Manchester UK based lighting and rigging specialists dbn created an elegant, bespoke, self climbing, ground support truss design to achieve the perfect positioning for key production equipment in The Pavilion Suite at Ascot Racecourse, Berkshire.
This allowed a conference and awards event to be staged in-the-round; ensured that all delegates in the room had a clear view of the proceedings with the installation of 16 plasma screens in strategic positions … and maximised the very low and idiosyncratically shaped headroom of the space.
dbn’s Project Manager was Nick Todd and the company was working for event producers, WRG.
The Pavilion Suite is a long rectangular room with a very low ceiling height of just under three metres down each side but up to five metres in the middle.
In addition to making this full ceiling area into usable space … the other big challenge was an extremely short window for rigging all of the production elements, so a solution which allowed the full four tonne structure to be raised when fully loaded was required.
The truss structure measured 30 metres long and was built from Slick Minibeam components.
Utilising dbn’s custom spacer bars, Todd and his team built four ‘inverted arch’ support portals which hugged the profile of the room - with only a few centimetres of clearance. These portals were positioned down the room and supported the two main horizontal trusses.
Then, with the aid of eight ground support truss towers and Lodestar motors, the entire structure was first raised from the floor to working height. This enabled sound, lighting and video equipment to be installed quickly and comfortably by the other suppliers working on the project.
Once fully rigged and cabled, the entire grid was raised to full height and the temporary towers swapped out for fixed legs.
The industrial strength style metalwork structure also juxtaposed brilliantly with the room architecture, making the environment interesting and visually exciting for guests.
Most importantly, it allowed lighting, sound and video equipment and the plasma screen viewing monitors to be located in exactly the right places to stage the production precisely as the client wanted.
The stage set featured a long catwalk and presentation space in the middle of the room which is where most of the action took place.
Todd had conducted a test at dbn’s warehouse beforehand to ensure that the plan was practical, and on site, he worked with a crew of six.
The system was fully rigged just six hours after the get in!
Says Todd “We love a bit of a challenge here at dbn and always enjoy the opportunity of solving technical problems for our clients, especially when they’re a bit out of the ordinary.”