CPL brought more festive sparkle to an independent Bristol based energy supplier, when they delivered full technical production – video, sound, lighting and rigging – for their Christmas conference and party, again working for producers Bright.
The event was staged at Bottle Yard Studios in Bristol – a vast and charismatic former bottling factory now transformed into a lively film and TV studio facility. However, the actual area utilized for the party had not previously been used as an event space, so it was specially modified for the occasion.
CPL’s crew of 12 were led by Project Manager Simon Haydon and they worked closely on site with Bright and set and stage builders, Flat Earth.
The event area was divided into two. The largest space, Room 2, was built as a plenary conference environment during the day for 400 delegates, and then completely transformed into a large, vibrant gala dinner hall for the evening.
Room 1 was used for refreshments and a meeting area during the conference session, and then morphed into an aftershow area at night, complete with DJ and lots of cool sounds for those wanting to make a full night of it!
The overall visual vibe of the event was minimal and stripped back – no superfluity – a concept that worked fabulously in the industrial factory setting, where the rawer elements of the building became part of the setting.
A network of trussing was flown in the roof – which had good weight loading and offered a decent 6 metres of headroom – and this provided positions for all the sound, lighting and AV equipment.
In Room 2, the stage was built along the longest wall, with three projection screens at the back, a 20 x 11 ft one in the middle flanked by two 12 x 6 fts either side. These were fed by front projecting Panasonic 10K and 20K machines, a single 20K for the centre section with two 10Ks for the sides, all rigged with ‘hot’ backups.
Two Sony HXC-100 cameras were provided by CPL for IMAG relay of the presenters on screen, while playback content was replayed via MacBook Pro laptops running KeyNote.
Lighting for the conference session was deliberately low key ‘house’ lighting. Twelve Patten 2013s were concealed in the roof and pointed directly downwards during the day, and there were also some generics dotted around for additional coverage.
The Patten 2013s were then repositioned on varying height drop bars for the evening during the all-action three hour changeover!
Five hundred metres of festoon was also hooked up on the roof for the conference, and then let down and strategically draped over the tables for some funky, low-level – almost random - illumination for the dinner.
For audio, CPL supplied ten d&b E12 speakers distributed around the space for the plenary sessions, which stayed in place and were augmented with a couple of extra speakers on stands around the room for the dinner. A background soundtrack was played out via a laptop, all running through a Yamaha QL1 mixer.
Room 1 during the day was lit in open white so it was a nice bright area for mingling, discourse and consuming snacks, while for the party, the creative team continued on the minimalist vibe – 1990s warehouse party / rave style. A d&b Q-series line array complete with Q-SUBS PA was ground stacked on the stage.
The main moving lights were Clay Paky Alpha Spots and MAC Aura LED washes, joined by Martin zoomable LED PAR2s. ChamSys MagicQ desks were used in both rooms.
The party video projection in Room 1 comprised two Panasonic 20Ks which were mapped – via a Pandora’s Box media server - on to the back wall of the building behind the DJ.
The event was a resounding success. Simon Haydon comments, “The turnaround in the main room was a big pressure, but we loved the challenge and it resulted in some great teamwork between CPL and Bright. Detailed advance planning and practical and achievable designs all helped deliver the style and aesthetics required by the client”.