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18/09/2018

Cream celebrates with PRG

Almost 3,000 square metres of LED screen, 624 rigging points, more than two kilometres of fibre, 1,800 lighting fixtures, six Barco E2 Screen Controllers, 18 Resolume Media Servers, four 30k laser projectors, two D3 Media Servers, 1,493 metres of truss and 144 Kinesys points (a world record). These are just some of the staggering statistics cited this month by PRG, the technical production specialist, as it supplied lighting, rigging and video services to the 21st edition of Creamfields, the electronic dance music festival.

A team of 120 – comprised of PRG event crew, freelance lighting and freelance video staff – worked round the clock to install a huge range of kit and event equipment that travelled to the Cheshire-based festival in 45 arctic trucks. 

The four-day event, which saw more than 70,000 fans descend on the Daresbury site each day, celebrated its 21st anniversary by introducing a number of new arenas – Silo, Generator and Warehouse. Each raised the bar in festival production and were designed to envelop the audience with an all out assault on the senses.

 

Steel Yard. Photo Credit: Lorenzo Tnc

 

Ian Greenway, director of LarMac Live, who managed the festival’s production, engaged PRG to provide an incredible amount of technical infrastructure to the festival, including a range of ROE products – ROE CB5, ROE MC7 and ROE Vanish – that would enable large LED structures to be created and high resolution content to be displayed.

 

Attention to detail

PRG provided full lighting and video pre-vis suites, which allowed VJs and artist’s technical teams to check any lighting and visual mapping, and if necessary make tweaks, before getting to the stage.

Attention to detail was everything for all involved. For example, Silo, a new circular structure with a mezzanine, featured 150 German Light Product’s JDC1 strobes and Panasonic 3k laser projection, used in conjunction with Disguise Media Servers.

 

Steel Yard. Photo Credit: Anthony Mooney

 

PRG’s Adam Power looked after the Silo stage, operating both the lights and Disguise servers, whilst Paul McCauley, senior account manager at PRG XL Video, worked alongside Ian Jones, Erica Frost, Ben Mason, Rupert Barnes, Ben Gilbert and Sam Jeffs – each ensured that LarMac Live’s exact specifications were met.

“We have been working with Cream and LarMac Live for years and we continually help Creamfields to push the limits in terms of production values,” McCauley explained. “More LED and screens than ever before, higher resolution, better control equipment, two pre-vis studios and content management all played their part in making this year’s festival one to remember – festivalgoers will be talking about an epic experience for years to come.”

 

Generator. Photo Credit: Geoffrey Hubbel

 

Pushing boundaries

Creamfields is widely known for pushing the boundaries in terms of technical production but this year’s edition of the dance music festival went one step further and deployed a record-breaking number of hoists for Eric Prydz; the Swedish DJ closed the festival on Sunday night (August 26) and headlined Creamfields’ renowned Steel Yard structure with a show that featured 144 Kinesys points, a world record according to Dave Weatherhead, director and co-founder of Kinesys.

Steel Yard, a 20-metre high super structure with capacity for 20,000, was one of nine arenas that PRG provided services to.

Richard Gorrod, head of event services at PRG project managed the lighting, rigging, automation and video elements within Steel Yard, and worked with LarMac Live for six months to ensure that Prydz boundary-pushing set made waves.

Q Willis, head of rigging services at PRG, oversaw all rigging elements and Nathan Avery, PRG crew chief, headed up video. The pair were joined on site by PRG’s Luke Jackson, who was site manager, and Pete MacDonald and Dave Evans, both Kinesys operators.

 

Steel Yard. Photo Credit: Geoffrey Hubbel

 

Steel Yard’s rig – designed by Ross Chapple, Prydz’s lighting designer – was installed by Nick Brown, who was assisted by Willis.

Gorrod commented: “PRG worked on nine stages at Creamfields, supplying rigging, lighting and video equipment and services. The show’s just keep getting bigger and better each year and the festival’s 21st outing certainly pushed the envelope. The sheer quantity of everything, from the amount of automation and the number of lighting fixtures, demonstrates Cream’s commitment to creating the best electronic dance music event for fans and naturally, PRG is hugely proud to be a part of that story. We are looking forward to pushing the boundaries even further next year.”

Yvonne Donnelly Smith, director of music (lighting) at PRG, added: “It’s all about the people – the fans that descend on the festival to have a good time and the people that work tirelessly behind the scenes to make sure that 70,000 people have an amazing experience. “PRG has been involved with Creamfields for a number of years and we never cease to be amazed at how Scott Barton [Creamfields’ promoter] continues to come up with such creative ideas that push the festival forward. “We love working with Creamfields and Ian Greenway and his team at LarMac Live to deliver a festival that is technically challenging but hugely rewarding and like Richard said, we can’t wait to see what Creamfields has in store for 2019.”

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22/08/2018

PRG and VER emerge as one integrated company in Europe & The Middle East

PRG announced today that VER has merged into Production Resource Group in Europe and the Middle East.

The entities will be commonly controlled by The Jordan Company, GSO Capital Partners and PRG Management. Jere Harris will serve as Chairman and CEO of PRG and VER, and Stephan Paridaen will be President and COO. Both companies will offer the ability to share equipment, knowledge and personnel wherever doing so will benefit its customers and meet evolving client needs, offer solutions, resources and expertise in ways neither company could achieve independently.

“For more than 20 years PRG has been diligent in offering its clients the best production service and equipment in the entertainment industry. Growth across disciplines, markets and geographies has always been a key part of our strategy,” said Jere Harris, PRG’s chairman and CEO. “Now, our ability to support all types of entertainment productions globally will take on new meaning, raising an already high bar to an unprecedented level.”

PRG and VER are both well established in concert touring in lighting, video, media servers, and staging innovations. Combining PRG and VER’s strength will now offer a complete suite of services for tours, festivals, and events. Further, PRG can enhance its long history in television production and expand its work in the film industry as VER brings world-class expertise in the video camera market, lighting, display and a robust suite of cameras. VER customers will benefit from PRG’s staging and automation expertise, vast lighting inventory and its position as the exclusive rental house for PRG’s patented proprietary lighting and video products.

“We believe that this approach will bring about innovation, an exciting level of service, and even more transformative collaboration with our partners. It feels historic, not only for PRG and VER, but for entertainment industry,” said Harris.

Globally, VER and PRG will have approximately 70 locations across six continents. Clients will have improved access to an extraordinary array of equipment from all major manufacturers as well as specialized and proprietary equipment.
 


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05/07/2018

PRG Announces New Concert Touring Innovations

Updated PRG SPACEFRAME™ and new Ingest product on Beyonce and Jay-Z’s “On the Run II” Tour

LONDON and LOS ANGELES – July 9, 2018 - Production Resource Group LLC, (PRG), the world’s leading provider of entertainment and event technology solutions, announces two product innovations – Infinity SPACEFRAME™ and Ingest – which are supporting Beyonce and Jay-Z's "On the Run II" Tour. The new Infinity SPACEFRAME which serves as a kinetic backdrop on stage and Ingest, a new technology that archives camera images created on tour, are industry firsts.

PRG SPACEFRAME
PRG SPACEFRAME is an innovative carbon fiber touring frame created by PRG Projects, a division of PRG which specializes in developing and integrating proprietary solutions to the rigors of the production and entertainment industry. It was launched on 2017’s U2’s “Joshua Tree” Tour and “On the Run II” is the second concert tour to feature the product. For this tour, Stufish (the designers of both “Joshua” Tree and “On the Run II” tours) wanted to have a clean look, visually eliminating all support structures and rigging. To do that, PRG Projects came up with a solution called “Infinity SPACEFRAME” where the rigging and support structure are integrated on the back of the SPACEFRAME, invisible from audience view. Video content on the screen is now edge-to-edge without visual barriers as a classic screen would have. It gives it a monumental look and creates a new type of immersive viewing experience. The Infinity SPACEFRAME makes the most of the PRG SPACEFRAME concept by utilizing the structural capabilities of the video screen as part of the automated tracking support. It ultimately saves truckloads of additional support structure.
“Designing custom LED and video solutions for live events is a core part of what PRG Projects does. Beyond what we develop for PRG, we work directly with designers to create unique staging solutions that allow them and performers to be as creative as possible,” said Frederic Opsomer, managing director, PRG Projects. “We are constantly thinking of what is next, how do we improve on what we’ve already done. The new Infinity SPACEFRAME allows for moveable LED screens in an operational effective set up which aids the dynamic energy Beyonce, Jay-Z and other performers create during the show.”

The stage design for “On the Run II” Tour includes two LED screens with SPACEFRAME. The secondary – or upstage – screen is a 16,8-meter-wide and 10,8-meter-high screen (55 feet x 35.4 feet) with ROE’s CB8 LED. The bottom section of the upstage screen is automated with three SPACEFRAME panels that open like garage doors, enabling the musicians’ rolling risers to enter and exit the main stage. The upstage screen stands behind a four-tiered opera box style performer platform. The main - or downstage - screen is divided into 12 automated sections. This allows for different dramatic scenes and settings and provides Beyonce and Jay-Z different entry and exit scenarios. The new Infinity SPACEFRAME screen, with GALAXIA’s WV9 air transparent LED, measures 52,8-meter-wide and 13,2-meter-high (173.2 feet x 43.3 feet) when closed and hangs on motorized carts that move left and right on a track. The carbon fiber fabrication and built-in wind bracing provides the stability that structural engineers demand in order to have a screen of this size move around on a track.
“There is currently no other framing system that can do this, it’s a perfect example of designers really pushing the product to the limits and having free reign for their ideas. A symbiosis rarely seen in our industry,” said Opsomer.

INGEST
“On the Run II” Tour is also implementing PRG Ingest. Ingest is a new technology that allows the capture of concert footage in real time from up to 24 isolated camera feeds. Each camera feed - or channel – will be ingested in the server, processed, and via the network pushed to an external storage drive.

Traditionally, footage from a single camera is captured on a single recorder, then after a show, each file on the drive is copied over to a separate hard drive. This is an intensive process that can take many hours as the transfer can take up to one hour per camera.

“With the Ingest system, we can create a show record on an external drive of all channels in nearly real-time and still have a back-up copy on the server should anything go wrong,” said Wolfgang Schram, director of video engineering, PRG. “The servers also get time coded, so all recordings have real time and can be used in an edit right away.”

In order to handle the 6.2 TB of data that “On the Run II” Tour generates per night, PRG uses six media servers which make copies of what is recorded, transcode it to a pro res 422 file and push it over a 10GigE network on an external NAS drive.

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14/05/2018

PRG’s New Concert Touring Products on U2’s eXPERIENCE + iNNOCENCE Tour

PRG’s New Concert Touring Products on U2’s eXPERIENCE + iNNOCENCE Tour

Pure10 and Rolling Video Floor Risers elevate the touring industry

LOS ANGELES – May 14, 2018 – Production Resource Group LLC, (PRG), the world’s leading provider of entertainment and event technology solutions, announces two product innovations - Pure10 and Rolling Video Floor Risers - which have been integrated into the design, production and operations for the U2 eXPERIENCE + iNNOCENCE Tour. Both solutions demonstrate PRG’s dedication to innovating products that respond to the needs of artists, tour designers and managers seeking to push boundaries and deliver a more immersive concert experience.

“PRG has supported every U2 tour since 1992, and they always challenge us to be innovative with available technology or to create something new,” said Jeroen Hallaert, director of PRG Projects North America.

U2 eXPERIENCE + iNNOCENCE Tour is a follow up to the 2015 Songs for Innocence Tour for which PRG provided the video cage on the moving catwalk between the video screens. However, for the 2018 tour, U2’s creative team required high-resolution, super transparent LED video screens and an independent automated kinetic catwalk between the video screens. The purpose of the transparent LED video screens is to allow band members to perform amidst the LED walls (as during the 2015 tour) without creating a visual divide in the arena. It also provided the ability to integrate Augmented Reality into the show.

Further, the design team wanted the catwalk to be accessible by a moving staircase, and therefore the catwalk should move independently from the video screens. This added automated catwalk required more motors and equipment, thus adding weight. This meant PRG Projects had to find a solution to make not only high-resolution, super transparent LED video screens but also make it super light-weight.



PURE10

In response to U2’s challenge to create a transparent LED wall, PRG Projects revolutionized the way LED screens are built and created the patent-pending Pure10. Rather than mounting the printed circuit boards (PCB) holding the LED in standard clunky frames, PRG Projects sliced the PCB in strips and turned them 90 degrees with the LED mounted on the side. This resulted in 75 percent transparency.

The added specially curated Augmented Reality scene-setter - triggered by the LED screen – required a transparent, high-resolution screen. The way PRG Projects chose to build the screen allowed for a 10mm pixel pitch. A pitch far superior than what PRG Projects initially imagined.

“The creative team and the band were looking for a LED screen that allowed them to use AR in the way they envisioned. Pure10 works so well thanks to the magic combination of the pixel pitch, the high transparency and the brightness,” said Hallaert. “The band now calls the screens and catwalk the barricage.”

Additionally, rather than metal fabrication to house or frame the Pure10, PRG Projects used knowledge gained from developing the SPACEFRAME® and engineered a fast-building system in carbon fiber. This resulted in the weight savings that the tour’s production team was looking for. It also gave free reign to the designers and the band to further use the automated catwalk creatively.

As with the innovative transport design for the SPACEFRAME, PRG Projects has advanced the way concert touring is taken on the road with Pure10 by maximizing space and volume in trucks, airplanes and sea containers. The number of trucks needed is cut in half compared to the 2015 tour. Further, when the equipment is used during the show, empty transport dollies fold, stack and roll away in the tiniest spaces. This allows for other departments to move around the venue more freely and makes for ergonomic and superior logistics for load-ins and load-outs.



Rolling Video Floor Riser

The Rolling Video Floor Riser is a revolutionary system in how it’s built and disassembled. Initially revealed last year, PRG Projects updated and upgraded it for U2 to be used as the round stage. Each riser is fitted with 2 LED modules offering a high resolution 4mm pixel pitch during performances. Each riser has integrated magnets to enable a speedy assembly - an LED Floor of up to 1,076 square feet can be set up in less than 20 minutes.

“The Rolling Video Floor Risers were developed to meet the short set-up and change-over times of LED flooring which is perfect for the concert touring and festival segment,” said Mark O’Herlihy, vice president of PRG Global Entertainment.

Not only do the Rolling Video Floor Risers dramatically reduce the set-up time for an LED floor on stage, they also are transported in especially fitted dollies, which contain six risers each. The dollies are 1.6 m in height, allowing shipment via airfreight on the lower deck, which drastically reduces the shipping costs.

Credits Pictures © Steve Jennings

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09/03/2018

The 90th Academy Awards Dazzle with Lighting Provided by PRG

The 90th Oscars dazzled with lighting design by Bob Dickinson and Travis Hagenbuch. The Academy Awards were broadcasted from The Dolby Theatre in Los Angeles on Sunday, March 4. To celebrate the 90th Anniversary of The Oscars, set design by Tony Award-winning Derek McLane featured 45 million Swarovski crystals that delighted the audience.

PRG was proud to provide an array of 350 assorted Philips Vari-Lite fixtures, over 225 Philips Color Kinetics LED fixtures, TMB Solaris Flares, and PRG Icon Edges (see full gear list below).  Lighting plots provided by Full Flood show what it takes to light the presenters, the winners, the stage, and the audience at this star-studded gala.
 



Lighting Team
Lighting Design Firm: Full Flood, Inc.
Lighting Designers: Bob Dickinson and Travis Hagenbuch
LD/Programmers: Andy O'Reilly and Patrick Boozer
Lighting Directors: Mike Berger, Ben Green, Madigan Stehly
Movie Theater LD: Dave Thibodeau
Movie Theater Remote Programmer: Patrick Brazil
Gaffer: Alen Sisul
Best Boy: Chris Lopez
PRG Techs: James Beaghan, Danny Villa, Janos Bode, Andrew Gonzales
Head Electric: Jason Seagrove
Head Electric/Panel Light: Chris Latsch
Floor Crew Assistants: Dennis Sisul, Chris Roseli, Orlando Gonzalez, Brian Marshall, Walter Elizalde, Brian Hoch
Floor Crew (non-assistants): Jeff Mcleod, Rick Thibideau, Kelly Kippen, Ted Way, Dean Kessler
Spotlights: Adam Hagin, Steve Leach, Scott Thorngate, Pamela Monroe, Kim Busse, Darrel Aranda, Joe Dominguez
PRG Account Manager: Tony Ward
PRG Production Coordinator: Jeff Javier

Lighting Gear List
200 Philips Vari-lite VL3500 Spot
150 Philips Vari-lite VL3500 Wash
70 Philips Vari-lite VL5
8 Philips Vari-lite VL6C
20 Philips Vari-lite VL2402
12 Philips Vari-lite VL6000 Beam
12 PRG Icon Edge
210 Philips Color Kinetics Color Blast TRX
12 Chroma-Q Color Block 2
12 TMB Solaris Flare
350 ETC Source Four
80 ETC Source Four PAR
20 MR11 20"
2 ARRI Skypanel
16 ARRI 650W Fresnel
100 ARRI 300W Fresnel
7 SuperTrouper Spot
Lots of RGBW LED Tape
Lots of LiteGear hybrid white LED tape

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18/01/2018

Holiday on Ice - The Anniversary Tour

A technical symbiosis of light and video

It is the most visited ice show in the world - Holiday on Ice! This year, the production celebrates its 75th anniversary. "Atlantis" is one of two shows currently touring Germany and France, exciting its audiences with spectacular costumes, great choreography and impressive scenography.

Once again this year, PRG will return to Holiday on Ice’s frozen world and support the show in terms of event technology. In addition to rigging and audio technology, PRG also provides lighting and video technology.

Adam Bassett of Woodroffe Bassett Design is the lighting designer of the show. Among other things, he and his team have worked on the lighting for the Rolling Stones, Lady Gaga and the Olympic Games. Adam Bassett explains what aspects played a role in the implementation of the current tour:
"Whenever we develop projects, it's the interplay between the design and what we have available in terms of budget, equipment and technology to meet the specific design challenges. It was very helpful to work closely together with PRG from the start, trying to find technical solutions to the complexities, within our budget."

One of the technical highlights of this year’s tour are the ten automated Roll-up screens in the middle of the ice rink. For this, PRG uses six Panasonic PT-DZ21K projectors. The Roll-ups are controlled via DMX by the GrandMA2 console. The GrandMa2 console also controls the WO media server to track the different positions during the show. A completely redundant WO system is used as an output.
As a backdrop of the ice rink, we installed a large video projection. Two Barco HD projectors W f 26K project in different depths so that with the help of the WO system, the data is mapped and a 3D effect is created. The projections also emphasize the costumes of the figure skaters and thus create the magical atmosphere of the lost city of Atlantis.

Kjell Peersman, Technical Manager of Holiday on Ice, is delighted with the successful video-technical implementation of the show content:
"We had to find a tailor-made solution to deliver video content on the automated roll-ups. PRG developed a great solution for this, making all boards and media servers communicate with each other. The result is just great! "

In addition to video technology, the lighting has been carefully adapted to the scenario of the show. A total of 40 Icon Edges were used. This moving head is a fast beam, spot and wash luminaire; it contains a wide range of gobos and offers a lot of lighting effects, which benefits the tour.

Bob Walpot, Director of Operations and Asset Strategy PRG, is satisfied with the technical solutions the team has created for the show:
"The combination of these video and lighting elements in synergy with the sumptuous costumes creates a wonderful and immersive show."

Holiday on Ice's Anniversary Tour is also a great success! In total, over 90 shows are performed. Till the end of February, the ice skaters will still enchant the audiences before Atlantis sinks back into the sea.

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Disguise_GX-2
09/01/2018

PRG Gearhouse invests in the latest Disguise GX2 Media Servers

Due to an increasing demand for projection mapping and large-scale content across corporate, special events and the concert touring market, PRG has added two disguise gx2 media servers (formerly D3) to its already impressive stock in Dubai.

The gx2 is the latest flagship offering from disguise and has been developed to support real-time, generative content and includes gold support for Notch and features a Notch playback license.

Dubbed as the future of live show entertainment, the GPU workstation on the gx2 is the most powerful yet, creating the most dynamic displays ever seen. With the ability to scale up to two 4k outputs or 8 HD outputs.

Matthew Holmes, PRG’s Head of Video for the region commented “There is a clear demand for faster and more dynamic media servers in the region and the gx2 will allow us to offer the right equipment solution for our clients. Thanks to the support of disguise, we will host a 2 day training session which will be held at our local office to ensure our operators are fully trained and show ready.”

Phil Smith, Director of Projects concluded “We are extremely excited about the arrival of these units as we are the only provider in the Middle East to offer complete main and back-up servers within this range. The system will supplement our existing investment in industry leading products such as Pandoras Box and WATCHOUT adding a further dimension to the company’s ability to deliver world class events.”

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Creamfields festival 2017 - lighting, video and rigging
05/10/2017

PRG Supplies Lighting, Rigging, and Video Technology for Creamfields 2017

With 10 performance spaces, including 2 main stages, 4 tent arenas, the highly acclaimed Steel Yard, and the new-for-2017 Warehouse venue, Creamfields has once again cemented its place amongst Europe’s biggest music festivals. With audiences travelling from across the globe, and world-famous dance music superstars, the festival continues to go from strength to strength.

This year’s main stage performers included Martin Garrix, Axwell Ingrosso, Hardwell, Fatboy Slim, and deadmau5, alongside special arena performances from the likes of Richie Hawtin and Stormzy.

Creamfields’ Technical Producers LarMac LIVE once again chose to bring in PRG as a supplier of video, lighting and rigging technology across multiple stages. Amongst the technology and services provided, PRG XL’s team supplied rigging, indoor and outdoor video screens; a broad variety of lighting; LED signage; media servers and content manipulation technicians; and broadcast equipment and support.

On the main Arc (CF01) and Horizon (CF02) stages, PRG supplied festival technology including lighting, rigging and video across both structures. Head of rigging, Q Willis took care of the rigging on both stages, leading a team of expert riggers who created the backbone for the lighting, video, and audio technology.

For all the video elements PRG XL Senior Account Manager, Paul ‘Macca’ McCauley took care of the specifications, with Project Manager Ian Jones taking care of the technical delivery. For lighting, Account Manager, Gordon Torrington, and Event Services Coordinator, Chris Scott, took care of the design and implementation on site.

The Arc stage featured, as its name suggests, curved wings which created an immersive space for the audience. The wings were made up of vertical columns of 12mm ROE Visual LED, built into PRG’s custom touring frames. The spaces in the frames between the columns were used to rig a variety of lighting fixtures including Ayrton Magic Panels, 4 and 8 Lite Molefays, and Atomic Strobes. Icon Beams lined the front of the stage below the wings, creating beams of light which stretched into the sky as the sun set.

On stage a large upstage back wall was formed from ROE 7mm LED, with a DJ riser built from the same material. The flown lighting was designed to offer incoming artists with a versatile package of fixtures, and this included Icon Beams, PRG Best Boy spots, Solaris Flare Jnrs to either side of the stage, GLP X Bar 20s, and B-Eye K10s. Additional GLP X Bar 20 fixtures were brought in for Tiesto’s headline spot on Sunday evening. Lighting crew chief was Aiden McCabe, with Chris Scott operating using GrandMA2 consoles. Video crew chiefs on CF01 were Ollie James and Colin Mudd.

Above the stage, the LED header was made up of ROE MC-18 Hybrid LED, enabling content designers to use it for content matched to the rest of the screens, as well as prominently displaying the Creamfields branding for everyone to see across the site.

On Horizon, the 18mm ROE Visual LED panels were built into the structure with specific horizontal rows missing on the wings. The spaces in the frame structures were then used to rig a variety of lights including 2 Lite Molefays and SGM Q7 blinders. Below the wings dozens of the new high brightness Icon Edge moving lights were used as beam lights.

On stage, a back video wall and a front DJ riser were both formed from ROE Visual MC-7 LED, with a header of 18mm LED above the stage. Both the lighting floor package and flown rig included Atomic Strobes and Martin Mac Viper Profiles, with the stage flown lighting rig adding 4 and 8-Lite Molefays and PRG’s new Icon Edge moving lights. Cy Dodimead was lighting crew chief for CF02, with Adam Power operating, using GrandMA2 desks.

On Sunday evening, headliner Martin Garrix changed up the DJ riser for a giant LED + symbol which makes up part of his logo. Behind this, flown ladders held additional LED lighting fixtures, creating a multi-layered performance space on stage. Video crew chiefs for CF02 were Craig Saunders and Steven ‘Waffle’ Lemahieu.

Across the other arenas and venues on site, PRG supplied a variety of technology, creating a different look in each space.

In the Armada/Mega Arena space (CF03), a sectional, wide video screen formed from 15mm LED spanned the rear of the stage, and saw headline performances from Above & Beyond, Alesso, and Armin Van Buuren.

In Steel Yard (CF04) a large upstage ROE Visual MC-7 LED screen and matching DJ riser were augmented by PRG’s lighting flown above the stage. The lighting fixtures were arranged on a Kinesys system, as well as lining the sides and centre spine of the huge metal roof trusses. This created an immersive space, lighting the audience with colourful beams from over 100 fixtures including GS Beams, PRG Bad Boys, and SGM P-5. Creating a great team, Steve Major was lighting crew chief on CF04, with Tess Minor operating using a GrandMA2 desk.

Steel Yard saw exclusive performances on Friday and Saturday from deadmau5 & Eric Prydz, and Richie Hawtin. Steelyard has already been used for two standalone Creamfields events in Liverpool and London, and is returning to Liverpool’s waterfront for a further three shows this November.

Gordon Torrington commented: “We were very happy to supply lighting to LarMac LIVE for three stages at this year’s Creamfields. It’s a brilliantly organised festival, with a huge crew. Everyone works very hard, with a strong sense of collaboration, and the end result looked amazing!”

In the Pepsi Max arena – a circular tent arena, a 4.8m wide LED upstage wall and DJ riser at the rear of the tent were flanked by 54 square screens; 27 on either side arranged in rows three squares high. The wings wrapped around the audience creating a high-energy space which was extremely busy all throughout the festival.

The CF06 stage, featured a single wide ROE Visual 7mm LED screen, spanning right across the rear of the tent arena. The screen was gently curved, mimicking the curve of the tent. On Saturday night, it played host to a very special one-off performance from Stormzy which saw such high demand that audiences were waiting outside the arena to get inside.

Especially for this performance, PRG brought in one of their GroundControl™ Followspot Systems. The followspot was rigged at front of house with the controller backstage. Using GroundControl meant that the organisers could avoid having to build a followspot tower at front of house.

In CF07, which hosted Mad Decent, and MK Area10 over the weekend a large upstage flown 12mm LED screen was paired with an LED DJ booth. The arena saw headline performances from MK and Diplo over the weekend, and boasted a DJ set from superstar Idris Elba, and special guest slot from Gorgon City.

New for 2017, the Warehouse was a new structure designed to hark back to Cream’s roots in warehouse parties, and celebrate its 20th anniversary. Giving the new arena an edgy look, PRG XL supplied an upstage screen formed from semi-transparent ROE Vanish LED. With lighting arranged behind the screen, it gave performers a three-dimensional backdrop and a fresh creative look for the new space.

Outside Warehouse and Steel Yard small LED screens were placed which ran looped content with the venue branding. These stepped away from the traditional tent branding and were highly visible around the site.

Across all the stages PRG supplied Resolume media servers to serve content. Project Manager Ian Jones, and Video Content Expert, Erica Frost worked on supplying pixel maps of the various stages to all the incoming artists and DJs ahead of the festival weekend, so they could format their video to the varied screen layouts. For those who needed extra assistance, PRG XL had content technicians on hand to re-size and reformat performers content on-site.

With Creamfields being captured for broadcast on BBC iPlayer and live stream from 4 stages for Facebook Live, media company Corrino were brought in to manage the broadcast element of the festival. PRG were asked to supply equipment for Corrino, including four portable production units, sixteen front of house cameras, and four on-stage robo-cams for some performers. Video engineer, Alex Mulrenan was onsite to maintain the PPU system, and support Corrino’s requirements.

“We’re delighted to continue our working relationship with LarMac LIVE and Creamfields,” commented Macca. “Every year, the technical specification grows and is more impressive, and the audience love it. Massive thanks to every single member of our hardworking crew who worked long hours to make the festival look amazing. We can’t wait to see the designs for next year’s 21st Birthday event!”

Photo credit: PRG, except Warehouse image: ALIVE COVERAGE, and Armin van Buuren in the Mega Arena: Geoffrey Hubbel.

 

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24/09/2017

PRG for the AIMAG Ceremonies 2017 in Turkmenistan

The 5th Asian Indoor and Martial Arts Games (AIGAM) just closed its’ doors in Ashgabat, the capital of Turkmenistan. Turkmenistan for the first time is opening up to the international scene and therefore this was a historic moment. The Opening and Closing Ceremonies, involving 7631 performers, are being held at the recently renovated Olympic Complex.

Balich Worldwide Shows, in charge of this production, put on stage a huge Ceremony and placed their trust in PRG’s technical services to collaborate with them on this spectacular event.



The Opening Ceremony was held on September 17th, the closing ceremony on September 27th and was technically strongly focused on the use of video projection. PRG delivered 100 Panasonic 21K projectors for the floor projections, 18x Barco UDX 4K 32 projectors for the Center Cilinder and 8 Barco 26K projectors for the Yunta roof.
On top of that, we supplied 36km of fibers, 8 d3 4x4 mediaservers, an 80x80 lightware matrix, as well as a 33x33 lightware matrix.

Take a look at the SLIDESHOW of the opening & closing ceremony!

The flawless execution of the Opening & Closing Ceremonies has showed us again how the values of the production- and crew members are based on professionalism, determination and competence. PRG has 25 technicians working on-site making sure that the Closing Ceremony on the 27th of September will be just as astonishing.



Tom Van Hemelryck, CEO Central Europe adds “We are honoured that once again Balich Worldwide Shows chose to work with us on this historic and prestigious show. The show was really quite spectacular and I would like to thank the Balich team for involving us in this one of a kind event and all our PRG staff involved for their absolute commitment!”



Credits
Photo Credits: Luca Parisse for Balich Worldwide Shows
Show Credits: Creative & Executive Production Balich Worldwide Shows

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04/09/2017

PRG launches opening ceremony of Southeast Asian Games 2017

International production team for lighting, video and rigging in the National Stadium of Malaysia

The 29th Southeast Asian (SEA) Games 2017 took place in Kuala Lumpur, Malaysia from 19th to 30th August 2017. A total of eleven nations, including the host country Malaysia, Indonesia and Singapore, fought for medals in more than 38 sports in the largest sporting competition in the Southeast Asian region. For the opening ceremony in Bukit Jalil, the event management service provider Memories Entertainment had extensive support from PRG.

Production Resource Group (PRG) was responsible for the Rigging, Lighting and Video as part of the large event in Malaysia's national stadium. This was a joint effort between PRG Germany, PRG Belgium, PRG Projects, PRG Gearhouse and PRG Japan, with the support of the PRG Alliance partner "The Show Company”. PRG Germany supplied the complete rigging and lighting technology, PRG Belgium the Video Technology and PRG Projects around 40,000 Pixel Tablets, which were developed in 2012 especially for the opening ceremony of the 2012 Games in London. The team of PRG Gearhouse and PRG Japan supported the colleagues with event technology and manpower.

In addition to the 40,000 Pixel Tablets, the event technology package included 88 Panasonic video projectors, five D3 media servers, around 800 Moving Lights from PRG, Vari-Lite, Clay Paky and GLP, 250 SGM Q7 LED floodlights, as well as a grandMA2 system.

The international PRG team comprised 43 people from Germany, Belgium, France, England, Spain and Dubai. In addition, 12 event students from Singapore worked as followspot operators during the live broadcast on TV and Internet. Despite the hot temperatures, the extreme humidity in Kuala Lumpur as well as the tight production time window, including constantly revised directories, PRG, in cooperation with other service providers, ensured a flawless and smooth running of the opening ceremony of the SEA Games 2017.

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01/08/2017

PRG technical provider for the opening ceremony of the FINA World Swimming Championships in Budapest 2017

ECA2 produced a spectacular opening ceremony on the Danube in front of the Budapest Castle and the Chain Bridge in association with the Cultural center MÜPA Budapest for the Opening Ceremony of the World Swimming Championships on July 14th.

PRG France, contracted as lighting, sound, video projection, scenic LED displays, and power distribution (Aggreko), supported this technical and artistic production by transforming the historic centre and the Danube into a full-fledged massive show, entirely run by time-code.

PRG installed just over 600 projectors, including 350 ROBE projectors (BMFLs, Spiider, Pointe), 70 new PRG Icon Edges, SGM P5s and GLP X4 Bars, everything controlled by five GrandMA2 lighting consoles.

The audio system consisted of a complete L Acoustics kit (K2/K1Sub/SB28/SB18/Kara2/Arcsll), with a DANTE broadcast network, two Yamaha CL1 & CL5 consoles and a Digital Performer station.



In terms of video technology, PRG installed around 300m2 of LED Absen X5 screens on the background display columns, 8 mapping zones on the stage by video projection with Panasonic PTDZ21k, a video projection on a water-screen (Barco’s HDQ-40K VPs) and 100 autonomous HEX Panels with built-in media servers for the artists performing the choreography. The control booth had 4x D3 4x5 and 2x D3 2.5 servers.

This vast technical production was a joint effort between ECA2 and the PRG subsidiaries in France, Belgium, and PRG Projects, with technicians from across the globe (Belgium, France, Qatar, Estonia, Italy, Spain, China, and England). 1,800 working days were needed for pre-production, installation, and operation during the ceremony by our 42 technicians, operators and on-site managers.



The highlights of the ceremony were PRG Projects’ Hex Panels, which in combination with the video mapping on the scene, the LED columns and the projection images on the water-screen and the illumination of the castle, the bridge and the quays, illuminated the city beautifully.
Magical laser effects and a magnificent firework also accompanied this spectacular ceremony.

Once again, ECA2 succeeded in producing an extraordinary show combining technologies, special effects, art and scenography.



We would like to extend our warmest thanks to our long-time customer ECA2 for the trust they have placed in our PRG teams for the last 18 years, resulting each time in high quality result and sublime performances, thanks to a flawless commercial, technical and logistical collaboration.

Everyone involved in this project demonstrated excellent teamwork to deliver a truly sublime show! Thank you!


© Show: ECA2 - Photos: Julien Panie

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Tableau Conference On Tour 2017 London. Event Technology supplied by PRG. Photo: PRG/Alison Barclay
25/07/2017

PRG Provides Conference Technology Globally for Tableau On Tour

Premium business and analysis software company Tableau has a growing worldwide audience for their software. Supporting this audience, the organisation holds conference events for their clients in a variety of locations around the world. Combining product presentations, education sessions, software surgeries, networking, and social events, Tableau Conference On Tour has spanned North America, Asia Pacific, and Europe, with events in Tokyo, London, and Berlin taking place in 2017.

Supporting this program of events, PRG’s Director of Global Accounts, Nick Barton, is Tableau’s key contact for live event technology and services. He has worked with Tableau since early 2015 and has delivered 14 events for them to date.

For the events outside of North America, Nick leverages PRG’s global network, working with account managers in PRG’s locations worldwide to deliver Tableau Conference On Tour providing matched equipment and services across several countries. He travels to each event to oversee the production and ensure that the final delivery of the show meets the expected high standards.

Each of the larger events consists of a plenary keynote room, with smaller breakout rooms and social areas. To deliver their design, Tableau relies on Production Resource Group (PRG), who supply staging, lighting, rigging, and audio-visual technology and services for the events, as well as expert production staff and technicians.

For the most recent conference at London’s Tobacco Dock, Nick worked with UK Account Manager Rich Pow to provide all the show technology requirements locally in the UK. Tableau aim to keep the design of their events clean and modern, and PRG support this, providing technical drawings and renders in advance, which can be refined to the client’s requirements.

The design for the London show included custom-built stage set and lecterns, and the use of large video screens in the plenary and across the breakout education sessions. Two large high resolution LED screens, used in split screen format, were situated on each side of the presenter. These displayed playback content and IMAG footage from the live camera. The live mix and output to screens was delivered using a Barco e2 screen management system.

To light the show, PRG utilised a combination of Tobacco Dock’s in-house lighting rig supplemented with a range of their own fixtures, including scenic floor lighting across the main stage. Crew Chief for Lighting was Dana Read, with Nathan Avery overseeing the video elements. Sennheiser radio channels were supplied for the presenters and a combination of wired and wireless Telex comms system was used for the plenary.

Breakout rooms across the site varied from a four-screen wide set-up in the Little Gallery, using Barco projectors and individual screens across the width of the room, to single Panasonic laser projector and screen pairings in the multiple education rooms.

Each breakout room included a custom-built lectern with in-built onstage switching system for presenting from a variety of inputs. Sennheiser radio channels were also supplied in each of the breakouts. Ben Monk oversaw the technical setups for all of the breakout areas.

A ‘surgery’, with Tableau Doctors on hand to help attendees with specific software issues, contained more than 20 workstations, and PRG supplied a pair of matched monitors for each PC.

Multiple plasma screens were used around all the Blend and Beats social and networking areas, including a rigged circle of plasmas in a central walk-through area. All of these displayed information, sponsor logos, social media feeds, and were used for relays of the keynote sessions.

d&b audio speakers were spread across the site ensuring all attendees were fully informed at all times, and between sessions could enjoy some chilled tunes from the Tableau DJ.

To ensure clarity of signal, PRG used an audio fibre system to feed into the plasma circle-truss area, as it was a considerable distance from the plenary.

Tableau’s next event will take place in Berlin later this year, where Nick will work with PRG’s team in Germany to deliver the show.

Photo credit: PRG/Alison Barclay

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Islamic Solidarity Games 2017 in Baku. Photo by Natalia Tsoukala
20/07/2017

PRG Supplies Lighting for Opening and Closing Ceremonies of the 2017 Islamic Solidarity Games

The Islamic Solidarity Games is an event which involves elite athletes from countries who are part of the Organisation of the Islamic Conference. Despite the names, non-Muslim citizens in the member countries are also allowed to compete. The first was held in Mecca, Saudi Arabia in 2005, with the most recent event taking place in Baku, Azerbaijan in May 2017.

PRG was selected as an official supplier for the opening and closing ceremonies, providing lighting for both large-scale events. The lighting design was created by Adam Bassett of Woodroffe Bassett Design, with associate designer, Terry Cook, who worked with PRG Account Director, Yvonne Donnelly Smith, and Head of Event Services, Richard Gorrod to specify the lighting requirements of the huge visual production.

The design in the Baku National Stadium made use of all levels of the stadium for lighting, as well as the stage built in the centre of the athletics track.

PRG used a combination of its own PRG Bad Boy, VariLite VL35kw, and SGM P5 15 fixtures around the roof trusses, of which there were 30 in total. At balcony-rail level high brightness Icon Edge and VL35k wash fixtures were added into the mix, creating maximum impact with beams reaching up into the sky and across the stadium.

Framing the colourful projections on the main shaped rear screen, brand new ultra-bright Icon Edge units were mounted on the edge of the screen on custom T bars. Icon Edge and Icon Beam units were also used to surround the stage floor. Philips iW Blast, and Color Blast TRX fixtures were used in the VIP Box as a quality front light, and coloured backlighting respectively. SGM P5s were used to backlight the audience on Levels 1 and 2.

Eight of PRG’s newest version of its revolutionary GroundControl™ Followspot System – the Long Throw - were used to as high level followspots mounted on separate trusses around the roof catwalk. These units are as bright as a 4k Gladiator followspot, and can be rigged on a truss, so improving safety and reducing weight by negating the need for operators in baskets. A combination of standard GroundControl Best Boy units, and M2 traditional followspots were used in the closer positions.

Two side light positions were populated with PRG Best Boy and Bad Boy units, and either side of the stage two architectural columns were lit up using a mixture of Floor Cans, 650kw Fresnels, and Birdies.

In total more than 1,100 lighting fixtures were used for both ceremonies. PRG Crew Chiefs Mark England and Luke Jackson led a team of highly expert technicians. Alex Passmore and Ben Hornshaw programmed the lighting on GrandMA consoles, and a WYSIWYG suite was used for pre-programming at PRG’s Longbridge location, and on-site during the build phase, and for pre-programming of the Closing Ceremony.

The control and networking was all managed using a S400 data distribution system with S400 fibre switches and a combination of Supernodes and Node+ units.

Richard Gorrod commented: “Our PRG Best Boys are still one of the best fixtures for a harsh stadium environment. The new Icon Edge performed brilliantly – it’s very reliable and a true work horse! The new GroundControl Long Throw followspots also performed well – they’re super bright and give you the advantage of hanging them in positions where you would not be able to site a conventional 4k followspot. The S400 system again performed brilliantly, as the glue for the whole system. Our crew were true stars – installing and maintaining the equipment on site under many different pressures.”


Adam Bassett commented: “Once again we were blessed with a great level of support, technical expertise and most importantly a brilliant crew. The PRG team in Baku, and behind the scenes back in the UK, were great and made a technically challenging production go very smoothly. The system lived up to every expectation and the ability to use the new GroundControl Long Throws massively changed how we were able to light the shows. By having the ability to place followspots in locations otherwise inaccessible with conventional spots, it enabled us to achieve the optimum angles and as a result protect the video projected surfaces which were so crucial.”


All photos: Natalia Tsoukala

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16/05/2017

PRG Launches New Technology Solutions as Concert Firsts on U2 The Joshua Tree Tour 2017

Innovative Touring Frame and 4K Broadcast Camera System Elevate Operational Performance, Stage Design and Fan Experience

Production Resource Group LLC, (PRG), the world’s leading provider of entertainment and event technology solutions, announced today that a new product innovation along with the application of an industry-first technology solution – SPACEFRAMETM and a 4K Broadcast Camera System – have been integrated into the design, production and operations for the U2 The Joshua Tree Tour 2017. Both solutions demonstrate PRG’s dedication to innovating products that anticipate the needs of tour managers, designers and artists seeking to push boundaries and deliver a more immersive concert experience onsite or virtually.

“SPACEFRAME and the 4K Broadcast Camera System perfectly demonstrate how PRG excels at seeing an opportunity for innovation that will add operational, economic and creative value from a customer’s perspective, allowing artists to more freely tell their story,” said Steve Greenberg, PRG’s CEO of Global Music/TV/Film.



SPACEFRAMETM
SPACEFRAME is a revolutionary touring frame design seamlessly integrating LED panels to provide industry-changing operational efficiencies and the opportunity for unlimited creative expression. The carbon fiber touring frame is ultra-lightweight, collapsible and fully wind braced creating an intensive built-in structural strength. This allows for a free-form approach to stage designs enabling artists and designers to think outside the conventional LED box. This latest patent-pending technology from PRG also dramatically reduces pre-tour engineering time, shipping footprint/weight, carbon emissions, load-in and load-out times, as well as labor required on tour and locally.

SPACEFRAME features and advantages:

  • Carbon fiber fabrication and built-in wind bracing reduces overall weight increasing safety and savings
    • 10 times stronger when compared to conventional fabrication
    • 15 percent overall weight reduction
    • 35 percent weight reduction including wind bracing
    • Integrated wind bracing up to 72 kph
  • Profile reduction and integrated wind bracing results in up-to 50 percent savings in shipping cost in some cases and a massive reduction in the tour’s carbon footprint
  • Specifically for this U2 tour, truck loads are reduced from seven to three - or one less airplane - when compared to conventional LED frame load
    • Compact, lightweight design offers up-to 30 percent reduction of installation/dismantle time and a 25 percent reduction in overall labor cost

“The quality and resolution of LED products have vastly improved over the last decade, but the frames have basically stayed the same. At PRG Projects, we saw an opportunity to innovate the way in which LED walls were assembled and transported, to rethink the construction of the frame and how it might impact the operational side of the business as well as the design experience,” stated Frederic Opsomer, PRG Projects' Managing Director and innovation leader.

Leveraging in-house talent and partnerships already in place, PRG was able to produce the carbon frames from prototype to final product in just 17 weeks, enabling U2 to be the first to take advantage of the innovation. SPACEFRAME has allowed U2’s designer to create a 200 foot wide screen¬, custom painted in silver and gold to mimic the original artwork of their 1987 album.

4K Broadcast Camera System
The U2 tour also marks the introduction of PRG’s 4K (UHD) Broadcast Camera System as a first for concert touring. The PRG broadcast system, developed and integrated over three months, is a combination of products that can operate in 4K (UHD) and 3G SMPTE Standards. This design philosophy allows concurrent production to operate at the highest level of broadcast standards. The system delivers 60 frames per second (fps) with a UHD resolution of 3840 x 2160 pixels. The concert touring system interconnects cameras and LED wall processors on fiber because of the enormous amounts of data and length of signal distances. The entire broadcast touring system can be set up within an hour and is designed to be operated by one video engineer, eliminating the need for four-to-five onsite engineering positions.

“PRG has been a part of every U2 tour since 1992 and the band always challenges us with pushing technology to its limits,” said Wolfgang Schram, PRG’s director of video engineering. “We have to be creative and that is the fun part.”

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