Current Issue - August 2014
Editor's Note

Finding Gear Just Got Easier

Written by: Justin Lang

PLSN Editor Justin LangFrom time to time, I get a chance to do some work in the DCMA — the Washington DC metro area, for those of you outside of the Beltway.  Typically, they are quick gigs, and the jobs range from running a desk to pushing a road case.  Yes, I am never above pushing a case — it builds character, and some of the stories my fellow stagehands tell are priceless.

Publishers Note

Calling All Desk Jockeys!

Written by: Terry Lowe

Clive Forrester of All Access Staging and ProductionsOkay... Who is going to take the first step? Well, I guess it will be me. No, that is not true. It was actually Clive Forrester of All Access Staging and Productions who took the first step around four years ago. Clive took the first step towards better health by buying a Tread Desk. What is a Tread Desk? A Tread Desk is a combination desk and treadmill that enables you to keep your body in motion during the workday instead of being slouched over your desk for eight or more hours a day.

On the Road

LD Troy Stubby and Air Supply

Written by: Debi Moen

LD Troy Stubby at the One World Theatre in Austin, TX. Photo: Debi MoenTour: Air Supply

Dates: Year-round, worldwide

Inside Theatre

"Act One" on Broadway

Written by: Bryan Reesman

Act One featured Broadway's largest-ever turntable set design. Photo by set designer Beowulf BorittBeowulf Boritt’s Tony Award-winning set for Act One, which ran this past spring at Lincoln Center’s Vivian Beaumont Theatre, was one of the grandest set pieces ever designed for Broadway. The 30-foot high, 60-foot diameter turntable featured three full stories of locations — apartments, hotel rooms, theater spaces, outdoor places — and created a larger-than-life presentation that added to the energy of the show, which chronicled the autobiographical story of playwright Moss Hart as he rose up from poverty to become a Broadway sensation through his association with playwright and collaborator George S. Kaufman. It was certainly an impressive sight, not to mention heavy — it weighed in around 100,000 pounds.

Production Profile

Tim McGraw's Tour Goes Rock 'n' Roll

Written by: Kevin M. Mitchell

Tim McGraw tour photo by Karl Naval“Tim McGraw likes his rock ‘n’ roll,” says lighting director Pat Brannon in what proves to be an understatement. “He likes that big look.”

If there’s a word that sums up McGraw’s current Sundown Heaven Town tour is “big.” Big set. Big lights. And perhaps most of all, a big new 7mm video screen custom designed by Screenworks NEP that has put that company in the manufacturing business.

Designer Insights

Ellie Goulding Halcyon Days Tour

Written by: Steve Jennings (Photos and Text)

Ellie Goulding Halcyon Days Tour photo by Steve JenningsHalcyon Days might imply times of languid repose, but with Elie Goulding’s fast track to success, the U.K.-based singer/songwriter has been busier than ever, and her career keeps hitting new crescendos. Her first album, Lights, sold more than 850,000 copies after its 2010 release. Together with her second album, Halcyon, released in Oct. 2012, which was re-released as Halcyon Days in Aug. 2013, her total album sales have topped the 4 million mark.

Wide Angle

EDC Las Vegas 2014: Stage by Stage, Gear and Crew

Written by: Justin Lang

Electric Daisy Carnival Las Vegas 2014 - Stage 1-kineticField photo by Adam Kaplan/ASK Media ProductionsEDC Production Crew

Producer: Insomniac Productions
Executive Producer: Forrest Hunt
Production Director: Alyxzander Bear
Production Designer/LD: Stephen Lieberman/SJ Lighting


BET Experience

Written by: PLSN Staff

BET Experience at Staples Center, photo courtesy of Visions LightingLighting Co
Visions Lighting

Staples Center
Los Angeles, CA


The Dance Connection: Turn Up The Music

Written by: PLSN Staff

The Dance Connection: Turn Up The MusicLighting Co
Spellcaster Productions

TD Bank Arts Centre
Sewell NJ


Gavin DeGraw Tour 2014

Written by: Steve Jennings (Photos and Text)

Gavin DeGraw 2014 tour photo by Steve JenningsLighting Co
LMG Touring

Various (Tour)


The Cure (Festival Tour)

Written by: Steve Jennings (Photos and Text)

The Cure festival tour photo by Steve JenningsLighting Co

Various (Festival Tour)


Soundtrack of Sumer Tour 2014

Written by: PLSN Staff

The tour featured Foreigner, Styx and ex-Eagle Don FelderLighting Co
Tour Tech East

Various (Tour)


All Time Low

Written by: PLSN Staff

All Time LowLighting Co
Zig Zag Lighting

Various (UK tour)


Miami's E11even Nightclub

Written by: Will Romano

E11even serves up a theatrical experience with its hybrid gentleman’s club/nightclub/dayclub design. Photo by Chibi Moku, Courtesy of Yami Alvarado, Carma PR Here’s a little math quiz. What do you get when you add 600 square feet of video wall units, one major “party pit” boasting nearly 60 moving heads and 360 LED video bars, and $40 million in construction and soft costs? The surprising answer is E11even — a 24-hour cabaret/nightclub in Miami, Florida, that made its debut earlier this year.

Buyer's Guide

Media Servers

Written by: Justin Lang

PLSN Aug. 2014 Buyers Guide: Media ServersIt is time again to take a look at one product segment that is growing not just in capabilities, but popularity among productions of all sizes and types, Media Servers.  In the past year alone, almost every single media server provider listed here has introduced an updated version of their software and/or added to their line of offerings in hardware.

To download a PDF of the Aug. 2014 PLSN Buyers Guide, CLICK HERE

Product Spotlight

ETC Source Four LED Series 2 Lustr

Written by: Justin Lang

ETC Source Four LED Series 2 LustrOur industry isn’t the only one where LEDs are making a big impact. Retail, commercial and even residential lighting designers and installers are all moving toward LEDs and away from traditional bulbs. Even with their higher upfront costs, LED fixtures are making inroads in nearly every kind of lighting application in markets all over the world.

Road Tests

Robe MiniMe

Written by: Justin Lang

Robe MiniMeHave you ever been so excited about a lighting fixture that you cannot stop playing with it? I’ll be honest here, that is almost always the case when a new light hits my doorstep.  It is kind of like Christmas every time.  Though, this time, I had to travel across the Atlantic with this particular light. I picked it directly from the factory, hot off the production line.

Company 411

Allen Productions

Written by: Tim Bradley

Along with lighting, Allen Analian can provide DJ services. Photo by Royal GorAllen Analian’s zeal for electronics is, well, electric. “Everything today involves electronics, and electrical engineering is the basis for the advance of technology,” he exclaims. “For me, I see a lot of interconnectedness in the world across all industries through electronics, from simple toys to supercomputers. With an electronics background, you can just about build anything!”

Video World

Build Me a Stadium, Fill It with Video

Written by: Paul Berliner

On site at Levi’s Stadium with Sony’s F55 4K camera. The new home for the 49ers opened July 17.Back when the Raiders had a team that knew how to find the end zone, I used to run slo-mo (instant replay) as part of an eclectic and highly skilled television crew in the Bay Area. We did broadcasts for the Raiders, the Giants and the A’s, Cal and Stanford basketball, and other various live events ranging from the Miss California pageant to the 1984 Olympics in Los Angeles.

Feeding the Machines

The Art of the Change

Written by: Brad Schiller

One of the greatest advancements in automated lighting programming over the last 10 years has been the ability to easily change fixture types from one to the other. As the market of available fixtures has increased, so too has the need to easily clone or change fixture libraries within a programmed show file. In the past this was accomplished through complicated copying routines and macros. However, even with the new tools built into consoles, it is important that programmers understand how to use these tools and how to prepare their show file for changes.

Designer Watch

Joel Reiff: Paperback Writer; Ravitz at the Drive-In

Written by: Debi Moen

Joel Reiff with his short story collectionIn between tours, over the past few decades, LD Joel Reiff has been writing. He selected 14 of his favorite short stories for his first published paperback, 14 Shorts and Other Dirty Laundry. PLSN found Reiff on the road with Peter Frampton, soon to head out again with Jason Mraz in August, to answer a few questions about his literary aspirations and inspirations.

LD at Large

The SWAT Team

Written by: Nook Schoenfeld

Illustration by Andy AuAs the summer goes by, I find myself playing lots of festival shows. Concerts put on with multiple stages, spread across a gigantic fairground. While festivals like these are really nothing new, the sheer number of them showing up in different cities is staggering. They are all huge, they all have to provide an infrastructure of a small city for a few days. And they all need a lot of employees to put it all together. But most of all, they need the SWAT team.