (now called Adele Live 2017), which began Feb. 28 and runs through March 26.
Grammy-laden Londoner Adele debuts her new stadium show this month on a six-city tour of Australia and New Zealand, to be continued in the UK in June. The opening in Perth broke records with 65,000 in ticket sales for a single night. Anyone fortunate enough to attend one of these sold-out shows cannot miss 285 meters of Firefly FloppyFlex LED neon lining the star’s surround-walk in the 360? in-the-round production.
“This is Adele’s first arena tour and the design is stunning,” says Firefly Founding Director, Heath Williamson. “Everything is traditionally lit for a warm, classic tungsten look. The FloppyFlex RGB is mixed for warm and cool whites, as well as the occasional red — all done with the greatest taste. Double runs of FloppyFlex coupled together render them even more impressive than usual, whether from the upper rows of the stadium or even the news chopper flying overhead! The programming is some of the most tasteful, elegant use of the product we’ve seen to date.”
FloppyFlex for the tour is provided by Tait Towers. Lighting is by Woodroffe Bassett Design.
Firefly FloppyFlex LED Neon is the perfect replacement for glass neon: Easy to use, long lasting, durable, and, at 24VDC, safe. Perfect for use indoors and outdoors, FloppyFlex is available in large dome (270° view angle), small dome (160° view angle), and flat versions. Standard single-color versions include Red, Green, Blue, Yellow, Orange, plus RGB and Digital RGB (pixel controlled) versions, as well as a wide selection of single-color white options ranging from 2100 to 5700 Kelvin. Also available in the Firefly range of decorative, outdoor-rated lighting systems are Festoon with shatterproof, outdoor-rated LED lamps, and Fairy Lights — long-life, heavy-duty LED Strings and Icicles.
Madzin Productions join the circus
Posted on Friday, March 10th, 2017
Madzin Productions truly ran away with the circus – all the way to South Africa! The tour was confirmed very late and Madzin Productions bought all the fixtures brand new and sent them to South Africa with only a two days’ notice.
A couple of years ago, Madzin Productions decided to get rid of their various lighting brands and concentrate on one manufacturer – Martin.
“Its tours like this that proves to us that we made the right decision,” remarked Frank Madzin. “We found ourselves in a position where we needed a piece of kit in a hurry – on a Public Holiday, after hours, when the factories were shut, when the time zones were all wrong, a week before Christmas, on a Friday afternoon, etc. Thanks to Martin and Show Technology, it all happened.”
Madzin Productions decided to purchase Martin RUSH MH7 and RUSH MH6 fixtures as well as an M2GO console.
“The RUSH fixtures are very versatile and pack enough punch to make the production look good,” said Frank. “They also produce very little heat and that gives us the safety and reliability that we need. To date the fixtures have been to Johannesburg, The Cape Town Dust Bowl, The Bloemfontein Mud Farm and the Port Elizabeth Wind Tunnel. In every venue the fixtures were exposed to the elements, as the Big Top only covers around 40% of the natural ground, so the units are still exposed to a lot of dust.”
The show is driven by an Apple Mac running Cue Lab 3.2 and this triggers the Martin M2GO over MIDI and it also plays back all Audio Tracks. The show consists of 432 Cues which is conveniently programmed to a one button go.
“Good lighting is critical in a circus environment and especially in The Great Moscow Circus,” said Adriaan Gebrer, touring production manager. “Our production is all about human ability and many of the acts perform death defying stunts at high speed and with no safety nets. Thus good stable and reliable fixtures, with a good even coverage and as little as possible fussiness, are required to ensure the safety of the performers. In one act we have five bikers hurdling around a 6m diameter steel globe at close to 90 Km/h, any little flicker or pop can cause a distraction which could lead to a serious accident. Thus the stability we enjoy with the Martin RUSH fixtures give us a sense of peace whilst our artists push the limits of human ability.”
Avolites Quartz creates magic for Wicked
Posted on Thursday, March 9th, 2017
One of Tasmania’s leading lighting designers, Gareth Kays, used an ultra-compact Quartz console from British manufacturer Avolites to programme the magical lighting and special effects on the state’s production of blockbuster Broadway musical Wicked. The show ran at Hobart’s Theatre Royal from 27 January to 11 February.
Featuring spectacular staging and a 17-piece orchestra, the musical was put on by local production company The Show Company. Kays was brought in to design and programme the entire lighting package. The owner of GK Productions, Kays controlled the show using an ultra-compact Avolites Quartz console running the latest Titan V10 software.
“There were a number of reasons that the Quartz console appealed to me,” explains Kays, who had invested in the console in 2016 from Australian distributor TLC Global. “Firstly, it doesn’t need to run on a laptop, which avoids Windows doing unwanted updates. It was super compact, but still had the full capabilities of Titan, and it was a lot quicker and neater than my existing set-up – which had a mountain of interconnecting cables. One of the great advantages of the Quartz is that it is available at a realistic price point for a fully featured professional console.”
For the Wicked production, Kays added an additional touch screen and the Avolites Titan Mobile Wing during the design and programming stages of the show.
“Adding the Titan Mobile Wing and touch-screen gave me more ‘real estate’ during the programming of the show,” he explains. “However, the Quartz’s well designed, full-functionality meant that I could disconnect these when I moved to my operating position. I then used my remaining faders for a few ‘on the fly’ specials, some basic FOH washes for curtain calls and an array of fog machines located around the stage.”
Robe helps launch MKR 2017
Posted on Tuesday, March 7th, 2017
TLD Services and partner Select Audio-Visual Hire recently launched the new MKR series at Brisbane’s Lightspace. ROBE lighting DL4X‘s, DL4S‘s and new Robe Spikies helped celebrate the start of the new series!
The DL4’s projected custom MKR logos around the room, while the Spikies added a nice aerial beam effect on stage. Looking forward to supporting Channel7 in 2017!
LD: Adam Volz
CHAUVET Professional sparkles at Wedding
Posted on Monday, March 6th, 2017
To end 2016, Ottimo House in collaboration with creative wedding stylist/designer Anna Wang were chosen to host and design a grand New Year’s Eve wedding, the last of the year for 2016. The event having been held on New Year’s Eve with the ultimate aim of the bride and groom to create a memorable wedding that would produce a party like atmosphere like no other. In order to achieve this, Ottimo House decided to install the complete CHAUVET Professional range of fixtures for its venue.
The complete CHAUVET Professional rig was installed for this special event with the purpose of creating an exquisite lighting ensemble to evoke a party like mood but also the need to embrace and highlight a sea of flowers and greenery that rained down from the apex of the beautiful Ottimo House.
To achieve this look, four Maverick MK2 Washes were used to create a rich saturation of colour in combination with four of the all new Maverick MK2 Spots for their custom gobo scenes. In addition to the Maverick fixtures, eight Rogue R2 Beams were also used to create an intense beam look. Finally, a mixture of COLORado Par 1 Tri Tours were used for up lights along with the Ovation 910FC and Fresnel FD165 fixtures to light up the main table.
The complete CHAUVET Professional range of fixtures performed flawlessly which helped deliver a dynamic atmosphere for the wedding and all the guests that packed out the Ottimo House. The wedding exceeded all expectations with the transformation of the rustic barn shed venue into the beautifully finished product, it was truly amazing in large part thanks to the use of the CHAUVET Professional fixtures. The night by all accounts was a success for all those involved from the creative stylist Anna Wang right through to Michael, owner and director of Ottimo House.
Martin RUSH for The Laird
Posted on Monday, March 6th, 2017
The lighting was designed by the Hotel’s resident lighting person Allan ‘Pearl’ Parkinson along with the supplier Paul Nardella of On Track Lighting. The centre piece was a custom made mirrorball encased in a mirrored structure.
The main problem faced by Paul was the low ceiling and so he immediately thought of the small Martin RUSH MH8 Mini Profile, supplying six of them along with four RUSH MH5.
“The good thing about using RUSH MH5’s and MH8’s together is that their colours are exactly the same,” said Paul. “The MH5 is a 75 watt fixture and the MH8 is only 18 watt yet the colours are still rich and match really well, so when you program them there’s no having to try match palettes.”
For a bit of bling, Paul added four RUSH Strobe CWLs and for dance floor wash he had three sets of ShowPro LED Tri-12 Pars with four Par lights in a set.
“The Pars worked really well, they have a great spread on them,” he remarked. “For a small lightweight Par can they are amazing plus they have an all wireless connection through the USB. It means you don’t have to run any data to them which is cool.”
Atmosphere was supplied by a JEM K1 hazer and a Unique 2.1 hazer. For control Paul supplied a Martin M1 console as neither he nor Pearl will use anything else.
According to Paul the night was a resounding success with great feedback from the clientele.
“We do a lot of the gay dance parties in Melbourne and they are so pedantic with lighting,” he said. “They look at everything, even things like colour richness and gobo choices so you have to do a good job!”
Jay Productions uses Eurotruss for Unique Wedding
Posted on Wednesday, March 1st, 2017
Jay Productions & Events was established in 2008, and from the outset has worked effectively with clients as partners in constructing successful events. They operate to a high-quality standard of work when fulfilling all technical and event requirements, servicing all aspects from small corporate, to outdoor events, through to large scale events with a dedicated team trained in all aspects of theatrical and technical event production.
A key part of constructing successful events requires the right equipment for the different event requirements of different clients. When it comes to the rigging element of an event, Jay Productions holds an extensive inventory of The Eurotruss Truss System and recently Jason from Jay Productions increased his Eurotruss inventory which now includes over 500 sticks of the industry standard HD34 supplied by Showtools International.
The inventory of HD34 square truss was put into action for an impressive wedding at the unique Australian Technology Park Conference Centre. Since 1998, The Australian Technology Park Conference Centre has hosted a variety of events that cultivate innovation, ignite the spark of inspiration, create exchanges in knowledge, and explodes beyond expectations daily. This was evident on the day with this wedding and the expertise brought by Jay Productions.
Jay Productions utilised the HD34 truss for the wedding to suspend the spans above the Centre which provided the lights that dangled from above. With Jay Productions specialising in large events ranging from corporate to concerts, they state that the standard 3mm wall thickness and TuV load chart rating accessible on the Eurotruss website allowed Jason and his team to calculate loads instantly for spans and load ratings that were not once previously achievable allowing rigging works of art for all decorative events and satisfying the needs of any stylist production.
The wedding was a success in large part to Jay Productions team and the use of the Eurotruss System, with the client thrilled with the outcome. With Jay Productions expanding Eurotruss inventory, it has allowed the company to continue to provide high quality creative events and productions which will enable further growth for years to come.
Jay Productions keep the bride happy
Posted on Tuesday, February 28th, 2017
The talented team at Jay Productions turned her dream into reality, not only designing, building and installing the chandelier but also lighting the structure as well. The chandelier consisted of over 4km of cable, 720 light bulbs, 18,000 watts of power, 140 pieces of truss and 18 chain motors as well as ten crew members having begun the build for the event the day prior, pulling 16 hours each.
Eight Claypaky Scenius Profiles highlighted the structure from the floor as well as lighting up the venue itself. A further eight Claypaky B-Eye K10 CC also supplied room wash and highlighted drapery whilst six Claypaky Alpha HPE 700 provided gobo effects. Sixteen Martin MAC101’s provided pin spotting with a Martin M1 console used for control.
Wireless Solutions W-DMX was extensively used around the room as there were several places where the crew could not deliver DMX as the venue would not allow taping down on the floor. The W-DMX Black Boxes reportedly worked very well.
The event was so successful, Jason Jay of Jay Productions has spent most of Monday fielding calls from people who want a similar production!
Claypaky shines at White Night
Posted on Friday, February 24th, 2017
This year’s White Night in Melbourne saw Martin Kinnane appointed as the festival’s official lighting designer. As well as overseeing all of the spectacular lighting installations, he also had his own project entitled Fingers of Light.
Fingers of Light (1) lit Melbourne Central’s iconic shot tower with a dazzling display of automated lighting. It was choreographed to enhance and highlight both the shot tower and Melbourne Central’s glass atrium ceiling.
“We used eight of the Claypaky Alpha Spot 1500 to light up the shot tower, two for each façade,” explained Martin. “I like the Alpha Spots because they have shutters and as I’m from a theatre background, I really like shutters in lights! In this case, I used the shutters to shutter off the profile to light up just to the very edge of the tower itself. We used a lot of colour, gobo tricks and even some shutter effects creating little cubes that bounced around the side of the tower.”
Fingers of Light (2) and (3) installations were located in Swanston Street. Two towers, each held ten Claypaky Mythos 2 which created beacons of light down Swanston Street, lighting up into the clouds to be visible from a distance. The Mythos 2 were choreographed to dance across the sky and alternately wash and texture the city’s buildings.
“A few years ago I used around one hundred Claypaky Sharpys on the roof of Hamer Hall for its relaunch and that worked really well as a tiny searchlight option,” commented Martin. “The Mythos 2 are so much brighter and have a great beam. They work really well as a punchy, searchlight type fixture plus one person can pick them up and you can fit ten of them in a scissor lift. Compared to the older searchlight fixtures, they’re not only lighter but move quicker and have much better colours.”
Martin used a MA Lighting grandMA2 to program the lights.
Alice in Wonderland Reimagined
Posted on Tuesday, February 21st, 2017
Developed by Melbourne-based Grande Exhibitions, ‘The Adventures of Alice’ is a touring exhibition like no other. It’s a unique, high-tech journey into one of the world’s most timeless and best-loved stories on a scale like never before: Lewis Carroll’s ‘Alice’s Adventures in Wonderland’ springs to life using Grande Exhibitions’ state-of-the-art SENSORY4™ technology, exquisite animation, a cinematic audio score and engaging narration by the legendary Sir John Gielgud.
Last December the exhibition had its world premiere in Rome, Italy, where it now resides.
The experience places the visitors within a super large format multimedia environment, as they journey with Alice through her adventures in Wonderland in an immersive storytelling experience. Across the entire exhibition there are 37 x projectors, 29 x separate screens, 54m of blended projection and three separate PA systems, with full synchronisation across all systems running in a 60minute automated loop.
The lighting was designed by Craig Smith, Project Manager at Grande Exhibitions, who uses the lighting to enhance the immersive experience within the main projection gallery.
“By utilising custom gobos and a colour pallet that follows the main animation, we are able transform the entire space into a mixed media immersive space,” explained Craig. “Lighting is also used throughout the exhibition both incorporated into props and set pieces, as well as being used as a method to pull the visitor through the various spaces.”
Before heading off to Italy, Grande Exhibitions purchased twelve Martin RUSH MH1 profiles and a large amount of ShowPro fixtures; 12 x Quad-18 LED PARs, 4 x Quad-7 LED PARs, 8 x EX36 LED Floods, 6 x LED truss warmers, 14 x LED Sunstrips, 10 x LED Pin Spots, 8 x LEDCon 24v PSU, 8 x LEDCon DMX 24v dimmers, 50m x RGB LED TAPE as well as all of the DMX cabling.
“We are running eight RUSH MH1’s loaded with various custom gobos in the main gallery,” said Craig. “We have another 4 x RUSH MH1’s loaded with a mix of factory and custom gobos distributed throughout the other areas. All the RUSH MH1’s are primarily taking care of the floor textures, as well as any of the timed spot light cues.”
Craig reported that the RUSH MH1 came out on top in a few areas particularly ‘price vs features’ which was the initial draw card. However, given that he works with an international market, in various types of venues and structures, fixture weight, operating voltage, parts and service options become major considerations.
“All of which the RUSH MH1 exceeds at!” he exclaimed. “They have performed exceptionally well, the entire experience from install, to programing, to show has been smooth and they haven’t skipped a beat.”
The ShowPro equipment takes care of all the prop and set lighting requirements, with many of the fixtures being built into the props and set pieces. According to Craig, every piece of equipment has been selected for a particular task or requirement and every item has delivered what was promised. Craig was particularly impressed with the ShowPro LED Sunstrips and LED tape saying that they are great fixtures.
“We needed to light a walk-through set piece based on Alice falling through the rabbit hole,” he added. “I wanted an LED bar fixture with a warm colour temperature and a narrow beam to back light the printed walls. The Sunstrip was perfect for this. The warmth of the colour temperature helped reinforce an underground/cave atmosphere. Also, having the ability to control each cell made it possible to get a bit of movement and a flicker effect that gives a feeling of being in candle light.
“The ShowPro LED tape and controllers have been great to work with too. We built a series of giant keyhole set pieces that needed a LED Tape solution to mount into the frames. The concern was finding something that would handle backlighting an acrylic diffuser without losing brightness or getting hotspots. Both the tape and the controllers have performed well, giving a great result.”
For control, Craig chose an MA Lighting dot2 Core which he said exceeded expectations in performance and ease of use.
“I wanted to go with MA as I knew we would get quality and have access to operators all over the globe,” he commented. “However once I had a look at the dot2 is was obvious it was our best option.
The show runs off LTC and I needed a platform that could run day after day unmanaged but also have a programmer that would allow simple position updates from install to install – without the need for any major reprogramming.”
Citipointe Christmas Concert with SGM and Madrix
Posted on Thursday, February 9th, 2017
Citipointe Christmas Concert is one of Brisbane’s biggest carol events of the Christmas calendar. More than 5,000 people attended the Christmas spectacular in 2016, bringing some of Australia’s finest performers to the stage.
Ash Neuendorf from High Impact Lighting was selected as Lighting Designer and Operator for the event, selecting a combination of SGM LB100 and Madrix control to the stage design.
“Citipointe Christmas Concert 2016 included 8 x SGM TLD612 art-net drivers and approximately 200 x SGM LB100 (1,400 balls) to create a canopy in the roof above the stage. As the stage is over 15m wide the LB100’s are an awesome way to create not only a great effect but help to fill out the large stage working with the other lighting and LED screen to complete the look.” said Ash.
The LB100 LED system was controlled from Ash’s operating position by Madrix control software. Being integrated to the MA platform for this job, Ash could trigger any of the pre-programmed scenes or effects in Madrix from the lighting console.
Ash continues to comment about his success with Madrix. “Since purchasing a Madrix license for a recent tour, I have been using it on every show to process high volumes of LED channels. I have been extremely impressed with it’s reliability and how Madrix is able to map and output art-net events in different IP ranges seamlessly. Another key feature which I have enjoyed using is the effect generator; instead of just playing back imported video files, you are able to select a specific effect and then manipulate the parameters for the setup you are using. This can create some extremely dynamic looks when using LED to fill out the stage around conventional and moving lights.”
Lighting Designer – Ash Neuendorf
Lighting includes – SGM LB100 LED Ball, Madrix LED Control
Firefly FloppyFlex for Five Guys Named Moe
Posted on Wednesday, January 11th, 2017
Clarke Peters’ jukebox musical Five Guys Named Moe, featuring R&B pioneer Louis Jordan’s greatest hits, has been delighting audiences at the Festival Square Theatre, Edinburgh. Called a “Christmas Carol in zoot suits,” the dazzling new production of the hit West End and Broadway musical features a cabaret set that includes 32 metres of the new Digital RGB FloppyFlex by Firefly.
“The rear wall of the set is a slice of an old vinyl record,” explains LD Philip Gladwell, “and we use FloppyFlex to simulate the record’s grooves, programmed to give a spinning effect. We chose Digital FloppyFlex to bring the scenery alive and achieved fantastic results. The smooth movement and vibrant colour is exactly what we needed. I can’t think of another product that could deliver such a stunning effect.”
Production electrician Gareth Clowes adds, “I highly recommend FloppyFlex. It’s really a nice product to work with and the installation tools needed are remarkably straightforward. It also seems practically indestructible. I’m sure it would withstand most things a tour, for example, could throw at it.”
Programmer Liam Jones pixel-mapped the stunning effects. Produced by Underbelly Productions in association with Cameron Mackintosh, the production will run until January 7.
Digital RGB FloppyFlex is the newest addition to the Firefly FloppyFlex LED neon range. DMX multi-pixel control at eight pixels per meter offers unlimited creative potential, including colour fades, chases, and unlimited colour-animating possibilities.
Original FloppyFlex offers the ideal replacement for glass neon in both entertainment production and architectural applications: It is easy to install, long lasting, durable, and at 24 volts DC, safe! In addition to a DMX controlled RGB version, a wide variety of both single-colours and white colour temperatures are available. Ideal for use indoors and outdoors, a range of dome sizes and bend axes are available. A comprehensive selection of mounting accessories facilitates any installation. A variety of ProPlex controllers are available for applications from portable touring to permanent install.
ZZ Creative ring in the New Year
Posted on Tuesday, January 10th, 2017
“They were all provided, installed and maintained by the wonderful talented people at 32 Hundred Lighting,” said Ziggy. “We worked together with Forch and his family at Foti as well, very closely to get the bridge to shine brightly this year.”
Total number of fixtures on bridge and foreshore was around 900 plus hundreds of metres of festoon on top of that. Fixtures on the foreshore included Claypaky and Martin fixtures with a lot of K20 B-Eyes and Mythos featuring amongst ETC generic fixtures and hundreds of happy tubes. Lots of smoke machines and strobe lights also featured across the foreshore.
Seven MA Lighting MA2 consoles and one Chamsys console were used along with an immense amount of networking and time code gear including 1500m of fibre data network cabling to link it all.
Concepts featured power analysis to choose the most effective lights whilst minimising power draw. LED lights featured heavily in the design.
Iain Reed, Joe Cox and Martin Bevz headed up an amazing team of people at 32 Hundred Lighting who were a pleasure to work with, according to Ziggy.
Some very talented lighting directors collaborated to make this all work including Matt Tunchon, Ben Ronczka, Greg Kershaw and Baz Barrett.
The creative team was Imagination.
BAAC Light are Wicked
Posted on Tuesday, January 10th, 2017
The BAAC Light team have just completed a huge production of Wicked for PLOS musical theatre. LD Braddles “I chose a very over saturated pallet “Disney” to light the show on this occasion. The results are almost cartoon like and help provide a feeling of fairytale to the script”
BAAC light provided all LX, VX and atmospheric effects for the production. Due to a tight 2 day programming window 3 networked Hog 4s were used to program the show with a 4 th acting as SM cuelist relay.
2 Road hog 4 Full Boar.
1 Road hog.
1 hog4 PC.
12 Fine Art 600L.
8 Fine Art Pixie.
6 Fine Art 1500.
4 Robe 600E.
8 Robe 300E.
20 Robe 300 LED wash.
8 Robe Points.
1 Panasonic 13k .9 lens.
Arkaos Media master pro.
Various BAAC light dry ice, smoke effects and haze.
Numerous RGB and set prac was also used via LSC GEN 6, Delta distribution and artnet splitters.
LD: Brad Alcock
Sys/programmer: Daniel Gosling
VX: Andrei Chlebnikowski
Op: David Bodison
Special thanks to Mike Fletcher for both the fantastic pics but also the incredible set.