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iNPUT The Official News Journal of Entec Sound & Light


Summer 2017



DIVERSITY IS THE KEY So far, so good. I’m delighted to say that we have enjoyed a tremendously busy year with a number of brand new clients and continued business with familiar faces, all making sure that we have plenty of diversity in our activities, working with everyone from rock, pop and soul stars to politicians and even dogs! The recent addition of Jo Beirne and Lee Stennett to our team has encouraged very positive reactions all round, both internally and industry-wide, and some strategic investments in equipment stock have been increasing our ability to meet client specifications head-on. This year began with a rather big surprise for me, personally, when I was presented with TPi’s Outstanding Contribution award in front of around 1,400 of my peers. I’m still dining out on that although, as I’ve often said to people, I feel this wonderful accolade was as much about the company as myself. What we have here for you in the second edition of our biannual news bulletin is just a taster of what we have been up to. Until next time! Noreen O’Riordan Managing Director / Head of Lighting

“Some strategic investments have been increasing our ability to meet client specifications head-on.”


SUMMEr 2017 edition

Cover photo: Liam Griffiths

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SAVAGES GO ATOMIC Anthemic indie four-piece Savages have been steadily rising as a critically acclaimed live attraction since forming in London nearly six years ago. With two Mercury Prize nominated albums under their belt – Silence Yourself and Adore Life – this summer has seen them touring the European festival circuit with a small but versatile dry hire lighting package from Entec and support from Simon Barrett at German Light Products (GLP). When lighting designer Liam Tully came onboard with Savages earlier this summer, it coincided with the band’s wish to make some adjustments to their show design. “They were very clear that they wanted to completely base their show around white light,” said Tully, who operates his own grandMA2 light control desk and has also recently worked with James Bay and Jack Savoretti. “The band had some pre-existing set and Mitch Gee, the tour manager, asked if I would be able to make it work. Conveniently, the set had mounting brackets built into it

to accommodate GLP X4 Atoms, which have really impressed me.” A small LED unit, the Atom features a 9:1 zoom that can progress from a very tight beam to a wide 34° wash to a very tight beam. Tully has been running 12 of the units from a single power supply, using standard four-pin cable. He commented: “There are four different ways to mount the Atoms and that offers a lot of versatility because, due to the size and light weight, they can be positioned pretty much anywhere.” Tully was introduced to Entec by business development co-ordinator Jo Beirne, who joined the company earlier this year. “Obviously, I’ve known about Entec for years but being friends with Jo I was swayed by her enthusiasm when it came to deciding on lighting support for this tour, and I’ve been extremely happy with the service I’ve received.”

Fronted by singer Jehnny Beth, Savages – also featuring guitarist Gemma Thompson, bass player Ayse Hassan and drummer Fay Milton – started their festival run at Belgium’s legendary Rock Werchter on June 29th, and moved on to play at OpenAir St. Gallen (Switzerland), Main Square and Days Off (France), NOS Alive! (Portugal) and Mad Cool in Madrid.


Photography by Tristane Mesquita



Entec shines a light on the ‘Dog Whisperer’ Combining education, storytelling and family entertainment, the legendary Cesar Millan brought his Once Upon A Dog tour to London on March 26th after an enormously successful, whirlwind trip through 16 European cities. Entec’s lighting division supported his one-off Eventim Apollo Hammersmith show, working with production manager Gustavo Reyes Leyva, lighting director Christian Gomez Ruiz and Daniel Scott of event promoter 3A Entertainment. Known as ‘The Dog Whisperer’ by his legions of TV fans around the world, Millan is the pre-eminent authority in the field of dog rehabilitation, and in his latest live show


he performed demonstrations with a number of ‘guest’ dogs, sharing his philosophy of trust, respect and love, and giving valuable lessons through everyday situations.

Based in Los Angeles and Mexico, Cesar’s Way – the company behind Millan – approached 3A to put the London show together on its behalf, as Daniel Scott explained: “Entec has such a solid relationship with the Apollo that we went directly to them to provide the lighting, and it’s worked very smoothly from the start. “Their MD, Noreen O’Riordan also helped with the video production, sub-hiring Transition to service that side of the show with projection and cameras. It’s Cesar’s first visit in four years so, having a large fan base here, we correctly anticipated that ticket sales would be very healthy.”


SIMPLICITY Entec crew chief Simon Chandler-Honnor, who worked alongside Anna Mac and Alessandro Schillaci, described the job as one of his simplest and least stressful to date this year. “We started at 8.00am and had everything all rigged and ready for Christian, the LD, within two hours,” he said. Trucked to the Apollo by R. Jameson Event Transport, Entec’s kit included Gomez Ruiz’s preferred choice of an MA Lighting grandMA2 full-size console, which controlled a rig containing 22 Martin MAC 700 wash luminaries, 10 Martin Viper profiles, a host of ETC Source Fours and six Thomas 8-lite vertical moles. The company also supplied a pair of Robert Juliat 1800W followspots along with trussing, drapes and borders. Throughout the day, the space outside the Apollo’s stage door and the interior stairwells was a haven for the visiting canines who awaited their moment of fame. “As with all of Cesar’s shows, the selection process started with the owners applying to appear via his website,” commented Scott. “After the dogs and their owners arrived, Cesar’s team made a selection for him to work with during his show on a range of behavioural issues.” He continued: “Working with dogs on a live event inevitably means that nothing is straightforward and there’s a lot of paperwork to deal with. There’s a strict code of practice laid down by Hammersmith & Fulham Council and the Kennel Club of Great Britain that we

have to follow. As a consequence, we have brought in vets and specialist temporary staff who are looking after the welfare of the animals, making sure they are fed, watered and safer than they might normally need to be, because this is a very unfamiliar environment for them with bright lights and a lot of cables in the stage wings that we needed to protect with ramps.” UNEXPECTED ADDITIONS Much to the surprise of Entec’s assistant head of lighting, Adam Stevenson, the company was called upon to provide an unusual extra. “The technical rider included ‘doggie poo pallets’ on the list of must-haves and 3A Entertainment asked if we might have anything of that nature,” he said with a grin. “We discovered some AstroTurf at the back of our container that was left over from another job so we attached it to some pallets, effectively adding another solution to our range of services!” The dog lovers in the audience were visibly thrilled to catch a rare glimpse of their hero on stage, and lighting tech Anna Mac was equally happy. “After a very busy few weeks spent working on a range of events for Entec, it’s been satisfying to end the run with a relaxed Sunday show.”


Photography by Mark Cunningham


JO BEIRNE & LEE STENNETT JOIN ENTEC Entec Sound & Light is delighted to announce that, earlier this year, Jo Beirne and Lee Stennett joined the company in full-time positions at its Northolt, west London premises. Reporting directly to MD Noreen O’Riordan, Jo takes on the newly created role of Business Development Co-ordinator while Lee comes onboard as Senior Lighting Technician. Earning her ‘industry stripes’ through jobs with Virgin Records and Bamn Management, as well as working for Production North on Westlife’s début tour, Edinburgh-born Jo later became one of the ‘pioneer’ staff at XL Video following its launch in the UK in 2000, and remained with the company until shortly after its acquisition by PRG. “That was my big break,” she says, “and working as a project manager for XL over the next 15+ years was a truly amazing experience as I literally watched concert video grow up, first-hand. As well as building some very solid, lasting relationships with colleagues and clients that I treasure, it was a valuable education that continues to serve me well. “I had been missing the camaraderie that you get with a close-knit team of people, so when Noreen offered me this new position, completely out of the blue, I instinctively knew it would be a good move.” OPPORTUNITY Hailing from the Isle of Man, Lee has been involved in entertainment production since his school days and took a B.Sc (Hons) course in Sound, Light & Live Event

Technology at the University of Derby before working as a lighting engineer aboard prestigious Cunard cruise ships including the Queen Elizabeth. “It was a good environment in which to learn how to handle real-world technical situations,” says Lee, who went on to lend his developing skills as a programmer to a number of theatre and install projects. “I returned to the Isle of Man a few years ago and realised that the local market for what I do is quite stagnant compared to elsewhere in the UK, so I moved to London with the intention of developing as a freelancer. I had only been there a couple of months when a mutual acquaintance introduced me to Noreen, who presented me with this wonderful opportunity.” A month after joining Entec, Jo and Lee are settling into their respective roles and enjoying the new set of challenges. “Some of the friendliest people in the industry are right here at Entec and throughout my career I’ve always been aware of the company’s excellent reputation, so I’m in a very good place right now,” comments Jo. “There’s a positive, family vibe about Entec that you don’t find too often in a business that is becoming increasingly corporatised,” says Lee. “Working on recent jobs such as the Jay Chou production at SSE Arena Wembley made me appreciate the sheer scale of what Entec can achieve. It’s fantastic to be part of a team that is not only in touch with market trends but also maintains a genuine heart and soul.”



BOOSTING THE INVENTORY This summer, after its substantial commitment to the Solaris Flare Q+, Entec became the first production rental company in the UK – and possibly Europe – to purchase Ayrton’s new MagicBlade-FX, the latest version of the award-winning MagicBlade-R LED product. Assistant lighting manager Adam Stevenson said: “We initially bought a number of Ayrton MagicBlade-FX for a touring band that specified them for a set piece and they’ve been permanently out on a variety of jobs ever since. “What makes the FX model different to the original product is the square shape of the seven trans-

mitting lenses, its speed of operation and a 15:1 optical zoom system that has no visible moving parts.” The lighting department has also responded to demand by adding further grandMA2 full-size consoles to its inventory. Significant purchases have also been by the sound department. As well as boosting Entec’s DiGiCo stock with an additional SD7 console and SD-Racks, and several new Shure IEM and UR4D systems, there have been some ma jor d&b audiotechnik acquisitions including a large consignment of B22 subs and extra J-Subs.

C h e c k o u t E n t e c ’ s c u r r e n t s t o c k a t w w w. e n t e c L I V E . c o m





Marina Topley-Bird

Live production allies assist leading record store’s ongoing events programme Ten years ago, influential music brand Rough Trade opened its flagship record store – Rough Trade East – in Brick Lane, London E1, and quickly identified the potential for using its 5,000 square foot space to host intimate live events, using systems from d&b audiotechnik with technical support from Entec Sound & Light. The idea, said co-owner/director Stephen Godfroy, was to make high quality events a default feature of the record store experience. “We’re now up to around four or five each week, and they can range from full-on performances by bands and artists at all levels of the business, to themed talks,” he said. “Rough Trade East is very much at the grass roots of today’s music industry. While the likes of Radiohead, Blur and Queens Of The Stone Age have all appeared, we also take recommendations from trusted sources for up-and-coming artists to break new ground at the store.” Godfroy continued: “As a retailer, we encourage acts to perform in-store to support a new album. People will pay a visit to purchase that album and the first 300 will receive a wristband, giving them access to the in-store gig that evening or later in the week. Due to the nature of the space, the audiences feel a direct connection with the performances that wouldn’t normally be experienced at a show in a regular venue.



The Strypes

“It’s a two-way street: while the events have become a critical component of our store model because they drive so many product sales, many people have said that the most profound live music experiences they’ve ever had was here – it’s certainly very different. “Of course, it can be a bit intimidating for some artists who aren’t used to playing in such close proximity to an audience, but equally they very much appreciate the sound quality that our system offers, which is why we have such a great reputation among bands on the live circuit who have appeared. That’s very much thanks to the quality and reliability of d&b’s products.”

“Entec continue to provide support and actively go out of their way to improve our presentation standards.” THE d&b CONNECTION In 2008, a year after Rough Trade East’s events programme began, the store became involved with d&b audiotechnik’s UK team with assistance from longterm d&b rental stockist Entec, whose technicians were called upon in September 2016 to work more closely on the operational set-up. Godfrey explained: “Entec were recommended to me by Stephen ‘Oggi’ Hogg, the MD at d&b audiotechnik GB, and Noreen O’Riordan [Entec’s managing director] was extremely helpful from the first phone call I had with her. She gave me every confidence


that Entec would be able to take the reins, give us all the support we needed and, in partnership with Jonny Clark [head of sound] put us in an even better position, technically-speaking, than we were in before.” The store’s resident system comprises of a pair of d&b E12 tops and four E15X-SUB enclosures, driven by two d&b D12 amplifiers, and a D6-powered four-way monitor mix to M6 floor wedges. “As part of a general system “tidy up” by Entec’s team, the store received new cabling and DI boxes. In addition, the company provided a practical lighting solution based around a ground support goalpost truss that, as well as housing a number of LED PAR cans and batons, enables the E12s to be flown. The package has since grown to include a trio of mirror balls. “This was all done very swiftly and their professionalism genuinely saved the day for us because our event programme was able to continue quite seamlessly,” claimed Godfroy. “Entec continue to provide support and actively go out of their way to improve our presentation standards. It’s a tremendous company with very special people.” Entec’s Jonny Clark commented: “We are very proud to assist Rough Trade – a constantly forward-thinking retail brand that has been at the vanguard of the music industry for so long.” To find out information on forthcoming live events visit: Photography courtesy of Rough Trade


NOREEN’S A WINNER! On the evening of Monday 27th February 2017, Entec Sound & Light managing director and head of lighting Noreen O’Riordan was presented with the prestigious Outstanding Contribution award at the climax of the TPi Awards 2017, at Battersea Evolution in London. It marks the first time since the event began in 2002 that the award has been given exclusively to a woman. Traditionally the highlight of the annual TPi Awards ceremony, the Outstanding Contribution award is bestowed upon a person whose long career has been distinguished not only by achievement but also by the way they have carried themselves as a professional in an ever-changing industry. Noreen’s award was announced by comedian host Russell Kane and presented by Luke Marler-Hausen, business development manager at Blackmagic Design, the category sponsor. Previous recipients of the award have included industry legends Hedwig De Meyer, Claude Nobs, Bob Doyle, Mick Upton, Charlie Kail, Mick Kluzcynski, Mark Fisher and, in 2003, Entec founders Harold & Barbara Pendleton. Witnessed by an audience of more than 1,400 guests, the presentation also featured a series of congratulatory messages on screen from a raft of industry contemporaries and artists including The Who’s singer and Teenage Cancer Trust patron Roger Daltrey, Blur’s Damon Albarn and Alex James, Madness frontman Suggs, singer-songwriter Margo Buchanan, and Paul ‘Wix’ Wickens and Robbie McIntosh. The award came as a complete surprise to Noreen, who said: “I am bursting with pride. I really had no idea that this was going to happen so from now on I’m sleeping with one eye open! “My thanks go out to Andy Lenthall, TPi, Mark Cunningham, Craig Duffy, Adam Stevenson, Jonny Clark, Team Pendleton, Team Entec, Luke at Blackmagic Design and all the legends that contributed to the amazing video tribute. Big love!”



clean bandit


Entec’s recent investment in TMB’s new, versatile Solaris Flare Q+ LED fixture was one of the highlights of Clean Bandit’s production on the John Peel Stage at Glastonbury in June. Designed by Rob Sinclair, the classically trained electronic music act’s performance was part of a European festival run for which Entec has provided a comprehensive lighting package, with LD and programmer Liam Griffiths at the helm of a grandMA2 light console. The company, which has supplied 19 of the Flares for the tour, added the fixtures to its inventory after their increasing worldwide popularity prompted discussions with TMB’s Paul Hartley. “There’s no doubt that Solaris Flares are now a standard worldwide and the Flare Q+ is a real step forward,” said Will Wright, who shares Entec crewing duties on the tour with colleague Lee Stennett. “So many projects coming through Entec are now speci-

fying the Flares and client choice is always a catalyst for investment.” Wright continued: “The Flare Q+ operates as both a strobe that combines extreme brightness [so bright that Griffiths runs them at a maximum of 70% power] with very good colours, and as a wash light that looks great on camera. With other strobe models, we’ve noticed that as soon as you try to introduce colour, it affects intensity output. That’s not an issue with the Flare, whose performance also doesn’t suffer when you transition between wash and strobe functions. It really does both of these things very well without any notable sacrifice.” Positioned upstage and at both sides of the performance area, the Flare Q+s are fitted with TMB’s Kasmer diffusers that are key to the flavour of Liam Griffiths’ overall approach to the lighting. Wright observed: “Liam was keen to hide the LED sources,



especially at Glastonbury where it’s important to be camera-friendly, and with the diffusion added, the result is a very bright, almost ethereal glow – you just don’t notice the fixture itself.” In addition, Entec’s package includes seven Martin Aura XB washes for key light on the risers, and three Tomcat towers either side of the stage, each of which is rigged with a pair of Martin MAC Axiom hybrid fixtures providing beams and spots. Travelling with production manager Tec Beint and tour manager Andrew ‘Wilkie’ Wilkinson, the production also features a set of seven upstage rotator pods, custom-designed and built by Specialz with co-operation from Entec, who supplied 70 Martin VDO Sceptron 10 1000mm linear LED battens for integration. Capable of rotating 360°, each pod consists of a panel of 10 Sceptrons with a laser-etched mirrorball finish on the reverse side.

Will Wright said: “When these pods spin around and the lights on the side towers hit them, all the beams reflect off to produce a brilliant, dazzling effect.” Following rehearsals at Cato Music in London, Clean Bandit’s European summer festival tour kicked off in May with Radio One’s Big Weekend, and went on to include the Isle Of Wight Festival, Wild Life in Brighton and Forest Live in Thetford Forest. The tour continues until September 3rd with appearances at Y Not, Standon Calling, Sziget, Pukkelpop, V and MTV’s Gibraltar Calling, after which the band head to America.


Photography by Liam Griffiths


C A R E F U L W I T H T H AT AXIOM, GADDIE! When Entec first became involved with The Australian Pink Floyd Show (TAPFS) in 2003, it was also the company’s introduction to lighting and projection technician, and future production manager, CHRIS GADD. The Yorkshireman also known as ‘Gaddie’ talks directly to iNPUT about the start of his career with TAPFS and how new technology is helping the show to evolve. 14

It was through performing arts at school [The Lindsey School in Cleethorpes, now The Cleethorpes Academy] that I became interested in lighting and a rigger friend of mine, Jimmy Johnson, told me that the Australian Pink Floyd Show needed a junior to help out the lighting crew. I’d never touched a moving light at that point but I did two tours with them and then the band stepped up their production by bringing Entec Sound & Light onboard. Shortly after, Noreen O’Riordan asked me to work on a few projects for Entec and since then we’ve had a very good relationship. I’ve now been involved with the band for nearly 15 years and I can’t believe how quickly that time has gone. “The only Floyd song I knew when I joined was ‘Another Brick In The Wall’ so I was hardly a dedicated fan. I’ve since developed a love of their earlier music but I really need a couple of

months away from it when I get home off the road! I love working with Nors – she’s like a ‘tour mum’ – and I still work with Entec outside of the Floyd tours because I enjoy it so much and you always get what you need. I do a lot of the Tony Denton tours like Once In A Lifetime and Legends Live with Richard Ames, and we did the X-Japan world tour with Entec. Although we ran the last TAPFS production for five years, the usual pattern is that we stay with one design for a total of three years, as we’re doing with the current one, because we tour so many territories that we can get a lot of life out of it. Sometimes we’ll upgrade certain aspects midway through a tour and that was the case when we introduced the new Martin MAC Axiom fairly recently [pictured opposite]. For the first half of the tour we used the Clay Paky Mythos which is the same kind of idea, in that both are very iNPUT • ENTEC SOUND & LIGHT • SUMMER 2017

versatile, hybrid fixtures, but I’ve found that the Axiom is a marked improvement in terms of performance and reliability. Entec’s investment in them is going to prove immensely popular. In the first five weeks of using them, we had one small problem and that’s very impressive. It’s capable of outstanding brightness an all-in-one spot, wash and beam, it gives our LD Tom Mumby a lot of creative potential whilst helping me with the budget. Positioned in the ladders, the Axiom has now become the workhorse of the show as it’s used on almost every song, due to its ability to output a diverse range of looks and effects. Then we have the Auras up in the roof doing their thing, so it’s become a very Martin-orientated rig. BLUEPRINT Now that Pink Floyd effectively cease to exist, we are working with a finite amount of musical content and our challenge is to try and forget what we’ve done in the past, and take a fresh approach each time we redesign the show. The blueprint is already there, of course, which makes it very difficult especially as our fans have grown to have certain expectations. Although we use Pink Floyd’s 1994 Division Bell tour design as the basis for what we do, I always brief our LDs to imagine what the band might be doing now if they were still current. There are always trademark elements that we have to keep, like the mirror ball and the circular screen, and in some ways we are influenced by recent solo tours. We saw that David Gilmour had a very large screen on his latest shows, with what appeared to be more lights around the perimeter than previously, so we’ve replicated that as far as our resources will allow. Last year, we had 16 lights around the circle; this year, we’ve had 24.

Now that Roger Waters is back on the road [with his Us + Them tour], there may be some aspects of his show that will have a bearing on the way we take things next time. The show has become very theatrical over recent years; it’s rock’n’roll with a twist. We don’t consider this to be a tribute band. It’s more of a sophisticated homage that’s not about our band members. They take a back seat to the visuals and simply play the music, and play it very well. We like to think of it as a sophisticated homage. We’ve been on the road with this new production for most of the year. It usually takes some time to settle, but the feedback has been fantastic. Our last Glasgow gig in front of 4,700 people was a real highlight. It was a real goosebumps moment with everyone singing along. Our latest in-jokes include singing some parts in an Aussie accent and in place of a radio tuning in at the start of ‘Wish You Were Here’, there’s a similar idea with a TV screen changing channels and images of Kylie Minogue, Men At Work and AC/ DC. Of course, we couldn’t be without our regular inflatable kangaroo which always gets a laugh. “The political aspect of Pink Floyd’s music has been quite formidable and we often respond in a timely manner. When we were touring in the run-up to the American presidential election last autumn, we were changing our video content on an almost daily basis, with Donald Trump and Hillary Clinton appearing just as the words ‘The lunatics are on the grass’ are sung during ‘Eclipse’. I think Roger would’ve been quite proud of that!” Photography © David AC Stuart / Martin by Harman & TAPFS



Iconic London studio launches monthly showcases in partnership with Clash magazine… and Entec lighting

METROPOLIS GOES LIVE From its base at The Power House, an imposing 1901 building off Chiswick High Road in west London, the legendary Metropolis Studios has hosted the recording sessions behind some of the most commercially successful music of the last quarter of a century. Since the end of last year, however, the building that had once been inaccessible to the general public has been welcoming audiences of up to 150 people into its flagship Studio A – the most expensively treated acoustic recording room in the world – to witness and be part of an ongoing monthly series of intimate live concerts, with lighting and expertise from Entec. The series, Metropolis Live, is largely the brainchild of Gavin Newman, who joined the studio team late last year as events & content director, and forged an alliance with event partner Clash magazine. It was in his previous role at The Hospital Club in Covent Garden that Newman originally developed the relationship with Entec that now flourishes at the Chiswick complex. Newman explains: “I originally joined The Hospital Club to run its website but when producer Nigel Godrich’s studio space on the top floor was reclaimed by the club to create a live venue, I got involved with

managing the events and the commercial brand partnerships. We concentrated on promoting exclusive VIP showcases for ma jor labels and management companies, and whenever possible we would record performances for the brands to boost their marketing. “The live sound element was in good shape but we later realised that we were falling short by not putting effort into lighting. I then started talking to Entec’s MD Noreen O’Riordan about a range of possibilities and it was agreed that Entec would provide us with a volume of equipment to help develop this aspect of the events. They were extremely helpful in showing us the way forward and [senior lighting service technician] Will Wright came in to light the next few shows. “Will is a fantastic, intuitive lighting designer and I built up a really good relationship with him very quickly as well as developing a lot of trust in these new ties with Entec, thanks to Noreen and [assistant head of lighting] Adam Stevenson. But as this was happening, I realised that I had outgrown my situation at The Hospital Club, mainly because it’s not specifically a music venue and I needed to transfer my knowledge, skills and ambitions to somewhere more appropriate.”



After meeting Ian Brenchley, the CEO at Metropolis Studios, Newman immediately realised the Chiswick building would be an ideal venue for live events. “It carries so much goodwill as a place of music creation excellence and would, therefore, be an attractive destination for audiences.” EXPERIENCE COUNTS Whilst familiarising himself with the building layout and engineer staff at Metropolis, Newman and his team launched Metropolis Live in partnership with Clash magazine last December, and staged two events in the celebrated Studio A. “There were a few wrinkles but the one thing that wasn’t an issue was Entec’s lighting,” says Newman. “The look of the room is of the utmost importance to us because it’s all about providing a different kind of experience and I’ve been thrilled with the appearance of the shows. You always know when you’re in the hands of top professionals and I have to say that the lighting has been one of the best things about these evenings. Experience really does count and when you have people at that level doing such a good job, you can immediately cross it off your list of things to worry about.” Metropolis Live has since been run as a monthly event with acts such as brash U.S. band The Orwells (pictured opposite) and garage rock trio Our Girl. Being limited on local power, it makes practical sense to base the design around familiar LED stock such as Robe 600LED wash fixtures, i-Pix Satellites, Martin Stagebar 2s and Thomas PixelLine 1044 linear battens, resulting in some striking RGB washes. Along with a pair of scaffolding uprights, a small hazer and a stage formed of Litedeck risers, Entec’s spec also includes an Avolites Tiger Touch II console with operation shared between Will Wright and Sudip Shrestha. Adam Stevenson, who manages the account for Entec, comments: “It’s a real honour to partner with Gavin and Metropolis on this exciting project, particularly as the quality of the acts we have been working with has been so compelling. We look forward to developing our relationship with the venue over the coming months and seeing the events Photography by Mark Cunningham grow.”

Gavin Newman.

The view from the Studio A control room.

The Avolites Tiger Touch II... and Will Wright’s dynamic digits.



iNPUT talks to Duncan Brignell, the production manager behind the live resurgence of an ’80s pop legend...

ALL THE GOSS Photography by Mark Cunningham & Neil Lupin



In the late ’80s, it was impossible to escape clean-cut boy band Bros. With a pile of Top 10 hits and a sell-out show at Wembley Stadium, it seemed that the Goss twins could do no wrong until they broke teenage hearts by calling it a day in 1992. While drummer Luke went into the acting profession, frontman Matt began a solo career that took him to Las Vegas. Shades of Matt’s swing-style Caesars Palace production were present when Entec supplied a full lighting rig for his one-off show at Wembley’s SSE Arena, just as rumours of a Bros reunion were confirmed privately by production manager Duncan Brignell – the boys are back this August. For the last 30 years, Brignell has made much of his living from producing exclusive private parties and special events. His long friendship with Matt Goss’s manager Rob Ferguson resulted in the opportunity to work on the Wembley show. He explained: “Rob often said we should work together on something and then this came up. He showed me a WYSIWYG design that, to my eyes, looked quite flat and I told him that I thought we could achieve some extra production value and excitement out of the same budget.” Brignell turned to another old friend, lighting/show designer Svend Pedersen, for assistance. “Svend designed some looks that we loved and I looked at the practical, physical side, such as the stage decks and risers,” said Brignell. “Svend regularly uses Entec and I looked forward to working with because seeing their logo all over the PA on ‘The Tube’ in the ’80s gave me my first insight into the mechanics of event production and I later got to know Noreen O’Riordan through dry-hiring Entec’s stock.” Unable to be present at Wembley, Pedersen brought in Dave Byars to see the project through as lighting operator. “I was very lucky to have Davey there,” said Brignell. Byars, whose long association with Entec dates back to 1989, commented: “Svend and I have done a lot of projects together, so it was easy to take the baton. Despite Wembley’s size, the idea was to get as much out of as little equipment as possible, so we brought a lot of creative ideas to the table.”

Matt Goss at Wembley

TWO SIDES The show was divided into two distinct parts, the first being tailored around the swing music that has defined Goss’s Vegas career. For this portion, Byars achieved a range of moods and looks by projecting various colours and gradients from Martin MAC Aura XBs and Viper Profiles on to a rear grey voile drape – part of the elegant set dressing designed by Michaela Edwardes. Part two of the show focused on Goss’s pop history. “That’s when I brought the lighting out into the audience, with Vari*Lite 3000 spot chases and [Thomas] 4-Lite Molefays,” said Byars. “In fact, we had a lot of conventionals on this gig with tons of ETC Source Fours on the front truss, and it seemed perfect for this type of show.” Benefitting from the support of Entec lighting crew chief Will Wright and his technician colleagues Simon Chandler-Honnor and Sudip Shretha, Byars was operating his own Avolites Sapphire Touch with his trusty Tiger Touch as a back-up. He commented: “We didn’t have the luxury of production rehearsals so having my own desk meant that I could do a lot of WYSIWYG preparation at home. “There were some last-minute things that Matt demanded when we shoehorned a production meeting into the schedule just 20 minutes after the doors opened, such as having a backlight on him when he was at the piano. I just had to work those moves out on the hoof.” “There were several ‘’ aspects to the day,” laughed Brignell. “If I had a fiver for every time I heard the question, ‘when are we getting a set list?’, I’d have come away quite rich. A lot of people behind the scenes were working on other things like afternoon meet and greets, so it was pandemonium at times but I’m used to that. I do ‘pandemonium’ regularly! “Having Davey on our side was a huge bonus because nothing fazes him. For a show of that size, it was a bit of a busk but if the client’s happy, you can rest easy. Everyone seemed over the moon about the show and we are looking at bringing the bulk of the crew and suppliers back for Bros which will be great fun.”

Dave Byars & Will Wright




all in a day’s work

A rare ’dark’ day in the six-year run of Roald Dahl’s ‘Matilda The Musical’ at the Cambridge Theatre in the heart of the West End provided an idyllic opportunity for Dutch singer-actress Willemijn Verkaik to present a special one-off concert. Originally a pop singer, Verkaik eventually became a much sought-after star of musical theatre, famous for her roles in ‘We Will Rock You’, ‘Mamma Mia!’ and ‘Tarzan’, and especially for making the ‘Wicked’ character Elphaba her own in German, Dutch, English and American productions of the hit show. Backed by an impressively versatile eight-piece band, Verkaik’s acclaimed performance on July 31st mixed musical set pieces (from Sondheim, ’Les Mis’, ‘Frozen’ and, naturally, ‘Wicked’) with blues, country and even a tribute to the late George Michael, fully showcasing her incredible vocal dexterity and charm, but also the skill and intuition of sound engineer James Dunkley whose challenge – to transform the theatre from ‘Matilda’ mode into a concert venue in less than a day – was supported by Entec’s sound department. Working with production manager Olly Rowland, Dunkley, an engineer usually linked with metal acts Satyricon, Iced Earth and The Used, was faced with

a number of compromises as a result of staging a concert within Rob Howell’s Olivier Award-winning set design for ’Matilda’, which incorporates giant alphabet blocks that line the entire proscenium. Flying over from Germany on the morning of show day, it was full steam ahead for Dunkley from the moment he landed. “When Olly brought me in for this, it was originally going to be Willemijn and a piano, then it was with a full band and as well as mixing the show under a balcony at FOH, I would also be mixing monitors from there, due to the tiny amount of space on stage,” he said. “I was just getting used to that idea when they added a 50-piece children’s choir from Stagebox. “Although it had all been prepped very thoroughly, it was going to be a struggle to get everything done within the allocated time, especially as the band wanted a long rehearsal period, and we were literally 10 minutes away from doors when we were finally show-ready. “Due to the sheer amount of work involved, it wasn’t until about halfway through the afternoon rehearsal that I even considered the possible effect of the set on what I was trying to achieve. My left/right outputs were going through a system that was part of a fixed install


Sound engineer James Dunkley reviews his busy, one night only experience with West End star Willemijn Verkaik


Right: James Dunkley at the Avid Profile. Below: The ‘Matilda’ set. and I suddenly realised I couldn’t see the speakers. I’m very accustomed to going into a venue and having to use whatever is there, but there is something that your brain doesn’t trust about an invisible PA system!” PROFILING Entec’s sound warehouse manager Ed Shackleton managed the project for the company. When discussing console options, a range of DiGiCo models were suggested, however, when Dunkley discovered that he would be mixing both FOH and monitors himself, he insisted on an Avid Venue Profile, generating 32 channels. “It had to be a Profile just because it’s one of the consoles I’m most familiar with,” Dunkley explained. “I’ve had them out on the road so many times. Apart from analogue desks, it’s probably the only one that I can system tech myself with complete confidence.” The specification included Entec’s now-standard monitoring package of d&b audiotechnik M4 wedges and Dunkley created eight monitor mixes that were shared between 12 people, including guest artists Suzie Mathers and Savannah Stevenson. “On a show like that,” the Waves-endorsing engineer commented, “with the kind of band employed by Willemijn, you can expect them to want a different monitor mix for almost every song, and that’s exactly what happened. The more they analysed what they had, the more changes they wanted to make and that’s OK, because that’s my job, but the clock was ticking.” Was in-ear monitoring ever considered? “I did suggest it at the start of our discussions because this kind of act does lend itself to IEM, and I was surprised when they chose to go the traditional route with wedges. The M4s were very popular; they were loud and clear, and everyone got what they wanted from them. EQ-wise, I really didn’t have to do much at all, which is fairly par for the course with them. We had a set of d&b Y-Series sidefills at our disposal but due to lack of space, we didn’t end up using them. Ultimately, the M4s provided all the coverage required.” Entec also provided a Shure UHF-R wireless system as well as boosting the large array of DPA microphones across the stage. Dunkley: “We started with a vocal and a spare, adding two guest vocal mics followed by eight headset channels. Not being a radio gear expert, it was a case of asking Ed to supply a rig that would do everything I needed. He was extremely helpful and made sure that I had a fully pre-configured system.” A big fan of DPA, Dunkley was flattered when the brand invited him into its exclusive DPA Masters Club. “I’d been looking at discrete ways of miking drum kits that naturally sounded very good. The Sennheiser e604 was physically too large for Satyricon, the band I was working for, so I went through a range of options until I found – and bought – a set of six DPA d:vote 4099Ds.

“For this show, as well as bringing my own mics, I rented a bunch of DPA headset mics from Entec and some d:facto models for the backing vocalists, and DPA kindly sent over some extras. Every channel on the Profile was taken up by DPAs apart from the DI boxes and a Shure Beta57 on the guitar amp.” ADVENTURE Ending with ‘Defying Gravity’, one of the biggest numbers from ‘Wicked’, Verkaik’s performance was a nonstop, crowd-pleasing experience that was loaded with surprises. For Dunkley, who also recently worked on Matt Goss’ successful Wembley show alongside Entec’s crew, it was nothing short of an adventure. He said: “The gig itself went very well and it was a huge relief to pull it off. Willemjin is such a talented professional and this really was a fantastic show to work on. People flew in from all over Europe to be there and they loved it. Ed Shackleton also took the time to come down and help me load out. “In fact, Entec provided great support all the way through, with Ed especially helping me get a square peg into a round hole!” Photography by Diana Vellema & Mark Cunningham



“At Alexandra Palace, there’s every reason to put on something special with much better definition because this venue does beg that kind of treatment.” DOMINIC SMITH 22


HAIL FAT FREDDY! Chilled New Zealand fusion jamsters thrill Ally Pally crowd with Entec lighting Entec is delighted to renew its alliance with one of New Zealand’s greatest musical exports, Fat Freddy’s Drop, the eight-piece crew whose unique brand of soul-nourishing music is a fusion of dub and reggae with shades of funk, jazz and electronica. Shortly before starting a European festival run, the band visited the UK for a short, four-date UK tour that climaxed with an extraordinary London show for 10,000 blissedout fans at Alexandra Palace where lead singer Dallas Tamaira, a.k.a. Joe Dukie, was celebrating his birthday and Entec delivered a comprehensive lighting package for LD Dominic Smith. After a warm-up set from revered DJ Norman Jay MBE, FFD ambled onstage and set about whipping the crowd into a frenzy with ‘Shiverman’, ‘Roady’, ‘Blackbird’ and other select cuts from their four studio albums. It was the latest chapter in a story that began in Wellington back in 1999 when founder Chris ‘Mu’ Faiumu gathered some like-minded musicians to form a jam band. Also from NZ’s capital is production manager Emma Jensen, a long-time resident of London who has known some of the band members since their youth.

She commented: “They came over to play a show at Brixton Academy which had a few technical problems so I offered a few suggestions, at which point they offered me the job. That was seven years ago and it’s been enormous fun ever since, mainly because the whole team is one big family. “They’re quite underground but not to the extent that you’ve probably never heard their music. They just like being slightly under the mainstream radar whilst having complete creative control through their own studio and record company, The Drop. Their manager, Nicole Duckworth does an amazing job across the board and they are all great people to work for.” Led by Peter ‘Pepper’ Schofield, Entec’s crew – also including Leo Tierney, Tom Crosbie and, making her Entec début, Katie Flanders – assisted LD Dominic Smith in his quest to make the Ally Pally show one to remember. Due to other commitments, Smith’s presence on the current tour was limited to this one performance, although he has been at the helm of the band’s lighting design on European tours for the last four years.



Left: Martin Vipers, Axiom Hybrids and Aura XBs converge with Portman P1s while Total Fabs’ LAD moving light truss is at the foundation of the flown rig. “I suppose the difference between this London gig and the rest of the tour is that the lighting has a much more bespoke feel about it,” said Smith, who co-founded event design company Neon Black with Bertrand Paré in 2012, and has designed tours and one-offs for the likes of Blink 182, Rihanna and Pharrell Williams. He continued: “The band’s budgets are usually set by the local promoter so it’s usual for my designs at venues outside of London to be easy for a local crew to put together. At Alexandra Palace, however, there’s every reason to put on something special with much better definition because, budgets permitting, this venue does beg that kind of treatment.” CHOICES While many lighting riders for this show of this kind tend to leave a wide range of options open, Smith was quite specific with his fixture choices, as he explained: “I’m very respectful about how far I’m able to go, financially-speaking, and if a supplier isn’t able to match what is in my head, we will obviously have a conversation about alternatives. There is always scope for compromise. In this case, I knew precisely what I wanted and I was delighted that Entec could deliver. “Creativity is one of those weird, intangible things and it’s hard to articulate what you have in mind when you come up with design ideas. My brain ‘sees’ music in a certain way. Music is my passion and my design starting point. When I listen to the emotions of songs, my ideas are driven by colours and shapes. Of course, some ideas will be practical but, ultimately, I’m trying create something that looks cool or appropriate to the setting.” Key to the design was Entec’s provision of Total Fabrications’ versatile LAD moving light truss, which ’Pepper’ Schofield described as a “shrewd investment” due to its versatility. “It’s the same product we used for Deftones in an upright, floor-based tower format, and for Fat Freddy’s Drop we built an overhead truss. This enabled us to have a smoother loadin on the eve of show day because by pre-loading all the lights in the flown rig, we could just wheel it in, clip it together, cable it all up and have it ready in a very short time.” While the front truss exclusively carried Martin MAC Viper Profiles, the flown truss featured a mix of Viper Profiles and Viper Air FX units. A series of upstage floor towers accommodated MAC Axiom Hybrids and MAC Aura XB compact LED washes, each topped with a Viper. Other hardware included ChromaQ ColorForce 72s, ETC Source Fours and “heaps” of Molefays. In 24


dimmer world, the set-up included an MA2 NPU (Network Processing Unit) to handle the data distribution and processing, and an Entec high-end fibre optic snake system. Entec also supplied truss for suspending a new backdrop, designed to represent the band’s recent ‘Fish In The Sea’ video – a track from their last album, Bays. Discussing some of his favoured fixtures for this show, Smith commented: “The Aura XB is a huge improvement on the original Aura. It’s way brighter with clean colours and very punchy when rigged in a mid-to-low level position. One of my issues with the early LED fixtures was that it was my problem to find white. Thankfully, all the manufacturers have been moving in the right direction on that score and it’s no longer my problem! “I think the Viper Air FX is Martin’s attempt to create an alternative to the Vari*Lite 3500 wash/beam. It’s a PC-lensed, multi-function fixture; it doesn’t have many gobos but it does a decent job of delivering a solid beam of wash light. It’s becoming a go-to multi-purpose fixture for me. It can almost stand up against a wash and I like its punch. As a designer, I’m constantly going through different creative phases and at the moment I’m

going through more of a solid beam phase – my looks are tending to be a bit sharper and less washy.” The most unusual items in the lighting spec were the four Portman P1 ‘retro’ lamps distributed amongst the upstage array of towers. Striking from a scenic perspective, they also added a powerful light source to the mix. “I’m always seeking a little addition of tungsten for the Freddy show,” said Smith. “I want something with a warmth that you still can’t achieve with LED, despite all the advances. There’s a beauty in tungsten that I like to see when it’s appropriate. The P1 is interesting; it was one of the options that Noreen O’Riordan and I talked about – a wild card that I felt was worth trying. I love the shape, it’s very architectural and has a hint of the old SkyPan. It has its own builtin dimmers and you can individually dim each of its seven cells, which allows me to do some attractive, twinkly chases.” SPECIALISED Fat Freddy’s Drop normally visit Europe twice each year and play to a very wide demographic. “They’ve successfully generated a very big following within the festival circuit in Europe and they organise a separate headline tour, although on this particular run we are



Above: LD Dominic Smith at the MA2 full-size console; Entec’s crew – Katie Flanders, Peter ‘Pepper’ Schofield, Leo Tierney & Tom Crosbie.

doing a mix of both,” advised Emma Jensen. “Apart from a couple of guitar amplifiers that are rented locally, they bring all of their remaining stage equipment over from New Zealand because, like Mu’s Akai MPC, it’s either specialised or very personal gear.” FREE-FLOWING “This is probably the most organic show that I ever get involved in because, musically, it’s incredibly free-flowing,” noted Smith. “These boys don’t ever perform the music as it is on the records, which means I can’t pre-structure my design. “It was a real education when I did my first tour with them. I wouldn’t use the word ‘busk’ for the way I approach a Freddy show, but I absolutely cannot come to it with any fixed ideas because no two performances are the same. Most songs have a definite beginning or the same kind of crescendo, but quite often the journey in between will be very fluid, and that is very much reflected in the way I handle my end of things which at times is rather scatter-gun, in stark contrast to what I might do with other bands.” Due to the nature of Smith’s operating, his choice of console is almost critical to the end result. While Entec supplied a grandMA2 lite with a fader wing for the band’s international LD, John Bamford, to operate on the touring portion of the UK schedule, Smith requested an MA2 full-size model for London. 26

“I made the step toward the MA2 very soon after it was launched and that’s been quite a journey for me,” he said. “For me, a console almost needs to be transparent. A lot of users obsess about the mechanics of a console and all the clever programming facilities it can provide, and while I’m able to do some of that stuff, it can never be a barrier to my creativity. Where the fixtures are placed is way more important to me and the console is literally the link between them and my brain, without arguing with me! Once I got inside the MA2 and discovered how powerful it is, I realised it was a perfect partner and so it has always been the item I’ll ask for.” Reviewing Entec’s role ahead of the event, Dominic Smith concluded: “It’s always been a pleasure to work with Entec and the company is perfectly suited to projects like this because they’re so good at meeting the demands of one-offs.” Emma Jensen added: “What’s great about Entec is that they love the band, so it’s exciting for them to be involved. It’s not just equipment specs on paper; there’s a genuine feeling of partnership and common respect.”

Photography by Mark Cunningham


Badu Spreads The Luv Despite setting up in business in early 2017, concert production company Neo Luv wasted no time in establishing its brand when it came straight out of the starting gate with two sold-out shows by soul music visionary Erykah Badu at Hammersmith’s Eventim Apollo. Celebrating the 20th anniversary of the Dallas-born artist’s genre-defying début album, Baduizim, the concerts on July 6th and 7th, featuring lighting and sound reinforcement from Entec, drew widespread accolades from the press and set Neo Luv on a path towards an exciting future. As a spokesperson for Neo Luv explained, the shows evolved through the power of social media. “It all happened after a message was posted on an Instagram fan page; we were directed to the right channels and after a phone call we were at the planning stage.” Although new to the concert world, the partners behind Neo Luv have amassed more than 25 years of event organising experience on the club scene and also in fashion and comedy. “When we found ourselves with this opportunity, we jumped in at the deep end and everything came together just as we visualised. “It’s surreal to have had such an instant success. Erykah’s management were very happy with the way we conducted ourselves on the business side and were able to sell out not just one night but add another and have the same success.” Neo Luv’s representative added: “The team at the Apollo gave us all the assistance we needed in organising the shows, and [technical manager] Alistair Parley was brilliant and always available to guide us. “Entec was named on the venue’s recommendations list and that was our introduction to the company. Noreen O’Riordan and Ed Shackleton understood how

new we were to this and offered an enormous wealth of production advice, as well as being very honest about the technical rider. They lifted a huge weight from our shoulders and left us to promote and look after stage and event management, and runners.” EXPANSIVE Linking to the house PA, Entec fielded a 96-channel Avid Profile at front of house and, for monitors, a Yamaha PM5D-RH desk. Shure was well represented with a PSM1000 IEM system and expansive microphone package and, on stage, the rider included 12 d&b M4 floor wedges, V-SUBs and V7Ps for sidefills, and a B22 drum sub. Entec’s lighting department provided grandMA2 full-size and light consoles, 26 Martin MAC Viper profiles, 32 MAC Aura XBs and a high count of rigging equipment. Channelling flavours of Etta James, Amy Winehouse and Billie Holiday, while simultaneously remaining a unique force, Miss Badu thrilled her audience with selections including ‘U Don’t Have To Call’, ‘On & On’ and a cover of Yarbrough & Peoples’ ‘Don’t Stop The Music’, while legendary rappers Common and Talib Kweli joined the artist at centre stage as special guests. “Erykah came with her own production crew who were very demanding, as one would expect from someone of her calibre,” said Neo Luv. “With lessons learned from working with them, we feel well equipped to take on anything that comes our way. As a brand, we feel very strong moving forward and are now looking to work with other artists, and hopefully we will renew our partnership with Entec on some future events.” Photography by Ravi Chandarana



THE ELEPHANT’S IN THE ROOM Entec supplies ‘retro’ lighting package for Kentucky rockers’ one-off London appearance American rock band Cage The Elephant wrapped up a short tour of the British Isles at the start of 2017 with a sell-out show at the O2 Academy Brixton that relied on Entec to provide full lighting support. With lead vocalist Matt Shultz fronting the fourpiece line-up, Cage The Elephant (CTE) maintain close ties with the Black Keys, whose singer Dan Auerbach produced Tell Me I’m Pretty, the inventive rock band’s latest and most diverse album to date. Auerbach’s combo also introduced lighting designer Michael Grant to CTE, as the LD explained: “I discovered them as the opening band for the Black Keys, for whom I’ve been working over nearly nine years,” said Grant. During this most recent tour, CTE asked my Black Keys design partner Eric Cathcart and I to come up with some ideas, and we tagteamed to create something that they really liked. “There were some scheduling conflicts when I became busy with The Arcs, Dan Auerbach’s other band, so Eric covered for me on tour, but I was back with CTE as soon as I became free.” While there was an absence of production at the band’s other shows on the tour, the Brixton perfor-

mance was treated very differently. “We were looking to make it a little more special and a company we work with in the States, Premier Global Productions, recommended that we talk to Entec, who were very helpful,” said Grant. OLD SCHOOL “It was a fairly simple rig to assemble although there were a few fixtures that we were very keen on using, such as the very retro-looking Robe Patt 2013 Skypans and Chromlech Jarag5 PAR 30s. We were delighted to find that Entec had everything that allowed us to replicate the old school rig we were aiming for.” A part-time musician, Grant added: “The band is the focal point of everything and the lighting design was very much about creating a series of moods rather than being a ma jor feature. The Brixton show turned out incredibly well and the Entec crew were fantastic in terms of putting it all together and rolling it all in. It was a pleasure to work with them.” Photography by Ant Adams






Sound Systems Technician What brought you to Entec in the beginning? “My Dad was a professional drummer who was friends with Dick Hayes way back when they were young men living in the Pinner area. Many years later, they bumped into each other at a party and got talking, and that resulted in Dick offering me some work experience at Entec. I was there for a month in 2007, working unpaid on cleaning equipment and making tea, and I loved it. When people say there’s a distinctive family feel about Entec, it’s absolutely true. It didn’t take long before I started to feel it for myself.” The first project you worked on was... “Loading in and loading out for the Teenage Cancer Trust series at the Albert Hall. I’d done a corporate gig and worked at Hammersmith Apollo, but this was the first big one with The Who closing a phenomenal week. It really started to sink in just how lucky I was to be a part of this industry.” Sound Systems Technician... what does that title mean on a day-to-day basis? “I prepare the equipment in the warehouse, making sure it is all working as it should. I then set up for the shows and tours. When I’m not away on tour, I work as part of the team in the warehouse looking after the gear, keeping it maintained to an excellent standard and coming up with new ways of doing things to make it easier for the engineers and techs on site. Being the face of the company when I’m on the road, I’m also often liaising directly with clients which has been happening regularly this year with Gorillaz.”

If your career at Entec to date could be epitomised by one single event, project or moment, what would you choose? “It’s probably still true that the biggest gig I ever worked on – and certainly the most mental thing I’d ever done up to that point in my life – was covering for someone on Gorillaz when they played the main stage at Glastonbury in 2010. It wasn’t just about the size of the audience and sense of occasion... it was pretty cool when my Mum saw me live on TV doing what I do now, which is running around after Damon Albarn and making sure his mic cable doesn’t get caught up.” What’s your favourite, most recent addition to the sound inventory? “I’m loving the fact that we are increasing our stock of DiGiCo consoles. While their support is incredible, I personally love using them because the desk workflow matches my own workflow. The correct button is usually where I expect to find it and it’s so important when you have a flash decision to make on a show. The thinking behind the design is so thorough, especially from an engineer perspective – things like being able to have multiple desks on an Opto-loop, and how easy it is to have gain share, are so valuable. So I think these purchases are definitely a good move.” Finally, can you reveal any future projects? “My diary is filling up with Gorillaz dates and every day until the end of 2017 is spoken for.”

“While [DiGiCo’s] support is incredible, I personally love using them because the desk workflow matches my own workflow.” iNPUT • ENTEC SOUND & LIGHT • SUMMER 2017


Entec supports Canadian prog-metal icons the Devin Townsend Project in London


Every so often, a live act comes along and insists on doing things a little differently. Such an occasion raised its head when Entec was brought in to assist with a show in Hammersmith by progressive metal icons, the Devin Townsend Project. Since the early nineties as the founder of Strapping Young Lad, Canadian musician and songwriter Townsend has constantly redefined his own brand of extreme rock and, in doing so, has become one of the most influential – and passionately eccentric – figures on the scene today. This was evident by the die-hard following that packed into the Apollo, the penultimate


stop on the UK leg of a European tour that followed the Project’s critically acclaimed seventh album, Transcendence. Dave Hale, production manager for promoter Kilimanjaro Live, explained that the Hammersmith performance was treated a little differently to the other UK dates. “While the remainder of the shows we promoted were at venues that could offer full production, we needed additional lighting at the Apollo and that’s why we approached Entec,” he said. “Previously, the band have hired fire-eaters and dwarves, and included multiple special effects, for London shows that have been filmed for commercial DVDs. For this tour, however, the Devin Townsend Project [DTP] are tightening their focus on the music whilst retaining their high production values.” What distinguishes the DTP from many of their contemporaries is the sheer amount of active control


Above: Mike St. Jean’s ChamSys MiniWing. Below right: Anna Mac & Will Wright.

they maintain over presentation. In addition to touring with their own LED-heavy floor lighting package, they possess a ‘secret weapon’ in the shape of Mike St. Jean who, as well as playing keyboards for the band since 2010, occupies the role of resident audio-visual guru. MAGIC TOUCH Responsible for the lighting design and video content production, St. Jean runs the lights from a small ChamSys MagicQ MiniWing in line with his MacBook, both of which are set up as part of his keyboard rig. Entec’s Will Wright explained: “The idea is that while all the lighting is tied into the Avolites Tiger Touch II console we’ve provided at front of house, he is actually controlling the entire light show remotely on stage, triggering all the moves via MIDI.” Highlighting the DTP’s self-contained mantra, the show is governed by the time code that links the partial backing track (containing vocal parts from the absent Anneke van Giersbergen), video and lighting, with St. Jean operating the universal playback automation and relying on a general show file. “I’ve seen him walking around in front of the stage this afternoon, focusing the lights with a mobile app,” observed iNPUT • ENTEC SOUND & LIGHT • SUMMER 2017


Entec’s crew, L-R: James Kerridge, Tom Olorenshaw, Liam Halpin, Will Wright, Peter Eltringham, Mark Wood & Maurizio Schiavi.

“If you’re new to a company, you can immediately feel pressure but that’s not the way with Entec.” ANNA MAC 32

Will. “So all he has to do for each show is update fixture positions but, overall, it adds up to a big responsibility for one person and he handles it very well.” Entec’s main brief was to provide all the flown lighting which included 18 Clay Paky Alpha Spot QWO800s, 16 Robe Robin 600LED wash fixtures, 24 PAR 64 ACLs, eight PAR 36 2-lites and four SGM X-5 white LED strobes, all of which were trucked to Hammersmith by the west London company’s regular transport provider R. Jameson. ATMOSPHERE Working alongside Will Wright were fellow Entec lighting crew Dave Bunn and Anna Mac. Coming hard on the heels of a show by Belgian-Canadian chanteuse Lara Fabian, this was Anna’s second gig with Entec. Originally from the theatre world, having worked on ‘Miss Saigon’ and other top productions, for the last seven years she has been gaining experience as a free-

lancer for the likes of PRG, Siyan, HSL and Neg Earth. “I’d heard so many great things about Entec, so it was wonderful to finally have the chance of working with them,” she said. “I love the family vibe of the company. Sometimes, if you’re new to a company, you can immediately feel pressure but that’s not the way with Entec, whose laid-back, friendly atmosphere is right there as soon as you walk into their offices. Naturally, I’m really looking forward to doing more with them.” Supported by Tesseract and Norway’s Leprous, the DTP’s main set at the Apollo on March 17th consisted of an entire, mesmerising performance of their leader’s 1997 album Ocean Machine: Biomech. Entec’s sound department also assisted with the Apollo show, supplying a dry hire package of mics and stands. Photography by Mark Cunningham


Peter ‘Pepper’ Schofield

‘Pepper’ Schofield explains the Entec approach... Entec stocks a wide variety of distros and buffer racks in different sizes that are specified depending on the scale of each individual job, and the responsibility of suggesting the most appropriate systems for clients generally falls to the company’s Will Wright and Peter ‘Pepper’ Schofield, the dimmers technician for the flown rig on the UK tour. While working as dimmers technician during the most recent Deftones tour, Schofield said: “I tend to choose the smallest configuration that we can work with so that we are maximising everyone else’s space, but I’ll factor in enough flexibility to cope with any additional production requirements on-site. We all have

our personal preferences and there are certain boxes that I would want to take on a longer tour because of familiarity or efficiency, or both. “For a Hammersmith Apollo show, we might take two buffer racks whereas for the Deftones at Alexandra Palace, I have six. “Fibre is obviously at the top end of our snake systems; I might also go out with a copper system but on Deftones we have Cat-5. It all comes down to scale and type of application. We always try to build redundancy into our systems and have back-ups close to hand, so that if anything ever went wrong, we are completely prepared to act very quickly.”





KENNY FOLDS ’EM WITH ENTEC One of America’s greatest exports with a career spanning 60 years, Kenny Rogers recently visited the UK as part of what was announced as his very last tour, The Gambler’s Last Deal. Extending a seven-year association with the artist, Entec provided sound and lighting packages in London, along with a five-man crew who reported to Rogers’ long-time technical director and monitor engineer Frank V. Farrell. At the Palladium, Farrell explained Entec’s role: “We’ve always appreciated their support. It really comes down to the quality and reliability of service, and I have great respect for their staff who work very hard to make everything just right for us.” Rogers’ touring crew augmented house PA systems with audio equipment from Entec, including an Avid Venue Profile for monitors and another for Keith Bugos, the FOH engineer/production manager who has served the artist for around 40 years. On stage, Entec supplied eight d&b M4 monitor wedges with D80 amplifiers for Rogers and his band, some employing back-up from hardwired Shure in-ear monitors. Farrell said: “The M4 is a wonderful wedge that works very well with this band. I’ve tried Kenny on a variety of in-ears but the cranial effect bothers him, so he’s a wedge man. I’m just sending a full stereo mix into a pair of M4s and he’s happy.” Entec’s mic package included the Shure UR4D+ wireless system with a UR2 handheld transmitter and Beta87A capsule as Rogers’ vocal choice. Farrell and Bugos were aided in the sound department by Entec’s James ‘Kedge’ Kerridge and Rik Hart.

LIGHTING Although directing the overall technical operation, Farrell leaves the lighting to Jeff Metter, a South African LD who also joined the team in the early ’90s after chalking up credits with a string of legends. Supported in London by Entec crew members Simon Chandler-Honnor, Andy Emmerson and Niall Hannell, the LD recently upgraded to a grandMA2 console, supplied by Entec with an On-PC Command Wing as part of a package that included Clay Paky Alpha Spot QWO800s, Sharpy Wash 330s, Martin LED Stage Bar 2s and PixelRange PixelPar 44s distributed on stands around the perimeter of the performance area. The main feature of the stage was a series of six elegant towers formed by hoops and white gauze, under-lit by a single Sharpy Wash to produce a stylish gradient effect. Entec’s package also included conventional overhead lighting in the form of ETC Source Fours, Thomas 8-Lite Molefays and floor cans, 750W halogen HPL lamps and 250W ACLs, and a pair of Robert Juliat Victor followspots. Unlike many farewell tours that have preceded eventual comebacks, Rogers’ is a genuine goodbye that will soon reach the end of the road on American home turf, stated Farrell. “Kenny’s mobility has been suffering but he does retain a good voice, which is obviously important. I just hope I’m as healthy and in Photography by such good spirits when I Mark Cunningham reach his age.”



Takin’ it Easy with Jackson Browne Throughout June, L.A. singer-songwriter legend Jackson Browne was in the UK to play seven sold-out shows with Entec proudly supplying a lighting package to LD Steve Comer. Showing no sign of running on empty, Browne, the beating heart of the original Laurel Canyon scene, offered rich pickings from one of the most celebrated careers in American music history with back-up from long-time band members Val McCallum (guitar), Mauricio Lewak (drums), Jeff Young (keyboards), Bob Glaub (bass), multi-instrumentalist Greg Leisz (guitar, lap steel & pedal steel) and backing vocalist Alethea Mills. Preceded by a four-date residency at Dublin’s Vicar Street, the UK run included a much-anticipated midway stop at the Royal Albert Hall in London where, typically, Browne’s set included such classics as ‘The Pretender’, ‘Doctor My Eyes’, ‘In The Shape Of A Heart’ and ‘Take It Easy’, the song he co-wrote with Glenn Frey that catapulted the Eagles to worldwide stardom in 1972. “The Albert Hall is one of the most prestigious venues in the world, so it’s a real privilege to light a show here,” said Steve Comer.


Originally an audio technician, Comer was soon drawn to the creative potential of lighting and joined the Browne crew after touring with the likes of country singer Wynnona Judd. One of the youngest in a crew that is mostly populated by colleagues who have served the artist for more than 20 years, the LD commented: “Jackson tours for about six months each year – three weeks on, three to four weeks off – which makes it impractical to work for other artists in between, however, I’m very fortunate to be part of this very tight family unit.” Entec’s lighting package was supported by technician Ian ‘Mac’ MacEwan and, later in the run, Andy MacGeorge, who has previous experience with this crew. Said Comer: “Mac has been my crew chief over here since I first came to Europe with Jackson in 2008, so whenever I’m putting a UK or European tour together, he will advise me on the lighting companies we should approach. That’s how I came into contact with Noreen O’Riordan. She sent in an Entec bid and


it was obvious from the start that this was a lovely company to work with, so we were happy to go forward. “Our production manager, Dennis Scrimo said to [promoter] Kilimanjaro that if we needed to bring in equipment at any point when we got to the UK, we should use Entec and I’ve had a very consistent package for the last three shows which is fantastic.” CONSISTENCY At the request of Browne’s management, transport was narrowed down to a single truck with an eight-foot space in which to accommodate the lighting. “I specified a floor package to light the backdrop, and key lights because Jackson doesn’t like spots,” informed Comer. “I figured that if I had consistency with the front and back light, I could make anything else work in the middle.” An eco-friendly focus on LED fixture use has been a workin-progress since Comer took over from his predecessor David Davidian. While he specified GLP X4 Bar 10 LED battens and Martin

MAC Aura XBs for the floor, and a pair of MAC Viper Profiles for key light, the flown rig – supplied by Entec for the remaining shows – included additional MAC Vipers and Auras, plus 12 Thomas PixelPar 44s. Comer elaborated: “I ask for two supplementary trusses in all the venues and request 10 Vipers, 10 Auras and 10 LED PARs from the supplier in each territory. I don’t always get that but I was delighted that it wasn’t a problem for Entec.” Comer (pictured below) harnessed these elements with an MA Lighting grandMA2 full-size console, sup-



plied with an MA2 light back up. “I moved over to the MA platform about eight years ago after operating Hogs for a long time, and the MA2 is now my premier choice,” he said. “You always see it at festivals; I can have the same show file and interchange anywhere I go, and I know it like the back of my hand. They’re widely available around the world so it makes sense.”

The design concept created by Comer was partly driven by the elegant set of drapes shipped over from America to form a stylish backdrop. “Knowing that a large portion of the audience come to relive the period when they first saw Jackson in the ’70s or early ’80s, I wanted to present a classic look that accents the music and helps takes people back to those times,” he explained. “I use the backdrop strictly for creating moods through the use of a variety of colours.” SURPRISES Out of a possible 250 songs, Comer has 28 programmed. Of course, it would make life very simple for the LD if they happen to be the songs performed on any given night, but that’s not how Jackson Browne works, claimed Comer. “When I receive the set list just before the show, it’s often a rough guide. Some nights, he’ll stick to it; other nights it can be so different that the song choices are surprises even to the band. It’s become almost a tradition for the audience to be very vocal with requests and it’s quite normal for Jackson to honour them. “I build the show on a song by song basis. I don’t approach it like a performance that needs to develop dynamically from the first to the last number; it’s about whatever the song suggests. We are now at the tail end of the cycle for Jackson’s last album, Standing In The Breach [released in October 2014], and I’ve been manipulating my show file since we first went on the road with it. “In a general sense, I’m creating an atmosphere around the music rather than running a light show – that may sound very simplistic but it’s really how it should be for Jackson because the musical performance is always sublime.” Photography by Mark Cunningham




On June 26th 1980, the NJF/Marquee organisation launched its first Rock At The Bowl at Milton Keynes Bowl, a year after “auditioning” the site with a well-attended soul music event. Headlined in the pouring rain by The Police, with support from UB40, Squeeze, Tom Robinson’s Sector 27 and, from the USA, Skafish, the concert borrowed a number of aspects from the successful Reading Festival format, not least having Entec to provide sound and lighting. The PA was Entec’s renowned JBL-loaded Martin Audio system with which The Police toured throughout the year in advance of their third album, Zenyatta Mondatta. Wet but ecstatic, the London Evening Standard’s reporter was moved to write: “The show by The Police in the hitherto rock and roll backwater of Milton Keynes proved that there are still few greater thrills available anywhere than to witness a group playing at the absolute peak of its prowess and confidence.”


As its name suggests, Milton Keynes Bowl is a natural, round amphitheatre with a gradual slope that affords excellent audience vantage points. A former clay pit, it was filled in and raised to form a 65,000-capacity amphitheatre using sub-soil excavated by the many new developments in the area. In 1981, Rock At The Bowl continued with a headline appearance by Thin Lizzy, and secured the site’s future as a go-to destination for ma jor rock events.

D i s c o v e r m o r e a b o u t E n t e c ’ s w o r k i n t h e ’ 8 0 s a t w w w. e n t e c l i v e . c o m / 1 9 8 0 s iNPUT • ENTEC SOUND & LIGHT • SUMMER 2017



Nile Rodgers & Chic perform for Autism Rocks 40


Loaded with festive spirit, the crowd gathered at Hammersmith’s Eventim Apollo for the Autism Rocks Sessions gig by Chic featuring Nile Rodgers was unmistakably in the mood for a party. And with help from Entec Sound & Light, the man with the million-dollar Stratocaster and his band ensured his audience funked the night away to a veritable jukebox of evergreen dance classics spanning the decadent days of the ’70s and ’80s… and beyond. Fronted by the amiable Rodgers and his female vocalists Kimberly Davis and Folami Ankoanda, today’s incarnation of Chic not only serves as a reminder of their enduring catalogue, with a 90-minute set list that includes ’I Want Your Love’, ‘Le Freak’, ‘Dance Dance Dance’, ‘Good Times’ and ‘My Forbidden Lover’, it also celebrates Rodgers’ career as a legendary producer and collaborator for Diana Ross, David Bowie, Sister Sledge, Madonna, Duran Duran, Sheila B. Devotion and, more recently, Daft Punk. The iconic bass lines originally laid down by Rodgers’ partner, the late Bernard Edwards are now handled with power, precision and even humour by the larger-than-life Jerry Barnes who forms a masterful rhythm section with drummer Ralph Rolle as part of the nine-piece line-up.

Since Chic returned to public performance, the band’s live sound has been masterminded by front of house engineer and production manager John Ryan, who was aided at the Apollo by Entec crew James Kerridge, Rik Hart and Emma Wood. “Wherever the band perform, our approach to production is essentially the same, whether it’s a small, private party, a theatre or large, open-air gig,” he said. “When you’re touring the way we do, it makes sense to specify equipment that’s available throughout most of the world. Fortunately, Entec’s warehouse pretty much covers everything we’ve needed for this Hammersmith show. I’ve used Entec a few times and always found their service to be nothing short of excellent. Their crew and production advances are great. We walked in today and everything was ‘as per spec’. It’s almost like being at home.” Ryan admitted that while he has no strict preference for a front of house console, he openly suggests brands such as DiGiCo. “I have a lot of experience with Yamaha, being one of the first engineers to use the PM1D system, but I can work with them all. Sometimes you’ll trade better sound quality for ergonomics. I certainly have no problem with the DiGiCo SD7 that I have chosen.



Above, L-R: Production manager/FOH engineer John Ryan with monitor engineer Marco Dellatore; the Chic set list featured all of the band’s major hits alongside highlights of Nile Rodgers’ production career with Bowie, Madonna, Sister Sledge, Duran Duran, Daft Punk and more; LD Andy Emmerson during programming. “This is treated very much like an analogue show in that I don’t use snapshots and prefer to mix on the fly. Snapshots are good to have if you’re dealing with an intricate, theatrical set that relies on different moods and effects, but this is a party from start to end and I have enough time to dial in everything as I go. “This band’s so good at keeping the dynamics constant that it’s a relatively straightforward job of balancing for me.”

“I don’t use snapshots... this band’s so good at keeping the dynamics constant that it’s a relatively straightforward job of balancing for me.” JOHN RYAN

The microphone package supplied by Entec included a raft of Shure and AKG models, as well as an Audix D6, specifically for Rolle’s kick drum. “We are more inclined to use Shure microphones,” explained Ryan, “not only because of their global availability but because we have complete trust in them. I have a personal preference for a single Audix D6 on kick drum and for the last six years I’ve travelled with my own as a back-up in case the supplier doesn’t have one. To their credit, Entec delivered their own D6 and that was very good to note.” 42

MONITORS Ryan’s audio partner is monitor engineer Marco Dellatorre. The pair first met around 12 years ago at a festival in Dellatorre’s native Italy, and have travelled far and wide ever since. The monitor man commented: “We have had some incredible musicians and singers pass through Chic over the last few years but this current line-up is probably the best so far for Nile. “As the band has changed, so have the monitoring requirements. There were no in-ears when I came onboard; everyone was on wedges. Nile began using IEM about five years ago and a few other members began to follow suit, although we are still working with the same amount of wedges – 12 or 13 – as we did originally. When you introduce IEM to a band like this, where each musician is really playing off each other, there is a risk that it could affect the interaction, so the most important thing is to keep the sound consistent everywhere on stage for them, which is why retaining wedges is crucial. “Like John, I am able to work with a number of different brands but, onstage, the 14 d&b M2 wedges from Entec [powered by d&b D80 amplifiers] are working very well for us as indeed is my DiGiCo SD10 console. We also have a d&b V-SUB for Ralph on drums.” Dellatorre also spoke very highly of Entec’s involvement. “I think this may be the first time I’ve worked directly with Entec and they’ve left me with a very positive impression. Nice guys, very well maintained equipment, up to date software, and everything we asked for arrived without fail. They provided eight


Above, L-R: Sharpy Wash 330s, Viper Profiles and Aura XBs in the house; Sennheiser RF rack; the million dollar Stratocaster; d&b monitor wedges line up at the front of the stage. Sennheiser EK2000 in-ear packs and when I requested an additional system that wasn’t on our list, they provided an extra two without even asking. That’s exactly the kind of response you always want, so I can’t fault them at all. Everything they do is brilliant.” RADIO WAVES With Allen Spriggs and Malcolm Giles at the helm of the production, this joint presentation by Dubai-based 117 Live and AEG Live was the third consecutive Autism Rocks concert at the Apollo in less than a year to benefit from Entec’s services. On this occasion, the RF portion of the show required 20 licensed frequencies along with Shure UR2 handheld microphones with Beta58A capsules, and the aforementioned IEM systems. While Entec has worked on events and tours with a much higher demand for wireless equipment, the pressure to deliver a seamless service was just as great. Jonny Clark, Entec’s head of sound, commented: “Generally, the wireless equipment requests we receive are for either Shure or Sennheiser, or both, and we maintain very generous stocks of both to the extent that Entec is often the first call when other companies are looking to sub-rent systems. “As is so often the case, having the equipment is one thing – and most top rental companies have a lot of similar gear – but it’s the level of service and crew skills you offer that distinguish one supplier from another. It’s now quite standard for one member of a sound crew to be designated as the radio systems technician because the frequency spectrum has become more congested and, therefore, requires a

dedicated person to deal with on-site licensing issues and frequency management.” Shure’s AXT600 Axient Spectrum Manager has proven itself, time and again, to be a crucial tool in this area for Entec, said Clark. “In less than a minute, it scans the global UHF spectrum and provides data on all the compatible frequencies that can be allocated to any number of wireless channels and devices. Working alongside regular updates of Shure’s Wireless Workbench software [Entec is currently using v.6 of this GUI], the system gives us the flexibility of selecting from a real-time group of back-up frequencies, should we need to reallocate due to local interference.” LIGHTING DESIGN Assisted by Simon Chandler-Honnor and Leo Tierney, Entec regular Andy Emmerson created the lighting design well in advance of the show itself. “It was a bit up in air for a while because management weren’t sure if Nile’s LD was going to to come over with them,” said Emmerson. “I later discovered that I’d be taking the reins and I had carte blanche to go with what I wanted, which was to create the feel of the classic disco era. The idea was to give the show a lot of depth, using a lot of white light and pinspot effects from moving lights.” Aware that video was going to be a significant feature of the show, Emmerson worked closely with screen provider Transition Video to ensure that his use of colour dovetailed with the media content as much as possible, whilst still retaining plenty of creative freedom.



The view from stage left. Below: Marco Dellatore on monitors; John Ryan at front of house; Andy Emmerson in show mode.

Owing to a later load-in time than hoped for, the fast-moving day saw Emmerson programming onstage during soundcheck on an Avolites Tiger Touch 2 before returning to front of house to run the show from an Avo Sapphire Touch. Emmerson explained: “At the Apollo, it can be a little difficult


to program lights from FOH because you’re under the balcony and therefore you lose sightlines. If time permits, I like to go out into the room and on to the stage to program – it really helps to nail the preset focuses.” Martin MAC Viper Profiles proved to be Emmerson’s mainstay fix-

tures – with six on each of the three trusses and four on the floor – especially for creating beams, chases and effects. Six Clay Paky Sharpy Wash 330s were rigged on each of the upstage trusses and Emmerson used Martin MAC Aura XBs for key lighting on the front truss and rear lighting on towers.


Other featured items from Entec warehouse included 38 Showtec Sunstrips, which followed the contours of the truss lines, eight Thomas PixelPar 44s for truss toning, plenty of 8-Lite Molefay audience blinders and, naturally, a 48” mirror ball. HOGMANAY The celebratory vibe continued just over a week later when Emmerson returned to the Apollo to light Club de Fromage’s New Year’s Eve Extravaganza. “The Entec rig remained in place over Christmas – we just moved the floor lights around a little to accommodate an in-house screen,” he saidd. “We had DJs on two levels of the venue and a couple of great cover bands, and the resident Compton

organ rose from beneath the stage at midnight to welcome in 2017 with ‘Auld Lang Syne’. It was a great start to the year!” All proceeds from Autism Rocks’ UK events go to the Autism Research Trust (ART), which raises funds to support the Autism Research Centre at Cambridge University. ART supports life-changing projects such as the development of an app, aimed at helping non-verbal children with autism to learn to speak.


Photography by Mark Cunningham


Entec supports US Senator Sanders at Hay Festival event

BRIXTON BELIEVES IN BERNIE Presented by The Hay Festival, Bernie Sanders’ event A Future To Believe In at the O2 Academy Brixton on June 2nd gave the sold-out audience a rare opportunity to see the US Senator talk about the radical policies he is championing for a new, progressive America. Chaired by David Lammy, the Labour MP for Tottenham, the event – filmed for National Geographic and attended by a seated audience of more than 2,300 – promoted Sanders’ best-selling book ‘Our Revolution: A Future To Believe In’, and Entec was honoured to provide lighting and crew. The event was lit by Elanor Higgins (pictured centre), a freelance lighting designer who has worked mainly in theatre and became a regular with the Hay Festival eight years ago. As well as inviting Sanders to appear at the festival’s home in Hayon-Wye, the organisers also decided to host this special presentation in Brixton. At the request of Hay technical manager Joe Fletcher, Elanor was assigned to turn the O2 Academy’s “vast, cavernous space” into an intimate venue, as both lighting designer and stage manager. “It was certainly a lively audience,” Elanor observed. “Many of the attendees were quite young and appreciative of the Senator’s views on the current state of American politics.”


In partnership with Joe Fletcher, who drew up the original plans, Elanor worked on the lighting spec and made some practical adjustments after making a site visit to Brixton. “As there were no rigging points at front of house for truss, I added a couple of boom lighting positions to help get some front coverage,” she said. DOMINANT While the set amounted to just a lectern, two chairs, a table and a Hay Festival backdrop, her main fixtures were 18 Martin MAC Aura XB compact LED washes and six Clay Paky Alpha Spot QWO 800s. She explained: “As well as being similar to the colour we would use in Hay-on-Wye, I chose the Aura’s blue as the dominant colour to help pick out the green, red and yellow logos on the backdrop. If I’d gone for plain white lighting, it would have looked very flat and dull. Eight Aura XBs were on the overhead truss and the rest were on the floor.” In addition, the designer used the QWO 800s to backlight the lectern, focus tightly around the chairs, produce gobo washes and also provide some light in the centre area of the backdrop. “It was a fairly formal look,” said Elanor, “and the reason I wanted these particular lights was for their punch, not any fancy movement,



because it’s such a large space. That’s also why I chose 2kW generics for the stage [Philips Strand Fresnels and ETC Source Fours] instead of 1kW.” CONTROL Elanor needed to have control over the house lighting during the audience Q&A session, however, this was not possible with the Academy’s resident system. The solution was for Entec to supply six Philips Strand Nocturne 1kW floods, enabling the LD to bring them up independently, as appropriate, via her choice of an Avolites Tiger Touch II console. She commented: “Being more of a theatre lighting person, I lean towards the ETC range but the Tiger Touch II is a nice, compact desk that we use in the two bigger venues at the Hay Festival so I’ve become familiar with its operation.” Lee Stennett and Ian ‘Mac’ MacEwan were Entec’s crew for the event. Said Elanor: “It all went really well and we had a great day. In terms of working with Entec, it was a very good introductory experience for both Hay and myself. I was impressed with not only the lighting kit, which arrived well-prepped and exactly as specified, but also Lee and Mac who were fantastic and made my day very straightforward.”

FULLY MAINTAINED and competitively priced EX-RENTAL PRODUCTS BY LEADING BRANDS INCLUDING MIDAS, AVID, d&b, jands, LAB.GRUPPEN, martin, ma lighting, avolites, clay paky and more go to the ‘for sale’ section at for our current availability

Photography by Michael Bowles & Elanor Higgins



“We’ve had plenty of ups and downs as a band, but Entec and Adam [Stevenson] have been permanent fixtures all the way through.” WAYNE HUSSEY 48


L-R: George Allen, Wayne Hussey & Paddy Farr, backstage at the O2 Academy Oxford.

R ETUR N MISSION Last September, The Mission successfully coincided a European tour with the release of their 11th studio album, Another Fall From Grace, which gave the band their first top 40 placing in over 20 years. In May, this recent return to commercial form encouraged the band to put out a limited edition deluxe box set of the album, providing the perfect excuse to extend touring plans with Entec onboard once again in its capacity of lighting provider – a role the company has been proud to maintain on a variety of levels for more than three decades. George Allen, the band’s manager since 2004, explained: “When we were offered a spot at the Wave-Gotik-Treffen festival in Leipzig in early June, we decided to build a tour

around it with another run of European and UK dates in cities that we missed last year.” After a week of rehearsals at Peter Gabriel’s Real World Studios in Wiltshire, Entec delivered its equipment to Silver Gray, the band’s bus supplier in Heathrow, as the band began their tour with a show at The Waterfront in Norwich. In preparation, founding frontman and songwriter Wayne Hussey, George Allen and lighting designer Paddy Farr reviewed the production design from 2016, and chose to go with a different look. Said Allen: “Wayne wanted more in the way of white light and smoke, and less saturated colours. We also dispensed with the Le Maitre confetti cannons that had been part



of Entec’s package last time. It had been fun but we needed to make some changes. Quite frankly, the fans bring enough confetti anyway!” Supplied as a simple dry hire solution, Entec has provided a package of eight Robe 600 LED Wash moving head luminaries for the current run which, notably features support sets from fellow British goths The Skeletal Family and punk goddess Pauline Murray. The west London-based company was also instrumental in securing The Mission’s new LD. “I joined the crew last October,” said Paddy Farr, pictured below. “The job came directly through a chat with Entec who told me that a position with the band was available, so off I went. Having also worked with Fields Of The Nephilim, I’d seen The Mission before so it helped that I knew what they were all about. “We’ve moved away from the iPix Satellites that we used last year and chose the Robe 600 LED Wash instead which, for me, was a big step forward – they’re so impressive. I have six of them upstage distributed across four upright stands and

one at each side, downstage, up-lighting Wayne from floor level, and that’s all the front light I use. I like that level of simplicity.” During the production review, Wayne Hussey drew inspiration from Jules Fisher’s back-to-basics lighting design for David Bowie’s 1974 Diamond Dogs tour, which ma jored in white light. Before the show at Oxford’s O2 Academy on May 18th, Farr commented: “I’d done something similar recently with Slowdive for a webcast they did from The Garage. The video people requested that I abstained from using vivid colour, so I ended up using lots of hot whites, cold whites, red whites, and so on. I liked it so much that I’ve taken that approach here. There’s so much you can do with white! That said, there are a couple of moments where I revert to deep blues for things like quieter acoustic numbers and greens for ’Serpent’s Kiss’, but that’s about it.” While the Robe fixtures remain in place on the tour, Farr otherwise relies on house rigs from venue to venue for the remainder of the lighting. The same applies with his control



desk although the Avolites Pearl 2008 provided by Entec means that the LD has a range of options at hand. “Tonight in Oxford,” he said, “I’m running the show from the in-house LD’s ChamSys MagicQ which is one of my preferred models.” As Hussey and his colleagues Craig Adams (bass), Simon Hinkler (guitar), Mike Kelly (drums) and backing vocalist Evi Vine treated fans to a wealth of classics, the backdrop of the Another Fall From Grace album cover served as a reminder that this band is as relevant as ever. On most dates, it is a constant feature throughout the show until the closing anthem, ‘Wasteland’, the first chorus of which sees an Entec-supplied Electro Kabuki system reveal an all-white drape boldly stating “The Mission Since 1986”. “The double Kabuki drop provides one of my favourite parts of the show,” claimed George Allen. “It’s unfortunate that we can’t use it at every venue, due to some width constraints. Nevertheless, it’s a real highlight.” LEGACY Entec’s relationship with The Mission is one of many behind the success and longevity of the west London production rental company. Back in the mid-’80s, the working bond between the two parties

was aided in no small way by the presence of Adam Stevenson. Today, he is Entec’s assistant head of lighting; in ’86, he was a newcomer to live production, as Wayne Hussey recalled: “Adam had joined Entec straight from school a year before we formed the band. His first tour was also our first. It consisted of three dates, one of which got cancelled due to litigation. “He was about 17 or 18 and he arrived wearing a clean white shirt, which looked so out of place, but at the same time he was a breath of fresh air. We were all quite seasoned and a bit cynical, and there was young, innocent Adam coming along to make us smile. He stayed with us for a quite a few years on all our tours and festivals, travelling around the world and sharing our experiences, and there have been occasions over the last 10 years when he has operated the lighting for certain shows. I consider him to be a very good friend, first and foremost.”

“The Robe 600 LED Wash was a big step forward – they’re so impressive.” PADDY FARR



This page: The Mission in the 1980s heyday.

In common with most start-up bands, The Mission’s live presentation was minimal on their initial tours, due to lack of finance. That changed as soon as their label, Phonogram (now part of Universal), allocated a workable budget with which to finance their World Crusade tour of 1987-88. From the start, however, Hussey had both an eye for production and an appreciation of those who made a valuable contribution. “With anybody that I work with, I like them to be able to express themselves,” he explained. “Phil Wiffen was onboard early on as our lighting designer – we brought him in from The Sisters Of Mercy – and, aided by the label’s finance, Phil had free rein to come up with bigger ideas and we would give our feedback, mostly based on what was affordable. That said, I’ve always known what I do and don’t like – in fact, I’ve always had an opinion about everything, and that includes all things creative.

“Whether it’s a record or a live show, I like to think we have delivered the best we can give within our means and, looking back, Entec really helped us step up a gear and create a good production as soon as we had some money to play with.”


ROLEPLAY The Mission’s original and highly distinctive ‘arches’ custom lighting rig, designed by Phil Wiffen, manufactured by James Thomas Engineering and dressed by Hangman, was based on the cover artwork for the band’s début album, God’s Own Medicine, released in November 1986. “It was such a powerful image that it was begging to be recreated for the stage,” Hussey commented. “We carried the arches across the UK, Europe and America, after which they remained in Entec’s warehouse for years and years, until Adam found them


The band today: L-R: Wayne Hussey, Craig Adams, Simon Hinkler and Mike Kelly.

and we used them when we got back together for the XXV tour in 2011. Entec’s team cleaned everything up and got them tour-worthy, and it was very appreciated by the audiences.” As well as managing The Mission’s day-to-day business affairs, George Allen assumes the role of tour manager when the band is on the road. “There are 14 people in this entourage, including the band,” he said. “And because we’re all on the one bus I also get lumbered with the production aspects with the help of our techs. “The great thing about working with Entec is that as soon as they’ve delivered the kit, they don’t usually reappear on my radar until the end of the tour. In my experience, there’s never been anything to be concerned about because if any issues ever arise they take things very seriously, very quickly, without any fuss.”

The Mission have broken up and reformed twice, but Hussey believes the current situation is secure. He reflected: “We’re very fortunate to still perform live and have a very loyal audience. None of us dreamed this was a remote possibility 30 years ago. “We’ve had plenty of ups and downs as a band, but Entec and Adam have been permanent fixtures all the way through. Invariably, he’s my first port of call whenever we are preparing for a tour and, naturally, [managing director] Noreen O’Riordan is also involved. I’m not going to go anywhere else; it wouldn’t make any sense. Entec are always fair with us on costs, the equipment is the best you can get and so is the service. They’re part of the family.” The Mission will join The Tubes as special guests Photography by on Alice Cooper’s arena Mark Cunningham, Entec Archives & tour this November.

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JAZZIN’ WITH LAMBCO Established in the mid-nineties by London Studio Centre in North Finchley, the Jazz Dance Company came together with the aim of touring a show on a specific theme around an average of eight UK venues. This summer’s production, ‘Dynasties: The Sands Of Time’, was the latest example to showcase the creative partnership between the company’s artistic director Robbie O’Reilly and lighting designer Richard Lambert of Lambco, and offered another opportunity for Entec to provide technical assistance. Featuring choreography from some of today’s leading experts, this dance spectacular was inspired and informed by the stories of lust for wealth and control that have shaped history since the times of the Pharaohs. “Each musical number was a story in its own right,” remarked Lambert. “It covers jazz dance, commercial dance, tap, ballet, hip hop and musical theatre as an holistic presentation. One of my favourite pieces was about the Ming Dynasty and

choreographed by Carrie-Anne Ingrouille, the resident choreographer for the West End production of the Broadway hit musical ‘Hamilton’, so we have some serious talent onboard.” The package provided by Entec included Clay Paky Alpha Spot HPE300s that are favoured by Lambert for overhead light. LED products from the GLP range were also on the designer’s wish list, as he explained: “The GLP X4 Bar 10 battens look so good – they zoom and they colour individually, as well as tilting [up to 210°] – and were used as side lights on scaff poles in tank traps. That’s what makes them perfect side light for dance. I also had GLP Impressions on four perches at the stage corners for special pick-ups..” For the first time, Lambert specified the GLP X4 XL, a large, ultra-bright, 24kg unit. “One of those could wash the entire stage with little effort,” he said, “although I had two on the far upstage rigged bar and one each side mid-stage on floor-mounted truss. I didn’t expect



the XLs to be quite that big when they arrived and they weren’t going to go up on the scaff pipe as I’d planned, so Entec very kindly ensured that I had the the right truss for the job and didn’t bat an eyelid. “That’s just one of the things I like about Entec – their willingness to be so flexible and helpful when things change at the last minute, which happens frequently with these productions. Even the day before we load out, I was adding extra elements and Entec will cheerfully amend the order once again! They’re all about doing whatever it takes to help you create your show and their personal touch is priceless.” ATMOSPHERIC ‘Dynasties’ was Lambert’s fourth tour with London Studio Centre and in recent years he has toured with his own Zero 88 ORB XF controller and ArtNet node, pre-programming his cues and palettes ahead of the first performance. “All the atmospheric elements usually come from my touring rig, and

then I patch into the house rigs for front face light, star cloths for the pop-style numbers, mirror balls and general colour wash.” The healthy sense of camaraderie enjoyed by all members of the Jazz Dance Company was particularly evident at the end of each show on this current tour. Said Lambert: “We had it down to a 50-minute load-out at one point on the tour, because the dancers themselves help out [pictured below]. They know where everything is and where everything needs to go – it’s a rarity, I know, and quite incredible to see this army of performers-turned-crew.” Entec was also delighted to work with Richard Lambert this year with the Starfire Singers and on Umbrella Productions’ UK tour of ‘Cirque Enchantment’, the concert-style cirque production directed by Stuart Glover that tours again this autumn.


Photography by AnnA Freez – courtesy of Lambco




A round-up of further Entec activity...

Photography: Mark Cunningham, Roman Boldyrev, Adam Stevenson & Christine Goodwin

Above, clockwise from left: Deftones LD Jon Eddy; the band and MagicPanels on stage; The Who play Tommy at TCT; packed and ready for the Chili Peppers; Okean Elzy; Jay Chou at SSE Arena, Wembley. Opposite page: Lana Del Rey at O2 Academy Brixton. When Deftones enlisted Entec’s support last summer, their lighting rig intentionally had an ‘old school’ flavour, ma joring in white light. According to Andy Tinsley, their tour/ production manager and FOH engineer, however, colour has played a much bigger role on the latest leg of the band’s Gore tour, with increased dominance of the Ayrton MagicPanel-R, whose 25 15-watt LED sources per unit offer many creative possibilities. Said Tinsley: “They really help to create some diversity because they can be programmed to produce automated windmill effects and create different patterns of light by altering the selection of the LED sources. I think that this show has at least as much impact as it did in 2016 but through a different approach that uses less electricity, as you’d expect from an LED solution.” Previously operating an Avolites Pearl Expert Pro console, lighting designer Jon Eddy picked an Avolites Arena. Combining the Tiger 56

Touch II interface with increased live control, the Arena allowed Eddy and Deftones’ lighting crew chief Dave Garcia – who also piloted the lights for the support band AFI at Alexandra Palace – to link two of the consoles, allowing them to double up on the faders and multiply certain abilities to individually control the floor and flown lighting rigs. Tinsley commented: “Our experience of working with Entec on these tours has been great. In all our dealings, they’ve responded well to our needs and really taken care of us right the way down the line. I have a lot of respect for them – they go the extra mile to make sure that our show is always what it needs to be.’ MEANWHILE... This year began with three longtime clients hitting the road. Skunk Anansie took out an audio package and the company furnished lighting for The Bootleg Beatles (beginning their Sgt Pepper 50th anniversary

year) and The Australian Pink Floyd Show who prepared for their tour at Fly By Nite Rehearsal Studios – see pages 14-15. Sound and lights were provided for film soundtrack legend Goran Bregovic’s show at Eventim Apollo Hammersmith. Andy Emmerson, assisted by Will Wright, lit the performance and Andrew ‘Chunk’ Charters handled sound. One of several dates at the venue for which Piu Entertainment hired Entec, it was followed by Canadian-Belgian chanteuse Lara Fabian and Vivaldianno – a dazzling live experience built around rock arrangements of Vivaldi’s classics. Entec supported Leslie Mandoki’s Soulmates when their Wings Of Freedom show arrived in London. The ‘soulmates’ in question featured some of the biggest names in vintage rock, including Jethro Tull’s Ian Anderson, Chris Thompson of Manfred Mann fame, Toto’s Bobby Kimball and John Helliwell of Supertramp. iNPUT • ENTEC SOUND & LIGHT • SUMMER 2017

Photography: Ryan Dinham

A taste of the Orient filled Entec’s much of spring diary. After working with Japanese new age composer Kitaro, the company provided lighting at the SSE Arena in Wembley for Jay Chou’s The Invincible Concert Tour. Simon Honnor, Skippy Monk, Dave Black, Fraser Elisha, Sudip Shrestha, Alessandro Schillaci and Lee Stennett were the formidable crew who quickly turned things around for A-Mei’s Utopia 2.0 show in Hammersmith, where Entec’s sound department also starred. Meanwhile, at the Troxy in Mile End, both of Entec’s departments were kept busy with Korean K-Pop act Block B. Moving eastward, Entec was responsible for sound and lighting when Red Square Projects brought Russian Pop Legends to the UK, and when Okean Elzy, the biggest band to come out of the Ukraine, came to London. Russian rockers DDT also paid a successful visit. Tours with Feeder and Slowdive were also launched when Entec started prepping its audio wares for this year’s Teenage Cancer Trust concerts at Royal Albert Hall, with another stellar bill that included The Who (performing Tommy), Olly Murs, Ed Sheehan, Paul Weller, the Pet Shop Boys and Romesh Ranganathan who hosted a brilliant night of comedy. Hats off to Matt Grounds and to Steve Allen and his team. RECORD BREAKERS Entec lighting was proud to be involved JBL’s Guinness World Record success at Village Underground in Shoreditch where, after successfully playing 1,000 Flip 4 portable Bluetooth speakers simultaneously from a single media source, JBL broke the previous record of 208 speakers. Entec provided Martin fixtures to the Harman Group – MAC Viper profiles, Axiom hybrids and Aura XBs – along with crew in the shape of Andy Emmerson and Alessandro Scillachi. May saw the company provide lights and control for Sheryl Crow’s UK tour, liaising with LD Jeremy Roth and production manager Rick Purcell. Coinciding with the release of Sheryl’s 10th studio album, Be Myself, the dates included London’s O2 Shepherds Bush Empire and Manchester’s Albert Hall.

A brand new grandMA2 joined the rest of LD Marc Thornton’s lighting rig for Charli XCX’s summer shows. The lighting department has also supported Premier Global Production Co. Inc. with equipment and crew for the Red Hot Chili Peppers’ European tour. Sound and lights have also been out on Marilyn Manson’s festival run. Earlier in 2017, Marianas Trench’s UK and European tour also benefitted from Entec’s supply of DiGiCo S21s for both FOH and monitors. Early July saw the start of a short run of shows at Hammersmith Apollo by four legendary names: Steve Winwood (with an old school PAR rig), two consecutive nights by Erykah Badu (see page 27), a one-off with Chicago blues pioneer Buddy Guy, and finally Wet Wet Wet. It was great to be working again with Martin Nicholas, Chris Trimby, Stumpy & Dave Hale from promoter Kilimanjaro. These shows were swiftly followed by an acclaimed, sold-out performance by Lana Del Rey (above) at O2 Academy Brixton where Entec’s lighting team worked with LD Phil White and tour manager Peter Abbott. So far this year, Entec has also been delighted to work with San Franciscan stars Train, Amy Macdonald, Tegan & Sara, Young Fathers and, last but certainly not least, Gorillaz on their Humanz tour. We hope to tell you more about this exciting production soon.

MANAGING DIRECTOR & HEAD OF LIGHTING Noreen O’Riordan | FINANCIAL DIRECTOR Barbara Pendleton CHAIRMAN Nick Pendleton | DIRECTOR/COMPANY SECRETARY Simon White BUSINESS DEVELOPMENT CO-ORDINATOR Jo Beirne | ACCOUNTS Laurie Coombs & Druvi Attygalle HEAD OF SOUND Jonny Clark | WAREHOUSE MANAGER Ed Shackleton LOGISTICS & DRY HIRE SOUND Phil Waters | ASSISTANT HEAD OF LIGHTING Adam Stevenson SENIOR SERVICE TECHNICIANS Will Wright (Lighting), Lee Stennett (Lighting) & Peter Eltringham (Sound) TECHNICIANS Peter Schofield (Lighting), James Kerridge (Sound) & Tom Olorenshaw (Sound) iNPUT EDITOR/DESIGNER Mark Cunningham/Liveculture | Copyright © 2017 Marquee Entec Limited

517 Yeading Lane, Northolt, Middlesex UB5 6LN, United Kingdom Tel • +44 (0) 20 8842 4004 Email • Web •



Music from the road s t re a m i n g n o w o n

iNPUT: Summer 2017  

The Summer 2017 edition of the official news journal of Entec Sound & Light.

iNPUT: Summer 2017  

The Summer 2017 edition of the official news journal of Entec Sound & Light.