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LarMac LIVE production Manages  Camp Bestival

LarMac LIVE production Manages Camp Bestival


London, UK based LarMac LIVE (LML), production managed and co-ordinated the supply of a full technical production package for all main stages and performance areas at the 2011 Camp Bestival event, staged in the picturesque environs of Lulworth Castle in Dorset.

It's the second year that LML's Joanna MacKay has led the production management team for this unique 30,000 capacity event, which is orientated towards children and young people.

LarMac LIVE's brief included organising the supply of lighting, sound, video, staging and backline for the 8 main stages which included a truly eclectic and fabulous array of live performance from Primal Scream, Blondie and Mark Ronson to Howard Marks to Groove Armada's Red Light DJ set, Mr Tumble and Sooty, plus host of other bands, DJs, comedians, poets, speakers, circus acts, etc., across the 3 day event.

Working for Loudsound Events and The Bestival Organisation, LML also production manages the main Bestival event on the Isle of Wight in September.

To provide lighting and sound for the Castle Field (main stage), Stage Two, and the Black Dalia and Bollywood tents, LMC brought in Audile from Manchester, one of their regular contractors. Having a single-source company supplying both of these production elements worked really effectively on site and also enabled the negotiation of cost effective solutions.

For the Spoken Word Arena, Bandstand, the Little Big Top and the Dingly Dell Trail in the woods, Isle of Wight based Widget was asked to supply versatile integrated lighting and sound systems.

Site wide video - both projection and LED screen systems - were supplied by XL Video, a regular LarMac LIVE technical partner. This encompassed a projection system in the Little Big Top and LED screens on the main stage.

Cameras for the main stage were supplied by The Faculty of Media, Arts & Society from Southampton Solent University, with whom the Bestival Organisation has a learnership/work experience programme. This offers students the chance to get hands-on involvement in many aspects of event organisation and production.

LML supervised about 30 students for the event, assigning them to different departments and ensuring they had a good selection of experiences of varied roles for the duration. Says MacKay, “It's a great idea for young people interested in potential professional careers in the event industry to get a real taste of what it is about – the long hours, the technical elements, the dedication and passion that's necessary and the communication skills required if they want to be successful”.

Selected highlights of the weekend's live action were filmed by Whizz Kid Entertainment for Sky Arts.

Backline and rolling risers for the main stages came from Music Bank who, MacKay comments, were "Fantastic as always”.

The Star Events Group - who also work regularly on LML's events - built the Castle Field Stage, a 15 metre Orbit style roof structure, and installed the decking in Stage 2's tented arena, once again reinforcing the excellent working relationship between the two companies.

The DJ equipment and set ups for 7 stages came from locally based LLS and the local crew were Rock Steady from Plymouth. Where possible, LMC's policy is to engage a percentage of local companies and their expertise for the event, to work alongside their regular nationwide technical partners.

Laura Hall joined MacKay on the LML production management team and they were backed up by 7 of their regular stage managers, who ensured all the stage builds and running schedules functioned smoothly and with a smile throughout the period.

The main stages were erected on the Monday for a Friday morning kick off and all the sound, lighting, video, etc., production got-in and were rigged on the Thursday, in a detailed and closely co-ordinated operation. This was tight by anyone's standards, but all rose brilliantly to the challenge and they were also blessed with glorious weather throughout the build and event.

Other overall production challenges included dealing with the logistics involved with getting over 200 bands and artists appearing across the 3 days on and off site and in all the right places at the right times.

“Camp Bestival has a very special dynamic,” explains MacKay …. “Being very child and young person orientated – it is a calmer atmosphere and needs a totally different approach and treatment from the average music festival". She adds that it is also one of the most enjoyable.

Of the event demographic 14,000 of the population are under 10, with 8,000 adults and the rest aged between 11 and 18.

The event was rounded off in spectacular style with the Finale, featuring high powered large format projections beamed from the FOH tower 150 metres away and 3D video mapping onto the Lulworth Castle walls by Brighton Art. This was combined with an eye-popping pyro show designed by Two Tigers, also from Brighton, all in collaboration with Camp Bestival's creative director, Josie Da Bank.

For more press information on LarMac LIVE, please contact Louise Stickland on +44 7831 329888 or +44 1865 202679 or EMail : [email protected] To contact LarMac LIVE direct, please call +44 (0)203 142 6260 or check

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