On Tour Events was approached by a Reading based record shop XS Records to supply the production for a one-off anniversary event, celebrating 25 years in the music industry as an independent underground dance music record label.
After meeting with the creative and media team at XS records then a continued debrief with the managing director, it was clear from the start that they wanted a fresh, modern, creative feel. The demographic being 25 to 40, they wanted their guests to walk away not just pleased they attended the event, but they wanted it to be one they would remember and to talk about it like an experience.
The audio visual element of this production was going to be huge, and this is what we do best… stand out from the rest. As the main office is based in Reading, it made sense for them to base the event if not in Reading then around the vicinity. There was going to be around 400 to 500 guests attending the event and it was due to run from 20:00 to 01:00. An event space was chosen just outside of Reading in Berkshire called The Ice Box. The Venue was super for this event, easy access, a large foyer for pre-drinks, 25m long x 14m wide x 6m high roof event space with 12 tonnes of payload gave us just what we needed, allowing us to be as creative as we needed to be in terms of production & rigging.
The audio requirements were extremely specific. We needed to supply super clear, defined audio from front to back with extended sub-bass capabilities and a high SPL for the latter part of the evening where the company wanted to showcase 25 tracks they have released over the last 25 years. For each track there would also be graphics made, which would be shown on the LED screen provided which we will come onto in a minute but for now let's continue with the audio....
We installed our L'acoustics Kara system which was made up of 6 Kara elements a side with a total of 8 KS218 infra subs controlled & run via our latest L'acoustics LA12X amps. Our d&b Audiotechnik M4's took care of stage monitoring alongside our Shure UHF-R wireless kit for IEM & handheld radio. A full set of Pioneer CDJs and variations of the DJM controllers were also provided. Audio was simple to be honest, but if you are unaware of what this system is capable of it is utterly amazing. To put this in a venue which holds up to 500- 600 guests it's crazy! Remember the brief was to provide very defined clear audio at high SPL from front to back and that was completely what we intended on doing (and did).
Next up is the Lighting and to be honest we couldn't wait to get started on this aspect of the production! They wanted the foyer lit with lots of LED furniture, light up cubes, wireless neon bars & we also installed glowing neon rings into the ceiling at different heights & sizes ranging from 50cm up to 2m. Later into the project we were asked to incorporate a space theme, not that it was meant to be space themed, but this was something which they felt would work within the venue and with their vision. Think Tesla, SpaceX very modern in terms of design & feel.
In the main room we installed high powered LED beam moving light fixtures which were controlled via a Grand MA lighting desk. The 25 tracks pre chosen tracks would be and would have time coded light shows pre-programmed made for each track & the only real reliable way to do this is via a Grand MA. 60sqm of 3.9mm LED screen was installed across 12 sections of truss across at the back of the stage with neon graphics. This made the whole set pop, really drawing your eye to what was going on, the media company responsible for content creation was incredible with a minimalist, high visual impact creative design! (for more information please see Python Media X Designs) The Icing on the cake would be the 4 x 5 watt full colour lasers supplied by London Laser Hire Quick side note here, lasers can be dangerous, and we take safety extremely seriously! Lasers can be very dangerous if you are unaware of all of the risks and hazards involved in putting on a safe event. That is why we subcontracted Laser Hire London to undertake any of our laser work, as this is a field which is forever changing, and we feel that there is no other more qualified company than this.
Finally, was the stage and drape... 80m of black hand pleated drape was to be installed around the venue. Soft furnishings were laid across the roof to help with noise sound reflections and a thick 4mm carpet laid throughout the venue, this was a way to control the sound a bit better. The client had no issue with this as whatever needed to be done in their eyes needed to be done. The stage would be black tiered 1.2 meter high @ 12 meter wide but only 6 meters deep. Most of this stage was to compensate for either LED screen or branding on stage. The front of the stage was then extended like a catwalk stage by 1 meter wide, 4 meter deep. This enabled artists to be more intimate with the crowd and was again tiered across four different levels. This all seems quite easy and many companies try but few can build and finish a stage to an extremely high standard, and that is what we believe our clients are looking for at a competitive price point for the services supplied.
To say that the event was a success is an understatement! Since writing this blog we are in talks with XS Records about returning to the venue for several one-off special events, as they believe this needs to be seen and heard by others alike. Just WOW we could not ask for more, very promising and we are extremely excited to be a part of this journey. XS Records has such a great following & brand behind them already that we are sure these future events will be a success.
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