SGM Stamps Large Footprint Across Glastonbury 2015
SGM’s groundbreaking IP65-rated LED solutions featured heavily across this year’s vast Glastonbury Festival site.
Starting at the iconic Pyramid Stage, a wide range of powerful washes, LED strobes and dynamic 3D effects cascaded down to a number of smaller stages where they performed long duty cycles flawlessly over the four days.
While 14 of the G-Spots, provided by HSL, graced the main stage (seven on each PA wing) elsewhere the scramble was on to secure inventory, in particular, for the popular and award-winning P-5 wash-light.
Main stage lighting was supplied by Neg Earth, and with The Who headlining, their LD Tom Kenny, had nothing but positives to say about G-Spot. “I was impressed with its power, and the way it fought through everything else. I also loved the colour and they matched the other fixtures well.”
Enlightened Lighting’s Simon Marcus was one who drew on the P-5s to light the landmark Ribbon Tower — a beacon that can be seen right across the site. He praised the saturated colours produced by the ultra-efficient washlight, deploying 24 P-5 RGBW in pairs on the ground to uplight the full 29 metres of the tower and 8 x TW (Tunable White) washes, subbed in from Vortex Lighting by Neg Earth, on the Minaret style top.
“The P-5s were sufficiently powerful to fire all the way up to the top and we could change the whole tower and snap the colours instantly from warm saturated reds to cold blues with a spin chase. As people use it to navigate from it was important it was lit through 360°,” he said. “The P-5 is far superior to the old discharge lights used previously — the colour saturation is better and in terms of usability it’s a lot less intrusive. “The SGM products were brilliant in every respect, and lovely to work with.”
Over at the John Peel Stage Imax Lighting’s Gary Churchill brought in a further nine P-5 RGBW washes — part of the floor package for La Roux’s set to meet the rider from their lighting designer, Andy Liddle. These were used both for lighting their backdrop and as floor cans on the edges of the risers.
Another company from the region that has been associated with Glastonbury since 2007 is Alister Pook’s SWG Events.
This year, their lighting manager Ben Perrin specified eight SGM X-5 strobes and four P-2 washlights for the Park Stage, with the P-2 units used to uplight the Park’s new pillars. “The design team was ecstatic with the results,” he said.
And for BBC Introducing Perrin specified 12 SGM Q-2W white fixtures and six SGM P-2 fixtures, adding: “I wanted a versatile strobe / eye candy light with a small footprint which at the same time could deliver as much colour as possible.
“The P-2 provided the answer — in fact everyone was amazed at the amount of output the fixture produced, with incredible smooth even colours.”
The fixtures also met the BBC’s requirements for a flicker-free LED solution. “The Q-2W, with the 12 individual cells per unit, I knew would produce some unique effects, and the fact I could put so many units into a venue without affecting the overall power consumption was a major bonus.”
As a result SWG Events now own all three SGM products. “They left such a good impression that we had to buy them,” was Perrin’s rationale.
Finally, Pussy Parlure, overseen by SWG Events’ Alister Pook, featured further P-2 washes and SGM’s LS3.75 video screen. “The venue designer wanted lots of coloured light but hidden fixtures to create atmosphere,” said Perrin. “We put four P-2 units in the king poles to illuminate their logo, along with eight washing the room and four to create a glow behind the slatted walls.”
The result was a thoroughly satisfying outing for SWG. “Many venues have requested the same products and designs again for the future,” Perrin confirmed. “The SGM products exceeded every expectation we had. “Many touring lighting designers were blown away by them and the house engineers also loved the ease of rigging the fixtures with great little features such as the retractable safety bond point. SGM provided us with the tools to have the most successful Glastonbury Festival yet.”
Also putting a highly creative spin on events using SGM tools was Ben Bailes at Oculux, who is the long-term lighting designer for Greenpeace at Glastonbury.
This year’s theme was sustainable fishing quotas and the centrepiece was a monster trawler called the Cornelis Vrolijk. Like a themed attraction it took visitors through a real life experience, showing what happens to tuna fished over quota and thrown back — and this also included a ‘Crawl / Wiggle / Slide’ area which was lit separately (‘Crawl’ formed the first phase of a chilling journey).
Bailes was tasked with enhancing the visitor experience by creating total 3D immersion, both sonically and via illumination, and accomplished this with tools from SGM Lighting.
While P-5s, sourced from White Light, washed the monster ship over the nets, 195 LB-100 strings (with 12 ILD controllers) from Blueprint Events served the Crawl space. Blueprint also supplied Artnet switches and Madrix software.
“For the P-5s I used a 21° medium lens at full brightness, which produced excellent colour,” he said. And by using movement sensors the LB-100s created “clear 3D waves of lighting to match the swell of the ship.” These were Madrix triggered by a Raspberry Pi, while 'The Engine Room' (the Greenpeace stage area) was on a Vista M1 wing, with SGM X-5s among the effects. The field lighting was run from Showcad Artist.
“We like to use the best tools for the job and SGM was the obvious choice,” he summarised, at the same time praising the support given by White Light and Blueprint.
And with further P-5s featured in the Circus area (and elsewhere on the site) there is no question that SGM left a powerful imprint over the Worthy Farm festival site in 2015. Concluded SGM UK’s Ian Kirby, “This is one of the largest deployments of SGM products at a single event and again demonstrated the fantastic impact that can be achieved when these groundbreaking fixtures are placed in the hands of creatives.”
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