Production company Creative Stage Lighting used Jands Vista T2 and S3 consoles to provide show control for Trans World Entertainment Corporation’s recent annual sales meeting in New York.
Trans World Entertainment Corporation is one of the largest specialty music and video retailers in the United States. The company’s seven day annual sales meeting for 200 of its top executives is a mix of presentations, awards and entertainment by various American artists. This year’s headliners were Chaka Khan and Boyz II Men, supported by performances from up and coming artists Last Goodnight and Cinder Road among others.
The live event was produced by LubieRocks Inc. and production managed by David Elliott. Lighting design was by John Broderick and George Studnicky IV, with programming by Nick Wisdom. Creative Stage Lighting provided all lighting and rigging equipment for the event.
Nick Wisdom had worked with David Elliott as the LD and Programmer for the Major League Gaming Tour for the past two years, and was invited by him to team up with longtime Metallica LD John Broderick as Programmer for the project.
Nick had complete freedom over the choice of lighting console for the event, so specified the Jands Vista based on his experiences using the desk since last year’s MLG tour. He commented: “After working with the Vista for last year I wasn’t going to do the Trans World show without one. I knew the desk would be ideally suited to the show’s very intensive production schedule.”
The set consisted of a stage for corporate presentations, which opened up to reveal a larger main artists performance stage behind a movable backdrop of soft and hard scenic elements. A mock store front setup was also used to showcase various product displays. The entire room was dressed with drapes and scenery to conceal it and envelope the attendees in an entirely unique atmosphere.
Over 600 feet of truss was used to hang the lighting, scenic, projection and screens. The rig included over 100 channels of conventionals, 50 Chroma-Q Color Block and Color Kinetics Color Blast LEDs, and 50 moving lights – including High End Studio Beams, Xspot Xtremes, Color Commands and Martin Mac 300s. IMAG was also used extensively during the corporate presentations and all music performances.
Due to the intensive nature of the show, which involved constant switching between corporate and entertainment lighting modes – e.g. a presentation would be immediately followed by a music act – Nick wanted to have lots of playbacks available to accommodate fast switches between the modes. He also wanted to give John Broderick access to the playbacks to suit the LD’s very hands-on nature. Nick’s solution was to use his own Vista S3 control surface as a playback wing connected to a full size Vista T2 console. He commented: “This was the first time I linked them and they worked great together. It also allowed me to lay out the S3 as John’s own playback surface, so he could drive almost all of the conventional fixtures. We had very little rehearsal time, so just about everything we did was on the fly. Having four hands on the desk at all times and lots of playbacks enabled us to react very quickly to any changes to any stage.”
Although Nick was used to creating and editing cues very easily using the Vista, he was particularly impressed by how much quicker the console’s unique visual interface made locating fixtures on such a large, spread out rig.
The team created several different looks for the room to give each mode of the event its own character and feel, and reflect what was happening in the moment, such as a bolder, more festive look during artists’ performances.
Summarising his experience with the Vista, Nick commented: “The event was very intense with a really challenging schedule. We spent an entire day and night programming looks and used every spare moment the group was out of the room to add more looks to the mix. The speed at which the Vista allowed me to work was a big part of the success of the event. I won’t lie when I say that programming for an LD of John’s experience made me very nervous, as he’s worked with the industry’s top tier programmers throughout his career, but the Vista gave me the confidence to take on this event and know that it would be a success.”
LD John Broderick commented: “Our event was a hybrid: we had to deliver a room in which the corporation’s annual meetings, lectures, and presentations took place, and then – in 30 seconds – convert the room into a concert hall; and back again after the musical act was finished (often this happened several times during the course of a day’s presentations). Nick Wisdom and his bank of Vistas made this a transparent operation. I was particularly impressed by the graphical representation of the lighting plot on the console’s main screen, helping us to quickly select, modify, and record fixtures in our limited time allowance. Many thanks to Nick Wisdom and the support of the Jands / A.C. Lighting team.”