900 acres of Somerset farmland, 177,000 people on site and three full days of music, entertainment, political speaking, campaigning, and other worldly activities marked the return of Glastonbury. Now considered the world's largest green festival, Michael Eavis and the festival's 25,000 staff once again drew a worldwide... audience to some of the most spectacular live production feats of the British summer. Although the Rolling Stones may have caught the attention of many, TPI's kelly Murray discovered there was much more to Glastonbury than a global act on a famous stage.
Backstage in the busy production area of Glastonbury's technical helm is Head of Production, Dick Tee. The experienced PM has had connections with the festival since 1996, but it wasn't until this year that he became head honcho for the entire event's technical needs. Originally intending to be a farmer, Tee only got involved in the live event industry in order to save up for his own farm. Decades later, he's not running a farm but he has bagged one of the most influential jobs in his sector.
He told TPi: "Michael Eavis contacted me in 1996 to get involved in the Classical Extravaganza at Glastonbury Abbey, so I set that up with him and the following year I did some work at Glastonbury Festival on The Other Stage. The following year after I managed the Pyramid Stage, then I became head of production for West Holts, Pyramid, John Peel and Other. In the last few months - with the new management team in place - I've assumed the role of Head of Production, which means I'm responsible for the whole festival.
"It's an enhanced role, as the festival has so many different areas. The stages are autonomous units in their own rights and they're got very experienced people working on them and I act as a supporting role if they have a problem."
The 2013 management system was completed by Paul Ludford, Operations Director, Tim Roberts maintaining Safety and Medical Welfare and the site's Silver Controllers, Security Director Adrian Coombs, Phil Miller, Infrastructure Manager (for permanent structures) and Water Provisions (the festival used four million litres less water than in 2011). Jackie Slade, Site Manager, Steve Russell-Yarde, the Offsite Manager, Robert Richards, Commercial Director, and unofficially on the board of managers, Teresa England, who looked after Licensing.
Tee continued: "Everybody looks at Glastonbury for the Pyramid Stage, those big commercial moments, but it's also very different because at the real heart and soul of the festival are areas like Shangri La, Arcadia, The Healing Fields, Uncommon Ground and the like. All of those areas are what it's all about. The commercial aspect of the festival has been demanded, almost by necessity, and it gets the most TV coverage but there's fantastic areas out there. Some people come here and never even see the Pyramid, they spend their time in an alternative world. Most other festivals can't compete with getting under your skin the way the creative elements of Glastonbury does."
On the technical front, Tee has a long-standing relationship with the festival's suppliers. "If it isn't broke, don't fix it," said Tee. "That's my motto. A lot of the suppliers on the site have long term existing deals with us. We are price competitive, so the large majority of our suppliers do the festival at a much-reduced rate. Principally, the three main charities we have are Oxfam, Water Aid and Greenpeace, so at the end of the day we're doing this so that we have profits for charity. The artists also don't do this for their full fees. While ethos of the festival is to raise money, nobody does it at a loss, as we all need to maintain our businesses, but it's somewhat easier as there's a lot of kudos involved with Glastonbury.
"That being said, we do review suppliers, but the key from my perspective is that the vendors understand our event. We've picked up where we left off in 2011 with vendors. With the new management structure, we tried to make sure that we came back confident that we could deliver the festival with a new team. There will probably be a much greater review after our four year run, so the time to look at possible changes may be in 2016," concluded Tee.
One of the longest supplier relationships with Glastonbury is Serious Stages. Michael Eavis recently hosted an industry open day for the Somerset-based temporary structure supplier. In his invitation, Eavis described the start of the relationship thus: "It must have been about 40 years ago that Steven Corfield, Serious Stages Managing Director, turned up here at the farm on a BSA Bantam looking for the commune. Not the best way to create a first impression.
But then he bought a little farm in Pilton with a small herd of Jersey cows. I employed him to help build the original Pyramid with a crew of professional stage builders and from there he started his own staging company and the rest of course, is history."
No small wonder then, that a coach (yes, a coach) load of industry luminaries gathered at the farm for a tour of the site and a good look at Serious' product range, devoid of sound, lights and video. As well as the farm tour, visitors were shown around their facility in nearby Wells, where Corfield gave a glimpse of products that are being developed specifically to further improve worker safety during build and dismantling.
Corfield explained the company's role this year: "We supplied 54 structures in total across the festival site. These range from the bespoke decking in the famous main Pyramid Stage, plus four other large stages, stage decking, specialist structures; the Bullring, The Ribbon Tower and BBC towers. The main skeletal structure of the Pyramid stage stays in place permanently, but all the sheeting, decking, ramps, steps, goalposts are removed each year. For 2013 we have installed a permanent back stage ramp substructure.
"We've supplied these stages and decking in the big tops and tents, which have evolved slowly over the past few years. The main new feature this year, in line with Michael's vision, were the additions to the Bullring, and putting up a mezzanine level as a back stage area."
"At Glastonbury we are joined at the hip to The Event Safety Shop (TESS) and the HSE. We have worked alongside the HSE for a number of years and have built very strong relations with them in the Bristol and Somerset Area. We've been working with the HSE directive to improve methods of staging and safe working systems on temporary demountable structures. They are very thorough in wanting to understand how our industry works, to work with us and support the introduction of practical improvements, so we're pro-active in communicating with the HSE consistently. We have also engaged with the Joint Advisory Committee for Entertainment (JACE) since last year," he said.
"The sheer scale of Glastonbury differentiates it from other festivals, working over 500 acres of site poses huge logistical challenges. It's our local show so we are all very proud to be involved in it. It really is the iconic ultimate festival. All the crew would like to work at Glastonbury, so we never have a problem staffing the event!"
LS-Live was the facility of choice for both production rehearsals and staging rental for four headline acts. Arctic Monkeys, Dizzee Rascal, Hurts and Chase & Status all performed headline shows with production support from the stage and set, equipment rental and studio complex based in Wakefield, West Yorkshire. The rental company welcomed Glastonbury's Friday night headliners Arctic Monkeys to the 17,664 sq ft rehearsal studio for six days full pre-production in June where the band and crew made use of the 14 en-suite bedrooms on site to work round the clock. Production Manager, Ian Calder, oversaw the production build, which incorporated two huge letters 'A' and 'M' clad in LED lighting on stage, to represent the band's name, part of a show that frontman Alex Turner later hailed as "one of the best gigs we've ever done". LS-Live was able to provide last minute risers for the performance from its hire warehouse of industry standard staging equipment right next to the studio.
Dizzee Rascal's lighting crew made a quick pit stop at LS-Live en route to Glastonbury to build and test the lighting rig for his performance on the Pyramid Stage ahead of Arctic Monkeys. Production Manager, Adam Murray, booked the studio and production offices for a day, so that HSL and lighting designer Steven Bewley could pre-build the lighting rig. Again the onsite hire warehouse meant the team could pick up a rolling riser package whilst on site to transport the lighting gear onto the stage for quick changeovers.
Proving once again that LS-Live is one of the first choice solutions for staging rental, both Hurts and Chase & Status travelled to the festival with multiple risers from the company, whether for band risers or rolling equipment on stage. Chase & Status Production Manager, Richard 'Wes' Wearing, built the band's stage set for the Other Stage entirely from LS-Live's band risers. Over on the John Peel Stage on Saturday night, synthpop duo Hurts performed on a series of 12ft by eight ft risers that Production Manager, Rick Smith hired for the duration of the band's summer festival tour, with an identical B rig for overlapping events.
Said LS-Live Director Ben Brooks: "LiteDeck is the industry standard, lightweight staging product that every production wants. We can create so many different configurations out of our rental stock, so we can always achieve the results required by the performance. When Dizzee Rascal's production crew turned up on site, they wanted a rolling structure for the show, so we built something there and then for them to take away that day."
THE PYRAMID STAGE
A very noticeable addition to the iconic Pyramid Stage was the The Phoenix, which production Manager, Dick Tee, explained marked the return of the festival. The huge bird came to life during the Rolling Stones' headline set on Saturday night. "The Mutoid Waste Company was approached by Michael and Emily (Eavis) and they came up with the idea, which was revealed over the course of the weekend. They worked with award winning Misty Buckley (Emily's friend) and designer Joe Rush. To bring some fresh looks to the festival, Mutoid did several structures and sculptures around the festival which helped to bring it to life over the weekend."
Staging titans TAIT also provided a staging element for the Rolling Stones' set, which Senior Project Manager, Brian Levine, explained: "We needed to provide something that was extremely flexible to deal with the uneven ground and the surprises that we often encounter while doing festival gigs and outdoors. We provided a package that was easily adjustable and could adapt to the environment while still giving the crew adequate lighting and monitor positions along the runways and giving the band a set of dynamic runways that needed to be very stable and also maintain the same floor surface that the band is used to having on their Touring Stage."
Fans had the pleasure of seeing headline acts lit by some of the best rock 'n' roll lighting designers in the world play the famous Pyramid Stage.T aking care of the festival house rig was head of lighting, Andy 'Fraggle' Porter, who chose Clay Paky's extremely bright, effects-rich Alpha Profile 1500's and Alpha Wash 1500's to deliver dynamic beam shaping, vibrant colour and super bright effects to the long-running event. 2013's headlining acts included the Rolling Stones', lit by Patrick Woodroffe, Arctic Monkeys lit by Andy Watson and Mumford & Sons lit by Ed Warren. Each put Fraggle's house rig through its paces and all made dramatic and creative use of the Alpha 1500 Profiles and Washes. In addition each designer specified his own additional requirements for Clay Paky fixtures. For the main rig Neg Earth supplied 29 Alpha 1500 Profiles, 10 Alpha 1500 Washes, 20 Sharpys and 10 Sharpy washes. However the Rolling Stones' LD added more Alpha Washes and Profiles and a number of Sharpy's to the mix. Rigged at varying levels upstage, the Sharpys provided razor-sharp architectural backlight that gave depth to the stage for the audience and television cameras alike. Meanwhile, the additional Alpha Washes and Sharpys were rigged onto a custom Arch Truss to deliver strong key and feature lighting effects.
Working alongside Neg Earth's Account Director, Julian Lavender, Fraggle and his team of skilled riggers and technicians managed a gruelling schedule of overnight turnarounds to rig, focus and programme each headlining act's bespoke rigs.
"We positioned the Alpha Wash 1500's in the house rig on LX1 and LX 2 to provide the powerful backlight required," said Fraggle. "This was not just for the main acts but also for the bands playing during the daytime as they needed something that would still have an impact on the stage and pick out the performers from the backdrops." While Patrick Woodroffe added a number of Alpha Profiles to the front truss and specially built side trusses, Andy Watson brought in a considerable number of Sharpys to provide dramatic beams to balance the Arctic Monkeys' dynamic laser show. "Designers love the Alpha Wash 1500's for their high output and, with the profile, the precise framing system," explained Fraggle.
"They are incredibly reliable and extremely robust, which is an absolute must when you are working in all weathers, outside! As for the Sharpys - well everyone loves a Sharpy and Andy Watson used them to great effect to set off his crowd pleasing and very lively design."
Philips Vari-Lite's powerful VL3500 Washes also provided backbone for Glastonbury's famous Pyramid Stage's versatile house-lighting rig. Fraggle continued: "I knew I needed something powerful and reliable," commented Fraggle. "I also wanted a fixture that I knew was familiar to all the incoming LDs and that would provide the feature set for each of the very different lighting designs they wanted to deliver. Obviously many of the supporting acts are playing in daylight, so we needed something that would cut through on a sunny day. Vari-Lite VL3500 Wash and VL3500 Spots are ideal for this as they are super bright, extremely reliable and robust in all kinds of atmospheric conditions."
Not only that, but with only a few hours of darkness for each designer of the headline acts to plot the night before their show, all lighting kit has to be super reliable. "LDs only get one hit at the stage in the hours of darkness before they play. Not only that, but the show is broadcast on TV, nationally and internationally, so it is crucially important that they are working with fixtures that are familiar and that they know will deliver."
For control, a total of three MA Lighting grandMAs, and a High End Systems Hog 4 were deployed. Completing the Clay Paky and Vari-Lite rig were Martin Professional Atomic Strobes and MAC Vipers. The fixtures were a mixture of house kit and kit brought in by bands. For the Rolling Stones' tour set-up, they use Vari-Lite and Clay Paky but they wanted to try some MAC Vipers and the Artic Monkeys bought Sharpys.
The Rolling Stones were lit from the floor with James Thomas Engineering MR16 batons, Spotlights mounted on the A goal post and front truss spotlights for cross shots to outside catwalks and 360 degree ones for backlight. "We were keen to keep the rain off so we house a lot of the outer lights in pods. They can act as sails though in the wind!" said Fraggle. "So we put them under the Robe eco-domes in order to keep them dry. We've been landing them every night and re-rigging them to make sure they're tight. I think it's worth doing as the pyramid is about 28 metres wide... Mick Jagger moves so fast, he's like a rabbit on stage!"
Fraggle summed up: "I try to form a consensus between what everybody wants, ensuring it's complementary to what each act needs. Some people have design elements that they're more emphatic about than others."
For gig goers at the back of the Pyramid arena, left and right I-Mag screens (8.13 by 5.33 metres) were supplied by Carmarthenshire and London based Picture Works. Made up of Lighthouse R7-ER LED panels, which were digitally processed. The side screens were flown off the main structure and an additional FOH screen was 5.08 by 3.85 metres in size and mounted. Creative Technology (CT) also enhanced the stage's video elements and provided its Flyer 12 LED display for the backdrop to The Arctic Monkeys set.
RG Jones once again turned to the tried and trusted Martin Audio W8 Longbow system, which again dominated the Pyramid Stage. With visiting artists and sound engineers were so complimentary about the sound system two years ago, specialist sound company RG Jones had no hesitation in fielding a similar PA rig, knowing that this would meet all compliances and propagation tests set by the acoustics consultants and organiser Michael Eavis and at the same time satisfy the vast crowds of around 150,000 who converge on the site for the extravaganza. The Longbow hangs are now a familiar sight, book-ending either side of the iconic Pyramid, having fulfilled similar duties for the previous four festivals.
Once again dual inner and outer PA hangs comprising 14 W8L Longbow elements per side, with two W8LD Downfills at the base provided the full range dynamic - making 64 boxes in total. However, this year RG Jones changed the subwoofer design from the Martin Audio WS318X (three by 18-inches) subs fielded in 2011 back to 54 of the WS218X (two by 18-inches) enclosures used previously - still maintaining an electronically curved, cardioid broadside array configuration.
With the subs delayed incrementally from the centre outwards, the overall wavefront was tuned to fill the Pyramid Stage area, and ensure that spillage beyond the site perimeter was minimised. According to RG Jones' Project Manager, Ben Milton, a Glastonbury stalwart who was taking on the role of project manager, for the first time, "We have tried various configurations of the bass array and this solution - with two enclosures front facing and one reversed - works particularly well; the rejection from the stage is great and it enables us to bend, shape and steer the sound."
In addition, two clusters of four W8LC Compact Line Arrays, situated at each end of the crash barrier, provided nearfield infills, and four delay masts each comprising a further 16 W8LCs were positioned 100m back from the downstage centre, split into an arc.
"This solution worked great," said Milton. "The organisers wanted to leave nothing to chance when it came to maintaining levels and this was virtually a carbon copy of the 2011 system. We had plenty of opportunity to walk the field and conduct measurements, to ensure the accuracy of the system."
One advantage was the additional zoning that could be applied for tighter control. "All the tops were on individual circuits so we could turn them down very discreetly if necessary and sculpt the system. When the sun goes down the air temperature changes and we back off the top boxes, and as it cools we can bring them back up again," he said.
This is the domain of seasoned PA System Technician, Mark Edwards, who has vast experience with all Martin Audio's premier systems. He was an essential member of RG Jones' specialist team, which included Steve Carr and Damian Dyer at FOH (with the vastly experienced Simon Honywill occupying more of a 'floating' role this year). Down at the stage logistical duties were shared by Ben Milton (who also mixed monitors for some acts) and Mark Isbister. Supporting the system throughout was Martin Audio's R&D Director, Jason Baird.
Summing up, Glastonbury veteran, Simon Honywill, could not have been more positive, "This year's Festival was the most professional, slick, calm, enjoyable experience I can remember at an event of this stature. The Rolling Stones sounded absolutely incredible, with all the requisite punch and fidelity you could have wished for. Coverage was superb - the Stones' FOH team were extremely happy, and the punters were testament to that. As a neutral platform for all the acts, it would be very difficult to criticise the sound, and I was proud to be associated with such a brilliantly well delivered system."
Milton added, "We now have bands and their technicians fully confident in the system and happy to use our racks, stacks and control. It makes for a great British synergy a British production company using a British PA system at the greatest of British festivals. The only thing Glastonbury lacked, reflected Honywill, was [sound engineer] Steve Watson, who sadly died the weekend before. "He is sadly missed, and the industry won't be the same without him," he said in tribute.For RF, a mixture of Shure and Sennheiser was used. Shure UHF-R handheld mic systems with B58 / SM58 capsules were on hand. Artists who used Sennheiser microphones over the Glastonbury weekend included Dizzee Rascal, Alt-J, Vampire Weekend, Editors, Arctic Monkeys, Haim, Rita Ora, Example, Two Door Cinema Club to name a few. As well as the individual artists using their microphones at the festival, Sennheiser supported South West Group with some additional equipment to supplement the Park Stage wired microphone and RF requirements, over and above South West Groups own Sennheiser mics. RG Jones supplied Sennheiser G3 IEM systems.
At FOH, RG supplied a 48 input Midas XL4, was utilised alongside a Yamaha PM5D at the monitor position. Audiocore XTA 448 processing was available on every mix. Friday and Sunday headliners, Arctic Monkeys and Mumford and Sons specified DiGiCo consoles for their sets.
THE OTHER STAGE
Lighting Designer, Tom Lesh of Lushious Design, also used a Clay Paky heavy rig for his time at the Other Stage. He said: "The 17 Alpha Spots 1500 HPE and the 23 Alpha Wash 1500 were picked for being bright, reliable all-rounders. To have lamps that read for daylight shows with visiting LDs using the house consoles and in some cases, their own consoles, to enhance headliners productions to give them a solid air package that worked with the respective LD's floor packages and to read over their visual screens.
"The final three acts each day cloned the rig into their shows using their own consoles and pre-programmed shows with no issues and the results were suitably impressive. The units were first fired up on Wednesday afternoon and not turned off again until Sunday night once the festival had finished, during which time we had no issues with any of the fixtures considering the environment we were in and weather issues, rain and shine, damp and dust.
"One of the best features is the stay sharp zoom function for automatic focussing, especially in a festival situation where you have time constraints are not able to see in daylight to get a good sharp focus to your gobos, especially with the option to go from narrow to wide zoom and be sure that it's going to look good. This was a great feature in this somewhat challenging situation for myself, and visiting LDs alike," he concluded.
A.C. Entertainment Technologies (AC-ET) Ltd's Lighting division supplied a significant quantity of SGM X-5 Strobes to Neg Earth for use on the Other Stage. Lesh chose to rig 28 SGM X-5 Strobes across three trusses as he explained: "We rigged 28 of them across three trusses - and kept two spare - to add some visual depth to the stage both for the audience and of course for the TV cameras. We also needed something that would cut through in the bright summer sunshine and these strobes were ideal. They were a big hit on the Other Stage during the festival, being used by LDs for the three high-profile headline acts, as well as many others further down the bill.
For those bands that played in the daylight the SGM X-5's were also welcome additions. Bands including: the Foals, Alt-J, Tame Impala, The Lumineers, Enter Shikari, Amanda Palmer, The Hives and Beady Eye, Example, Two Door Cinema, Alabama Shakes, Noah and The Whale, Azealia Banks, Dry The River The 1975 & The Staves, Smashing Pumpkins, Editors, Of Monster & Men, PiL, I Am Kloot, Stornoway, The Heavy and Zulu Winter.
LDs programmed either from the house consoles or their own touring consoles. "They either cloned or fixture swapped using the four-channel mode to replicate their own strobe effects," explained Lesh. "This worked every time and the SGM X-5s slipped seamlessly into shows without any hassle."
Julian Lavender, Neg Earth's Project Manager at Glastonbury, where the company supplied lighting equipment not just for the Other Stage but for The Pyramid as well, concluded: "The SGM X-5 strobes worked out brilliantly - they really did make a big impact."
Left and right I-Mag screens were again supplied by Picture Works. Each screen was 6.10 by 3.81 metres in size and once more comprised Lighthouse's R7-ER LED panels.
DiGiCo consoles were specified on the many band riders for 2013-14 tours. This is reflected across the global festival scene, not least at this year's Glastonbury Festival, including Smashing Pumpkins, who played the Other Stage on Sunday.
"Despite the popularity of our consoles, it's still relatively unusual for bands to take their own equipment into a festival, due to the restrictions imposed by the quick turnarounds between sets," said DiGiCo Managing Director, James Gordon. "The fact that three top class bands (including Mumford & Sons and Arctic Monkeys) are insisting on taking their DiGiCos into a festival as vast as Glastonbury shows just how much they have come to rely on the ease of use and great sound quality of our products.
"I only use DiGiCo consoles, so I will be using my SD7, while our monitor engineer John Shearman will be taking his SD10 on stage," confired Smashing Pumpkins FOH Engineer, Jon Lemon. "There's nothing else that works for me at this point and they're still the best sounding live console there is."
For the PA spec, Chris Fitch of Skan PA Hire who was on site as the Other Stage's manager, alongside Assistant Stage Manager, Ade Assistant Ade Burt, provided its d&b audiotechnik rig. The main hangs comprised 16 J8's and four J12's, 14 J8's for the side hangs, the centre hang was made up of four V8's. As the subs couldn't be flown on the Other Stage structure, the alternative was a pit sub array which comprised 20 J Subs and eight J-Infra's. The d&b set up was completed by 64 D12 amps.
The PA target was implemented to avoid as much spill into the adjacent performance areas as possible and it was noted by TPi various times this year that the audience were complimenting the sound at the Other Stage, with one festival goer describing the audio as "better than it's ever been." The d&b system was praised by onlookers for its clarity and far-reaching splay.
Skan also provided control and monitors, desks, wedges and IEM systems. The house kit comprised two Midas XL4's at FOH, one Midas PRO1 to collect feeds from all FOH consoles and send to the PA drive, two Midas Heritage 3000's on monitor and XTA GQ 600's for EQing.
Monitor reinforcement was handled by four d&b V8's and four V Subs per side, two d&b C7's and four C7 subs for drum fills. A total of 20 d&b M2 wedges were also placed on stage. An incredible 150 microphone were also on hand, made up of Sennheiser, Shure and AKG models. Six packs of Sennhesier G3's IEMs were used and four Shure UHF-R c/w B58A and KSM9 heads.
The Other Stage Audio crew was completed by System Designer, Matt Vickers, Crew Chief and FOH minder, Tom Tunney, FOH minder, Rob Collett, Monitor minders Chris Barton and Scott Essen, Patch / wingman, Richie Gough, RF Engineer, Nick Jackson, Mic duty, Matt Besford-Foster and Dan Parkinson.
Brit indie darlings, The xx drew an impressive crowd over on the Other Stage, even when competing with the main stage contenders. The band's show design was focused around their logo which was a focal point thanks to visual effects experts, Strictly FX. The company used lasers to make a bold statement on stage.
"The xx was shot with a Pangolin Beyond console, using four FB3 cards and one of our workstations. Eric Gorleski, Lead Programmer, programmed most of the show in rehearsals and I programmed and tweaked both during rehearsals and in the office afterwards, and I also did some tweaks at Glasto as well," noted David Kennedy of Strictly FX of Chicago, IL.
"For The xx, programming is key to the look of the lasers," furthered Strictly FX Partner and Visuals Director, Ted Maccabee. There were four high-powered, full coloured 30W lasers, two on the upstage towers, two on the mid stage blocks and four mirrors, to create the double 'x' in lasers used in the band's production. He continued: "The xx show is comprised on a lot of nuanced laser looks that are a showplace for our gear, and the talents of our crew."
As for being part of the Glastonbury experience, Maccabee noted: "In a summer filled with festivals, Glastonbury is always a high point for us in the European summer circuit." The Strictly FX Glastonbury crew was completed by Shooter and Lead Tech, Michael Hartle, and Programmer, David Kennedy.
THE JOHN PEEL STAGE
Essex based DPL, once again handled the production lighting for the John Peel Stage. KOI nominated MD, Pete Watts spec'd a colourful lighting rig for the festival's only indoor stage. The fixtures comprised 12 Philips Vari-Lite VL3000 Spots, 12 Robe Robin LED Wash 1200's, six Studio Due LED 600's, 10 ChromaQ Color Punches, six Martin Professional MAC 301's, four Martin Atomic 3000's, nine 4 Cell Molefays, 16 Micro Blinders, six ACL Bars, eight ETC Source 4 Junior Zooms, six Arri ST1 Fresnels and an Avolites Pearl Expert with Touch Wing for control.
For the video elements, DPL supplied 92 two metre LED strips and 12 one metre LED strips with individual pixel control. The Phoenix set on the John Peel Stage also utilised CT's Flyer 18 LED display while a variety of cameras providing content to both the BBC and red button options and to the screens were also supplied out of CT's own inventory. For control, Green Hippo Critters were the media server of choice.
Green Hippo's Simon Harris was invited down to join the John Peel team including Lighting Designer Cate Carter from Bryte Design and Lighting Chief Pete Watts. Running two HippoCritters on stage (one an unused backup) and a ZooKeeper tablet PC front of house, the design contained over 60 DMX universes of LED Strips controlled by PixelMapper.
"Every year we strive to implement the video / media server into the design in a way that doesn't scare away the visiting LDs. This year we are really pleased with the end result based on the number of operators who chose to use the system and the positive feedback we received from them all." explained Carter.
The HippoCritters were then patched to the Avolites Pearl, however a decision was made to create a custom fixture personality that only included level, RGB and speed with all other values via PresetManager on the tablet PC. This made the system simple to use even if the visiting operators had no previous Hippotizer training.
"The systems were tested back in the warehouse as we were aware that 60 DMX universes was a big ask from a HippoCritter but I'm very pleased to report the system ran seamlessly for the entire weekend" said Watts.
This year also saw the introduction of a volunteer programme in partnership with Rose Bruford, LIPA and Backstage Academy. Students Jeff Hinde, Jon Nunn, Harry Harrison, Nick Ashcroft and Roxane Mirza were all invited to be part of the team to give them valuable experience of working on one of the world's biggest festivals.
"I had the most amazing experience; it really opened my eyes to the world of live events. I learnt a lot, and it was really beneficial to have the chance to busk and find that connection between the music and light." explained Hinde, for which Glastonbury was his first festival experience, and what a way to start!
"The student volunteers were absolutely fantastic and some even got the opportunity to operate lighting and or video for some of the early performances on our stage. Having never used such a large rig of lights and some of them never operating video at all, those who took up the challenge exceeded both their own expectations and ours. This is a prime example of what is possible with a great team of people and a cunning technical yet attractive design for the audience both on site and watching at home," Simon Harris, Head of Training, Green Hippo highlighted.
Yamaha has worked with The John Peel stage for a number of years to help introduce visiting engineers to new products in a working environment, alongside supplier, APR Audio. Yamaha's Senior Manager, Karl Christmas, highlighted: "Typically, the John Peel stage hosts many bands that go on to be next year's big hit so we have the opportunity to meet as many as 60 FOH and monitor engineers who may well be about to embark on a year of touring with their particular act."We normally send a couple of guys to Glastonbury who act as technical support or babysitters to anyone who may need assistance. Anything can happen in those muddy fields so having a spare pair of Yamaha eyes and ears can sometimes help to diffuse a stressful situation."
At the FOH end of the core, Ben Dexter looked after engineers and APR's AVID Profile and a Yamaha CL5 desk. On stage in monitor world, Fabrizzio Piazzini used the Yamaha CL5 and a Yamaha PM5DRH. Piazzini chose the CL5 as the house console as its iPad app gave him the ability to walk the stage with band members and tune their mixes on the spot.
Continued Christmas: "Fabrizio connected up his Waves processing on his MacBook Pro, but such was the intensity of the weekend we didn't get enough time to experiment fully with all the features. We worked closely with APR Audio during all stages of the festival and had the pleasure of meeting up with David Ogilvy (FOH for Tom Odell) who was touring with a CL5 at the time when he appeared at the John Peel stage. The occasion was made all the more poignant when Tom used the occasion to announce that his album had just reached No. 1."
Having heard the Aero 50 a while ago, Andy Reed, MD of APR Audio, knew that it was a very capable system. With the help of the guys at DAS Audio, he decided to use it on the John Peel stage. A total of nine Aero 50's were flown per side with a sub array of 24 LX218CA designed by DAS System Tech, Joel Damanio. Convert12As were also used for infills.
The Aero 50 elements of the system were processed via the DAS DSP4080 and a KT DN9848 for the sub array. For system control, APR used its newly acquired Lake LM44. This also dealt with desk bussing requirements. The Aero 50 was powered by a single rack per side, each containing six Powersoft K6 amplifiers which along with everything else being powered, made for a very light truck pack.
For wedges, APR used the DAS Road 15's. Said APr's Matt Gunter: "We tried these a couple of years ago and they were great then but now they are a completely different animal which kept our monitor guy very happy. DAS Convert 18A and Convert 12A made up the drum fill system." A selection from Sennheiser's E Series and Shure's Beta and KSM models were chosen alongside four AKG C414's. The PA comprised 24 Electro Voice XLC DVX cabinets, 24 EV X-line subs, eight XLE 120 degree fill cabinets and an EV P3000rl remote amp system.
THE WEST HOLTS STAGE
DPL and APR Audio also supplied lighting, video and audio for the West Holts stage. 12 Robe Colorspot 1200AT were spec'd with various Martin Professional fixtures including seven MAC 2000 Washes, six Martin MAC 2000 Beams and three Martin Atomic 3000's. A total of 28 James Thomas Pixelpar 44 (Cree Led), 11 4 Cell Molefays and eight 4 Lamp Bar completed the house rig. Control came via a High End Systems Road Hog 4 Full Boar. For video at West Holts, again Creative Technology CT Flyer 18 video screens were used with a Green Hippo Critter for media control.
Electro Voice was again the choice for PA by APR Audio. For this outdoor stage, the PA boated 20 EV XVLS 90 degree cabinets, four EV XVLT 120 degree cabinets, 32 EV X Line subs and six XLE infill cabinets. The EV P3000rl remote amp system was also in place. The trusty Yamaha PM5D desk was used in monitor world and an Allen & Heath R72 desk with an A&H iDR 16 mix rack. Microphones comprised of Sennheiser, Shure, AKG and two EV RE20's.
THE PARK STAGE
Around 400 Robe fixtures were on site in various areas at the 2013 Glastonbury. Robe UK's own Ian W Brown took his tent, clothes-pegs and Wellies and got into the festival spirit. Brown spent time hanging out at some of the coolest Glasto spaces including The Park with its abundance of open air stages, late night bars, lounges and cafés, tee pee villages, art installations and 17 metre high illuminated Ribbon Tower that overlooks the entire festival site.
When Avolites Media formed in 2011, it did so with the clear objective of bringing holistic show control to market. At Arcadia - Glastonbury's most theatrical space - the company didn't only reaffirm that it had succeeded in doing that, it helped to deliver one of the most memorable visual spectacles the festival has ever seen.
Created around a giant 30ft spider structure, Arcadia came alive on three consecutive nights in spectacular style, with video, lighting, lasers and flames filling the darkened landscape. As the clock struck midnight, the metallic beast exploded into action with a scripted 20-minute performance, followed by two hours of immersive audio-visual entertainment, set to the soundtrack of some of the UK's finest DJs.
Video Illusions, Immersive and Avolites Media collaborated to deliver the technical infrastructure for the visual elements, while Blinkin Lab supplied the animation and VJ, CPL the projection and Sir Henry Hot the flames. It was a truly collaborative affair, with the Arcadia's visionaries Pip Rush and Bert Cole and their team providing creative direction and event production.
Immersive was briefed with visually enhancing the giant spider through a tightly time-coded video projection, LED, pyro, laser, firework and lighting display. This was the first 20 minutes of each evening's performance, which brought together all of the visual elements under the cue of the recorded soundtrack, and drew massive crowds in the process.
Using the Infinity Ai Infinity Media Server, Sapphire Media and Saphire Touch platforms, Immersive programmed and virtually rehearsed the video animation; lighting looks and laser positions offsite, over two weeks of preparation. The Arcadia team was close by with art direction throughout. Pyro and fireworks were then added onsite, which was a new experience for Immersive's MD, Mark Calvert: "The Pyro was incredibly exciting, as this was an element we had not personally time-coded before."
An Alesis HD24 hard disk recorder was used to playback the audio and time-code information, thus connecting each department together. Immersive took responsibility for project managing the departments during programming work off and onsite.
"With so many people involved, naturally there were challenges," said Calvert: "So many departments all had to work together for the first time, all of which had never met before, and all of which were working to a tight budget. In addition, the Arcadia team are incredibly passionate about their show, which, in parallel, made them nervous about the time-code element - they hadn't done that before either."
Despite the concerns, the show was in safe hands.
The Ai Media Server is the fruit of a strategic partnership between Avolites Media and Immersive - who had developed its predecessor, the Addict Media Server. Dave Green, who remains as Technical Director at immersive, joined Avolites Media as Head of Development and worked with Trey Harrison to further develop the Ai. The duo combined the 'Salvation' node based engine with a slick user-interface and controls. The result, as Green explained, is formidable: "It's a very powerful tool and extremely flexible. It allows you to create whole new ways of working in a matter of moments. You're not rigidly stuck with the interface you've been given, you're able to quickly create your own."
At Arcadia, two Infinity Ai 8 Media Servers were used together with two Avolites Sapphire Media consoles to control all of the video elements. Two Sapphire Touch consoles controlled the lighting and other DMX cues.
"Each Ai offers eight HD outputs and delivers smooth playback of multilayer 8K media, using the AiM Codec and 32 media layers," explained Green. "Features include soft-edge blending of multiple projectors, timeline and time-code sequencing, support for 3D displays and remote vertex adjustment. Users can map and warp onto any 3D surface and on moving scenery. Intuitive modular LED support widens the capability further."
The variety of the performance at Arcadia showed off the system's flexibility; not only in terms of the number of elements involved but also in the transition from the pre-programmed segment to the live performance. As soon as the time-code ended, the audio and visual performances moved to live, with DJs, VJs and LDs taking off from the end of the automated show. The Ai Media Server, an ever-present throughout, ensured the change was absolutely seamless. Dave Green explained: "Once the choreographed show finishes its rave time and it's all done live. That's one of the nice things about our system actually, it's very good for doing pre-programmed content and it's also very good for doing live stuff. A lot of the other systems don't really have that intuitive live thing going on."
The Ai Infinity server is also the only fully featured media server on the market which has eight outputs, Green elaborated: "These are all fully synchronised unique GPU outputs, each with internal EDID management and an internal DA to enable on board monitoring of the signal. Being in the round with only one side visible from any viewpoint made the Arcadia stage a video mapping challenge. We tackled this using the auto map feature of Ai over VNC from a variety of points around the structure. We actually video mapped the entire structure in around four hours total."
The Ai is designed from the ground up with both pre-sequenced and live control in mind, which enables the operator to seamlessly mix between a time-coded show and an improvised live performance - this was essential on Arcadia. The Sapphire Media control surface is designed for shows that need an extremely flexible interface that can be tailored to the shows requirements, whilst also showing previews of all of the eight outputs from the system. These outputs can be monitored whilst operating the show or installing / mapping the structure.
"The AiM codec is the industry's best quality codec," continued Green. "With 24-bit true colour there is no loss of quality whilst maintaining very high performance from the GPU decompression. This is how we can drive eight 1080p outputs with beautiful true colour video."
"Arcadia demonstrates collaboration at its very best," added Steve Warren, Managing Director for Avolites Media. "I feel honoured to be able to work with such creative teams. The artistry produced by Jaz Bhullar on lighting and the video content from Blinkin Lab's, Tom Wall, was magical. It's great to know that the successful realisation of their work was made possible with the efforts of the Avolites Media team, Immersive and Video Illusions. Arcadia's Pip and Bertie have both been appreciative, supportive and 100% focused on the highest show values. Together we truly delivered the 'spectacular' in the Arcadia spectacular."
Testament to this is the fact that audiences flocked to Arcadia – drawn in by the enchanting imagery and theatrical performances. After weeks of preparation, the team combined onsite to astounding effect. With each performance, the numbers grew, as word spread around the site. For Immersive's Mark Calvert, overseeing the shows as FOH Technical Manager, it couldn't have gone much better: "It was a total success. On Saturday night the crowd was calculated at over 47,000. We're really looking forward to seeing what the future holds for Bert, Pip and the whole Arcadia Team."
Immersive Ltd and Video Illusions Ltd'are the AV experts responsible for the jaw dropping video aspects of the Arcadia Spectacular witnessed by the thousands that attended and many thousands more that viewed live broadcasts of Glastonbury 2013's Arcadia stage. Known as the 'Arcadia Spectacular', a giant mechanical spider was the centrepiece for an audio visual experience that included explosive pyrotechnics, high definition projection mapping and stunning choreography set to a soundtrack from some of the UK's finest bass DJs including Andy C, Fatboy Slim, Ratpack, Plump DJs and more.
To help Immersive bring the show to life, Panasonic provided six of its very finest twenty thousand lumen DLP projectors, which were located in three areas and beamed vibrant coloured textures, geometrically mapped images and excitement building info such as a countdown onto the legs of the nearly 10 metre high spider. The results were truly phenomenal with the spider ignited in a scene of animated colour and illusion.
Funktion-One and three of its rental network partners delivered audio solutions to Sonic, Arcadia, and WOW at the UK's biggest festival, continuing a relationship that began during Glastonbury's formative times in the early 1970s. Audio Plus worked closely with Funktion-One to design an audio spec for Sonic, which presented some unusual challenges. Funktion One made sure that the aural spectacle matched the visual extravaganza at Arcadia. And Audio X supplied the sound to WOW, which, like Sonic, formed part of the Silver Hayes area.
Sonic was built by Silver Stage, using its SaddleSpan modular truss framework. Structured in a three-pronged-shape - essentially a Y with a short stem - it presented an intriguing space for festivalgoers and a rather challenging environment for the audio specialists. Tony Andrews worked with Audio Plus' Owner, Stefan Imhof, and Project Manager, Mark O'Neill, to create a solution, which ensured the entire space was covered in a consistent spread of Funktion-One-quality audio.
The stage occupied the short stem of the Y, providing views from beneath its arms and outside in the central V formed by those arms. Coverage was needed for both arms of the structure and in the central zone - which had the potential to stretch back as the audience grew.
Left and right stacks of eight Funktion-One Resolution 5 loudspeakers and six Funktion-One F221 bass enclosures, positioned on either side of the stage, covered the canopied area. Two delay stacks, consisting of three F221s and five Resolution 5's were placed at the edge of the tent, in the central zone. While three Funktion-One BR221 bass reflex speakers delivered infill bass frequencies.
"We also tried some BR221s in the middle – taking advantage of their shorter range," said Andrews. "They were between the two main horn-loaded bass stacks, on each side of the stage. The bass was fantastic. There was a DJ playing who had decent files and it really was a joy."
An inventory of Funktion-One RM18 point source monitors and BR118, BR218 and BR221 bass reflex enclosures, as well as stacks of Funktion-One F218's and Resolution 4's formed part of a high-performance monitoring system - all using MC2 E100 amplifiers and XTA processing.
"It was an awkward and challenging tent. The consensus of opinion at the end of the festival was that we'd absolutely cracked it and they were very pleased, which is nice. We had a lot of good feedback – we were using PSM 318's for the DJs and they were all loving it. The crowd were absolutely loving it. The bass - we had gallons of it. It was rocking," added Andrew. "It was certainly different. And hats off to the Sonic guys for trying something unusual."
If Sonic was unusual, Arcadia was unconventional, to say the least. It was formed by a giant 30ft high spider structure, which came alive at night with video, lighting, lasers and flames animating the darkened landscape and high fidelity audio filling the air. The audience formed beneath its three legs and body, and all around the metallic arthropod.
Audio Funktion deployed 30 Funktion-One Resolution 5T loudspeakers and 18 Funktion-One F221 bass enclosures in a six-point hexagon layout of outer stacks. These were powered by MC2 E100 racks, with XTA 448 control.
For inner fill, six Funktion-One Resolution 4T speakers were flown from the spider structure in three different positions, along with a total of six ground stacked Funktion-One F218's. Six outer-fill positions at the rear of the main stack used Resolution 2SH loudspeakers – the skeletal mid-high section of the Res 2. And the ARC Bar, situated on the outer edges of Arcadia, was reinforced with two Funktion-One Resolution 4E speakers and four F218's. Power came from MC2E45 and E25 amps, with XTA 448 control.
"They've got this really interesting set-up at Arcadia, where they've got this three-legged spider, as people call it," explained Andrew. "What they do is set up six blocks of Res 5's on F221's around it, all pointing in from a fair distance out. And it all shoots into the middle. In the middle, underneath the legs, they've got a pair of Res 4's, just spraying the middle area, where you'd expect a bit more intensity because it's right underneath the DJ pod."
WOW was split between outdoor daytime performances and evenings in the WOW tent, which demanded two different set-ups. WOW Outdoors used three Funktion-One Resolution 3 loudspeakers, together with eight F121 bass enclosures. WOW Tent employed six Funktion-One Resolution 9 speakers, eight F221's and two Resolution 2's for infill. Full Fat Audio and MC2 amps were used with XTA processing.
Reflecting on Funktion-One's involvement at Glastonbury 2013, Tony Andrews said: "We find ourselves involved and associated with the people who are pushing the creative side of the festival - they're focused on performance and audience satisfaction. The people on the fringes tend to be the ones who are willing to experiment with new ways of doing things, which makes it interesting for us. Inevitably, there were challenges, but we're really happy with the way things worked out."
THE PARK STAGE
Supplying lighting to the main stage at The Park was South West Lighting, with a production design created by Ben Perrin and Mark Bott. This involved 24 Robe LEDBeam 100's, eight LEDWash 600's, four LEDWash 1200's and 10 each of ColorSpot and ColorWash 700E ATs. Around ten acts a day played here, including Solange Knowles (Beyoncé's younger sister) and Southend-on-Sea's finest, The Horrors, whose LD Matthew Button, like many others, was very impressed with the Robes.
The LEDBeam 100's were all facing the audience for eye-candy effects and helped increase the general depth and back lines of the stage. The LEDWashes were used for side lighting for some artists and as effect lighting for others.
For the first time The Park's main stage was televised, so the LEDWash provided 'rider compliant' LED illumination which was perfect for camera, with no flicker issues and a great range of white colour temperatures.
Come witching hour in deepest, darkest Glastonbury, the late night world of Block9 came to life. Here, visual innovators The Picture Works helped to create something quite spectacular. Two Christie 35K projectors were used to create a projection-mapped design onto the area's 'Tree of Light'. Previously seen at The London 2012 Cultural Olympiad, this 50ft tall 3D creation became home to a kind of dystopian tree in which DJs performed while graphics raced around the mighty technological structure. Meant to celebrate the environment through technology, the Tree of Light was designed by Gideon Berger & Steve Gallagher. Visuals were controlled using Green Hippo Hippotizer HD servers by LD Alan King, using content supplied by Ben Sheppee.
Picture Works owner, Robin Wealleans, has been a fan of Glastonbury festival ever since he can remember. With his parents working there from the early years, Wealleans actually had his first experience of the charitable festival at 20months old. Now in his thirties he is quite an anomaly for his age - still passionate & with a wicked sense of humour. Having been involved in the live production industry since his teen years, the enthusiastic Welshman this year enjoyed his 26th Glastonbury Festival. "Even Eavis was surprised at that" joked Robin "it's way more than just another gig to me, it's the soundtrack & annual highlight of my life really."
Clearly delighted with what his innovative company achieved at the Somerset event (project managed by Rhodri Shaw & in conjunction with Production Network) he told TPI: "We had 2,359,296 LEDs (150sq metres) of Lighthouse panels elsewhere onsite - showing everyone from Portishead to the Rolling Stones. From the start, we were on fire! But actually it was our projection in Block9 that I was the proudest of. It wasn't the easiest of conditions - but the end results spoke for themselves and became a bit of a talking point. It looked like the best kind of nightmare, with a soundtrack to match!"
The rumours began circulating weeks before the event that Grammy award winning musician and DJ, Skrillex would perform a surprise DJ set at the Glastonbury festival. The rumours proved to be correct when he appeared on the Gully Stage in the Silver Hayes dance area. The whole area was packed even though the official announcement was made only hours before and the show was one of the highlights of the weekend.
MilTec UK Ltd supplied the bulk of the lighting via A1 Entertainments of Bristol who supplied the complete package of staging, sound and lighting for the Gulley. It is believed that they are the first company to supply the whole package at the festival.
All of the Miltec equipment was LED powered and consisted of 10 Batten2's, four EPW2 and two EPW3 moving heads, 20 144Q LED pars and two 324W moving head washes. The EPW fixtures were very popular, being used for profile beams, washes and pixel effects.
Paul Wilshire, owner of A1 Entertainment commented: "The MilTec products were both innovative and reliable, the unique features on some units allowing me to be very creative throughout the duration of the festival. I even saved on the return costs by buying the Battens."
A focal point of Silver Hayes was the SaddleSpan structure supplied and installed by the aptly named Silver Stage Event Structures. The structure became the 'Sonic' stage, billed by organisers as the flagship venue within the newly created area. The Silver Hayes area utilised five of Silver Stage's S5000 SaddleSpan's, which were configured in what is termed the '5V' layout. The finished structure allowed for greater crowd flow in and out of the structure through the two open ends, with the stage situated at the bottom point of the V shape. A tapered end wall provided a fully covered backstage production area.
As a result of the unique design, the truss framework of the SaddleSpan structures was used to suspend the majority of the lighting production within the Sonic arena, with the main audio system being ground-stacked.
Silver Stages' unique structures have the ability to be configured in a number of different ways, giving production designers the scope to shape and create a covered area that is far more dynamic than a traditional marquee or big top. Silver Hayes organisers also opted for the S5000's silver coloured skins as opposed to white in order to maintain a continuation of their theme and branding.
Audile maintained three duties at the festival; sound for the William's Green stage, sound and lighting for the Beat Hotel and the Everything Everywhere Recharge Stations.
For the William's Green area, Audile supplied a d&b J-series system with V-series fills, M4 monitors and C7 sidefills; a Digidesign Profile FOH; a Yamaha PM-5DRH on monitors; Shure UHF-R radio mics and Sennheiser EW300 G3 IEMs. The stage featured high-profile acts likes Alt-J, Django Django, Everything Everything, The Vaccines and Martha and Rufus Wainwright playing in an intimate setting, supplementing their higher-profile performances on the big stages. With a packed line-up playing on a compact stage, the Audile team had their work cut out managing changeovers, but an exceptional response was received from the artists, who greatly appreciated the full Audile festival service being provided on a smaller stage.
Lighting at the William's Green stage comprised mainly of Martin Professional fixtures. "The MAC 101's were a great tool for the William's Green Stage. The fixtures were small enough to adapt to the limitations of the size of the stage yet powerful enough to provide the main focus of the rig. The fixture was excellent at providing output even during daylight bands. Many incoming LDs also commented on what a great looking rig it provided them," said LD Mark Jones.
"The LC panels provided depth to a shallow stage, the content from the screens along with the entire lighting rig being LED fixtures (apart from some Atomics and moles) gave us a limitless selection of looks on what was a very busy stage. The LC gave us options to change the look of the stage throughout the four days it was open from 10:30am right through to 3am. The screen played a key part in providing incoming artists with not only content but backdrops and logos something that would not have been possible on that particular stage otherwise."
Over at the hugely popular Beat Hotel, Audile provided a Funktion One Resolution-4/F-218 sound system with Pioneer and Technics DJ equipment, to cater for big names like Fatboy Slim (playing under his Beats International moniker), T.E.E.D., Simian Mobile Disco, The 2 Bears and Seth Troxler vs Eats Everything. Lighting supplied included architectural fixtures from Studio Due and Pulsar alongside Source Four Juniors and an Avolites Pearl Tiger.
For the two 'EE Recharge Stations', Audile supplied background music systems using Tannoy speakers and MC2 amplifiers, with a DJ set-up in the larger venue. Lighting included architectural fixtures from Studio Due and SGM. Over at EE's VIP area, Audile provided a Funktion One Resolution-1/F-121 sound system and Turbosound TFM-450 wedges to cater for not just DJ sets, but an intimate acoustic performance and Q&A session with the legend that is Nile Rodgers. Uplighting of this area was provided by Chroma-Q DB4 units.
The numerous features, nooks, crannies, hideaways and eclectic spaces around The Park including the entrance arch, Ribbon Tower and Glasto sign were designed by Misty Buckley and lit by Simon Marcus MD of Enlightened Lighting from nearby Bath, using a plethora of Anolis fixtures. While Marcus enjoyed the relaxed vibe on 'the hill' at the Park, Enlightened's Dave Thorpe took a trip to the wild side – down to the East side of site - and to The Common in particular, where they had supplied Robe moving lights to the two main venues, The Temple and the Rave Cave.
Six of Enlightened's brand new Robe Robin Pointes moved things in The Temple, which featured a heterogeneous mix of interactive and experiential happenings curated by Bearded Kitten during the daytimes, and Bristol based Invisible Circus at night, followed by full on DJ sets pumping into the small hours.
The LD was Paul de Villiers, who also used LEDWash 600's and LEDBeam 100's and a bunch of other kit. The Rave Cave had a spectacular rock-faced frontage, complete with real waterfall and abundant foliage, which was spectacularly lit with Anolis ArcLine LED fixtures. Inside the Cave itself were Robin 600E Spots and LEDWash 300s. Moving further into site and staying in Enlightened territory, was the Glasto Latino Tent at the hub of a South American themed area, replete with salsa lessons, Cuban bands and heaps of fun - all lit with Robe ColorWash and ColorSpot 575E ATs operated by David Johnson - one of Robe's PLASA 2012 student team.
SSE has been providing risers and staging platforms at festivals and events since 1995, and has its own range of manufactured bespoke products. SSE won the Glastonbury contract in 2002, and the amount of rolling risers required has grown each year as the festival has developed, to it now being the company's largest single riser contract.
"We're now up to 12 stages on the site so it's a major logistical operation - as that amounts to two full artic loads of platforms - and you can get a lot in a 40 ft trailer! In total we supplied 190 decks and 19 DJ tables across the site at a variety of rolling risers," stated Owner, John Penn.
"We also supplied two collapsible quick change rooms to both the Pyramid and the Other stage. It's a part of our business which is much less glamorous than our core PA rental activity, but all of the parts add to make a very successful whole!"
Posted on: 03/09/2013Categories: News from TPi Magazine