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TOTAL PRODUCTION INTERNATIONAL

LIVE EVENT DESIGN & TECHNOLOGY • APRIL 2016 • ISSUE 200

ELLIE
GOULDING
Delirium reaches touring reality
200 AND COUNTING

ENTER SHIKARI • THE BRIT AWARDS • RUDIMENTAL • FOOTLOOSE • THE 1975 • FOXES APRIL 2016
#200
ROAD DIARIES • INTERVIEW: SOUND IMAGE’S DAVE SHADOAN • IN PROFILE: BEDFORD GUITARS
THANK YOU
FOR MAKING US
A DEFINITIVE PART
OF YOUR LIVE
EVENT WORLD
#200
B T T B

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Meyer Sound Laboratories Inc. • 2832 San Pablo Ave. • Berkeley, CA 94702 • 510 486.1166

PUBLISTING Close Date Revision #


TPI 3/31/16
Creative: Believe IT / Venue

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PRODUCTION NOTES
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EDITOR’S LETTER

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#200
We spend a lot of our time talking to creatives about reinvention - be it a totally
new show design or a mini adaptation during a tour run. And, with 200 issues being
somewhat of a landmark, we thought it was time to follow suit. As you’ll no doubt have
noticed from the size of our magazine of late, this year has been monumentally busy,
so what better time to add to the madness than to reinvent the look of TPi! Thanks
to Dan in our production department and his slick ideas, we’re enjoying a brand new
facelift, and we’ve also changed the names of some of our sections. Over the next few
months, we’ll be introducing some new features too. Stay tuned!
It’s also, quite bizarrely, my 5th anniversary at TP HQ this month. I’m unsure
where the time went (ok, lessons in stereo mixes, the environmental importance of
LED manufacturing and festival health & safety conversations could count for some
baptisms of fire) but it seems to have flown by.
Speaking of baptisms, we’re literally pressing print as our taxi to the airport is en
route to begin our trip to the biggest tradeshow in our calendar. See you very soon,
Frankfurt Messe... This time five years ago, I had no idea what a journey this was going
to be. Here’s a toast to where it all began, Germany!
Kelly Murray
Editor • Climbing- or Standard Hoist
• Overload Protection
with Patented Friction Clutch
• Direct Control or
EDITOR
Kelly Murray
GRAPHIC DESIGN & PRODUCTION
Dan Seaton: d.seaton@mondiale.co.uk
Contactor Control
Tel: +44 (0)161 476 8360 Zoe Willcox: z.willcox@mondiale.co.uk • Light And Compact Design
Mobile: +44 (0)7738 154689
e-mail: k.murray@mondiale.co.uk EDITORIAL INTERN • Precise Chain Guide
Will Kirkman • Textil Chain Bag
ASSISTANT EDITOR
Ste Durham ACCOUNTS • Several Models on Stock
Tel: +44 (0)161 476 8385 Lynette Levi / Sarah Miller: ar@mondiale.co.uk
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STAFF WRITER CHAIN HOISTS • CONTROL SYSTEMS • SOLUTIONS
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Tel: +44 (0)161 476 8360 Damian Walsh
Mobile: +44 (0)7702 054344
e-mail: s.hume@mondiale.co.uk COVER PHOTOGRAPHY
Ellie Goulding by Carli @ Adby Creative
GENERAL MANAGER - TPi MAGAZINE & AWARDS
Hannah Eakins
Tel: +44 (0)161 476 8360 PRINTED BY
Mobile: +44 (0)7760 485230 Buxton Press • www.buxpress.co.uk
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Annual subscriptions (including P&P):
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Charlotte Goodlass Subscription enquiries to: Subscriptions,
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EVENT MANAGER - TPi AWARDS e-mail: subscriptions@mondiale.co.uk
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Tel: +44 (0)161 476 8360 www.tpimagazine.com • www.tpiawards.com
Mobile: +44 (0)775 9272 313
e-mail: m.naeem@mondiale.co.uk Issue 200 - April 2016
CHAINMASTER BÜHNENTECHNIK GMBH
TOTAL PRODUCTION INTERNATIONAL is a controlled circulation magazine, published 12 times a year by Mondiale Publishing Limited under licence.
ISSN 1461-3786 Copyright © 2016 Mondiale Publishing Limited. All contents of this publication are subject to worldwide copyright protection and reproduction Uferstrasse 23, 04838 Eilenburg, Germany
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ITINERARY

EVENT FOCUS
08 Footloose
NEXO delivers a lightweight PA for
the touring theatre adaptation.

14 Video Games Live


The British Sinfonietta Orchestra
perform gaming soundtracks from
Zelda to Assassin’s Creed.

08
18 Prolyte Group’s Factory Tour
TPi visits the company’s new Romanian
facility.

20 Foxes
Touring LD Jake Vernum discusses
the English singer’s recent show design.

26 Focusrite’s product launch


Introducing the new Red 4Pre.

PRODUCTION PROFILE
30 Ellie Goulding
TPi sees the stunning co-designed
Delirium tour reach arena heights.

30 44


Enter Shikari
Kelly Murray experiences surround
sound with the electro-rock group.

56 The BRIT Awards


We speak to the returning crew
involved in the annual live TV broadcast.

68 Rudimental
Ste Durham heads to London for the
11-piece’s hometown O2 Arena show.

76 The 1975
It’s 100% LED for the young quartet.

56
ROAD DIARIES
82 2016 TPi Award winner, LD Ed Warrren,
let’s us into his world.

IN PROFILE
84 Former Backline Tech, Dean Rowbotham
on his new business, Bedford Guitars.

INTERVIEW
88 Kelly Murray meets Dave Shadoan of
Sound Image to discuss the early days of
life on the road...

84
CLOCKING OFF
92 Jerry Gilbert laces up for the London
Marathon.

GEAR HEADS
94 Adam Hall Group speaks about recent
tech developments from the company.

INDUSTRY APPOINTMENTS
98 The latest movers and shakers.

PSA: THE BIGGER PICTURE


100 Andy Lenthall is on the case for
protecting local UK music venues.

106 BACK CHAT


106 Monitor Engineer of the Year, Jac Nott.
EVENT FOCUS

08
FOOTLOOSE

Opposite: Manchester’s Palace Theatre played host to a Nexo PA package from Orbital Sound, where the sound design gained praise from the show’s producers.

CUTTING LOOSE WITH NEXO


With French loudspeaker manufacturer NEXO leading the way for economically viable
touring theatre productions, TPi’s Kelly Murray speaks to the audio team behind its latest
outing, Footloose, about system preferences for touring sound designs and the skills
required to maintain them on the road.

Produced by award-winning team Dean Pitchford and Walter Bobbie End shows. It’s the main area that I focus on, however I have also been
at Sell A Door Theatre Company, producers of Avenue Q and American involved in the Olympics, Commonwealth Games, corporate shows,
Idiot, Footloose the musical has once again been reinvented for a UK orchestra performances, music festivals and concerts, so I have a good
theatre run. TPi caught the actor / musician show staring Gareth Gates knowledge of all kinds of live events.
and Maureen Nolan at Manchester’s Palace Theatre to speak to Sound “I think the skill for theatre is probably is being able to bring
Designer Chris Whybrow, rental partner Chris Headlam of Orbital everything together and work closely with the production’s creative
Sound and Touring Head of Sound, Piers Archer. team to fulfill the director’s, musical supervisor’s and producer’s wishes.”
Whybrow led proceedings: “I started designing musical theatre When starting a sound design and choosing a PA system, Whybrow
shows nine years ago, and my first design was Thriller Live in London’s always looks at the tour’s venues and scheduling before thinking about
West End. Since then, I have gone onto design many more tours and West the size of system. “Footloose, for example, is doing a huge range of

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09
FOOTLOOSE

Touring Head of Sound, Piers Archer, said he can use the Nexo Geo M6 system in each venue “without compromise.” He mixed the live show from FOH on a DiGiCo SD8.

venues and by specifying a Nexo Geo system, it has enabled me to scale Orbital’s Chris Headlam added: “UK touring musical theatre operates
the rig up and down dependent on the size of the room,” he added. broadly on two scales. Some shows reside in a given theatre for a month
The main objective for this production was to have a system that or so and economically enjoy a load in and fit up period of a week or
the touring crew could load in and fly quickly, ready for the show that more. Others jump from theatre to theatre weekly and as a consequence,
evening. Continued Whybrow: “The great thing about using Nexo is how the load in, fit up and first performance will all take place on a single day.
compact and lightweight it is; it’s very quick, light, “In the latter scenario, the industry requires
and importantly it delivers the coverage and SPL a redefining of the words light, speedy and
that this show needs.” economic because the Nexo Geo M6 is a
Rental company Orbital Sound provided 12 benchmark leader in all of those areas. Specifiers
M620 80° loudspeakers per side covering the “The great thing about using who adhere to the more mature view that the
stalls and circle areas, six Geo M620’s per side on Nexo is how compact and brand name is less important than the end result
the advance truss which covers the gallery, four are migrating toward solutions that facilitate
LS18 sub bass for the stalls, four LS18 sub bass lightweight it is; it’s very simple touring whilst maintaining first-class
for the upstairs seated area and six ID24t for a quick, light, and importantly sound. Nexo holds two of the long-standing
compact front fill. key patents associated with line array theory,
To complete the main package, Whybrow it delivers the coverage and which gives them a significant technological
chose a DiGiCo SD8 console for FOH duties SPL that this show needs.” edge when developing next generation compact
and a DPA / Shure microphone package. He Chris Whybrow, systems. The whole subject of who holds which
elaborated: “These are choices that have carried patent - and how that effects their manufacturing
through my designs over the years. I have refined
Footloose Sound Designer opposition - is often overlooked but presents a
and tested numerous other options but have fascinating subject of its own.
found the combination I love.” The musical was “Musical theatre sound is very complex. The
starring DPA d:fine 4066 omnidirectional headset advances over the last decade in digital consoles,
microphones and IEMs were Shure PSM1000’s. Monitoring is handled computer playback and networking have allowed the designers to take
directly into Aviom mixers by the on-stage musicians and the rest is their creative designs to another level but crafting deeply layered and
mixed from FOH. complex sound creations is not possible with older, analogue solutions.

10
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DiGiCo S21 Silhouette Advert Master - TPI.indd 1 22/10/2015 08:40


FOOTLOOSE

In Manchester, six ID24t were placed on the lip of the stage for a compact front fill solution. This speaker allowed for uninterrupted audience sightlines.

The technology has completely re-written the support rules required. Chris Whybrow’s system design gives you the energy in all of the songs,
Orbital Sound has a network of experts and the skill gap between what but also cleverly draws you into the dynamic during the tense acting
the equipment requires for day to day running and what is available scenes, and the system caters for both experiences perfectly. With this
onsite during a tour is ever widening. It’s Orbital’s responsibility to fill set up, I use the front fill for imaging and to pull focus alongside the even
that gap remotely. It’s can be a huge challenge - but one we relish.” coverage across the front.”
Touring and operating the Nexo system - which is transported in Prior to this tour, Archer hadn’t used a Nexo PA for 20 years, but
bespoke Nexo flight cases - is Piers Archer, Footloose’s head of sound. described the experience as eye opening. “I only used one hang either
He commented: “In theatres you have to consider side at our show in Edinburgh and it did the job
weight limitations and sight lines, as well as really well. It was rigged in 45 minutes!”
maintaining the correct coverage and distance With a heavyweight name such as Footloose
throw in the premium seats. Because the Nexo “The industry requires a selling out theatres in various cities, audiences
Geo M6 system is so compact and lightweight, it across the country continue to expect the best
means we can put a full system into every venue
redefining of the words out of a classic. What they won’t realise is there’s
we tour in, without compromise. The producers light, speedy and economic a lightweight star enhancing the experience - no
paid the tour a visit this week, and they were very matter which seat they’re kicking their Sunday
happy. They actually said, ‘how did you make it
because the Nexo Geo M6 is shoes off from.
sound like this in a room this big?’” a benchmark leader in all of TPi
Archer sets up the system with lasers for scale, Photos: Shirlaine Forrest
using Nexo’s NS1 software to map the room. He
those areas.” http://footloose-musical.com
continued: “Footloose historically always been a Chris Headlam, http://nexo-sa.com
loud musical, putting out 96db with crowd noise. Orbital Sound. www.orbitalsound.com

12
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EVENT FOCUS

VIDEO GAMES LIVE


Five years ago it would have been difficult to predict the popularity of video gaming as a live
spectator ticket. Now gamers are on the verge of celebrity status with concerts attracting
audiences in their thousands.

In March 2016, Troxy hosted Video Games Live, a multi-media conductor Eimear Noone (Songs of Zelda) and Flute Link - Laura Intravia.
immersive concert created by the video gaming industry. Featuring Music included games scores from Tetris, Mario, Donkey Kong Country,
the British Sinfonietta Orchestra, this record-breaking concert Skyrim, World of Warcraft as well as the world premiere score to the new
recreated epic gaming soundtracks from some of the most popular Assassin’s Creed by BAFTA (British Academy Games Award) and Grammy
video games, combined with lighting, video projections of the games, award-winner Austin Wintory.
live action and audience interactivity, making it the first and most Steve Miller, Video Technician of Video Games Live, explained: “Video
successful video game concert tour in the world. games music has come so far in an industry spending a huge amount
Troxy hosted two shows, a matinee and evening performance, of money to produce the games, which are now scored like the movies,
the latter of which signified the 357th Video Games Live performance, with film composers writing full scores for video games. Just like movie
which saw the co-creator of the series Tommy Tallarico presented trailers, they draw you into try their game, so that’s what you’ll be seeing
with two official certificates celebrating his Guinness World Records on the screen.
achievements – primarily the record broken on the night for the most “We create cinematics, which is a movie trailer equivalent for a video
videogame concerts performed. game, telling both the story of the video game and including actual
The concert featured musicians and composers from the games game play. One of the interesting things is that in this digital age, the
industry David Wise (Donkey Kong Country), Robin Beanland (Rare titles), audience often doesn’t realise that the soundtrack originates from a real

14
VIDEO GAMES LIVE

Opposite: Featuring the British Sinfonietta Orchestra, this record-breaking con-


cert recreated epic gaming soundtracks from some of the most popular video
games. Below: The evening featured a number of guest performers.

orchestra. But as soon as they see these live gigs they relate what they
are seeing to the sound and when they see the music actually being
played by musicians on stage, they appreciate the sound more.”
While Miller’s work is not dependant on specific switchers or
cameras, baggage allowances and a busy travel schedule does require
whatever he brings to be lightweight. For the event at London’s Troxy
he used a Roland 1600 HD video switcher. “Even though we use a lot of
mixed material, this one is powerful in being adaptable,” he said. “We
walked in and thought we were going to use the old 4:3 screens. We
couldn’t lower the screen far enough so we changed the format right
away and went to 16:9 - so it’s really flexible and the quality is great; it
has multiple channels so you can show content in the middle and on the
outside.
“It fits the bill on this tour as it caters to many formats of video.
When I’m in the US, I work with similar gear and know roughly what I’ll
be running into, but when I’m travelling overseas, Germany for example
uses a slightly different system to the UK, but the Roland HD system will
take almost anything in and give us everything out. Sometimes quality
plays a big part in kit, but if you look at it, some of the video games we
play are actually very old with lower screen resolution, so quality isn’t
necessarily there.”
Miller also used a lightweight Panasonic SDI camera, a GoPro on
the stage to show the orchestra live, another GoPro mounted on the
conductor, a MOTU audio adaptor and an Apple Mac running QLab
software.
He continued: “Troxy is different to every other venue we’ve been to
and the art deco design creates a unique ambience. We always need an
in-house production team and it’s been very helpful to have access to
the team at Troxy to share skill and knowledge to help us adapt to the
space changes. We’ve all seen the show, we all know the show and what
we want to achieve. People ask if we get bored with the show but my job

15
VIDEO GAMES LIVE

Video Technician Steve Miller; Atif Malik, Event Manager at Troxy; Adlib Video Rental Manager, Dan Brown; The team had three screens to work with at Troxy; The world
premiere of the score to the new Assassin’s Creed conducted by Austin Wintory and performed by Laura Intravia.

is to pay attention to the nuances of the venue and the video. Rental Manager from Adlib Lighting, explained: “A lot of the content is
“We have been limited on time with every orchestra, luckily this is the 4:3 and that’s mainly because the video games are dated, but for us 16:9
third show we have done with them, so we’re used to each other now. To has now become the standard. We couldn’t bring the middle screen all
make the production work, we bring in a click track. As the video rolls, the way down without getting in the way of the orchestra, but the middle
and the members of the orchestra wear in-ears with a click. One of the screen is 16:9 and the two side screens are 4:3, which are all controlled
reasons for this is that the conductor will have so many things to do in a by Troxy’s in-house team and the Roland switcher.
very short amount of time, so having the metronome click means she’ll “We put in one Sanyo PLC XF47 projector, which is the central
have one less thing to think about.” projector, and even though it’s an older model, it meets the spec for the
Another of the adaptations Miller had to make was working with show. We’ve recently invested in Panasonic quite heavily, so we brought
a different amount of screens in each venue. While the graphics on 6.5k laser projectors for the side screens. Panasonic projectors are great
the centre screen will always roughly have the same content, any for dealing with haze so sealed optics is the benefit to that.”
side screens can show combinations of additional graphics and Brown continued: “Traditionally a front truss is about the width of the
stage cameras. He continued: “I have to cut away a lot of the content stage, but our projections are just outside the stage area. Another reason
beforehand but that’s when it has been approved by the video games we used the Panasonic projectors is that they have corner correction
company. You don’t want to do that too much as you’ll cut away from the capabilities, which means as long as you get that image over the screen,
content. With the three cameras we have at Troxy, it means we can put you can pull in the corners, rather than dropping the truss and moving it
a live camera on one screen, the video game on another and any other or taking it out. it works out well especially for Video Games Live and is
graphics on the third screen.” brilliant from engineer’s perspective.”
Although the team didn’t have a full rock ‘n’ roll touring rider at their The final word went to Atif Malik, Event Manager at Troxy. He said:
disposal, the in-house Electro-Voice XLC line array system and screens “Video Games Live is a great success for the games industry and we’ve
that they utilised were more than enough to whip the excitable crowd really enjoyed this opportunity for Troxy to get involved with the evolving
into a frenzy. Miller commented: “For this show, the visuals are the video sector and play our part in this record breaking night. Almost 2,000
games. Most of the crowd will see one element of this video game and gamers joined us for both the matinee and evening shows on the London
start roaring. They will know when Assassin’s Creed comes up or within leg of this tour. Like any traditional classical music and film show, the
two beats of a song and they will cheer just because they know it’s that audience were fully seated so as to sit back and enjoy the live music,
one! There is a full orchestra on the stage, so they want to hear the cinematics, projections and lighting experience.”
sound and see the visuals.” TPi
As well as adapting logistically to the wide variety of venues that www.videogameslive.com
Video Games Live has played, the crew also had to cater for the age of www.adlib.co.uk
the content itself, some of which was decades old. Dan Brown, Video www.troxy.co.uk

16
a1TPi_advert final.pdf 1 01/04/2016 11:26

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T H E N E X T L E V E L O F T O U R S O U N D
EVENT FOCUS

PROLYTE GROUP’S NEW ROMANIAN FACTORY

The trussing and staging systems manufacturer proudly announces its new, purpose-built
factory in Piatra Olt, Romania. With its ultra-modern facility, the company reaffirms its
vanguard position.

Last month TPi made the trip out to Piatra Olt, Romania to visit Prolyte experiences, the official opening was put off until the spring.
Group’s new factory. Measuring in at 5,000 sq metres (with the possibility During an extensive tour of the factory, TPi along with other members
to expand up to 16,000 sq metres) the completion of the facility marks of the industry’s press and representatives from the Prolyte Group were
the end of a long-term plan that began back in 2010. Rather fittingly the taken through the whole in-house production process; from the creation
opening of the new facility has coincided with Prolyte’s 25th anniversary. of the truss down to the company’s extensive product testing area.
The new production base has been fitted with brand new automated With safety a main priority, Prolyte have taken measures to ensure the
production equipment and new welding jigs as part of its state of the wellbeing of all of its clients using its products with 90% of all product
art production line. In addition, the building contains industry-leading testing being conducted by machinery. Such safety measures include
employee welfare and environmental systems, as well as an in-house the implementation ultrasonic testing used to perform circumferential
training facility for welding personnel. weld inspections on small-diameter pipes.
All equipment, procedures and personnel have obtained an EN1090 With the company’s in-house tracking system, Prolyte is able to
certification in the highest execution class III along with being ISO 3834-2 monitor each piece of truss produced in the factory in detail - even down
certified by the International Institute of Welding. Prolyte predicts that to the name of the welder who worked on it.
its manufacturing capacity will grow by 250%, which is vital for the After the tour, during a drinks reception, CEO of the Prolyte Group,
continued world wide sales expansion. Lambert Bouwmeester gave a speech where he talked about the
The new factory first started production at the beginning of the year, inception of this new facility: “In 2014 we made the decision to make a lot
however, due to the temperamental winter weather conditions Romania of changes in Prolyte, one of which was to invest in what would become

18
PROLYTE GROUP

Opposite: Prolyte Group’s new Romanian Facility. Below: Before the tour, Prolyte conducted a ribbon cutting ceremony; During the tour attendees were taken through the
whole production line process.

this Romanian Production Facility.


“We wanted to really focus on what we are, which is safety, quality
and dedication to our customers. Twenty years ago we would have never
thought we would be able to achieve something like this. We hope to
be an example for other companies who are looking to invest and grow
outside their countries. We are paving the path you might say.” Adding
to this, Ralph Stockley, Chief Commercial Officer, commented: “In my
opinion, this facility will give us the ability to provide our distributors
and customers with a top quality product with high levels of safety and,
more importantly, quicker build times to give you the edge on your
competitors.”
Bouwmeester explained: “Prolyte has always been typified as a
market leader in production technology, which underpins our quality
promise. We have pioneered some production firsts, such as automated
jigging and robotised welding. We hope that such innovations will only
continue in our new factory.” Mihai Hlihor, Prolyte Group COO, continued:
“We’re very proud to have achieved this in such a short time span. It’s
very important to us to invest in Europe and to assure our customers
that we have the most efficient production facility, meeting our exacting
standards.”
Prolyte is confident that the new facility will cement its position as
a market leader in terms of volume, quality and global network reach,
as well as giving a solid foundation for its continued international
expansion.
TPi
Photos provided by Prolyte Group
www.prolyte.com

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19
EVENT FOCUS

Foxes performed at the Roundhouse, London in support of her new album, All I Need.

FOXES
In support of her latest album, All I Need, English singer / songwriter Foxes set out on a
nationwide tour. TPi spoke to the singer’s touring LD Jake Vernum to discuss the artist’s
latest visual look.

Singer / songwriter Louisa Rose Allen, better known to the world as in this month’s Ellie Golding feature). It has been great working with Cate
Foxes, has become a mainstay in the world of electro-infused pop along with the technical support of Bryte Design. In terms of the process,
music. In 2013 the singer became known on a global scale after being Louisa herself is very involved with the creative process. It’s a real
invited to provide vocals on Zedd’s single Clarity. That same year Foxes collaboration between artist and the production team.”
released her debut album Glorious followed by her latest record, All I For this tour the brief from the artist was to create moody, dramatic,
Need. magical looks that represented a departure from her previous tours,
Foxes’ touring LD Jake Vernum has been with her since 2014. which had a very definite ‘pop’ feel utilising lots of strobes and lasers.
He was originally picked up by her management while working at Following this brief, along with her Bryte Design colleague Mike Smith
Buckinghamshire New University’s May Ball, which Foxes headlined. “At (who provided technical support and rendering) and Vernum, Carter
the time I was a lighting tech at the union and I got the chance to design, began to develop the concept of a dramatic star cloth and a voile
program and operate a custom design for her show,” explained Vernum. backdrop providing the foundation of a theatrical set of varying levels
“After that the band’s tour management approached me to be their complemented by a carefully plotted floor package to create powerful
touring LD and operator. I jumped at the chance!” looks that came from the backline set up. “We needed to ensure that the
Vernum has been with Foxes ever since. The LD talked TPi through set and lighting design was going to be as flexible as possible to blend
the creative process of thing singers latest show design. “Since working the wish for ‘magical’ and ‘moody’ along with some references to ‘pop’
with Foxes I have had the pleasure to work with the award-winning Cate with some big ‘eye candy’ lighting moments,” commented Vernum.
Carter of Bryte Design who is Foxes Show Designer (and can also be seen Once again Pearce Hire supplied the Foxes tour with a complete

20
ROBE - Inzerce DL7S_210_297_mm.pdf 30.1.2016 14:11:04

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CMY

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FOXES

For Foxes’ UK tour, Show Designer Cate Carter from Bryte Design with touring LD, Jake Vernum created a look that was moody, dramatic and magical; Jake Vernum’s con-
sole of choice was a ChamSys MagicQ MQ80; on this tour the production had around 80 fixtures which was expanded for the Roundhouse gig where the production made
use of the venue’s in-house rig.

lighting package. “Pearce Hire actually supplied the first gig I did for because I’ve trained on it since the beginning of my career. For this
Foxes back in 2014 and ever since has provided her tours with floor level of tour with 70 or 80 fixtures it is a great-sized board. I needed a
packages and control desks since I joined the crew,” said Vernum. “This compact lighting control desk which was ideally suited to the smaller
long-standing relationship means Pearce Hire are familiar with the type venues but which could step up to provide enough control surface in the
of equipment the artist and the tour management prefer to use, and what Roundhouse in London and The Ritz in Manchester. It’s quick and easy to
works for their audience. This collaboration between the artist, myself as programme too!”
the LD and Pearce Hire as the rental company guarantees the equipment For the tour’s lighting package, Vernum described how they required
they supply is the very best. As well as supplying a complete lighting a set up that would go into a variety of small and medium sized venues
package, Pearce Hire also produced a customised set for the artist’s all with their own in-house rigs complementing the tour package. “We
set at London’s Roundhouse. Vernum explained: “The Roundhouse was had to insure that our set up was modular and that we could trim back
the largest show of the tour and it was important that we maximised on the kit if required but without impacting the show files and the overall
the space available to us to make the show as big and impressive as effect Foxes wanted from the lighting programme,” stated Vernum. The
possible as well as do justice to the room, which is such an iconic space LD went on to explain that the main workhorse fixture of the tour was
to perform in. Part of the additional kit that we used to achieve this the Robe ROBIN LED Wash 1200. Expanding on this he stated: “These
was some custom-built stage risers to create an enhanced dimension extremely bright LED luminaries were posted behind each of the five
to the set. Working with Pearce Hire meant that we were able to have stage risers. This gave me the ability to cast powerful backlight through
the lighting equipment supply and a bespoke stage build all from the the band whilst up-lighting the voile. The intention was to create
same supplier - which made a seamless operation, and a far more cost suspense without the audience knowing if the band were onstage or not.
effective solution than working with two suppliers.” Together with the 50ft by 20ft voile and star cloth that formed the back
For this run, Vernum used a ChamSys MagicQ MQ80 compact console drop the 1200’s helped capture the dramatic theatrical look the artist
with an extra fader wing that was expanded further for the Roundhouse was looking for. They also worked well with the Showtec 4-Cell Blinder
date with an extra playback wing. This gave the LD more control over and the Martin by Harman Atomic 3000 Strobes.”
the stage and ambient room lighting. “ChamSys is my desk of choice Other Robe fixtures seen on the tour were Robe ROBIN Pointes,

22
FOXES

The tour’s lighting package was supplied by Pearce Hire.

ROBIN 100 LED Beams, Arri 650W Fresnels and Ayrton MagicBlade-Rs. the venue’s in-house rig including 12 Clay Paky Alpha Spot QWO 800’s,
Vernum stated: “The Robe Pointes were spaced evenly on the back of Robe ROBIN 600 LEDWash, DLF Wash and DLX Spots along with extra
the outer risers to provide powerful looks using wide breakup effects Robe ROBIN 100 LEDBeams, complementing the floor kit already out on
through the band and backline. The Pointe is my number one choice tour. Also in the in-house rig were 10 Philips Showline eSTRIPs, which
for a moving head profile on a tour of this scale. The Robe ROBIN 100 Vernum used to enhance Roundhouse’s cast iron architecture.
LEDBeams were positioned on the edge of the drum riser steps, upstage In conclusion, he stated: “I am proud of how successfully we met
from the centre vocal. I personally like using this small and effective the brief given by the artist and her management. The design really did
little fixture and it helps me draw the onstage attention right onto Foxes’ have an ethereal, magical look, which Foxes was delighted with. I am
central vocal position.” He continued: “The type of features on a number really proud of the ongoing relationship with this artist along with Bryte
of these fixtures demonstrates Robe’s commitment to producing exciting Design. Being part of the team on a long-term basis means being part of
products and how much they listen to the input they receive from LDs.” the evolution of the artist and how they present their tours which really is
He also expressed his admiration for the Ayrton Magicblade-R. “This is rewarding.”
currently my favourite fixture on the market. They offer endless design TPi
possibilities. We mounted eight of the fixtures on four of the vertical Photos: Luke Dyson
towers. They looked great in the haze and perfectly complemented the www.iamfoxes.com
other fixtures on the rig.” www.pearcehire.co.uk
When the tour entered the Roundhouse the production made use of www.brytedesign.co.uk

24
TPI_E-Series_QU02.indd 1 31/03/2016 3:37:49 PM
EVENT FOCUS

The brand new Red 4Pre; Focusrite’s Director of Product Strategy, Rob Jenkins; The London launch attracted various sound professionals.

FOCUSRITE
Focusrite released the latest addition to its product line, the Red 4Pre.
TPi’s Stew Hume was at the launch.

Focusrite is proud to announce the launch of Red 4Pre – the pinnacle who started with the company back in 1989. “Through my years with the
of Focusrite’s interface range. The 58 input / 64 output Red 4Pre company it has been a great pleasure to steer this great brand through a
combines four of Focusrite’s specially-developed digitally-controlled lot of changes within the industry. What I have seen over the last quarter
mic preamps, plus high-headroom instrument inputs, with dual of a century is the changing techniques of the way people are recording
Thunderbolt 2, dual Pro Tools HD DigiLink and Dante network and I believe Focusrite to be an innovator of the industry.” Jenkins
audio connectivity. Featuring Focusrite’s most advanced low-noise continued to highlight some of the successes that Focusrite has achieved
conversion and beautiful yet robust design, the Red 4Pre interface is over the years including the creation of the Rednet range. He stated:
the perfect balance of form and function, delivering the sound quality “Rednet is right at the top of the range of Focusrite’s products. It is the
and versatility engineers and producers around the world expect from most scalable and flexible audio recording system in the world allowing
Focusrite. an almost infinite number of channels there is the range of recording
For the launch Foucusrite a whole host of press and customers to possibilities.”
check out the newest release from the company and London’s TileYard Jenkins also outlined the goals of the new product: “What we hope
Studios a few days before the official announcement. Leading the is that the new product will fill a gap in the current range. As well as
proceedings was Focusrite’s Director of Product Strategy, Rob Jenkins, appealing to the smaller studio market the hope is that the new product

26
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FOCUSRITE RED 4PRE

The new product will allow engineers to create improvised recording


environments.

could be used to convert a space to create a improvised live recording


environment. We wanted to bring something of real value that had
professional recording software.”
Four of Focusrite’s new, specially developed Red Evolution
preamps lie at the heart of the Red 4Pre, featuring clear, honest audio
performance with –129 dB EIN and 63dB of gain with 58 inputs and 64
outputs. Software control allows recall of settings and stereo linking,
plus configuration of HPF, polarity invert and individual phantom power.
The preamps include Focusrite’s unique Air effect, recreating in the
analogue domain the sound of the transformer-based mic preamps in
the classic ISA range. This feature is ideal for bringing out the breathy
quality of a vocal track or adding presence to an acoustic guitar.
Red 4Pre also includes high-headroom instrument inputs, instantly
accessible from the front panel.
One aspect that was key in the designing of the Red 4Pre was
exceptional connectivity. The dual Thunderbolt 2 ports connect to any
DAW while allowing daisy-chaining of drives and displays. Our lowest
round-trip latency permits recording with preferred plug-ins in real-time
and simplifies workflow, while dual DigiLink ports connect the Red 4Pre
directly to any Pro Tools | HD system as standard. In addition, Red 4Pre
features built-in Dante network audio connectivity. With the use of the
dual Ethernet ports to connect any Dante-compatible product such as
units from Focusrite’s own RedNet range, adding up to 64 channels via
ethernet with low latency and lower cost.
The Red 4Pre’s new high-performance conversion system features
‘parallel path summing’, where two matched converters are run in
parallel to increase the signal to noise ratio. They operate at up to 24-bit,
192 kHz sampling - ideal for high-resolution audio - with a dynamic range
of 118dB(A-D)/121dB (D-A). The Red 4Pre delivers ≤0.0009% THD+Noise
and a frequency response flat from 20Hz to 35kHz ±0.25 dB or better.
TPi
https://uk.focusrite.com

28
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PRODUCTION PROFILE

Opposite: The tour was co-designed by Bryte Design and Black Skull Creative, and each worked closely with the pop star to complete the final look of the show.

ELLIE GOULDING: DELIRIUM

TPi’s Ste Durham witnessed the collaborative four section visual spectacular.

When Ellie Goulding first appeared on the general public’s radar in so relaxed on site and we take that as a huge compliment!”
2009, few would have suspected that she would go on to produce According to TM Travis, this philosophy is something that filters down
the kind of elaborately scripted stage show that TPi was on hand to right from the top. She added: “Ellie doesn’t want any dramas. She wants
witness at Manchester Arena. The production value was certainly everyone to be happy and trusts us enough to leave us to it. I make a
upped from previous tours, with a huge video and lighting package, point to go and see them every day because we’re so self-contained. The
bespoke staging and striking drapes to rival those of mainstream people employed to do the day-to-day jobs know what they’re doing,
pop’s biggest names. which allows us to plan ahead, then get into show mode later on.”
Tour Manager Rebecca Travis first joined the Ellie Goulding camp four As well as instilling an ethos of calm within her crew, Goulding has
years ago, and has overseen performances across the world, in venues of also (coincidentally or otherwise) assembled a crew reinforced by a
all shapes and sizes. For the artist’s first full arena run, the team turned number of strong female characters – something that pleases her no
to seasoned Production Manager Bob O’Brien to lend his experience end, according to Travis. She said: “Ellie is very into having strong women
(and unflappable disposition) to the Delirium tour cycle. around her - it just so happens that one of the only female bus drivers in
Having arrived in September 2015, during the album’s promo period, the industry is on this tour as well!”
O’Brien had plenty of time to settle into the fold and begin coming up
with ideas for the tour itself. He said: “It was brilliant as it gave us all a SHOW DESIGN
head start. In terms of crew and suppliers, everyone was happy and Another of the aforementioned female contingent on the Delirium tour
everything was working well so I saw no reason to change that. We is Lighting and Co Show Designer Cate Carter of Bryte Design. In close
certainly upgraded for this level but did so with the same suppliers, as collaboration with Director of creative production agency Black Skull
well as adding them for aspects that Ellie had never needed before, such Creative, Dan Shipton, she helped develop the show from its embryonic
as All Access Staging & Productions for the tour’s staging requirements. beginnings to the full stage production in effect at arenas across the UK.
This included some custom work, a moving thrust catwalk and a B Carter, who has been with Goulding since the end of 2012, explained:
stage.” “Basically myself and Dan were introduced to each other and then
Having been prepared for the usual maelstrom that is an arena immediately started work on the show design from the initial concept.
production on show day, it was quite startling to be greeted by the level This was a combination of the ideas that Ellie had put forward, the ideas
of calm felt at Manchester Arena. O’Brien laughed: “It took a while for us behind the new songs and album, and an overview of Ellie’s progression
all to settle it in after the transition but it really is quite chilled out now. as an artist. It’s been a really good experience because Black Skull come
That said, everyone knows what they’re doing and the work is getting from a slightly different background than us. They do a lot of TV and
done in double quick time. Promoters and reps always wonder how it’s theatrical things as well as concert touring, so that definitely lead to

31
ELLIE GOULDING

The Delirium tour had a strong look based on geometric shapes, most notably the shards of video screen.

some interesting ideas during the creative process.” Shipton continued: “We started by sectioning the show into chapters
The pair started work together in the autumn of 2015 with rehearsals that grouped Ellie’s music together. This allowed us to give each chapter
due to begin in January 2016 at Litestructures on Wakefield’s Production a visual identity that would transcend the costume, choreography,
Park. From the first meeting that they had with Goulding and her screen content and magic moments within the show. The chapters begin
management around the artist’s kitchen table, Carter and Shipton were to explore versions of Ellie that link to the music. We start with Ethereal
certain that they had to bring nothing less than their A game. Ellie who is dressed in white and represents Ellie in her purest form. She
Shipton said: “Cate’s previous relationship with Ellie has been based invites us into her world that quickly introduces us to Energised Ellie who
on her live shows and I have focussed on her TV performances. We is more fun and outgoing.
wanted to make sure that the tour felt cohesive with everything that has “Then we move to the darker side and discover Digital Ellie, who has
gone before so there was a creative through line to the whole album a sexy, underground club vibe to her. Heart comes next - a chapter that
campaign, which climaxes in the tour.” shows the warmth and emotion in Ellie’s music. A harder, more Rock Star
Carter added: “We had lots of feedback and revisions from Ellie Ellie is seen for the darkness section before she becomes light again.
and her guys during the design process. This meant a relatively Finally, all of the versions of Ellie intertwine and we see them resolve
tight rehearsal period, but everyone at Production Park is always so into the live Ellie who is holding court on stage. It’s as though we are
accommodating. The fact that we could stay on site during the long saying that you can’t have Ellie without all of these facets to make her
hours made a massive difference.” complete.”
Carter and Shipton were informed from the off that the Delirium tour Lite Alternative provided the lighting rig for the Delirium tour. The
had to a big step up from what had come before. This included a unique moving head fixtures consisted of 62 Ayrton MagicDot-Rs, 16 Philips Vari-
design, a discernible narrative thread and special moments within the Lite VL 3500 Wash FXs, 25 Martin by Harman MAC Viper Profiles, 14 MAC
show to mark these transitions. In short, a show some way from the Viper AirFxs, 12 MAC Viper Performances, 44 MAC Aura LED Washes, and
artist’s understated beginnings - more akin to those of contemporaries 25 Clay Paky Sharpy Spots. These were underpinned by 12 i-Pix BB4’s, 22
such as Katy Perry or Lady Gaga whose productions aren’t afraid to flirt Martin by Harman 3000 DMX Strobes and three Robert Juliat Lancelot 4k
with the theatrical. followspots, as well as over 50 4-lite and 2-lite molefays.
“We started with the concept of Delirium, the album title, and a way of Carter commented: “When we designed the show I realised that I
using that to show the audience all the different sides of Ellie,” explained wanted to use Ayrton MagicDots because they were small and light but
Carter. “She is a girl who can pick up an acoustic guitar and sing a powerful enough to the fill space and frame the mirrored lighting pods.
beautiful, vulnerable love song but also turn on the performance for a They are versatile as well, working hard during the rave portions of the
big dance hit. With this fragmented sanity idea we can also introduce show and producing beautiful eye candy moments elsewhere.”
some of the darker material she has done as well.” Another key design choice for Carter was the addition of MAC Viper

32
ELLIE GOULDING

Goulding uses a Sennheiser 9245 microphone with an EM 3731-II receiver; Showtex created stunning soft goods for the show.

AirFXs alongside her “workhorse” fixture, the MAC Viper Profiles. “During the X-lift from the stage-level up into the air that is used during the set.”
show I have a mixture of jobs and lots of space to fill. I knew that I needed to The company supplied raised tech wings that housed a cosy monitor
shutter things off and keep momentum with the high-energy stuff. And, of world at stage left and doubled as a riser for Goulding to use during the
course, lots of Sharpys!” show. The package also included all high-shine flooring and a catwalk from
A separate rig for the B stage section included eight Philips Vari-Lite the stage that detached to allow Goulding could glide to the B stage.
VL 3500 Wash FX Luminaires, 20 Clay Paky Sharpy Spots, 12 MAC Viper While the majority of the staging elements were stock, some custom
Performances, and a Robert Juliat Lancelot 4k Follow Spot. To accentuate work was involved for a raked stage that housed the band, including a
the fragmented theme, Total Solutions Group manufactured four mirrored, patchwork fascia created by Derby’s Drapemakers. Bull continued: “The
triangular lighting pods that were flown above the video screens. They were original fascia was going to be hard but Bob required soft ones that would
made up of a truss along one edge and ladder frames along the others. be easier to transport. I met the Drapemakers guys at a show earlier in the
The truss had some of the MAC Vipers hung from the underside, while year and they seemed like a great fit.”
the ladders had some of the Ayrton MagicDot-Rs uniformly spaced along Head Carpenter Paul Stratford was on site in Manchester to oversee the
each edge. These were used to reflect the moving lamp beam off the construction of the stage, along with Carpenter Josh Perree and freelance
mirrored surfaces, creating some spectacular effects. Carpenter Nidge Dobson. Bull said: “Bob wanted someone from All Access
Carter opted for an MA Lighting grandMA2 Full Size console for control, on the crew but they were all busy so we asked Nidge. Although he is
with one for backup – her go-to desk for a rig of this size. technically freelance we’ve worked with him for a while – he’s practically
She said: “I do use other consoles occasionally but for touring I usually part of the team!”
choose the grandMA2. It’s really powerful, versatile, and always reliable. Another facet of the show design was the selection of visual draping
My colleague Mike Smith has been integral in the design and programming elements supplied by ShowTex. The company provided two golden
process as well, and is great at the technical aspects - as is Lighting Tech LurexVoile 100 drapes that were hung in the middle of the stage during the
Glenn Johnson from Lite Alternative. I’m happy to say to them what I want two opening acts, which were then dropped for the arrival of Goulding by a
and I know that they’ll be able to help me.” ShowTex Kabuki system.
While Bryte Design and Lite Alternative were members of the Ellie Later on in the set, during the song Explosions, Goulding appeared on
Goulding ‘Class of 2012’, the team added a new supplier in All Access to stage in a white dress, dragging two giant elastic wings made of PolyStretch
introduce staging elements that were previously absent from Goulding’s P8 CS Matt behind her. These were fully stretched out during the song and
bag of tricks. later, courtesy of another Kabuki drop system, seemed to vanish into thin
All Access UK Sales and Marketing Manager Matthew Bull explained: “We air, as seen on the current cover.
supplied all of the staging elements on the show, based on our new style of Another of ShowTex’s creative contributions was a number of bespoke
rolling stage with a touring leg system to allow more weight. We have two coloured banners made from a mixture of Spinnaker CS and glow in the
star lifts that start below the stage and bring Ellie to stage-level, and an dark Phosphor Foil strips for the ultimate psychedelic special effect during

34
ELLIE GOULDING

Monitor Engineer Mike Flaherty; Monitor world with Flaherty and Audio Crew Chief Marc Peers; Bryte Design’s Cate Carter; Megan Griffiths of Phoenix Bussing, the tour’s
band bus driver; Systems Tech George Puttock and FOH Engineer Joe Harling.

one of the high-energy sections of the evening. manually using a Carbonite Production Switcher. He said: “The camera
Fabric Designer Carl Robertshaw was behind the design of the content is falling into place night after night and the guys know their
wings, flags, and gold reveal, originally being scouted by Shipton. Carter shots by now. I’m still better busking from FOH as there’s always the
remembered: “We had ideas for the different elements and Carl helped possibility that Ellie might change where she goes. The band are quite
us to make them into something tangible. He specialises in 3D fabric prominent, particularly when she mentions or interacts with them, but
designs and so was the perfect man for the job.” she is the main focal point.”
The visuals were further accentuated by eight CO2 jets and around The stars of the video design were the triangular ‘shards’ of FX 11
half a tonne of gold confetti, provided by Pyrojunkies and overseen by (11mm) LED screen, which stretched across the back of the stage and
Stu Wickens. was meant to represent the fragmented nature of the show’s concept.
The shards were flanked by three MC7 (7mm) IMAG screens – one on each
VIDEO side and one flown in the centre. All of the LED surface could be used as
Goulding’s Video Director Robin Haddow was originally brought into one canvas to show content or split to display a combination of content
the fold to cover Carter on lighting at a time before video was involved and live camera shots.
at all. He laughed: “That’s usually the way my career goes! I find it quite Haddow also used an MA Lighting grandMA2 onPC command wing
a natural progression and I think the background gives me a great to busk in the camera feeds, which was especially useful between songs
understanding of the bigger picture. It’s the main reason I’m out front when Goulding spoke to the audience.
with Cate when many video directors would be backstage at the racks. Due to the condensed pre-production time, content creation for
In such a visually rich show it’s useful to see what’s happening with your Delirium was tackled by a number of different studios, with Bryte
own eyes and feed off one another’s energy.” Design’s Paul ‘Pablo’ Beckett collating the material from the different
PRG XL Video provided the kit for Haddow, as well as three LD techs studios and producing a number of the pieces himself. All of the
and an engineer. Video Engineer / Projectionist Ray Gwilliams looked transitional films and bespoke footage of Goulding was handled by
after the cameras filming IMAG content, which were operated by LED NorthHouse Films, while London’s Atticus Finch created a portion of
Tech Tim Bolland, Truck Driver John Burgess, and Head Rigger Amos the animated visuals and Belgium-based studio Fabrique Fantastique
Cotter, who operated the camera situated at FOH. produced another batch of song-specific custom content.
There was seven cameras in total at Manchester Arena: three manned Carter explained: “The studios created 100 minutes of quality content
Sony HXC-100 cameras (two in the pit and one at FOH), two Bradley between them, allowing Dan and myself to spend time pulling the whole
robocams on stage and two GNAT minicams - one on the piano stage thing together. We worked through set list and script to see who was best
right and one on drumkit stage right. Haddow cut between the cameras suited to deliver each bit of content. We play to their strengths, as well as

36
ELLIE GOULDING

The fabric wings in all their glory, designed by Carl Robertshaw and manufactured by ShowTex.

playing to our own.” colour shifts. The benefit of this being a plugin within d3 is that it
Shipton added: “The video content is hugely important part of the removes the latency you would get if you were routing the cameras
design. The screen content also became hugely important in making through an external effects device. I definitely look forward to using the
the transitions between the different sections within the show work. Notch plugin in future shows as I am only just scratching the surface in
We wanted to take Ellie into the screens and show her morph into the what it can do.”
next version of herself. We spent time shooting the various ‘Ellies’ with
NorthHouse Films, who then did a great job of producing the transition AUDIO
VTs. One of my favourite parts of the show is the acoustic version of While Adlib were contracted to supply audio for the tour, FOH Engineer
Devotion where we strip everything back to a single spot on Ellie playing Joe Harling’s preferred system for Goulding, the d&b audiotechnik
her guitar with a white outline on the screens before she sinks into the J-Series, had to be sub-hired from Entec Sound & Light. Systems Tech
stage, the track drops and Digital Ellie appears on the screens.” George Puttock explained: “Audio Tech Lee Fox Furnell is a freelancer
As the whole show was timecoded, Haddow decided to try switching to that does quite a lot of stuff with Entec so he knows what he’s doing! We
d3 Technologies media servers for the tour, saying that he felt it was the have 20 J8’s per side with eight J-SUBs flown behind and to the side we
perfect fit for the job. have a 16-deep hang of 12 J8’s and four J12’s. On the deck we’ve got a
Haddow commented: “I’ve been involved with d3 Technologies for line of eight J-INFRA subs and eight J-SUBs, all driven from the new d&b
a while, most recently for Massive Attack where we used it for lighting D80 amplifiers. Harling has chosen a DiGiCo SD5 to mix the show, running
and video. I’ve always been quite intrigued but never had the chance to Waves externally on an Apple Mac mini as well as a variety of outboard
properly use it. This tour was a great opportunity to test it and I’ve had effects.
some time off that allowed me to do some training in Hemel Hempstead, “The light weight of the J-Series lends itself to the variety of arenas
as well as some time at home as well. By the time rehearsals came I knew we are playing. We don’t have to carry a big box and a small box because
it quite well and I’ve had great support from the staff at d3.” we’ve got both in one. It also means that we can have the same boxes on
He went on to speak highly of the “great quality” of the servers’ SDI main and side hangs, which you can’t usually do because of truck space.”
input cards, which resulted in a much clearer camera picture than he As well as the practical bonuses afforded by the J-Series, Harling
was used to, and the efficient way that he added effects using d3. “I use favours it because of its ability to compensate for quiet vocalists like
the onPC command wing to control Notch digital effects in an analogue Goulding. “It just allows me to get a bit more control,” he explained.
way,” he explained. “The challenge is always getting her vocal on top. To then maintain the
“Notch is a plugin for d3 that allows camera feeds to be manipulated density behind that in a live environment is quite tricky, especially when
and affected in an amazing array of ways, from neon trails to subtle she comes out to the B stage in front of the PA.”

38
ELLIE GOULDING

The B stage supplied by All Access Staging & Productions.

One of the techniques that Harling utilises to overcome this challenge microphones were two of the four prototype Sennheiser 9245’s in the UK,
is by keeping the show’s overall decibel level a touch lower than your running into an EM 3731-II receiver, while the backing vocalists used e945
average pop show. He continued: “There is also lot of processing going wireless microphones.
on with vocals, you have to rely on multi-band compression rather than Harling continued: “There’s a lot of density to the sound and
broadband because, when someone uses their head instead of chest everything changes song-to-song. For example, the bass player will
voice, they’re not really expressing a lot of air, so odd notes will stand switch between a synth bass that has a different tone for every song to
out. a real bass with loads of effects pedals – we’ll maybe have three or four
“For instance, a note at 2.5kHz is going to have even less pressure different bass sounds in one song. It’s enough just to try and keep on top
than a note at 800kHz so the threshold around there needs to be a bit of that.”
lower. I also use something called Waves WNS, which is a six-band gate Although this presented another set of challenges for the audio crew,
expander. It helps reduce the ambience and feedback when she’s at at least some of the other instruments were slightly lower maintenance.
the B stage but not singing. We have to take time to ring out the vocal “The keyboards don’t actually output any audio. They basically act
microphone and perhaps be more aggressive than you’d normally like as MIDI controllers so the world is their oyster. We spent some time in
to be. In the middle section I bring the band down about five dB to rehearsals trying to recreate the sounds on the album, but now they’re
compensate.” there it’s quite simple.”
As Goulding owns a selection of Sennheiser gear, it made up a Another thing that Harling and Puttock were particularly proud of
large chunk of the gear on stage, along with a variety of beyerdynamic was the “vibey as possible” FOH they had created at Manchester Arena,
and Shure gear for instrument microphones. Her main and spare complete with carpet, rope lights and a vinyl player. The same look had

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39
ELLIE GOULDING

Matthew Bull of All Access Staging & Productions; Video Director Robin Haddow; Goulding in her Ethereal alter ego.

been recreated in monitor world, tucked underneath stage left, where view. The video lads really sorted us out with that one.”
I was greeted by the amiable pairing of Monitor Engineer Mike Flaherty Again this is representative of the chemistry between departments
and Audio Crew Chief Marc Peers. With sound check approaching, and suppliers that was evident during almost every conversation I had at
Flaherty revealed Goulding had only attended two all tour. “She’s really Manchester Arena. Peers put it succinctly: “Rebecca and Bob are really
easy going and polite. If there’s something she needs she’ll just ask but decent people to work for. We don’t have any shouters on this tour -
she tends to just let us get on with it,” he said. everyone is good at their jobs and gets on with it. I’d much rather be part
Peers added: “I think it’s a measure of confidence in what Mike is of a team like this and to top it off the work’s all being done at a good
doing that she doesn’t sound check. If it was a dog’s dinner every night pace.”
she’d be in sound check every day!”
Flaherty was also using DiGiCo, this time an SD7, to stay on top of the LOGISTICS
12 channels of Sennheiser 2000 Series IEM, as well as additional output Phoenix Bussing is another of the go-to companies for the Ellie Goulding
mixes for the dancers. While the majority on stage rely on their Jerry crew, having provided its services since 2012 when one bus and a trailer
Harvey Audio JH16 in-ear moulds, the keyboard and bass positions have would do. For the UK leg of the Delirium tour, Phoenix supplied three
an L-Acoustics SB18 each. The drummer has two bi-amp 15-inch wedges crew buses and a band bus, with another artist bus being added for
to stay in touch with the bass. All of the on stage subs run using Lab. the European run. All were 14 metre double deckers and were laid out
gruppen PLM 10,000Qs. in the various configurations required for each touring party: 16-berth,
An additional function of the desk that helped Flaherty during the B 14-berth and an artist suite.
stage sections of the gig was suggested by some of the crew from PRG XL Phoenix Bussing’s Andy Gray said: “It was great to be working with
Video. Flaherty explained: “We can’t see Ellie from here when she is on Rebecca again on this tour, and to have Bob joining her as we have
the B stage so the video lads have run us a direct feed from the cameras worked with him previously on other tours. Dealing with both of them is
into the back of the board so we can still see how the show is going. It’s very easy and a real pleasure.
been really helpful.” “The tour planning was quite straightforward. There were a few long
Peers said: “Mike knows her better than anyone and can tell just drives in Europe that required second drivers and stopovers en route but
by looking at her if something is wrong. You can’t stress how much nothing too troubling. Also it was very fortunate that the weather was
difference it makes to be able to keep eyes on her during that section, good for the time of year in Scandinavia and there were no delays on any
particularly with how complicated that part is from an audio point of of the journeys.”

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ELLIE GOULDING

The singer enjoyed a sold out show at Manchester Arena; Rock Star Ellie - one of the four characters in Delerium; The production team led by PM Bob O’Brien (centre).

Taking the wheel as Band Bus Driver was Megan Griffiths, an industry with which both O’Brien and Travis have established relationships. Fly By
veteran who has spent 16 years at Phoenix - currently standing as the Nite’s Operations Manager Paul Walker said: “They are both great people
company’s only female driver. While Griffiths might seem like an obvious and amazing to work with! We provided nine trucks for Ellie’s UK tour. As
addition to Goulding’s team of strong women, her inclusion was a support act John Newman is a regular FBN client so we also provided a
complete coincidence. 26T truck for his equipment.”
“When I started there were very few females in the industry, let alone TPi
bus drivers,” she said. “I’ve just seen it as a job and not really thought www.elliegoulding.com
anything of it. I’ve certainly never encountered any negativity – perhaps www.brytedesign.co.uk
a few surprised looks when the doors open!” www.blackskullcreative.com
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PM O’Brien echoed Griffiths’ sentiments: “I think having women on www.fabriquefantastique.be
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has become a lot tidier since she started driving it as the guys made a bit www.flybynite.co.uk
more effort - that has got to be a good thing!” www.pyrojunkies.com
Trucking for the tour was provided courtesy of Fly By Nite - a company www.designservices.co.uk/drapes/

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PRODUCTION PROFILE

Opposite: The tour played a variation of arena capacity venues and smaller, intimate club shows.

ENTER SHIKARI

British alt rock quartet, Enter Shikari, embarked on a UK and European tour in February and
March 2016 in support of their fourth studio album, The Mindsweep. Known for their action-
packed, immersive live shows, the band once again relied on LD Steven Bewley to deliver a
show design worthy of their quadrophonic tour sound. TPi’s Kelly Murray goes spaceside...

Enter Shikari have been touring since 2007, developing a sterling live mainly standing tickets. This is a band that wants to interact with their
reputation with their fans across the world. This is perhaps due in audience, and they do it very well.”
part to having been surrounded by many of the same people since
their need for road crew arose. Production Manager Graeme Nash, SPACEAGE CRAFTSMEN
(previously their Promoter Rep for Live Nation) was brought in by Lighting Designer Steve Bewley has worked with Enter Shikari for almost
predecessor Chris Griffiths. He told TPi: “Enter Shikari have got a a decade, after finding his way out of a corporate event background.
really good crew behind them, so that makes my job a lot smoother “I was freelance and began working with Adlib Lighting working as a
than it could be, given that I’m new to the role. Most of our suppliers technician. I met Enter Shikari through Adlib. Back then it was a hell of a
have been in place for some time. PRG XL Video are doing lighting and lot smaller and there wasn’t as much equipment so I basically took and
video on this tour, but they’ve been working with the band in some developed the show with the band from a club show with a small floor
capacity since ’07, so that relationship has just grown from strength package into what we have today but we still need to be creative with the
to strength. Adlib is a new sound vendor, although they’ve provided budget. The band wants a new look to change it up every time they go
lighting in the past. When the audio contract went out to tender, we out. Being a DIY band, they tour a hell of a lot - even when they’re writing
were very excited when Adlib came in because they were very eager to albums, so sometimes we’ll have two or three different show designs in
do the quadrophonic sound we had planned.” a year on the same album cycle!” explained Bewley, who to keep up with
The tour rehearsed at Millennium Studios during pre-production. demand, enjoys using new technology wherever possible. “Technology
Nash went on to explain that with a band like Enter Shikari, the touring changes so quickly, but I like that. It’s something new to play with. I think
process is very artist led. “The band decides what they want. They put we were the first tour in the UK to use the Ayrton MagicBlade Rs, and now
so much work into it, especially with the visuals, which they even design. everybody is using them!” he laughed. “With the use of quadrophonic
I love the fact that they shun clichés. When you put on a big rock show, sound, the band has incorporated specific visions during those key
sometimes it can be all about the Co2 and pyrotechnics but they don’t moments. Singer, Roughton ‘Rou’ Reynolds, has designed the visuals
want to do that. That’s where they bring in the creative ideas such as himself which is pretty impressive because they look great and he’d
quadrophonic sound and their own visual ideas. It’s wonderful to see never done it before!”
a band that you’ve worked with for a long time going from those little PRG XL Video supplied all lighting fixtures and the video screen,
tiny shows to their first arena tour. They’re a challenge from both the while Bewley, who operates both lighting and video, brought his own
promoter’s and the agent’s point of view because they have to decide control package on tour. The theme for this outing is space and cosmic
where to put them on. They’re a band people don’t want to sit down and surroundings, with the content being shown on a ROE M18 Hybrid (12
watch - they want to jump up and down and crowd surf - which makes metre by 4.8 metre) screen placed on the back wall of the stage and
it tricky because we’re able to sell arena size shows that need to be curves from left to right. The visuals are powered by Bewley’s Green

45
ENTER SHIKARI

Singer Rou Reynolds utilises the B stage during the show’s moment of calm.

Hippo Hippotizer media server, which is described as an “obvious” wanted it to look as full as possible, without taking away from the music.
choice for investment. He continued: “The band don’t like to take They’re very mindful of that; even though they want it to look amazing,
themselves too seriously so there’s some cartoons in the visuals too they want the music to be paramount.”
which were created by Peter MacAdams, an animator for American In a juxtaposition to the A stage structure, this tour carries a B stage
cartoon, The Ren and Stimpy Show. He’s done a couple of their music rig which is home to a minimal floor package. During this section of the
videos so they chopped some of them up and used them alongside the show, Rou plays the piano for some - believe it or not - slower ballad
space content.” numbers.
When it comes to lighting fixtures, Bewley kept the varying size
in mind. “It had to be modular - that was my starting point. We’re not QUADROPHONIC SOUND
exactly consistent with venue size so it had to be at the back of my mind. In the same vein as Bewley, sound engineer Andy Russell is the band’s
We didn’t want the usual front truss / mid truss / back truss design, we first and only FOH mixer. He explained the origins of their relationship:
wanted a clear centre focus that would work on any stage. We had a “I was working in-house at King Tut’s Wah Wah Hut venue in Glasgow
circular truss made to sit above the band on the A stage, and it instantly when someone mentioned that Enter Shikari were coming in to play
gives their set an industrial, spacecraft style framework. The whole tone and suggested that I should watch their show but I wanted to mix them
of the set comes from that structure so we added the Enter Shikari logo instead! They seemed happy with what I did and we all got on well... the
onto it as a main focal point, along with the looks on the screen.” next day I got a call asking if I wanted to go on the road, and I’ve been
Bewley operates on his own MA Lighting grandMA2 Light desk. “I working with them ever since,” said Russell, 10 years after said encounter.
bought a personal MA because it’s easier for me to do a lot of preliminary After so many years with the band, the camp decided to mix it up a bit
planning and programming pre-tour. I use the MA desk on every tour I do. and introduce a new sonic force: a quadrophonic touring sound design.
It’s perfect for what I need: it’s powerful and small yet you can run a huge Continued Russell: “It’s something we’ve always wanted to do. The band
show off it. There are a lot of tricks inbuilt that MA Lighting has come up push boundaries with their music and they’ve always pushed production
with for easy programming. “We have also been using RDM quite heavily values with whatever budget they’ve had to play with. Adlib have been an
since we first used the MagicBlades back in January 2014, we don’t have incredible help with their technical staff and the standard of equipment
any fixture numbers so we can put them anywhere in the grid and they they’ve provided.”
can be addressed and controlled remotely via luminex software” Russell specified an L-Acoustics V-DOSC PA system which comprised
Bewley’s (pre-rigged) lighting spec comprises 30 Martin by Harman 24 V-DOSC for the main hangs, with 3 dV-disc downfill; 24 SB28 for the
Atomic 3000 Strobes with scrollers, 36 Ayrton MagicBlade Rs, 32 High End subs; side hangs (when applicable) are eight dV-disc per side and 18
Systems Shapeshifters, 26 PRG Best Boy HPs, 12 generic linear molefay KARA for the rear hangs to achieve the quadrophonic sound source from
blinders, 30 PRG Icon beams, six GLP Impression X4S, and 10 Clay Paky behind. KARA and ARCs were chosen for front and lip fill. All speakers
Sharpy Washes. He continued: “There are a lot of lights because the band were powered by Lab.gruppen PLM 20,000Q amplifiers and processed

46
ENTER SHIKARI

Alexandra Palace was an ideal venue for the band, who entertained over 10,000 standing punters.

by three Lake LM44’s at FOH and two LM26’s on stage. Said Russell: “We and we’re using the new wireless 10 system. It gives us really good
chose a V-DOSC system because we’re basically doubling up on the PA support for what we need to achieve; they’re very robust and can take a
and you get a big bang for your buck. It sounds great and the system good beating when it gets crazy, but never fails to give us the sound we
techs from Adlib, led by Sam Proctor have done a fantastic job in setting want.”
it up. Ian Nelson and Dave Jones from Adlib were a great help too, they “The microphones have held up, even when Rou’s crowd surfing back
gave us a wealth of experience on the systems side of the tour.” to the A stage, from the B stage,” added Proctor. “On the B stage, the
Proctor added: “We chose KARA partly because you can fly it or band has managed to transition the set really well. They were bought
ground stack it depending on the room. If you ground stack, it doesn’t up the ranks through the club scene, in intimate venues, but they’re still
take up a lot of space and if you fly it, it won’t really affect sightlines, so known for being an intimate band who get the audience involved. On
KARA is perfect for this job.” the B stage, Rou plays the piano but he also stands on top of it to play his
Russell and co spent a lot of time programming the quadrophonic guitar and trumpet. It’s a breakdown from how intense the rest of the set
sound on Ableton and the result entailed four lines of audio feeding into is but it all works towards engaging the audience.”
each speaker system, which then goes into the desk. “I have to balance
it all, and then it goes back out of my desk, so I’m muting and un-muting MONITORING THE MADNESS
where needed, swelling the sound around the room. It’s all automated In monitor world, AJ Sutherland is also using a Midas PRO2. He told TPi:
during pre-production but I have to make sure it’s mixed appropriately. “The Midas PRO2 is fantastic, its features such as the MCA have made
L-Acoustics has a programme called Sound Vision which calculates having intricate control a really easy thing. The band are very perceptive,
where the sound disperses from each speaker so we’ve been able to and often only need changes of 1dB or 2dB. They’ll ask for me to bring
design the system with good coverage no matter how challenging the up the level of all the vocals without changing the balance, which is
room is.” exactly what the MCA feature is designed for. It’s also useful because Rou
Proctor agreed: “For the audience in the middle of the room, it’s like has five different vocal microphones and the band like me to turn all of
being in a 3D environment, it creates a cinematic effect which is a great them up or down together. The band have both the front and rear stereo
enhancement for the spacey visual effects.” electronics channels in their ears, so the MCA has allowed me to easily
For control, Russell opts for a Midas PRO2, a desk he’s used for years. manipulate the surround sound sources in their stereo mixes.”
He noted: “It’s my choice because it’s a very reliable desk. I think they’re All of the band and the techs use in-ears alongside a talkback
easy to use and they have a user-friendly interface. I’ve been mixing on system to communicate. Continued Sutherland: “It makes the channel
the PRO Series for years because find I can do so much with it.” count quite high but the Midas can handle it and it means that we
The microphone package is a mixture of Shure, Sennheiser and can communicate in a noisy environment quite effectively. No matter
Audio-Technica. “The Audio-Technica microphone is for Rou’s vocals, what I have cued up and I’m listening to, the shout back microphones

48
ENTER SHIKARI

Clockwise: Adlib’s Sam Proctor with FOH Engineer, Andy Russell; The show design included Aryton MagicBlade Rs in the roof; Monitor Engineer, AJ Sutherland with his
Midas PRO2; LD Steven Bewley operated both lighting and video from his own control systems.

will override that. Effective communication has been key to the tour Saucery’s Alison Taylor commented: “My crew on this tour - Brendan
running smoothly. The PRO2 handles the numerous vocal and shout out Mckenzie, Chloe Whitehead and Henny Collins and I - had a full on few
microphones very well; pop groups are invaluable for organising things like weeks in the catering department as we had a double bill of support artists
this. The powerful routing infrastructure allowed me to route my solo bus to feed as well as the main band party. Chloe baked a lot of birthday cakes
through a matrix and combine it with a group of the shout microphones.” during this tour!
The band - completed by Chris Batten, Rob Rolfe and Rory Clewlow - all “It was wonderful to back out with Enter Shikari, as we are now in our
use Sennheiser G3 IEM packs, with Cosmic Ears molds. Said Sutherland: fifth year of working with them. They’re a pleasure to look after. Even as
“The Cosmic Ears CE6P in-ear monitors have been serving us very well. their audiences have grown bigger, their connection to the crew around
In the last 12 months the entire band has migrated to them. For the large them has not changed one bit. Their needs are very modest and their riders
arena stages we have side fill subs and sometimes a drum sub, but aside are reasonable requests! A lovely thing about working with them is their
from that we rely solely on the IEMs. Having the clean stage look has been a manners - the thanks we get for making dinner effusive!
really nice touch.” “The humble approach to touring is evident throughout their
Like Russell, he’s also a fan of the Audio-Technica system. “The 10 production. From Keith Reynolds managing all aspects of the tour, to their
wireless equipment we use for vocals has helped make my life easier. fans being invited to watch sound check, they are a family kind of band and
They sync so simply and I don’t need to worry about intermodulation, I feel that Saucery is included in that. It’s been lovely for me to watch them
interference or licences as they operate in the 2.4gHz spectrum. The grow, and despite my advancing years, I love their show!”
wired AE6100 vocal microphones have been as successful as ever, happily
enduring being thrown in the air and crashing around the stage without any RUNNING LIKE CLOCKWORK
signs of damage!” Crossland has been working with Enter Shikari for approximately six years,
Rou’s vocals range from a very quiet, falsetto tone to full-on throat transporting the band and crew all over the UK and Europe. In February
rattling screaming which had an impact on the microphone choice. “Last and March 2016, the company supplied two busses and three trucks for the
year we spent quite a bit of time trying to get a consistent sound and UK leg, and a single bus and truck for the European run. Malachy McMullan,
ended up using a hard limiter on his vocal channel which is compressing Director at Crossland said: “Depending on Keith’s requirements, we supply
everything but his soft lines. The combination of the AE6100 and the Midas any style of bus to suit their needs, however, they tend to prefer our Setra
PRO2 processing make this sound surprisingly natural, now Rou rarely asks double decker vehicles.
for level changes.” “Prior to each tour, Keith and his team provide all logistical
requirements to Sharon Tea, when everything is discussed and prepared
A HUMBLE APPROACH for a smooth run. We keep in close contact with the production team and
Feeding the clan is long-time road chef specialists, Saucery Catering. with our drivers, so that if there are any unexpected changes along the way,

50
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ENTER SHIKARI

Bassist Chris Batten amidst the cartoon creations.

we are ready to react and deal with them 24/7. The UK leg was a

Music, Film & TV nice and easy in terms of transport and logistics but the EU leg
involved a bit more planning in terms of driver schedules and
truck permits.
PRODUCTION FACILITIES “Over the years we have developed a great relationship with
the team. On the road, the familiarity our drivers have with the
Lighting Package - Production Office - On Site Catering band and crew and what they require is a benefit to all involved.
Dressing Rooms - 24 Hour Security Everyone knows what everyone else needs and that can only
serve to keep things running like clockwork. It’s a relationship
we hope to continue for many years to come,” he concluded.

CREATIVE INDIVIDUALS
As the extra-terrestrial, cartoon wielding visuals died down,
and the surround sound thud of a band on a mission called
it a night, it was clear that Enter Shikari are a band capable
MILLENNIUM STUDIOS of three traits any live act would be proud of: they put on a
pretty impressive display of energetic musicianship; they have
‘A’ Stage Hire £600 / 10hr weekday • 27.7m x 18m x 10m a connection to their fans that has kept them on the road
for years and years, without even the slightest hint of tiring;
Recent visiting clients include: and without taking themselves too seriously, they do take
Will Young • John Legend • Bastille • Bring Me The Horizon • Fall Out Boy care of their crew and suppliers like you can only hope every
professional touring act does. In his closing comment, Bewley
confirmed this status: “We get on like best friends really, we
always have done. There’s an extended family feel to working
with this band; we see each other outside of work and they’re
always willing to listen and encourage ideas. They don’t have
any attitude at all, even though you could expect that from such
creative individuals. That’s why we’re all here after all these
years.”
TPi
Photos: The Fifth Estate ©thefifthestate.co.uk & Alexey Makhov
www.entershikari.com
www.stevebewleydesign.com
www.prg.com
Telephone: +44 (0) 1234 780100 www.adlib.co.uk
www.saucery.net
www.millenniumstudios.co.uk www.crossland.ie
www.millenniumstudios.co.uk

52
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PRODUCTION PROFILE

Opposite: The 2016 BRIT Awards once again took place at the O2 Arena with some of the biggest names from the music world getting under one roof to recognise the
achievements of artists throughout the year.

BRIT AWARDS 2016

The annual award ceremony once again made a home at the O2 Arena for a night of musical
celebration, which saw performances from nine acts including Adele, Rihanna and Justin
Bieber. TPi spoke to the longstanding crewmembers and suppliers who once again provided
their services to the BRITs.

The annual BRIT Awards is one of the highlights of the music industry’s in my area are always to do with budget, space and time. This year’s
calendar, presenting a chance for the biggest names from Britain design was different in that there was not much of a set but the rigging
and around the globe to get under one roof and celebrate what the was incredibly complicated as we had so many moving elements.” She
pop world has to offer. For the sixth year running, the event was continued: “I thought this year’s show was great. There was fantastic
broadcast live from London’s O2 Arena. As always, alongside the energy in the room which was helped with the re-introduction of the
awards ceremony, nine of the world’s most prestigious acts shared standing audience. It added a good dynamic to the event. The design
the stage, giving a variety of performances that provided an audio and worked well for all the artists and gave them scope to try very distinctive
visual treat for both those at the venue and the millions watching from performances.”
home. This year’s line up included performances from Coldplay, The
Weeknd, Little Mix, Adele, Rihanna, James Bay, Jess Glynne, Justin STAGING
Bieber and a tribute to David Bowie performed by Lorde along with Staging services were once again supplied by TPi’s Staging Company of
the late singer’s backing band. the Year, Stageco, which this year celebrated two decades of working the
Once again many of the same suppliers and crewmembers answered BRITs. In fact, the first year Stageco worked on the event was the same
the call to work on this high-profile event including Britannia Row year Geri Halliwell famously wore her now iconic union jack dress (oh
Productions, Stageco, Stage Miracles, Outback Rigging Steel Monkey, yes, that was 20 years ago!) Stageco reported to Production Manager
Ogle Hog, VER, PRG XL Video, Blackout to name but a few. Tony Wheeler as well as Papilo. The core Stageco team who working
Taking up the mantle of Project Director was Kate Wright and Lisa on the event included Account Manager, Dirk De Decker along with Luc
Shenton of Papilo Production Management. “This was Papilo’s seventh Dardenne and Stefaan Vandenbosch who managed the project onsite.
year with the BRITs,” explained Wright who has personally been involved Together, the company ensured that the basic staging foundations were
in the event for an impressive 22 years. “Our main responsibility lies in built, along with the FOH control platform, numerous risers, platforms
the live side of the event, as opposed to the TV side. I am responsible for spotlights, cameras, jib cranes and monitoring. “Stageco undertook
for managing the design process, appointing all the key suppliers, site a little extra work this year,” informed Dardenne. “We built some extra
layout, guest logistics and the additional dinner/ aftershow elements.” platforms for spotlights and two for video screens. With the weight
This year saw the BRITs bring in a new TV crew headed up by first time loading in the O2’s roof already being very high, we added a central video
awards Director, Liz Clare. Talking about the show concept, Wright screen truss in our signature black steel to relieve some of that stress.”
stated that this year built upon 2015’s theme of truly “owning” the He continued: “It’s generally a six to seven-day build for us and this year
space. She discussed the challenges the team faced. “The challenges we brought six equipment trailers and an eight-man crew who worked

57
BRIT AWARDS 2016

Above: Jack Garratt, 2016 Critics’ Choice Award winner.

with local support. It’s an event we are very proud to be associated with.” Mike Grove. Altogether the company provided 45 crewmembers. Grove
This year’s show was designed by Es Devlin and constructed by talked TPi through the whole process of putting on an event of this scale.
Steel Monkey. All rigging duties came via Outback Rigging Group. Head “I started on the Saturday [five days before the show]. By that point the
Rigger, Conrad Ryan, spoke of the complex arrangement of this year’s basic nuts and bolts and scaffolding were already out of the way so by
awards. “This year Outback supplied all the production rigging for the the Saturday we are able to start getting the performers creative looks
show including truss hoists and automation features. We also provided and set pieces in as well as setting up all the various pieces of backline.
general production rigging support for all departments. The main Our next responsibility was to make sure the set looks worked for all the
feature of the show was the LED zoetrope structures. We had a couple camera shots. By Monday we were ready for band rehearsals which took
over the auditorium with a 30 metre diameter zoetrope that hung over place all the way up until show day on Wednesday.”
the audience.” These various structures came in and out throughout the With nine acts to coordinate throughout the night, Grove and the
evening. Outback also installed an arc that held LED columns that was rest of the Stage Miracles team certainly had its work cut out. “For the
situated at the front of the stage that acted as a close down feature. show to work, everything needs to be lined up in the correct order. There
For automation Outback opted for Kinesys. “Overall we had 80 plus is actually a part of the rehearsal period where the team and myself
Kinesys Point Hoists,” stated Ryan. “We ran all automation via two Vector go through the process of getting sets on and off the stage, for a timed
Systems along side a Kinesys Mentor system which provided us with practice run. The show is very much like a freight train. It comes in on
additional safety features.” Outback also delivered two automation one side, and off the other. It doesn’t feel like 2.5 hours during the night.
operators, Gareth Williams and Lluis Diaz-Guerra Martinez as well as six It’s over before it begins! It’s personally one of my favourite shows mainly
spotters with an additional 10 for the show’s opening. Ryan continued: due to the fantastic team. The production has reached such a good
“This year’s show was certainly an ambitious project. It did throw up a lot standard and they always look for the best people to join the crew, not to
of challenges for both rigging and automation; especially with the vast mention, once they have got you they hang on!”
amount of weight we were carrying [110 tonnes in total]. We spend a lot Grove concluded by giving special mention to two of his Stage
of time with Show Designer Es Devlin along with the other departments Miracles colleagues, System Stage Manager, Bert Harris and Crew Chief,
and the venue to try and make it work.” Frank Moran whom he described as “key” to the whole operation.
In conclusion Ryan stated: “We were proud to be involved for what
was Outback’s 14th BRIT Awards. It was an exciting design and it was SOUND
great to help bring it to fruition.” On the audio front, Britannia Row Productions for another year running
For the main show draping, Blackout were brought into the supplied a complete PA and control package. This year was the second
production to provide a 70 metre by 24 metre backdrop, drape boarders time that Colin Pink was brought into the role as Sound Designer.
for video trusses, FOH control and dressing all the camera platforms Standing on stage with his colourful hi-vis jacket, he talked about his
to ensure that the whole focus of the evening stayed with the action relationship with the event. “Last year was my first time with the BRITs
on stage. Chris Brain, Blackout’s Project Manager commented: “We’re after the sad passing of Derrick Zieba who had been doing the awards for
proud to get the opportunity to work on the BRITs as it’s always such a many years. Last year I basically copied the template from the previous
spectacular show to be part of. We worked closely with the designers year’s event. It’s an established show with an established crew and
and the production team to help ensure the main stage was dressed there is no point re-inventing the wheel. There was no need to make
seamlessly to reflect the glamour of the event. As the BRITs is broadcast any drastic changes.” He added that: “Working with Brit Row has been
live, creating a truly visual experience is paramount to the enjoyment of fantastic. In my opinion they are the best in the world at what they do
the celebrity guests, as well as the viewers watching at home and the and I definitely take their advice wherever I can.”
end result looked fantastic.” Every year there is always a mixture of acts from full bands and
Handling the stage management fell into the capable hands of Stage musicians who perform live vocals to a track. For the 2016 event there
Miracles and headed up by Stage Manager (and 2016 TPi award winner) were six full bands and three vocal performances to track. “In an ideal

58
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BRIT AWARDS 2016

Award winner, James Bay; Justin Bieber had a pyrotechnic-heavy show, supplied by FFP; Björk won the 2016 International Female Solo Artist; The evening payed tribute to
David Bowie with Lorde’s rendition of the late singer’s, Life on Mars?

world I would try and mix up the live acts just to break up the show and the way they work on optical loops meaning you can interface them
give the crew a bit more preparation time,” explained Pink. “However together quite nicely.”
what tends to happen is that more live bands play at the latter end of For on-stage sound, Pink explained the necessity of still having
the night to build up excitement throughout the event. With live TV it is wedges as many of the artists had dancers who needed to hear the
always high risk and there is a chance that things might go wrong. My mix for timings. “We are using d&b audiotechnik M2 wedges which are
default setting is to always have several plans if things don’t quite work great boxes. We also have L-Acoustics ARCS and SB28’s for side fills but
out. The real trick is for it not to be noticeable on the live broadcast.” the interesting thing about working on the TV shows is that the camera
The audio crew (including Pink) was made up of 11 individuals, operators are not the biggest fan of them from an aesthetic point of view
including Dee Miller, Britannia Row’s Crew Chief. He talked TPi through so we try to reduce the amount we use as much as possible.”
the PA setup for the show. The main hangs and side hangs consisted For IEMs, the majority of the acts were using the Sennheiser 2000
of L-Acoustics K1 and K2 elements with L-Acoustics K1SBs as the main Series apart from Justin Bieber who uses Shure products. Sennheiser
flown sub with the rear hangs made up of L-Acoustics KARA. The ground also provided the production with several wireless microphones from
stacked subs consisted of L-Acoustics SB28’s with floor fills provided both presenters and performers. The award winners’ acceptance
by L-Acoustics KARA and ARCS Elements. “We have used L-Acoustics speeches were delivered via Sennheiser’s Digital 9000 Series wireless
for several years,” explained Miller. “At the end of the day it’s one of the microphone with ME 5004 capsules while the majority of performers
best sounding PAs in the world. On the audio front, a show like the BRITs used either Sennheiser 5200’s or 2000’s. Sennheiser not only supplied
is slightly different from your regular tour. Although the live sound is microphones for the venue but also for astronaut Tim Peake’s who
important, the main priority is the live broadcast. This means we take announced Adele as this year’s winner of the Global Success Award,
slightly more of a backseat with the PA and we have to compromise with which he declared in a pre-recorded message from the International
what we would usually do with an event of this size. For instance, we fly Space Station, using a wireless Sennheiser e835.
the whole system higher than we normally would so it doesn’t interfere The abundance of wireless frequencies created an interesting
with the camera shots.” Miller explained that his main responsibilities for challenge for Sapnel Patel, RF Supervisor. “She did a sterling job!” stated
the event is to liaise with other departments from rigging to lighting and Pink, adding: “It’s a big logistical issue on these shows. With nine acts, all
video to ensure everyone is working together. of which want between six to 20 IEMs along with wireless microphones
For audio control at both FOH and monitors, DiGiCo was at the she has her hand full. There are not enough frequencies to meet the
forefront with an SD7 used to control the main PA mix for the artists demand of everyone so there is a lot of clever switching around that goes
alongside an SD10 that dealt with all the presenters’ mixes. FOH Engineer on.”
for the live acts was Josh Lloyd while the presenters’, guests’ and
winners’ mixes were managed for Chris Coxhead. In monitor world, two ARTIST RELATIONS
SD5’s alternated between each performance, operated by Dan Ungaretti Over the years the BRIT Awards has seen some fairly spectacular
and Steve Donovan. “The great thing about using DiGiCo from my point performances and this year was no exception. The person who aids
of view is that they are extremely flexible, which makes sense when the procession from inception to performance is Maggie Mouzakitis,
dealing with nine separate acts,” explained Pink. “The other benefit is Band Production Manager. In collaboration with Production Manager

60
BRIT AWARDS 2016

Coldplay enjoyed a colourful performance with their song, Hymn For The Weekend.

Tony Wheeler, Mouzakitis acts as a go-between for the TV department time in Europe that the VFC cards have been used as well as Notch plug-
and the technical live production. “The process can start as early as ins which were used to time-slice live video content onto the various
December,” explained Mouzakitis. “As soon as we know a couple of the LED surfaces. Driving the servers was Richard Porter. “An added benefit
artists we attempt to start meetings with the musicians management. to using d3 this year was the opportunity to pre-visualise the video set
This time round we already had initial meetings with four of the acts pieces prior to the show,” said Saunders. “With on site rehearsal time
before Christmas, discussing design ideas and creative concepts. Usually being squeezed from all angles this allowed us to arrive on site running.
each act brings in their own creative team but sometimes it’s a bit of a It also allowed the content creator the opportunity to see their work in
collaboration with people from our end as well. Because we are always context.”
looking at each act as part of the wider show, we have to advise creative In total there were 715 sq metres of LED for the performance. Ogle
teams so as not have performances that are too similar.” Hog sourced various brands to complete the look of the show with VER
Mouzakitis explained the importance of the team effort seen on the supplying LED for the main stage, house dressing, Adele’s performance
BRITs. “Every performance is discussed at length with every department, and the IMAG screens with PRG XL video supplying screens for the B
especially with Mike our stage manager as it’s his job to get everything on stage. Speaking to VER’s Project Manager, Alastair MacDiarmid, he
and off the stage. This often means looking at the event script and trying discussed VER’s involvement with the event: “We first became involved in
to get him a few more minutes for the change overs.” the BRITs through our relationship with Ogle Hog. This was the first time
Chris had contracted a major component of the video supply to VER.
VIDEO AND LIGHTING We supplied screens for the main stage as well as some low resolution
Video was the main element of the show design. Specialist video supply products for dressing the sides along with some high res for Adele’s set
company Ogle Hog, were brought on board again this year. Video Project with IMAG screens out in the bleachers.”
Managers for the event were Chris Saunders and Connie Glover. This The bulk of what VER supplied was Winvision 9mm Air. MacDiarmid
will be the fourth year in which Ogle Hog supplied both equipment and noted: “In addition to being lightweight, the screens look great both on
services to the BRITs and Saunders’ 23rd year. Saunders commented: camera and to the eye. It also has a very low power consumption, not to
“This year we worked very closely with the Es Devlin, Liz Clare and Kate mention it’s extreme reliability.” VER also supplied 68 panels of Martin
Wright to offer a design that matched the creative aspirations and the by Harman LC 40mm and ROE Onyx 3mm. MacDiarmid explained: “162
carefully controlled budget. Ogle Hog also worked with Shop, a boutique panels of the ROE Black Onyx 3mm high res screen were set onto nine
motion design studio, for the content that was shown on the screens as rolling towers for Adele’s performance. Each dolly had to be 1.5 metres
well as the individual creative teams. It’s our job to ensure that all the wide by three metres high with a two-way mirror attached to the front,
graphics delivered work with our system. Between myself and Connie all of which was put together by Steel Monkey. The towers were built up
we split the work, so she overseas the build of the LED screen where as I on stock VER rolling truss bases for quick changes between acts.” For the
personally oversee that the correct content is being sent to the screens B stage PRG XL Video provide ROE MC7’s.
at the right times.” QED’s fiber-optic distribution system provided the backbone for the
For media servers, fiber distribution and projection equipment Ogle show , feeding all the LED, relay screens and stage mapping projectors
Hog brought in QED for the ambitions video design. The media server of with video signals as well as network control. Three km of multichannel
choice was d3 Technologies 4x4pro server supplied by QED (four in total) fibber cables were run from the backstage control area to service
along with two d3 Technologies 4U v2.5’s. With the 4x4pro servers, Ogle multiple destination throughout the arena.
Hog made use of the new video format conversion cards - the very first Ogle Hog also brought in eight Christie Boxer 4K30 Projectors, again

62
BRIT AWARDS 2016

Little Mix performed their hit Black Magic which included a large Sugar Skull set piece along with an elaborate dance routine.

courtesy of QED, for Jess Glynne and Rihanna. “We had to increase the about how the concept for lighting takes place each year: “The BRITs
number of Boxer 4K30’s for Rihanna’s show design. This element came is a television show from the ground up so although the live audience
to the table relatively late. Her design team were after a very specific is catered for, our main point of reference is what do the cameras see.
look incorporating front projection. This eventfully resulted in setting up As with any show of this type, the design has to be largely in place
some of the fixtures on the stage edge.” With the new Christie projectors before a great deal is known about the artists and what their individual
being smaller, quieter and lighter the other similar products on the requirements will be. So I design a core rig with a check-list in mind of
market meant they offered additional installation flexibility making it what I will need. I need to know all the individual areas are covered,
simpler for the design team to positioned the with the in O2. making sure that I have dedicated groups of lights that I don’t have to
Director of QED, Paul Wigfield gave his thoughts with his companies choose between.
involvement with the BRITs: “Ogle Hog where a pleasure to work with, “This year we used PRG Icon Beams as pinspots on each of the VIP
very professional and exceptionally easy to get on with.” Continuing, tables, Philips Vari-Lite VL3500 Washes and GLP Impression X4’s to light
Wigfield gave his thoughts on the Christie Boxer 4K30: “We were the audience, PRG Best Boy HP to key light, and Clay Paky Mythos for
absolutely delighted with the result. The boxers worked fantastically air effects. We also used Chroma-Q Colour Block 2’s around the arena
well. They were so bright that for the first time ever, the brightness of on the balcony levels with Clay Paky Stormy Strobes.” Also used in the
the LED screens was able to turned up to match the light output of the lighting rig were 4K Xenon Gladiator Followspots, TMB Solaris Junior
projectors.” Adding the this Saunders gave his thought on the projectors: Flares and custom built Lite Panel fixtures that fit on the front of the
“The Christie projectors represent a major step forward in projection.” cameras which were controlled wirelessly from the console that emitted
Ogle Hog also controlled the O2’s in-house video screen system that a cold and warm white LED. At the helm of the lighting operations were
runs around the arena as well as bringing in its own camera system LDs Ross Williams and Theo Cox who both used High End Systems Hog 4
which was used along side Camera and VT feeds from the broadcast consoles.
crew to stream nomination and acceptance footage to the screens. Dan Supplying all the lighting fixtures and control was PRG XL Video. Rich
Ormerod handled video directing during the eventing. Gorrod, Head of Events and Services for PRG XL Video, spoke about
Saunders gave some final thoughts on the event: “I think that it’s was the company’s involvement with the awards. “It’s great to be involved
one of the most ambitions video designs I have ever done in the last 20 in such a large scale event. The BRITs is a well-oiled machine now with
years of the BRITs. I would be lying if I said it was easy and there definitely the same HODs being involved.” Gorrod talked about the PRG fixtures
were some challenges. There is always a lot of pressure to get it right as incorporated into the show. “The PRG Icon performed very well, lighting
the screens are always in shot. The added trickiness is when the various the 140 tables as well as providing some great effects during the musical
screens are moving all the time which comes with its own problems numbers. Also used was the upgraded Bad Boy Colourspots which
and certainly with the zoetropic screen we had this year that went up gives great control for both the operator and the LD. All functions can
and down many times throughout the show. So cable management was be controlled from either the console or the operator. PRG XL Video use
critical.” the same lighting crew for all these large scale events and they make
The lighting designer, celebrating his 20th year with the BRITs, it easy for me. When you have good gear and great crew it’s a win-win
was Al Gurdon. With two decades of experience of the show, he spoke situation.” Gurdon commented: “Rich Gorrod has been my gaffer on the

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BRIT AWARDS 2016

Above: Arena Group’s Spaceworks and Well Dressed Tables supplied a total 2,600 covers of crockery, cutlery, glass wear and furniture with in the main arena and the
VIP marquee; Jess Glynne’s performance made use of Christie Boxer 4K30 projectors; The Weeknd made use of the BRITs Sennheiser microphone package; Annie Lennox
gave a tribute to to the late, great, David Bowie.

BRITs for many years. He brings an enormous amount of experience for the event which was quite time consuming for the company’s R&D
to the production. He is always proactive and an asset to the whole department.
production.”
Gurdon went on to discuss how the various looks for each artist came CREWING
about. “Many of the acts bring their own LDs and their involvement can Another veteran company returning to this year’s event was Showstars.
vary but the experienced ones know that the best thing they can do is Director of the company, Stuart Milne, talked about the company’s
be a facilitator between the artist and the award show. They understand involvement with the awards. “The BRITs has always been one of my
that within the framework of the event, my programmers and I have to favorite events. We have supplied crew to the BRITs for over 20 years
build the looks on our own to our own schedule [which is very tight]. and although it has changed over time, it has never lost its appeal. It
They help the artist to communicate with us, and vice versa. When that has always been a massive challenge and although it is a bit smaller
dynamic is understood, the relationship between us and the visiting since it moved to the O2, it is still one of our biggest one-off jobs. In the
LD is positive, productive and helpful. We gain from their insights and early days when we were involved with the BRITs, the driving force was
access into that particular artist, and they gain from our ability to make Production Director Michel Kluczynski. He always had time for everyone
it work for them in the context of the awards show, as well as from our and particularly identified with the crew and regularly said he stayed
own creative input. The awards show should be more than the sum of loyal to people not companies. That’s why every year when the BRITs
its parts, with it’s own creative dynamic and individual style, rather than comes along, it feels more like a family reunion. Kate and Lisa have
simply a showcase for the latest artist promo.” He continued: “The stage definitely kept this ethos and it rubs off on everyone.”
at which I am brought into the creative process really depends on the Showstars supplied stage builders, steel hands, production hands,
artist, their management and label. Sometimes they come with very forklifts along with MEWP operators, runners, spotlight operators and
specific ideas and sometimes we come to them. We work hard to make show/party crew. In total 220 individual crew were involved. Milne
sure that the BRITs, coming just a week or so after the Grammys, is not commented: It’s always a massive logistical challenge and credit has to
simply a rehash of that show. It has its own unique style, and brings as be given to the Showstars office as well as the crew. Both were superb
much to the table as a creative entity, as is brought to it.” once again.”
In conclusion Gurdon commented that he was very happy with
how this year’s show went. “I think we achieved a distinct look for each HOLDING BACK THE CROWD
performance, each different to the last, and that is what keeps the The reintroduction of a standing crowd meant that barriers were
audience entertained and engaged, and makes the show memorable of utmost importance this year. Mojo Barriers provided a variety of
after it has been broadcast.” products and configurations including 300 metres of stage barriers as
Finally, on the visual side, providing all special effects needs for the well as 2,250 metres of heras fencing and crowd control barriers. Eight
event was FFP. This was the company’s sixth time working on the BRITs members of the Mojo team were on site at the BRITs for the build and
and this year it provided effects for Coldplay, James Bay, The Weeknd, break down. Kevin Thorborn, Mojo Barriers’ UK Manager commented:
Justin Bieber and Little Mix. Most of the effects were custom made “The O2 is one of London’s busiest venues, so a rapid turnaround was

66
BRIT AWARDS 2016

CREATIVE.
POWERFUL.
FLEXIBLE.

Adele’s performance incorporated the ROE Onyx 3mm screen.

needed to ensure a safe and efficient egress whilst the ceremony was conducted. One
of our barrier systems’ core features is the it allows a fast and efficient set up.”

DINNER IS SERVED
With everyone at home getting to enjoy both the award ceremony and the live music,
there was one element that was reserved for those in attendance at the O2; the
NEW
PRODUCTS
dinner! Arena Group’s Spaceworks and Well Dressed Tables division supplied a total
2,600 covers of crockery, cutlery, glass wear and furniture with in the main arena and 2016
the VIP marquee. Christopher Piggott, Managing Director of Well Dressed Tables spoke
of some of the challenges during the event. “On the night we had just 30 minutes to
clear the marquee of 1,000 chairs and 100 tables so the after show part could take
place. Then, once the main event had finished, we were tasked with clearing the main
arena of 1,400 chairs and 140 tables. All in all the job went very well. The BRITs is such
a spectacular show to be part of and we’re proud to have been involved once again.”
Another arm of the Arena Group that was involved in the event was Arena
Structures who were called in to supply a variety of temporary structures including EOS
the dining structure which was then transformed into the after party area, catering
area and production offices. Arena Structures installed two five metre by 15 metre
tents and one, three metre by 15 metre tent to create a horseshoe shaped kitchen and
catering space which was positioned outside of the O2’s dome. Two 10 metre by 20
metre tents were also supplied by the company to create the main production office
and the BRITs TV office which included the Ogle Hog live video editing suite. Dan Bluff,
Arena Structures Project Manager, commented: “We work with The O2 on a number of
different events which means we’re familiar with the space available and the working
practices within the venue. This allowed us to successfully construct a number of
temporary structures within the venue. We were delighted to be able to build on our BABYZOOM 4 BABYZOOM 1
longstanding relationship with The BRITs and to once again be involved with this
brilliant event.”

AND THE WINNER IS…


With yet another BRIT Awards done and dusted, the overwhelming response from
all suppliers and crewmembers was that the event was a great success. And, most
importantly, the enjoyment of everyone involved seems to have a great impact on the
BRIT Awards with several parties having been being on deck for upwards of 20 years,
it is certainly an annual gathering of people from all sectors of the industry who are
proud to be involved. Roll on 2017…
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67
RUDIMENTAL AT THE O2
Having toured almost solidly for over three years, London’s Rudimental have learned to
adapt their stage show to suit everything from small clubs to sold out stadiums. TPi’s Ste
Durham made the trip down to the O2 Arena to see the 11-piece’s A-rig in all its glory.

Hometown shows can be hectic at the best of times and Rudimental’s said: “The only change for this leg was our audio supplier, but even that
triumphant London return after months on the road was no exception. wasn’t out of any bad blood. Dave Shepherd from BCS Audio came in
From the first minute I was warmly welcomed by Tour Manager and became like my mentor, so it’s great to have them on board. Colour
Andrew ‘Wilkie’ Wilkinson, the backstage area was a hive of activity: Sound Experiment have provided lighting for the band for years and PRG
staff, crew and band members alike introducing themselves briefly, XL Video were an obvious choice for video, particularly since I’d worked
before disappearing back into the ether. The team was expecting with them on the Rita Ora tour three or four years ago. All of our suppliers
a full house that evening as well; with friends, family and industry have been really good to us and I’ve no intentions of changing.”
colleagues adding to an O2 Arena already packed to the rafters. The 11-strong group of musicians also added lasers to their arsenal in
The first port of call was Production Manager Matty Roberts. After 2015, which were originally provided by Colour Sound Experiment. As the
beginning his Rudimental life as the band’s drum tech, Roberts quickly size of the shows grew and only the very brightest beams would suffice,
worked his way up the ladder, eventually taking the reins in January Rudimental brought in ER Productions, as well as hiring Pyrojunkies to
2015. add special effects to the increasingly busy show design.
Although the majority of suppliers were in place when he took the Roberts continued: “We are kind of lucky because we designed this
job, he has built his own relationships with each of them during his arena gig last year. Although we had full production rehearsals, we’ve
time on the road, and isn’t set on replacing them any time soon. He only used it a handful of times at festivals and the Alexandra Palace

68
PRODUCTION PROFILE

Opposite: LD and Show Designer Jonny Gaskell.


Below: The Eat To The Beat crew; Ricketts’ Soundcraft Vi6 at FOH; Production Manager Matty Roberts; The O2 Arena A-rig.

shows in 2015. The floor package, risers and control system are modular European leg in Poland last year that has stuck and remains part of the
and can move up and down depending on the size of the room that we’re A-rig today.“
in.” Additions like the thrust, supplied by True Staging, are usually at the
Rudimental’s first visit to London Speaker Hire’s rehearsal space was behest of the four founding members of the band, with keyboard player
in the spring of 2015, which allowed them to make full use of the three Piers Aggett acting as the creative driving force. Roberts added: “They all
different sized rehearsal spaces (and the ‘50s-style diner and chill out make decisions collectively and in a very pleasant and professional way.
area). It really is a great team to be part of.”
LSH’s Eddy Northcott commented: “Being one of the few places The show that Rudimental brought to the O2 was centred on trying to
on the east side of London, the boys love the fact that LSH have a create a party atmosphere reminiscent of Notting Hill Carnival, including
fully stocked pro-shop to cover their needs and, with LSH’s close a railway bridge fascia, mountains of wooden speaker boxes and visuals
relationships with mainstream premium brands, it means they can based on the capital’s skyline.
service endorsements and source kit quickly. The bridge structure in particular looked more suited to the theatre
“Having a hectic touring schedule with a large amount of than a rock ‘n’ roll show, framing the backdrop, and later the LED
international travel, LSH will bend over backwards to accommodate the screens, in the same way that a proscenium arch frames a stage set.
diverse requirements bands have. The MD even jumped in the LSH Flash Roberts explained that this influence stems from the band’s own creative
Mob Mini once to drive Beanie, the drummer, down to the nearest kebab vision of what a touring production should look like.
shop when it was pouring down with rain!” He said: “Theatre is a something that comes up a lot in our
Roberts added: “From the production end I love using LSH because discussions. Some of the guys come from that background having
there is enough space in that big room for me to have both my A and worked at Hackney Empire at one time or another. As well as this, they
B-rig systems set up, allowing my boys to prep one while the other is are always keen to incorporate London into the show, being a proud
being played. The added bonus for us is the easy access for our artic Hackney band. The bridge fascia is designed around the Hackney Central
trucks, touring buses and enough free, private, secure parking for overground bridge - except that our version is twice as big as the real
everyone. When we went straight into rehearsals after a long tour, we one!”
were able to use the hot shower and were even provided with towels -
this may not mean a lot to some but, knowing the job like we do, it makes NOT GIVING IN
a difference!” The majority of Rudimental’s bespoke speaker boxes were created
The band has brought its high-energy show to a variety of venues by boutique set design and manufacturing company, Get Set. The
during Roberts’ tenure, meaning that the full A-rig is only unleashed company’s co-founder, Jim MacAuley, who originally came on board as
every so often. the group’s stage manager, explained: “The speakers placed on stage
“Although we know well in advance what each particular show is have been in use for two years, while the downstage risers came in
going to warrant, we can still kind of make it up as we go along,” he about a year ago. They’re manufactured from wood but have aluminium
laughed. “We have A, B, C and D systems and can experiment and add to reinforcement frames so the band can stand on them and not fall
them as we see fit. For example, we introduced the stage thrust during a through – which was definitely a concern!”

69
RUDIMENTAL

PRG XL Video’s domain, backstage at the O2 Arena.

The boxes have also been designed so the can be easily wheeled this was a drape truss with a black cloth that masked the bridge during
around and flat-packed down during transport. the two opening acts. On an electric kabuki, this dropped at the top of
In order to upscale for the London show, the team added even Rudimental’s set to reveal the bridge. Upstage of the bridge goalpost was
more of the boxes, this time by refinishing units that Production North the back lighting truss and behind that, the backdrop drape truss (on the
manufactured for a television performance on The X Factor in 2015. tabs). The rig was also fitted to three circular trusses that were flown in
Although they are an emerging company, Get Set has already created front of an upstage LED screen.
custom staging elements for Hurts, The Stranglers, and Nero, as well The moving lights were primarily from Robe and Clay Paky, with 10
as continuing to find new challenges in the future. MacAuley continued: Robe MMX Spots as key lights on the front truss, Robe BMFL Spots on the
“We’re still a boutique company, but we’ve already got some great upstage trusses and floor, and 88 Robe LEDWash 600’s spread out over
projects under our belts. We like to get involved in as much of the design the entire rigs as the primary wash fixture. They were complemented by
process as possible, as well as taking care of construction and offering 46 Clay Paky Sharpys positioned on the vertical trusses, the circles, the
show design.” bridge and the floor.
For a huge back-light effect in three of the band’s songs, Colour
COMMON EMOTION Sound provided six Novalight Super-Nova big beam effects, four along
The physical set was accentuated by a substantial lighting rig, which was the back and another two beneath the side screens, which stretched out
devised and operated by LD and Show Designer, Jonny Gaskell. Having the whole performance area.
spent three years on the road with Rudimental, he has become attuned Another theatre-esque technique used during the show was the
to the band’s creative vision. creation of ‘day and night’ scenes by lighting a back cloth with different
“Lighting-wise they tend to like it pretty ‘ravey’,” he said. “The variety fixtures. Eight Chroma-Q ColorForce 72 LED battens positioned along
within the set also allows me to do some subtle static looks and then let the floor skimmed up the cloth during the ‘day’ scenes, while five Studio
rip when it comes to the bigger rave tracks. There’s all sorts of genres Due CityColors illuminated it from the back, bleeding through and
to play with in Rudimental’s music, which gives me scope to design illuminating buildings and windows on the Hackney cityscape for ‘night’
different kinds of things for each track. They’re a great band to work for in scenes.
that respect.” The scenic lighting props included six authentic lampposts with
Still a relatively fresh-faced act when it comes to their back Chauvet Professional mini COLORband PiXs fitted in the heads - two per
catalogue, Rudimental quite often opt to add brand new material to light. The six masts were each lit with an i-Pix Satellite LED ‘brick’, and an
the set in order to give returning fans their money’s worth. Gaskell SGM XC-5 strobe was concealed in a London phone box.
continued: “When I started the band only had the one album, but by now The crew also made use of four of the O2’s house Gladiator
they definitely have enough to keep me on my toes! They are good guys followspots and Jonny operated the show using his own ChamSys
and they understand that you are learning the new material just like they lighting console. Forty-six 2-lite molefays were also dotted around.
are. It’s all bedded in by now and at least the audience is excited in the As Roberts discussed previously, the crew needed to stay light on its
knowledge that they might be getting some new tracks.” feet. This meant cloning house fixtures when there wasn’t room for the
Gaskell pre-programmed the A-rig lighting show during production full floor package at academies, or using a scaled down riser package to
rehearsals already done. He chuckled: “We had a great four or five days make as much room on stage as possible.
of building and programming - then we packed it down and didn’t use it These kinds of calls were made show-to-show and, as the O2 was by
for three months! The show doesn’t really translate when we scale down far the biggest venue on the run, the crew and band were quite literally
the rig, so I have different show files for the smaller stuff.” allowed to stretch their legs.
The C-rig of two Fly By Nite trucks expanded to seven for the O2 show, Gaskell continued: “Everybody loves this A-rig set. It’s a bit of a pain
which also necessitated a bigger crew. Colour Sound’s Joe Beardsmore to set up but it looks so unique once it’s done. It certainly makes things
– who also did some additional programming with Gaskell - and Simon more difficult that we’ve never had a run of setting it up, meaning it’s
Robertson were both on site, while Yose Lawson, Ben Love and Dave almost like you coming to it fresh every time. I was stood out front with
Jolly from Rigging Machine and the additional Colour Sound Experiment band’s manager and we both said how much of a shame it is that it
crew of Andy Melleney, Frankie McDade and James Hinde completed the looks so good and we’ve only used it a handful of times! It might still
line up. make an appearance because it seems a shame to completely get rid of
A 60ft wide front truss was floated just downstage of the bridge something that’s had so much effort go into it. Hopefully stays in some
fascia, which was made up from a trussing goalpost. Just upstage of form or another.”

70
‘From the production end I love using
LSH Spaces because there is enough
space in that big room for me to have
both my A and B rig systems set up’
-MATTHEW ROBERTS, PRODUCTION MANAGER

SENDING A MASSIVE APPRECIATION TO THE RUDIMENTAL GUYS AND CREW FOR NOT
JUST CHOOSING TO USE OUR SPACE BUT MAKING YOUR TIME WITH US EVENTFUL!

020 3333 4444


ATLAS WHARF
BERKSHIRE ROAD
LONDON, E9 5NB
100M FROM HACKNEY WICK OVERGROUND
...IN THE HEART OF THE EAST END BY THE A12
RUDIMENTAL

Monitor Engineer Stu Mac and FOH Engineer Rickey Ricketts; Fly By Nite and MM Band Services vehicles were at the O2 in force.

Rudimental once again chose PRG XL Video to provide screens, The V-DOSC setup was specified by the band’s FOH Engineer Rickey
cameras and control for the show. This included an upstage 12 metre Ricketts. He laughed: “I chose the V-DOSC because it’s got balls! I prefer
wide by 4.2 metre high screen, made of ROE MC-7 in XL Touring Frames, it to the smaller K2 as I’m one of those engineers that likes to move air,
and two six metre wide by 3.6 metre high IMAG screens, made of ROE MC- wherever you are in the arena. It wasn’t cost-effective for us to bring in K2
12 in XL Touring frames. The company also provided three Sony HXC-100 delays for a one-off show so we’re using the in-house ones. You will still
camera channels, four HDIYE mincams, and a Barco E2 screen switching feel it at the back of the room, don’t you worry!”
package. To control this powerful rig, Ricketts opted for a Soundcraft Vi6. He
PRG XL Video also provided six crewmembers: Director, Phil continued: “I’ve used so many consoles over the years and to me that’s
Woodhead; Engineer, Andrew Powell; E2 Programmer, Sam Jeffs; LED the warmest sounding digital desk. It’s on a par with the Midas PRO
Techs and Camera Operators Gareth Manicom and Colin Mudd; and Lead Series but I find it easier to set up. The Vi6 has been rock solid for me so
Camera Operator Lisa Baker. far.”
Phil Mercer, Project Manager at PRG XL Video, commented: “We’ve Following experimentation conducted during the band’s perpetual
been involved with Rudimental since they first introduced video into tour cycle, the crew settled on Audio-Technica microphones, which have
their live shows, and have thoroughly enjoyed working with Jonny since become “a big part of the band’s sound”, according to Ricketts.
Gaskell and Matty Roberts from the outset.” He chose Audio-Technica AE 6100’s for vocals ATM 350’s for horns, AE
The video and lighting setup was further accentuated by a laser 2500’s for the kick drum, AE 3000’s for the snare top and bottom, an ATM
package from ER Productions. This consisted of three Excellent 21 RGBB 450 for the hi-hat, ATM 350;s for rack and floor toms, an ATM 450 for the
ops laser units, a Pangolin Beyond control system, a smoke package and ride and ATM 4050’s for overheads.
an operator, Laser Technician, Chris Vickers. Unlike many of their ilk, Rudimental produce almost all of their
Ryan Hagen, Director at ER Productions, explained: “The band sound from live instruments, including a brass section, keyboards,
predominantly uses a three laser setup in it’s A-rig – one upstage centre drums, guitars and bass, and use only three tracks of external audio.
and two downstage left and right, a decision that comes from LD Jonny With the exception of the live drum kit and brass, all of the instruments
Gaskell. go through DI boxes into a mixture of Ableton and Apple MainStage
“As the A-rig shows are only now and again it’s difficult to have software. Rudimental uses this combination in the studio, allowing
everything pre-programmed. That’s why we use Pangolin Beyond. The the musicians on stage to match the exact sounds used on the band’s
software is quite comprehensive when you want to operate live, and that albums.
is exactly what we need for the Rudimental gigs we have been a part of.” Monitor Engineer Stu Mac explained: “It keeps everything true to
Pangolin Beyond lets the operator build a bank of presets that can be the record, which is a big priority for the Rudimental boys. To be fair, it
added to as time goes on, even updating effects on the day of the show, works really well and there are some nice sounds in there. Everything live
time permitting. is mic’d with ridiculously nice microphones as well. This keeps the job
relatively easy but it’s still a challenge with 11 of them on stage.”
FEEL THE LOVE This allows Ricketts and Mac to run a relatively quiet stage, with the
The tour was only the second time BCS Audio has provided a full PA band almost exclusively relying on Cosmic Ears in-ear monitors, bar the
system for Rudimental, though it has been supplying the band’s control L-Acoustics subwoofers used as side fill and a d&b audiotechnick sub for
package for some time. The O2 Arena show was scaled up to a total of the drummer.
60 L-Acoustics V-DOSC speakers from the usual 24 used on the rest of Mac said: “This means that the stage is quite comfortable for the
the tour, as well as 40 SB28 subwoofers. The in-house JBL VerTec delay guys, other than bowel-rattling subs! It’s to help Ricky out as well as the
speakers at the O2 were made use of, though the crew was confident band, because there’s a lot going on. The cleaner and simpler we can
they weren’t necessary from a volume point of view. source sounds, the better.”
BCS’s Dave Shepherd said: “What they call an arena in the Europe is The group plays to two click tracks, one for the drummer and one for
so varied that you sometimes have to quite drastically scale up. The O2 is the rest, and all have their own individual in-ear mixes. “The majority of
a perfect example, as it is almost double the size of some of the country’s the mixes are quite full and close to the studio tracks with their own parts
other arenas. The V-DOSC still gets to the back of the room but it’s good a little louder, though the specifics change track by track,” said Mac.
that the delays are there to help with definition at those very top seats. “We have scenes for every track and a couple of scenes within each
It’s a great sounding box and the newer amplifiers we supplied really got one. We have to be this detailed due to level discrepancies that can occur
the most out of them.” when using MainStage for guitars and bass in a live setting.“

72
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Adaptive_ThisGuy_TPI.indd 1 3/2/16 3:59 PM


RUDIMENTAL

If housing the 11-piece wasn’t enough, the stage also had to provide enough room for wooden speaker stacks, lamp posts and a telephone box.

WAITING ALL NIGHT Rudimental relied on Hull’s MM Band Services.


Although Pyrojunkies has supplied Rudimental with Magic FX Handheld Keeping the scaled-up production fed and watered was Eat To The
Streamers and confetti cannons for some time, the band wanted to Beat, with six staff on site including Head Chef, Dan Gamble. Throughout
make “a bigger impact” at their O2 Arena show, according to Sales and the day, the amount of mouths to feed rose dramatically, serving 30 for
Project Manager for Pyrojunkies, James Priddle. breakfast, 70 for lunch, and upwards of 80 for dinner, as well as providing
He explained: “After a few calls and emails with Matty Roberts, platters and snacks for the dressing rooms after the show.
we agreed on six Magic FX Superblaster XL Confetti Blowers and four Gamble said: “Aside from a few vegans and a few gluten free diet
Magic FX Stadium Shots. The Superblaster XLs were used with 17mm requets we have relative freedom. We’ll always look at the people we’re
by 55mm silver metallic confetti and the Stadium Shots were filled feeding and we know in general what different types of crewmembers
with multi-coloured streamers, again manufactured by Magic FX.” The like to have. Our chicken parmesan is a popular dish with this group, as
pyrotechnics expert on site for the company was Stu Wickens, fresh from are the pork chops with cider gravy and seafood linguine. It’s a great
his stint on the Jason Derulo tour (featured in TPi Issue 199). crew and everyone seems happy with what they’ve got to choose from.”
Another of the suppliers who has enjoyed a fruitful relationship with Having just made it on site in time for a healthy portion of ETTB’s vegan
the heavy-touring band and its production and management teams is cottage pie, I am certainly inclined to agree!
Rock-It Cargo. Although the company wasn’t heavily involved with the
O2 show in particular, Rock-It’s David Stone was on site to celebrate GO FAR
Rudimental’s biggest UK show. You could be forgiven for thinking that Rudimental would celebrate
He said: “Rudimental are hardworking and, as such, have a full-on their London homecoming, as well as the past few years on the road,
and often challenging schedule. To meet the tight deadlines and by dusting off their collective slippers and taking a day or two off. That,
demand for shows we often have more than one rig travelling to different however, is not the way this band rolls. Cue an almost breathless touring
destinations.” schedule that will take Rudimental to perform for their fans across the
“Management are well aware of the logistics that need to be US, Dubai, the Far East, Europe (again) and Australia, where the band
considered, so before committing to shows I’m often thrashing out enjoys widespread popularity.
budgets and schedules with Wilkie and Matty to come up with the most With this many shows on the cards and the crew’s itinerary’s
economical / workable shipping schedules. This ensures that they can looking relatively full until at least August 2016, it is hard to believe that
maximise the number of shows played, without compromising service Rudimental’s impressive A-rig has had it’s swan song at the O2 Arena.
levels or taking any unnecessary risks.” You never know, Gaskell could get his wish after all!
Stone continued: “When freighting large amounts of equipment TPi
around the world for time-specific moves, there’s lots of variables Photos: David Morrell
dependent on the country, flight availability, timelines, and customs, as www.rudimental.co.uk
well as the authorisations and permissions required. If processes aren’t www.bcsaudio.com
followed correctly, without the right planning it could mean a missed www.prg.com
show.” www.coloursound.co.uk
Fly By Nite first stared working with Rudimental in August 2013, and www.er-productions.com
provided seven trucks for the band’s London show, comprising two www.truestaging.co.uk
mega step trailers, four flat floor mega trailers and a mega curtain. www.pyrojunkies.com
FBN’s Matt Jackson said: “Matty Roberts has done an amazing job since www.rockitcargo.com
becoming PM, he is excellent at pre-planning and communicating on www.flybynite.co.uk
logistics so it makes the task in hand straightforward.” www.mmbandservices.co.uk
When it came to transporting crew and the band themselves, www.eattothebeat.com

74
Desired directivity
and better impulse response

KH3
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PRODUCTION PROFILE

Opposite: Off the back of a busy month of album promotion, The 1975 hit the UK with their visually stimulating live show; FOH Engineer Jay Rigby with the analogue
Midas XL4; Stage Manager Jack Dunnett; Lighting Crew Chief Josh Barnes; Monitor Engineer Francois Paré with Chris Hall, Monitor Technician.

THE 1975
Pushing the boundaries of LED capabilities, Cheshire’s alt-rock success story presented the UK
with a stunning visual tour to match the band’s energetic live show. TPi’s Stew Hume met the
crew behind one of the Britain’s worst kept secrets.

If you have not yet come across The 1975, that is guaranteed to change everyone got stuck in and worked really well together.”
over the coming months. Since late last year on the build up to the He went on to state that the band themselves were very easy to work
release of their second full length album, I Love It When You Sleep, with: “You might expect that with a younger band there would be a few
For You Are So Beautiful Yet So Unaware Of It, the UK four-piece have egos but it’s really not like that. It’s not what I was expecting and when I
undertaken a relentless touring schedule that has seen them perform was with them on the first UK tour it was a nice surprise how well we all
in venues across the globe. Off the back of various promotional TV got on.”
appearances on both sides of the Atlantic, the Cheshire boys headed For suppliers Lynch went for many companies he had previous
back to the UK, playing multiple nights in London, Manchester, experience with. “We have Fly By Nite for trucking who are a staple for me
Glasgow, Birmingham and Dublin. as is Eighth Day Sound for audio. As The 1975 are a new client so, their
management obviously wanted to explore different options to see what
SETTLE DOWN else could be brought to the table but, just like every other production
Heading up The 1975’s tour is Production Manager Dermot Lynch. manager, I have my relationships with certain companies and people
Brought in during the latter end of the first album cycle, Lynch began that I can trust. With Fly By Nite I know there are people there I can call at
working with the band as interest in the group sky rocketed. He four in the morning and they will be able to sort the problem. The same
explained: “On their first album I think they did something like 200 gigs, with Eighth Day Sound who are providing a global package.” For the tour
very much on a global scale. The band’s growth and busy schedule Flybynite supplied three Mega artics and a low ride 26 tonne rigid truck.
meant that they needed some advice and some more hands on deck.” Another supplier who both the band and Lynch have had prior
The PM’s name was put forward by The 1975’s Show Designer, Tobias experience with is EFM which has supplied the logistical needs for The
Rylander, who he got to know while working with French rock band, 1975 since their humble beginnings in 2012. The EFM team witnessed the
Phoenix. steady growth of the group through Europe and beyond, most notably
After several intense months with the band, Lynch explained that the in the US. The company started assisting with raising ATA Carnets and
current UK tour had been very relaxed. “February was always going to be advice on the most cost-effective US and international tour routings
album set-up month with lots of promo and we were dragging the crew which soon developed into the regular freighting of their backline and
back and forth to the US to do TV slots on Saturday Night Live and the production equipment. Most recently EFM used its pioneering in-house
Jimmy Fallon Show. When we came back to London to begin production system to raise an ATA carnet for the band with in excess of 4,500
rehearsals in Brixton Academy it was fairly busy as we were adding six items. Lynch commented: “They are a great team who always give you
backing vocals and a brass section. But by the first show everyone was confidence that the job will get done. In 12 years of working with them,
really relaxed and the opening night was a blinder. Everyone is happy to they have never failed to deliver, regardless of what I have thrown at
be here and it’s a great crew.” them.”
Apart from touring LD, Darren Purves, Lynch had worked with Despite Lynch’s tendency to veer towards the familiar, this tour
everyone in the crew before. He stated: “Everyone has gelled really well. presented the PM with a company he had not worked with before;
We were squeezing this large production into smaller areas and there lighting and video specialist VER. “VER had serviced the bands account
certainly were challenges. Perhaps it was a ‘war-time mentality’ but on the last album cycle so they were already one of the front-runners

77
THE 1975

With three hanging rectangle structures, four LED columns and a massive LED wall, the band’s Show Designer, Tobias Rylander, was able to create several looks that experi-
mented with the idea of forced perspective.

but the end decision to go with them ultimately came down to two Rylander explained the creative process behind this current tour. “Matt
reasons; firstly, was the product the could provide and secondly was [Healy, lead singer] and I had become good friends during the first tour
the competitive deal we struck. The nature of the show design was and he wanted to work with me again. For the last tour we had a very
very video heavy. There are a number of products on the market but black and white look so for this one we wanted to do the opposite - using
ultimately the WinVision Air 9mm is really what we wanted and VER is the lots of colour. We noticed that many of the fans, while posting pictures
biggest supplier of it.” Talking about working with VER for the first time, from the shows on the last tour on social media, were colourising
Lynch stated: “They have been super helpful. I have a tendency for going the images and using filters that often brought out blues and pinks in
with smaller complains but VER have been great on this run.” photos. So we took these photos as a starting point for graphing a colour
Spending more than one night in each venue created some logistical scheme. One other aspect that Matt wanted from the design was for the
issues. Stage Manager, Jake Dunnett, explained: “Due to the fact that set to look like an art instillation, so during the creation of the show we
we are spending so much time in each venue we have to send the trucks took inspiration from various artists such as James Turrell.”
away so we have the issue of storage. We are having to use every bit of The set design incorporated four LED columns as well as a giant 50
space in every venue. Also, with these recent runs there has also been sq ft LED back wall along with three hanging rectangular frames. “I knew
quite a fluctuation with venue size. But we are on top of it. We always that I wanted to work with video again for this tour but I wanted to use
have a meeting the day before we move into a new venue and discuss if the LED as the main light source for the show.” To achive this effect it
we can put in the full show (50 ft) or the reduced show (30 ft).” meant pushing the WinVision Air 9mm to the limits. Video Crew Chief, Ed
The current tour taking place in venues for several nights also meant Lawlor he talked TPi through the LED set up of the show. “We are actually
relying on local accommodation rather than tour busses but Lynch running the LED at 100%, which is something that rarely happens on
stated that, once the tour picks up for the mainland European leg, the a tour. The WinVision Air has been the perfect choice. Not only is it
bus supplier of choice will be Beat The Street. incredibly bright it is really light weight. It is something like 10kg per sq
Rounding up the production team was Production Coordinator metre.”
Elaine Byrne. Along with organising the crew travel, accommodation The LED towers themselves were built by Brilliant Stages. The role
and prepping the backs stage areas, Byrne explained some of the other of setting the towers up fell to Richard ‘Shaggy’ Ehmcke, LED Carpenter.
responsibilities she had for this band who’s popularity continues to rise: “The towers are my day and some of my night. The setup we have now
“We have a lot of fans that camp outside before the band arrives so there is much easer to the first design we had. The towers split in two. For the
is a need for a bit of extra security. We also make sure that anyone that top half the three panels are passed up. To make the towers used to be
does camp out gets wristbands to make sure they get in before anyone a three-man job but now I can run the operation by myself with some
else.” local crew which means the rest of the video crew can focus on their job.”
Lawlor explained that the stage set up had been created with festival
100% LED season in mind and the need for a set that could be wheeled out quickly
For this tour, The 1975 once again employed the services of Tobias and efficiently.
Rylander from Seven Design Works, to create the look for the show. While creating the looks for the show, Rylander collaborated with
Speaking from his LA base, Rylander explained how he met the English Content Creators Kerstin Hovland and Emery Martin from Electronic
quartet. “I first got involved with the band back in 2013,” began Rylander. Conuntermeasures. Hovland stated: “Tobias brought us in to the project
“They had never really had any production or even any lighting design early when he was still sketching the set. He drew it out for us during
so I had to bring them through that whole process and explained what the first meeting and we were very excited to work on the project as
could and couldn’t be done. The last design I did for them was quite we are always seeking to bring video out of the familiar realms. The
daring as it used projection, which meant you needed a lot of smoke.” LED columns gave the band a real physical way to be inside the video

78
THE 1975

Frontman, Matt Healy, entertained the crowd with his signature energetic performance; Eighth Day Sound provided audio for the tour including
a d&b audiotechnik J-Series PA system.

elements.” The creation of the set design happened while the band were that is looking to move into arenas, that is incredibly light these days.”
finishing recording their second album. Rylander said: “The studio where For the tour Lawrerence used 36 CM Lodestar Motor Hoists. Although VER
the band was recording was only 20 minuets from my house so I could were to main supplier, the rigging supplies came from Actus Industries
keep the band updated with ideas as well as popping in to hear some who have a working relationship with VER.
new music.”
One of the elements throughout the show that Rylander was keen to LIGHTING
explore was the idea of forced perspective and false shadows. “One of With such a LED heavy show, Rylander needed to create a lighting show
the main inspirations came from Stanley Kubrick and they way he shoots that could punch through the content streamed on the various video
his films. When video content moves through the various LED surfaces surfaces. He explained: “I needed fixtures to be very bright and strong
we play with the perspective by using false shadows on the back wall.” because nothing really punched through the video screens when it was
As effective as some of these looks where, Rylander commented running at 100%.”
that using multiple surfaces to produce the video content did cause Josh Barnes, Lighting Crew Chief, talked through the various
some logistical issues. “It was a lot of work to get the show looking right elements of the rig. “The lighting is pretty clean cut and the trusses are
especially with the looks that focussed on perspective as well as finding not over crowded. Everything has got a purpose and its very specific.
the right LED product that could line up seamlessly at 90 degrees. The We have 63 Solaris LED Flare full size units, which we are running at
show content also had to be scalable so the set could be reduced to the maximum 12 pixel mode. Thirty of the Flares have been built into
fit into smaller venues. But I am super happy with it. It’s going to be our custom risers and in the back of the four LED towers. We also have
interesting to see where it goes when the they move into arenas.” quite a few of the Flares in the rig.” Barnes went on to highlight the other
According to Lynch, the need for the exact placement for all the aspects of the rig which included 28 Impression GLP X4 Bar 20’s, four Clay
various set pieces for the show required the inclusion of someone that Paky Alpha Spot 1500 HPEs, 36 Clay Paky Sharpy Wash 330’s and 16 Clay
was a stickler for detail. Enter Tour Rigger, Simon Lawerence. “The main Paky Mythos. For a flowspot a PRG BadBoy was deployed.
concern for me is the three structures that we have flying overhead. Launching both video and lighting from FOH was Lighting Director,
Once I work out the positions in each venue, I then map the rest of the Darren Purves. “I have actually known the band for a long time as
set around them. To be honest, on this tour I spend more time on CAD friends,” explained Purves. “Once things started happening for them I
mapping out the stage then I do actually rigging the show. The show got the offer to come and work with the band. I was there during the first
itself is very light. Including the PA it’s only 10.5 tonnes. For a production album cycle and then half way through that period, Tobias got brought

79
THE 1975

LED team, Jack Gambino, Tim Brennan, Richard ‘Shaggy’ Ehmcke and Ed Lawlor; FOH Engineer, Jay Rigby; LD, Darren Purves; Production Manager, Dermot Lynch;
Production Coordinator, Elaine Byrne; Tour Rigger, Simon Lawerence; Sarah’s Kitchen’s Paddy Cullen and Vicky Lee.

in and we started working together. Purves’ control came from an MA vocal dubbing with the Lexicon by Harman PCM-92 Digital Effects
Lighting grandMA full size with a grandMA Light as a back up. Processor and two TC Electronics D-Two Digital Delay. “With digital desks
For media servers, the production made use of two Hippotizer V4’s you are able to save all effects as snap shots but with this analogue set
(one as the main and the other for back up). Purves went on to explain up I change through songs by flicking through the pre-set effects on
the importance of time code for this particular show. “Due to the fact the outboard gear. I personally find that with digital consoles you get
there is a lag on the servers and we are using a lot of the LED surfaces buried in the desk. You press next and you’re not completely sure what is
as fixtures essentially, everything has to line up with hits. The time code changing. That’s not the case with analogue, as it’s all set out in front of
takes the 4/5 frame lag out of the proceedings. There are some rhythm you.”
elements that I control from the MA, and I always have control of the One element that Rigby was nervous about losing by making the
molefays and followspot, but the majority of the show is time coded.” switch to analogue from digital was the lack of ability to run ‘digital
The LD also commented on his experience with VER. “When Tobias sound checks’ with the recording functionality available on most
first got brought in to work for the band and added in various video modern consoles. “Being able to go into a room, set up, and then play
elements, this started the relationship with VER. They have really looked back the show from the day before is a great way to feel the room out
after us over the years. They have got a massive stock and are able to and much more effective than having the backline guys making some
virtually supply everything we ask for. You turn up to another continent noise. So I brainstormed with the guys from Eighth Day Sound to come
and you know everything is going to be right.” up with a solution and we settled on three Focusrite Rednet 2 Units. With
16 analogue channels in and out, it gives me the a 48 channel use. I then
THE SOUND take all those individual tracks over Dante and record them using Waves
FOH Engineer Jay Rigby was brought onto the project after being put Tracks Live. This is great for the band as well as once in a while they will
forward by the tour’s audio supplier. “Our Monitor Engineer Francois try out a new song and want to hear it back so they can all come to FOH
Paré, our Monitor Tech Chris Hall and I have all worked on various tours and listen to the recording from the night before and we can work out if
together before, so when Dermot was looking for people for this new it’s sounding they way they want.”
crew we got the call. It’s been great! The band are such nice guys, really For PA, the tour was carrying a d&b audiotechnik J-Series, which
down to earth people. It’s a really family which is important with a consisted of 28 d&b J8’s and eight d&b J12’s that were flown, with
schedule like this one, where we a together for 14 months.” eight d&b Y10Ps for the ground front fills along with a ground sub array
“We could not have done this tour without the support of Eighth Day. containing 12 d&b B22 subs. Rigby commented: “We have replaced the
Especially with their offices in the UK, US and Australia, the gear they older B2 subs with the B22’s. It’s the same design with a single amplifier
have provided has been perfect.” channel but it’s a much higher output thanks to the new drivers they
For control, Rigby opted to go for an analogue Midas XL4. “For the have in there.”
last couple of tours I have been mixing on an analogue desk when I can. Rigby explained that the crew used d&b audiotechnik array
Obviously sometimes you can’t always use analogue when you are in processing for this tour: “Array Processing looks at the room, works out
smaller venues or lots of fly days but when we are able to have the space how far you need to shoot and any obstacles that may be in the way,
I always opt for the Midas,” explained Rigby. “It’s the best sounding desk and gives you even coverage and tonality from the front to the back. It
out there. There are no computer screens and you get to just look up at sounds great anywhere in the room, it really takes everything to the next
the band playing the show.” Rigby discussed what the band need in their level.”
mix. “For their live show they are really looking for it to sound as close to At monitor world, TPi met up with Monitor Engineer Francois Paré,
the album as possible.” the man who is responsible with handling the large amount of wireless
To accomplish this, he uses vocal effects from various pieces of frequencies on stage. “Virtually everyone has got a wireless pack on
outboard gear including the Eventide H-8000S Effects Processor for this tour from, band to crew. I have a total of 40 frequencies that I have

80
THE 1975

to deal with every day, which includes IEMs, radio microphones and Sarah’s Kitchen. “Sarah’s Kitchen were new to me for this tour,” stated
instruments. I use the Shure Axient system that helps manage and co- Lynch. “I have known Sarah herself for many years and while we were
ordinate all various RF.” Paré went on to explain that with such an LED rehearsing at LS-Live we got to know them as a catering company. They
heavy show, presents some issues in terms of wireless transmission. He have been fantastic for this tour.” On the road representing Sarah’s
continued: “I have to make sure that all the frequencies are split up. The Kitchen was Chef Paddy Cullen and Vicky Lee who was responsible for
low 500 MHz and high 400 MHz is kind of where my problems are with the kitchen’s front of house duties. Cullen, who has been with Sarah’s
the LED so I try and make sure I have very few in that range.” In terms of Kitchen for over three years, talked TPi through his experience with the
IEMs the tour opted for the Shure PSM 1000’s. All crew also had talk-back tour: “We are doing the UK dates on this tour which has been slightly
microphones as well as the drummer, guitarist and bassist and the stage different as we are doing several nights in the same city. I personally
right session musician. For on-stage monitoring, Paré deployed four d&b prefer to be on the move although it has been nice to have a bit more
audiotechnik B2 subs with two d&b M2’s at centre stage all of which are time in the morning!”
only used for the bottom end. “Everyone is on in-ears so the side fills As TPi left the show via a backstage door, an audible groan of
are just so the band can feel the mix and the wedges by Matt are there disappointment came from the crowds of young fans hoping to catch a
simply because the side fills can’t reach the centre of the stage.” glimpse of the band - a humbling experience if ever there was one! But
For control Paré used a DiGiCo SD5 with a Bricasti M7 Reverb and while battling through the crowd, the sheer passion that this band’s
a Yamaha SPX-990 Digital Effects Processor for effects. “My DiGiCo is fan-base has for the group certainly suggests that The 1975’s recent
a great sounding board with all the facilities on it. It sounds nice and success-story is far from over. With their sights firmly set on arenas, it
it’s easy to work with for snap shots. The mixing itself is very snap shot will be interesting to see where they take their impressive live show once
based. There are simply too many people on stage not to rely on that they hit the bigger stages...
method. My main focus throughout the show is Matt’s mix. For now I TPi
am sticking with the SD5 as it will be great for festival season unless the Photos by Adam Powell
band decides to add more people on stage.” www.the1975.com
For vocal microphones the band opt to use the new Shure KSM8 www.8thdaysound.com
Dualdyne, the worlds first dual diaphragm dynamic handheld mic, www.verrents.com
which Paré reported are great to work with. The backing vocalists, which http://sevendesignworks.com
were a new addition for this tour, used wireless SM58. For audience www.ecminteractive.com
microphones Paré deployed two Shure VP89M Shotgun and two KSM www.brilliantstages.com
32’s. www.flybynite.co.uk
www.beatthestreet.net
CATERING www.sarahskitchentouring.com
Keeping the band and crew fed on this run was UK catering company www.efm-worldwide.com

Studio grade remote controlled mic pres

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or its subsidiaries in the United States and/or other countries

81
ROAD DIARIES

ED WARREN
Lighting Designer, Mumford & Sons

best job in the world. But touring South America definitely separates the
wheat from the chaff.
We get to the festival after an hour’s drive and are greeted with the
news that the lighting crew won’t be on site for another two hours, as
they had a “difficult night” last night. Cue two more hours of waiting
around with no information, patch sheets, or power for that matter. The
merch guy and I spend much of this time tactically locating the strongest
wifi with which to watch the football later.
By the way, don’t misread this, I’m still not complaining. I love my
job and I’m no cynic, but you really must prepare yourself for the worst
in some cases. Get on with things the best you can, grin and bear it and
store it all deep inside, hoping that one day TPi to ask you to write a
column...
Once the local crew arrives, there’s another 30 minutes or so before
they acknowledge my presence, and I definitely don’t get any kind of
apology. I get hold of the patch sheets, I get my desk plugged in, and I get
control of the rig (or whichever parts of it still work). Some lights broke
last night and won’t be replaced, which is a major MFT (My First Tour)
on their part, so a lot of creative patching, morphing and cloning is the
name of the game.
I check in with my friend who is LD for the headline band on the other
main stage and she’s having an almost identical day, which saddens yet
comforts me. Kinda warms me up. I don’t take any of the crew’s actions
personally, and it almost endears me to them. They’re actually pretty
nice guys, this is just the way they are and the way it will be today.
Having completed my tasks within my designated time despite the
two hour delay, we all get the van back to the hotel. I’ve had a poolside
burger, I’ve FaceTimed the loved ones, I’ve had a power nap and had a
shower. Back on site, refreshed, and the day’s earlier battles have faded
away. Noel Gallagher is on the other stage during our changeover, which
provides a perfect soundtrack amid the changeover chaos.
“I’M AN ALLIGATOR...” The show comes and despite a few insignificant (accidental) colour
scrolls on my behalf and the constant re-lamping of lights mid-song, it’s
Woken at 5:30am sharp by David Bowie’s Moonage Daydream. He’s the an absolute wonder-smash of a concert. The band’s first appearance
only man on earth who could startle me at such a hellish hour without in this country is met with an overwhelming reaction throughout, and
feeling the full brunt of my wrath, hence his home on my alarm. I’m a at one point I’m brought to tears. Although that might be due to almost
good early riser, I have a routine. My bags will have been packed the crippling tiredness.
night before, clothes laid out, toothpaste on the toothbrush. It pays to When all is wrapped up I find the local guys I’ve been working with
be a little bit obsessive when your brain is still trying to get itself to sleep and thank them. They return the gesture and we all leave with smiles
following last night’s late loadout. on our faces because, at the end of the day, it’s that 90 minutes, that
Touring South America with an internationally successful band performance and that crowd that matters the most. After load out we all
has its ups and downs. On the one hand you get to visit the colourful, get in the van, buzzing off the band’s response backstage, to be met with
vibrant, electric countries, with their beautifully welcoming and overly the news that lobby call is in two hours.
enthusiastic crowds. On the other are the late shows with late finishes,
early flights with early starts, every technical and practical difficulty you Ed Warren
could imagine, and of course Montezuma’s Revenge (aka the sh*ts).
Almost every member of our almost 30-strong crew has been struck
down at least once in the last few months spent in South America and
South Africa. Some more than others. One described his arse as being
“like a defensive squid”. No matter how careful you are - keeping your
mouth closed during a shower, avoiding ice cubes in your drinks, and
using bottled water to brush your teeth - it always finds you in the end.
I’m not complaining, not in the slightest. My insides could be outside
and my brain could be falling out of my feet and I’d still think I’ve got the

82
IN PROFILE
BEDFORD GUITARS

Opposite: Apprentice Luke Tomlinson with Bedford Guitars owner, Dean Rowbotham.

IN PROFILE: BEDFORD GUITARS


When his days as a backline tech were drawing to a close, Dean Rowbotham, owner of
guitar repair and cable manufacturing business Bedford Guitars, had a tough decision to
make. A gap in the market for the niche area he’d become an expert craftsman in eventually
made the decision for him. TPi’s Kelly Murray paid the workshop a visit…

Touring is undoubtedly a lifestyle choice: a living undertaken with do it! When he explained that I’d be setting up backline and re-stringing
passion and dedication to a life in motion. Although circumstances guitars, I thought, “Well, I can do that... and you’re going to pay me?”
may dictate the longevity of time spent living on a bus, it’s rare for Suddenly I was on a six-week tour of America with BMTH. I absolutely
people to leave the industry altogether. Just as one would have loved touring. I’ve got some amazing memories and met some of my very
had to adapt to life on the road, when the time comes to hang up best friends through touring, but I found that it was getting harder to get
your laminate, one must also readjust to life off the road, and hone any better at my job on the road because I was in a different venue every
specialist knowledge into a different career path. Around eight day and I didn’t have time to stop and think for very long. As a backline
months ago, Dean Rowbotham, head honcho at Sheffield-based tech, you’re always trying to learn so I started Bedford Guitars just so
Bedford Guitars, found himself in that very position. that I could have a workshop at home when I wasn’t on the road.”
In a quaint mill unit in the centre of the South Yorkshire city stands It was a difficult decision to stop touring. He furthered: “I was getting
a little known workshop where Rowbotham creates customised guitar the schedule details through for Bring Me The Horizon’s tour [TPi January
cables for touring backline techs, retail outlets and musicians of all 2016 cover story] at the same time my fiancé’s visa was being accepted,
abilities following his own successful career as a backline tech. Having and I had to really think about what I wanted out of life. She was moving
established the company in 2012 while juggling tour duties, only in the over from America - I met her when I was on tour actually. I wouldn’t
last few months has the business become his full time concern, offering change my time touring for anything and if it suits your lifestyle you’ll
debatably unrivalled services to those in the know. On a bitterly cold have the most incredible time, but I decided that I wanted to be at home
morning over a mug of Yorkshire tea (and a TPi brownie!) Rowbotham with her and our dog and really make a go of my business.”
explained: “My first guitar teching job was for Bring Me The Horizon There are currently three strings to the Bedford Guitars bow: guitar
[BMTH] in 2008. They were quite different to every other band in the repairs, tour consultation, and manufacturing - which includes custom
city, they were doing everything their own way. They got my attention design. “A lot of bands don’t have the budget for tour managers or
immediately because they were incredible guitarists. They used to come backline techs so I do workshops and show them how to maintain their
into the old guitar shop I worked in and I’d help them out however I could gear on the road until they get to the point when they can take someone
with their amps and guitars. out with them. We also recommend techs from our known network to
“The guitar shop got bought out by a bigger corporate company who help to maintain quality.”
quickly changed it from a really cool place to hang out, where you could The manufacturing side is all done from their cosy workshop, and
play and trade guitars, to a catalogue type guitar shop. I got a written the concentration on the company has paid off, enabling an expansion
warning once for refusing to up-sell a Chinese guitar to a young kid who from pure guitar work, to servicing amps, building custom pedal boards,
already knew what he wanted to buy. After that I handed in my notice,” playback systems and the trickiest of custom cables.
he added. Said Rowbotham: “We’re aiming to become an internationally
This experience allowed the six-string enthusiast the freedom to get recognised brand which produces reliable and unique products, a brand
out and pursue his curiosity for touring. He set up a splitter van business that collaborates with creative minds and builds close relationships with
after purchasing and renovating his first vehicle and spent two years our customers.”
driving through Europe with the likes of Neurosis, Mono and Planes In the name of brand awareness, Bedford Guitars has recently moved
Mistaken For Stars, even forming his own band, The Mirimar Disaster. into the trade and retail stockist market. Continued Rowbotham: “We
“After we disbanded I got an email from Sheep, who was BMTH’s first offer a lifetime warranty, it’s all about offering high quality gear that’s
Tour Manager. He asked me if I wanted to be a guitar tech. I didn’t know gonna last a really long time. If one did ever break, we’d give you another
what a ‘guitar tech’ was at the time so I told him I wasn’t sure if I could free. That’s always appealing for stockists because they know they can

85
BEDFORD GUITARS

With its craftmanship, the company has established a clientele which includes retail and trade stockists, as well as the ability to build any given cable design for musicians.

put faith in you, even as a small business.” Philippakis added: “Since Dean built my rig, it’s never sounded so good.”
With its craftmanship, the company has established a clientele Although clearly attached to all of his creations, a tale that makes
which includes retail and trade stockists, as well as the ability to build Rowbotham come over somewhat humbled is his experience with the
any given cable design for musicians. Rich Tone of Sheffield is a good late Lemmy of Motörhead. He said: “When I was with BMTH, we went
example of our venture in retail.” Rich Tone’s David Stockdale explained from playing gigs like extreme metal festivals in Finland to getting slots
the decision to take on the products: “We were excited when Dean at Reading and Leeds festivals quite quickly, so I suddenly found myself
approached us with a view to us selling his cables - not only because of working on the same stages as Aerosmith, AC/DC and Motörhead. It
his vast professional experience with touring bands, but also because was really exciting for me because I’d get to see the gear everyone was
we really saw a place in the market for high quality, locally made cables using! I was taking photos of Lemmy’s bass rig at Sonisphere in Italy
at a reasonable price. When we actually got our hands on the cables, we once, and his tech Tim Butcher was wondering what I was doing! Lemmy
were astounded by how good they were. From the unique, high quality famously didn’t use any pedals, he literally just turned it up loud and
packaging, through to the quality of the components and high standard played his strings as hard as he could but as he was ageing he needed
of workmanship, it was clear that quality and attention to detail were a solution to create that signature sound without having to play so
high on the list of priorities. aggressively. I asked if I could make a bespoke pedal for him and they
“The cables have also created a bit of a stir in-store with our gave me a shot, so I built a pedal with a friend. I’m told that Lemmy kept
customers. Not only because they get a chance to test and feel the it in his rig until he passed away. He also invited me and my Dad to the
quality of the cables, but also with the vast array of configuration show when they played in Manchester, which will always be one of my
options available, there’s a cable to satisfy just about any need a happiest memories.”
customer may have. It’s always good to know that we have a very good As for the growth of the business, Rowbotham is keen to slowly
chance of helping a customer out - no matter how bizarre their cable train up a new generation in backline engineering. This plan came into
needs may be!” fruition when he advertised to take on an apprentice. The results were
Indeed, Bedford Guitars’ interactive cable builder - found on its both reassuring that there was an interest, and maddening at just how
website - allows for a trail of unique orders to be handmade in Sheffield much backline hopefuls were willing to give. Rowbotham explained:
for customers from all over the world. “People applied for the position from all over the world. I had applicants
Rowbotham elaborated: “Most systems, whether a simple from Sydney and Tokyo, people were willing to move to the other side
pedalboard or a full system that is split between A and B rigs, takes a of the world to sit with me in my workshop in Sheffield and learn more
lot of time to plan out. It’s not a case of just throwing a load of money at about guitars. I wasn’t really expecting anyone to apply, so when that
it and hoping for the best. It takes time and knowledge to understand happened it was pretty overwhelming!”
about the voltages and specific needs for the rigours of touring. We build The lucky candidate was from a little closer to home, Yorkshire’s very
rigs with that knowledge at the forefront. It’s a very in-depth service that own Luke Tomlinson, 22, who has been learning his craft primarily as a
comes with over 10 years of challenging touring experiences.” cable maker for the last year. Rowbotham concluded: “I think three years
Bedford Guitars has worked with bands as diverse as The Prodigy, down the line we’ll have more staff and we’ll be looking at manufacturing
Arctic Monkeys, Alt J, All Time Low and Foals to name but a few. TPi pedal boards and guitars of our own. This is just the beginning.”
asked Foals frontman Yannis Philippakis’ Guitar Tech, Jack Hughes, to No matter how well known the brand goes, there’s no doubt that
explain how the service enhances their tours: “I met Dean several years Bedford Guitars will remain in Sheffield; a homegrown, organic work
back when he was working for BMTH. He helped me out with some ethic is the essence of its creative force. So like the website encourages,
amplifier modifications on my JCM 800. He was so knowledgeable and if you’re in the neighbourhood, pop in with any queries - no doubt a pot
his enthusiasm was great so when I was asked to build a new rig for Foals of Yorkshire tea will be brewing.
I went straight to Dean with my ideas. His attention to detail and the TPi
service he offers is second to none - I think the products and service he Photos: Tom Sykes
offers the bands, crew and musicians on every level is exceptional.” www.bedfordguitars.com

86
Headoffice Austria: joerg@beatthestreet.net | klaus@beatthestreet.net | hannes@beatthestreet.net
Office UK Buses: tim@beatthestreet.net | garry@beatthestreet.net www.beatthestreet.net
Office UK Cars & Vans: ian@beatthestreet.net | mark@beatthestreet.net
INTERVIEW

88
DAVE SHADOAN, SOUND IMAGE

Opposite: United Audio Companies - the UAC alliance - joined forced for the transatlantic Imagine Dragons outing.

DAVE SHADOAN, SOUND IMAGE

Audio rental and install specialist, Sound Image, was initially founded by Ross Ritto and Joel
Silverman in 1971 under the name Silverfish Audio Associates. A decade later, the company
was renamed Sound Image with new partner Dave Shadoan - now President - and the
company was moulded into a North American market leader.

In a quiet Italian restaurant in the even quieter, picturesque setting of school I was a saxophone player and when we tuned the orchestra I
Del Mar in San Diego county, California, TPi’s Kelly Murray spoke with was the one they always picked because I could tune very easily. When
Shadoan about his early career, the company’s phenomenal growth I was younger I was in a lot of bands. When I started working, Ross had
and the transatlantic importance of the newly-formed UAC alliance - a a big influence right until he sadly passed away in 2009. Then there’s
partnership with UK-based rental house, SSE. Mike Adams [tour sound designer] who still works for me today - after 44
years!
You’re one of the most well known people in the pro audio industry,
where did your story begin? What made you want to become a monitor engineer?
I left home at 18 and moved to California. Through friends of friends I I always liked mixing monitors because it kept me very close to the
ended up meeting someone who would become my business partner, clients. Sometimes I would get a job with a band that I couldn’t actually
Ross Ritto, in 1978 and we became very good friends. He already had work with because I had my own sound company. It was more important
some business partners, but we started discussing the possibility of for us to grow the business, so I’d rather deal the musicians themselves,
him and I working together and I had started to invest money into his directly. I became good friends with many bands over the years because
sound rental company. His original partner had already been bought out of how I viewed touring as a business and in over 30 years of mixing
and together we bought out the other partner. In 1981 we re-named the sound I was never fired.
company Sound Image. Ross had been mixing big bands since 1971 and
because I wanted to go on the road, he taught me. What was your analogue board of choice when you started out?
Most of the desks were home built, because in those days not many
When you embarked on a career in live music and concert touring, people were making them but Billy Thompson and Dave Malloy, the
who were your main influencers? founders of Ashly Audio actually made our boards. Suddenly people
In those days it was all analogue, all done by ear so it wasn’t as were making partnerships and that was the beginning manufacturers
complicated as it is now. I was a musician firstly, and I had perfect pitch thinking, “there’s this whole other world out here!” Nobody made their
according to my music teacher, Mrs. Smith. When I was in junior high own speakers or took them on tour so we started to make our own

89
DAVE SHADOAN, SOUND IMAGE

Sound Image provided the very first EAW Anya system for Tom Petty’s most recent North American tour.

speakers; we’d buy amplifiers from a manufacturer but they were never At the point when you were experimenting with speakers, providing
up to the rigours of what we had to do on the road. Originally speakers rental equipment and mixing monitors, how many people was Sound
were only designed for use in a living room, so we had to adapt them. Image relying on to operate the business in comparison to the market
We used to call it ‘hot rodding’. That was our nickname for fixing up demands today?
manufacturers’ products to withstand the rigours of riding in a truck and In the very beginning, there was only between six and eight people but
being played loud on stage. It was all a learning curve; I remember one now we employ several hundreds. In order to do as many tours as we do
time in Canada it was -25°C and we pulled up at 8am but nothing would at one time, with a fully supportive, excellent service, it takes hundreds
operate at that cold temperature. I can remember the cables being and hundreds of staff.
frozen like an ice cube. So we had to wait until 11am to pull them off the
trucks! The company started in live sound, at what point did you start doing
installations too?
Were people taking notice of the problems you were coming up Because of the slow season of touring in those days we needed to find
against for the progression of the industry? another way to drive revenue between November - December. So we
Yes, you’ll often hear people say that Sound Image were pioneers. It’s started doing installations. We had done them all along but when we
a relative term. We were creating and learning but what we were really officially said we were going to do it for real and really concentrate on
doing was making mistakes, and then fixing them, it in 1989, we started the integrated systems
figuring out what the next mistake might be and division of Sound Image. To this day, it’s the same.
pre-empting it, until it got to the point where It’s almost a separate company because we
the bigger manufacturers thought we would pay don’t share resources. In other words, our touring
them to do it. I think it was 1982 when we started guys don’t come off the road and do installs, and
buying power amplifiers from QSC. When they
“We would buy amplifiers install guys don’t do live sound roles. They’re
started making amplifier parts and we tried their from a manufacturer but all trained differently. Some of our live sounds
products, it was the first time something had guys have ended up in the install division once
actually worked without us having to do a lot
they were never up to the they’ve quit touring and that’s probably a fairly
of stuff to it. Necessity is the mother of invention. rigours of what we had to do substantial number. It’s a life choice, and some
I think we all learned that phrase because we people get sick of living on a bus in the end, if
made what we could until we realised we had to
on the road.” they want to be at home with their families for
make it better or get someone else to. Dave Shadoan instance.

90
DAVE SHADOAN, SOUND IMAGE

L to R: Mike Sprague, Director of Touring, Sound Image; John Penn, MD SSE; Dave Shadoan, President Sound Image;
Jesse Adamson, Business Development Sound Image; Yan Stile Hire Director SSE; Dan Bennett, Project Manager SSE.

With people wanting to stop touring, do you place a big emphasis on fence. I had a son when I was very young whose mother unfortunately
training to bring the next generation of pro audio talent in? passed away. He never saw me much at all because he grew up with me
Certainly, we have interns from universities and they all go through a being gone all the time. I got remarried and had a daughter but I was a
process before they go to a show. Some people are amazing and it’ll take different type of father then; I was at home and my daughter had me all
them just six months but on average, it takes students around a year to my time. Funnily enough it does run in the family - my son has worked for
learn the ropes. When they come out of school they sometimes think the company for 22 years!
they know everything but what they couldn’t possibly know is what it’s
like to live on a bus, what it’s like to stand next to all the other people on At what point did you become connected with John Penn and SSE in
a tour and be told, “I don’t like the way you’re doing your job.” order to form UAC – United Audio Companies?
On an average tour there’s 20-30 people travelling but on really big tour Quite recently. We’d tried doing things in the UK several times over the
it’s hundreds. It does become a family and there’s no such thing as a years - in the past I’ve worked with Bryan Grant of Britannia Row who I
non-dysfunctional family. Many people want to be a part of this industry became good friends with, there was Chris Fitch of Skan PA and Dave Kay
but it’s the people who understand the family side of touring and who at Adlib. I was very fond of Dave. When Jesse [Adamson, Sound Image
don’t burn bridges that are going to have a much longer life span on the Director of Business Development] came to work for me, it opened the
road. door up. We thought we could be stronger with SSE as a group than
as individual companies. I always used to say you don’t want to turn
So can part of a roadie’s success be attributed to personality? over a rock and find someone else under it. Leave it alone. I’d rather
I spent many years on the road and I enjoyed it all until the day I didn’t, have friends in business and say it was all done in fair play than be the
and I knew that day. It was 19 September 2001. The tour was supposed big winner and have everyone hate me at the end of the day. Life is
to do shows on 9/11. For whatever reason I got up to get on the flight somewhat about fairness.
and the singer of the band called me at 6am. He said, “Do you have your
TV on? I don’t think we’re going anywhere…” Right when I turned my TV is So with fairness in business in mind, what are you hoping to achieve
when the second plane hit the tower. I stopped and started watching. I with this partnership?
couldn’t believe what was happening. We want to be able to provide more service and grow our businesses. It’s
On 16 September the tour flew into Florida and played the scheduled as simple as that. At the end of the day, the UAC will evolve. I’m not quite
shows. When I got home I said I don’t want to do this anymore, be a sure what the end result is really, because we’re so new, but over 10 tours
sound engineer. I decided to put my focus on the company itself. We had later, the clients seems to like it…
so many clients that it was an easy decision; the hard bit was so tough TPi
because it was a lifetime of that line of work I had to leave behind. I was Photos: Tom Martin, Mirza Noormohamed and SSE.
so torn but to this day I don’t have any regrets at all. I got to do the best of www.sound-image.com
both worlds. I spent almost 30 years touring so I can see both sides of the www.uac.global

91
CLOCKING OFF

Jerry Gilbert

THE LONDON MARATHON


I never knew the meaning of true pain until I started training for my one and only London Marathon.

I either have to admit to being bonkers or simply fess up to the fact leafy trails and Grand Union Canal towpaths I never knew existed. This
that this was on a Bucket List - that curious modern phenomenon that should have prepped me nicely for my local half at the weekend, but 48
does crazy things to people’s judgment and sense of invincibility. hours before the event I inexplicably started projectile vomiting with
Besides, there was a morbid curiosity in finding out whether the such ferocity I thought I was waving goodbye to half my small intestine.
ravages of my dissolute early rock ‘n’ roll lifestyle - starting when I joined Ignoring all sagely advice to scratch I dragged my body to the start line,
Melody Maker in 1969 and ending when I joined the local running club in virtually foodless for two days, weak as a bled calf and feeble as a fish.
2014 - had been vanquished by the new world of nutrients, nootropics I quickly learnt that a palsied body cannot involuntarily shed half
and night training that I now populate. a stone in body weight, virtually overnight, without payback. For eight
Having missed out in the general ballot, I opted for a charity place. miles I kept up with the two-hour pacer. Then I hit that imaginary
After churning around inside the ‘Charity Machine’ on a turbo-charged runner’s nightmare known as the wall, and my platoon of jellybabies,
spin cycle I quickly became disillusioned as mandatory minimum armed or not, were no match. I didn’t just slow down, I pretty much
sponsorship targets seemed to rise to stratospheric proportions. It all stopped. I had simply run out of fuel. The ignominy of recording a ‘DNF’
seemed a bit like commercial exploitation on steroids - but perhaps I was seemed marginally worse than doing the last three mile ‘walk of shame’
just being naïve. to get over the finish line, as droves of weekend joggers wafted past me,
Anyway, I was all set to throw in the towel (or run for Save The Rhino disseminating more sympathy for my evident plight than if I had just
in a daft Kigurumi rhino onesie) when I was introduced to a newish and been bereaved. Alan Sillitoe’s iconic book The Loneliness of the Long
locally-based charity called Carers Worldwide. These guys strive to Distance Runner came into sharp focus (and I must remember to share
improve support and recognition for anyone living with the challenges of that memory with his daughter Sue when I see her in Frankfurt).
caring for a family member, but specifically in developing countries like But running is nothing if not a great leveller. Suitably replenished
India and Nepal. I hit it off with them straight away - they weren’t seeking and able to digest more than chicken soup and dry toast again, I am
the earth in sponsorship money and I felt I still had enough mates to get now ready for my next challenge. This will be a mighty 20-miler around
me over the line (financially speaking anyway). Windsor’s Dorney Lake in the company of my old chum, David Atkinson
And so I tripped through the Stargate into a world from Sennheiser. As it’s more or less a home fixture for
of carb packing, electrolyte gels and getting proper him, I’ll probably let him win. I chose Dorney for that
‘porridged up’ before each major run. I pouched a weekend (in preference to the alternatives) because
couple of 10-milers, and fuelled with confidence, I’d seen the Olympic Rowing stuff and, being smart, I
I then went for a 17-mile training trot around the
villages of Hemel Hempstead. This took me so far into DONATE figured lakes rarely flow up hills (which seemed like a
good thing).
unchartered waters that all the gels, whey proteins,
energy shakes and Endurox (which sounded like an
upmarket enema) did little to repair the agony of
HERE
www.justgiving.com/
Then someone described the route as “bleak”, the
perpetual three-mile laps as “boring” and the fact
that it is exposed and “prone to high winds”. Maybe
these 67-year-old legs. Jerry-Gilbert/ the hilly Bedford alternative (which I turned down)
I have since run two half marathons, the more wouldn’t have been such a bad alternative after all.
scenic, oddly, being in ‘concrete’ Milton Keynes, along TPi

92
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#42283 - KSM8 ad - TPI.indd 1 03/03/2016 16:30


GEAR HEADS

The headquarters of the Adam Hall Group, located in close proximity to the German finance centre that is Frankfurt am Main; Adam Hall leadership trio: Alexander
Pietschmann, David Kirby and Markus Jahnel; Alexander Studte, part of the expanding development department.

ADAM HALL GROUP


Adam Hall Group, whose corporate HQ is based in close proximity to the German finance
centre that is Frankfurt am Main, is a global player in the pro audio, light and event industry,
not to mention the specialist music trade. CEO Alexander Pietschmann tells TPi about the
company’s latest offerings, and why Prolight + Sounds is still the perfect entertainment
technology launch pad.

There are a lot of brands within the Adam Hall Group. Where does the Adam Hall, Hardware and Adam Hall Stage Equipment Cables. Strong
company sit in the industry? retail brands complement the extensive portfolio and are equally
As a leading German manufacturer and distributor, who provides event involved in the long success story of the ever-growing company.
technology solutions for business customers, Adam Hall Group has
an excellent reputation worldwide. Target groups include retailers, That’s a huge portfolio. What kind of success did the company see in
live event and rental companies, broadcast studios, AV and system 2015?
integrators in both private and public sectors, as well as industrial Our success last year was underpinned by, among other factors,
manufacturers. Adam Hall Group offers numerous solutions as well as the expansion of the international sales teams, the opening of large
a wide range of professional audio, lighting, stage and event products showrooms in Singapore and Barcelona, and of course the many new
under its own brands LD Systems, Cameo, Gravity, Defender, Palmer, products across various brands. And let’s not forget the multi-award

94
ADAM HALL GROUP

The new Professional Spotlight ZENIT Z 120; The Cameo Auro Matrix 500, a high-power moving spot with 25 powerful 15W LEDs.

winning Array System CURV 500 and the MAUI 5 by LD Systems, or the be controlled. The LEDs of the Aurobeam 150 can also be individually
large number of professional LED lights and lasers by Cameo. controlled via single pixel control.
We also introduced the new Gravity brand of music and microphone The Auro spots operate with ultra-fast three-phase motors for 630°
stands as a particular highlight and a pioneer in its own market segment,panning and 235° tilting (230° tilt for the Auro Spot 400). The differences
which in the fourth quarter of last year went from being released to being
here lie primarily in the LEDs, which range from 60W Auro Spot 100, and
successfully introduced in all relevant markets. 100W Auro Spot 200 to the powerful 180W Auro Spot 400, and achieve
extremely high luminance of up to 190,000 lux. Two gobo wheels, with
What can you detail about the new Cameo products, presented at seven rotating and nine fixed gobos, as well as two colour wheels with
Prolight + Sound in Frankfurt? a total of twelve intense colours, and warm
The passively-cooled Professional Spotlight and cold whites, make the Auro Spot 400 the
ZENIT Z 120 with zoom and IP65 is the first frontrunner of these three new LED moving
product to be released from this new series. “Our success last year was heads.
A unique feature is the use of a durable 120W underpinned by, among Auro Matrix 500 is a high-power LED moving
RGBW COB LED which, in combination with spot with 25 powerful 15W LEDs. Ultra-fast
16-bit technology, creates vivid and extremely
other factors, the expansion three-phase motors make unlimited pan and
homogeneous colour mixing with high resolution of the international sales tilt movements possible. Extremely quiet,
and a wide-ranging dimming response. With teams, the opening of large temperature-controlled fans and a 3,600 Hz
its variable dispersion range of 7° to 55°, the repetition rate are additional features that make
silent zoom motor provides flexible lighting that showrooms in Singapore and the Auro Matrix 500 ideal for use in a filming
extends from sharp, narrowly-focused beams Barcelona, and of course the environment. Auro Bar 100 has the same features,
right up to fully-covered surfaces. Flicker-free but a different housing shape due to the row of
operation by means of a 3600 Hz repetition rate,
many new products across seven powerful 15W LEDs. Both Matrix 500 and
colour temperature correction, variable white various brands.” Bar 100 can be controlled via ArtNet, ensuring
balance and four high-resolution dimmer variable CEO Alexander Pietschmann flexible use in large setups.
responses make ZENIT Z 120 the ideal projector With the Auro Beam 150, Cameo adds a
for TV, film and the theatre. moving head to the range that impresses with its
rich colours and professional features. Two high-
Can you talk us through the stand out features the Auro series offers speed motors move the spotlight quickly on its horizontal and vertical
lighting designers? axes and ensure continuous, endless rotation. Seven powerful 15W
The Cameo Auro series presents its new LED moving heads. Auro Spot quad LEDs, harmonious RGBW colour mixing, and differentiated, natural
100, 200 and 400 make fascinating colour, prism and gobo effects white tones with 16 bit resolution are special equipment features. The
possible. What is particularly impressive with the Auro Matrix 500 and 12° dispersion angle creates a clearly focused beam, and the repetition
Auro Bar 100 are the pixel mapping effects, in which individual LEDs can rate of 3,600 Hz. All Auro series moving heads have RDM functionality,

95
ADAM HALL GROUP

The Professional Spotlight ZENIT Z 120, the first product to be released from the series.

a repetition rate of 3,600 Hz and professional PowerCon, three-pin and of increasing crisis regions, especially in the Near and Middle East. All of
five-pin DMX connections. the above makes it hard to predict how things will go, which is why we
are focussing on more ‘technical’ skills and, above all, quick corporate
What do you think about the changes to Prolight + Sound? responsiveness.
We are very positive about the new developments at Prolight + Sound
2016. The new and compact exhibition centre in Hall 3 is very attractive How do you plan to progress in the future?
for visitors. We view the later start of the music fair and the resultant The markets, our customers and our partners are receptive to an
increase of the overall exhibition period to six imaginative and service-oriented company and
days, as well as the further shrinking number of recognise the benefits of strong company and
exhibitors more critically. product policies. In order to strengthen the
perception of Adam Hall Group as an international
How are current economic developments in the
“We are very positive about key player, which is the company’s main goal, we
market making themselves noticeable to your the new developments at will continue to maintain a precautionary and
business? Prolight + Sound 2016. The low-risk growth strategy based on solid financial
We are on schedule. Critical to the successful footing. In addition, Adam Hall Group wants to
implementation of our 2016 plans are, in new and compact exhibition be a more secure and attractive employer - we
addition to our extensive product planning and centre in Hall 3 is very currently have more than 190 employees.
improving our logistics (including new buildings TPi
to be opened this year), of course, geopolitical
attractive for visitors.” Photos: Adam Hall Group
changes, monetary conditions, and the impact CEO Alexander Pietschmann www.adamhall.com

96
#004
COMING THIS JUNE
INDUSTRY APPOINTMENTS
Sponsored by
www.interfacio.com • +44 208 986 5002

INDUSTRY APPOINTMENTS

Martin Audio has appointed Dom Harter as Managing Director with Roadie School, Cato Academy, to create a Centre of Excellence for
immediate effect. His remit will be to build on the success of the Martin training the next generation of touring and production professionals.
Audio brand and help grow this success across multiple markets Both academies have been pioneers in the field of vocational and
worldwide. academic education in the entertainment sector and, together, will
Harter has held multiple pro audio roles including serving as both provide a comprehensive training solution to emerging, aspiring and
Director of R&D and Sales Director with Turbosound before joining talented crew.
Harman’s Mixer Group with several roles including Global Sales Director / Commenting on the partnership, Co-Founder of Production Park,
VP for Harman’s Mixer BU. Lee Brooks, said: “We are delighted to be welcoming Cato into the
“Pro audio has been my entire professional career, having worked Production Park family. We’ve been hugely impressed by how Cato has
for some of the best known pro audio brands alongside a number of developed over the last 15 years and, from the moment we met, it was
prestigious installations, one off events and tours,” said Harter. clear that we both shared the same values and vision for supporting
“It is an honour to lead the Martin Audio team,” he continued. “It the live music industry. Our academies are at the forefront of training in
is a brand of tremendous pedigree with truly exciting innovations. I’m touring and production and the synergies are evident.”
excited by the energy, talent and love of the brand within Martin Audio. Cato Music Chief Executive and Tour Director for Muse, Glen
I can’t wait to get going, together I am confident the Martin Audio team Rowe, added: “2016 is a huge year for Cato and the collaboration with
can put the plan and structure together to realise our true potential - Production Park is only just the start.”
watch out everyone we’re coming!” Sennheiser has acquired the business of Vienna-based distributor,
Mark Graham, CEO of Loud Technologies, added: “We are thrilled Grothusen Audio Video Vertriebs and has founded a new sales
to have Dom join Martin Audio. The combination of his engineering and subsidiary, Sennheiser Austria. “We would like to thank Grothusen
industry background together with his proven business acumen brings a CEO Alexander Kränkl for his excellent work, which was instrumental
powerful skill to fulfill the potential of the Martin Audio brand.” for Sennheiser’s success in the region, and are grateful for his many
Cato Music is to become part of the Production Park family based achievements,” said CEO Daniel Sennheiser.
in Wakefield, West Yorkshire. The acquisition will pave the way for “We are building on a long-standing relationship with one of our
Production Park’s popular Backstage Academy and Cato’s specialist strongest distributors to create even stronger relationships with

98
www.interfacio.com • +44 208 986 5002 INDUSTRY APPOINTMENTS

Opposite: Dom Harter, Martin Audio’s new Managing Director; Grothusen CEO Alexander Kränkl and Sennheiser CEO Daniel Sennheiser; d3 Technologies Nikita Bazalo,
Marketing Manager and Matthew Drozd, Digital Designer; Christopher Spahr, DPA Microphones’ VP of Sales and Marketing in the US. Below: James Capparelle, DPA Micro-
phones’ Marketing Manager; Gabriel Antonini, DPA Microphones’National Sales Support / Business Development Manager.

our customers. The new operation will be key to even better serve Business Development Manager.
Austria and the Eastern European region, delivering the value added “We are delighted to announce these three well-deserved
services and consulting needed to offer a seamless experience of audio promotions,” said Niels Jørgen Øhrgaard, EVP of Sales at DPA
excellence.” Microphones. “Their pride and passion in our products are the driving
Commenting on the objectives for Sennheiser Austria, Grefer said: force behind everything DPA does. We look forward to their continued
“Grothusen has worked to develop exceptional expertise working as contributions and hard work as DPA continues to build upon its
a proud partner to Sennheiser, and this next exciting step is a great reputation as the industry’s best.”
reflection of the team’s achievements, as they join the company to play a Spahr’s new role will include managing the dealer network in the
key role in taking the Sennheiser story forward in the region.” east of the US and increasing overall sales. He will also be responsible
d3 Technologies has hired Nikita Bazalo as Marketing Manager and for overseeing sales across the US and coordinating the eastern, western
Matthew Drozd as Digital Designer, who have both come on board at the and southern regions. Capparelle will be responsible for all of DPA’s
company’s London headquarters. marketing initiatives in the US, including print and online advertising,
“From traditional advertising campaigns and brand development and trade shows and events, while Antonini will control the technical
to innovative digital media engagement, Nikita’s track record and sales support for DPA microphone technology and its applications for
experience will continue to enhance d3’s international presence,” said the professional music, broadcast, theatre and audio-visual markets.
Fernando Kufer, General Manager at d3 Technologies. “She will ensure A brand new addition to the team is Eric Stahlhammer, Business
that the brand is communicated clearly and consistently by d3 and our Development / National Sales Support. Stahlhammer will be in charge of
worldwide partners. support for the sales team with dealer trainings, assisting at tradeshows,
“Likewise, Matthew’s international design experience will be an asset finding new dealer opportunities and coordinating the information with
in the continuing development of our marketing materials, website and the regional Sales Manager.
social media presence,” Kufer added. Øhrgaard added: “DPA prides itself on its staff’s dedication to making
DPA Microphones has promoted Christopher Spahr to VP of Sales the company shine, and we have no doubt that Stahlhammer will get the
and Marketing in the US, James Capparelle to Marketing Manager, also job done.”
in the US, and Gabriel Antonini to the role of National Sales Support / www.tpimagazine.com/category/industry-jobs/

99
PSA: THE BIGGER PICTURE

MUSIC INDUSTRY CAMPAIGN PROMPTS ACTION FROM


GOVERNMENT TO HELP PROTECT UK MUSIC VENUES

The story of Adele’s humble beginnings, singing in the back room of a North London pub,
honing her craft, is oft told in music industry circles as an example of the value of a healthy
grass roots music scene. Small venues and, more importantly, a supportive audience, play
their part as much as access to education and rehearsal and recording facilities.

In the world of live music production, the network of small venues past eight years.
that support new performers also serve as a proving ground for the The new regulations will amend the permitted development right.
next generation of crew, techs and associated managers. In both live UK Music’s Bristol live music census published last month by Bucks
music and business events, we represent the needs of our members New University found that 50% of the city’s music venues were affected
as well as adding your collective voice to wider campaigns. This alone by development, noise or planning issues. These issues pose a direct
has seen us achieve recognition for production as a key part of both threat to the future of Bristol’s vibrant ecosystem which generated £123
areas of production; we like to think that we can repay this by adding million towards the local economy in 2015 and supported 927 (full time
numbers to the campaigning voices of association groups such as the equivalent) jobs. The UK live music sector as a whole contributed almost
Business Visits and Events Partnership an UK Live Music. a billion pounds in GVA to the UK economy in 2014 and employs over
Great news for us then, when UK Music, Music Venue Trust and 25,000 people across the country.
Musicians’ Union welcome new Government legislation to protect Details of the new regulations were revealed in a letter to UK Music
music venues following a meeting with Ministers at the Department for CEO Jo Dipple. Ministers suggest that the new regulations will encourage
Communities and Local Government and Culture Minister Ed Vaizey MP. local authorities to require applicants under the permitted development
New regulations, which came into effect on 6 April 2016, mean right to put in place noise mitigation measures where appropriate.
developers are now required to seek prior approval on noise impacts The Ministers’ letter outlines steps Government intends to take
before a change of use from an office to residential building can be including notifying chief planning officers of the change to permitted
carried out. development rights and re-emphasising updated planning guidance on
Recent permitted development right extensions that have allowed noise that highlights the potential of new residential developments on
changes of use to take place have put pressure on music venues making live music venues. Whilst these steps do not constitute the introduction
them prone to noise complaints from residents once they move into the of an Agent of Change principle, the new regulations mark a step-change
area. In London alone 35% of grassroots music venues have closed in the in planning law.

100
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PSA: THE BIGGER PICTURE

The Town and Country Planning (General Permitted Development) fight to protect, secure and improve them goes on.”
(England) (Amendment) Order 2016 was presented to Parliament on 11th Jo Dipple, CEO, UK Music said: “Ministers Ed Vaizey, Brandon Lewis
March 2016 and will come into effect from the 6th April 2016. The new and James Wharton deserve sincere thanks for taking up our cause and
regulations can be found here: offering to act on industry concerns. There are times when it seems
www.legislation.gov.uk/uksi/2016/332/pdfs/uksi_20160332_en.pdf Government does not listen. When it does, and when it acts on what
Commenting on the amendment, Mark Davyd, CEO, Music Venue Trust it hears, we should be proud of our political masters. The Music Venue
said: “We warmly welcome this breakthrough for the UK’s grassroots Trust has done an amazing job to raise awareness and push this issue
music venues. This common sense move by the government provides an to the top of the Governmental ‘in tray’. If these new regulations have
opportunity for local authorities to use their powers to ensure that live the desired effect, grassroots venues around the UK will have additional
music continues to play a vital economic, cultural and social role in our powers to help them survive and prosper.”
towns and cities. For music venues, this has never been about stopping Horace Trubridge, Assistant General Secretary, Musicians’ Union said:
development or preventing the creation of much needed new housing; “We are delighted to see that the Government has responded to our calls
it’s always been about ensuring that new development recognises the for action to protect grassroots live music venues. Hopefully, this will
culture, economy and vibrancy of city centres by building great housing, ensure a brighter future for this vital resource”
enabling existing music venues and new residents to live in harmony. TPi
This is a major victory for the UK’s music venues and music fans. The www.psa.org.uk

MOBILISING CHANGE IN AFRICA’S LIVE EVENT


TECHNICAL & PRODUCTION INDUSTRY

The second annual Live Event Technical and Production conference • Work towards an increase in skills qualifications to NQF level 5.
takes place the 12 - 14 May 2016 at the Sunnyside Park Hotel in • A forecast of skill requirements within the live technical and
Parktown, Johannesburg. The conference is a South African Roadies production sector.
Association (SARA) initiative and is supported by the Department of • Increase integration and transformation within the live event
Arts and Culture as anchor sponsor. technical and production industry.
• Establish a South African Live Events Technical and Production
The conference aims to: Backstage Academy.
• Bring transformation to the live events, technical and production
sector SARA President Freddie Nyathela shares his objectives for this year’s
• Focus on the need for a critical upgrade of skills development conference: “The main aim is for us to move forward on the outlined
• Sector training and skills interventions in the field LETPC 2015 outcomes, to follow-through with implementation
• Gather relevant stakeholders, professionals, practitioners, local on the first SA Backstage Academy, focus on increasing the skill
and international market industry leaders and the education qualification level to NQF5, to set-up the skills need analysis and to bring
sector to discuss the way forward and how to bring about change transformation to this sector.”
in this sector. International speaker John Botham OBE, owner of Semperior
shared his view: “I attended and was a speaker at the 2015 conference,
Currently the sector’s skill qualification is only at matriculation level and meeting lots of different people and getting their views on Live Events
urgently needs to increase to at least NQF level 5 (National Qualification in South Africa. It was an enormously rewarding experience, it gave
Framework) to match international standards. The level descriptors were me an insight into the skills needed to improve the life chances of
developed by SAQA (South African Qualification Authority). They are young South Africans. Many of the people I met are still in contact
primary aimed at qualifications experts, who are involved in developing and I count them as friends, I am really looking forward to the 2016
and implementing the South African NQF. conference.”
TPi
The 2015 conference outcomes were clear: www.letpc.co.za

102
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105
BACK CHAT

JAC NOTT
Monitor Engineer

On getting started in the industry… On winning (another!) TPi Award…


“I started playing in a band at school, but could “Mind boggling! To be nominated is
never hear myself when in shows - so took an brilliant - it’s an amazing feeling to realise
interest in the reinforcement of sound. I mixed my people have noticed you, but to win with
first gig (under supervision!) aged 14. A few years all those other great engineers out there
later, I talked my way into a local recording studio is something else! Immense! I really do
for work experience - starting as tea/coffee maker - appreciate all those who put my name
moving to tape op then moving up to learning mic forward. I am also really thankful to the
techniques, console mixing, Cubase programming. bands I have worked with repeatedly
A good day was when you didn’t have to get the over the years; fundamentally they have
soldering iron out to make the pub PA work!” made me the engineer I am today.”

On her touring origins… On passions away from the


“One of the bands I had console...
covered monitors for on “Ocean conservation. I am a
a few one offs (Groop keen diver (in hotter climates!)
Dogdrill) were supporting to and it breaks my heart to see
Motörhead in 1998. I asked how much rubbish is in the
them if I could visit their water caused by mankind
first gig and say hi, they and how much we are
replied only if I mixed their wrecking the oceans with
monitors for the show - first unnecessary, non sustainable
show would mean PA techs antics like shark finning, or
would have little time spare poaching ever dwindling
for mixing support the acts. populations from designated
Boom, I was on tour.” sanctuaries. These animals
Jac Nott, 2016 TPi Monitor Engineer of the Year. all play a huge part in how
the ecosystem works, and
how oxygen is circulated. The
On touring etiquette… Ocean is (was) a balanced environment so if we mess up the
“You need to be a bit of a chameleon. consequences will hit us on land. As a result I spend a fair
It’s no good being the best engineer or bit of my spare time supporting and volunteering for Sea
tech in the world if you rile everyone up. Shepherd UK. Sea Shepherd is a global movement dedicated
You all have to live in close proximity on to ocean conservation and preservation, entirely made up
a bus for long periods of time, and some of volunteers both on land and at sea all around the world.
times show days are really challenging Ordinary people like you and I who will take (non-violent)
in so many ways. A happy bus is a direct action where necessary to stop the antics of poachers,
happy tour. You also have to know when illegal whalers, drift net fishing vessels (which was made
compromises are needed in your world illegal years ago!) and a whole host of other illegal ocean
for the bigger picture or better outcome damaging activities. It is amazing how little people know
of the show as a whole. One of the most about ocean damage, and how simple changes we can all
important things is to want to tour!” make will help hugely.”

106
MONITORING ESSENTIALS

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