UK: The busy summer of festivals has shown no signs of slowing down just yet, with Avolites & Avolites Media storming onto the scene for another fantastic weekend at Secret Garden Party 2014 with five stages controlled by Avolites, and Avolites Media featured on the main stage. The festival, held in Abbots Ripton, welcomed a huge and eclectic line up of acts including headliners Fat Freddy’s Drop, Public Enemy and Little Dragon, to cement its position as one of the most hotly anticipated festivals of the year.
The boutique weekender attracted a crowd in excess of 20,000 festival-goers, witness to the multi-sensory experience. Contributing to the visual spectacle, a range of Avolites equipment provided by London based supplier Colour Sound Experiment (CSE) occupied the Front of House lighting positions on five of the most prominent areas, including the main stage. CSE also sent an 18-strong team headed by Jonathan Ricketts, to operate and support the event.
The festival’s main ‘Great Stage’ featured international acts such as Fat Freddy’s Drop and Public Enemy, lit up by Chris Steel and Dave Kyle, using a Sapphire Touch. Chris has used Avolites consoles for many years, noting his love for the support LDs receive from the team when using their consoles at festivals:
“It was nice to have Pete [Budd – Avolites Software Test Engineer] down there taking notes and answering questions, whether from us or incoming LDs. Steve [Warren – Avolites Managing Director] and Jaz [Bhullar – Avolites Creative Consultant] visiting all the other stages supporting the rest of the CSE team on site was also great!
“It’s fantastic to see that Avolites have never lost their build quality, their consoles still look and feel a top quality product. I chose them for this project as, they are still one of the fastest consoles for busking and that’s what you need at a festival.
“Secondly when on a main stage, you get lots of LDs turning up. Everyone knows Avolites, and they can all get a show out of it within a change-over if needed. This makes my life easier as I don’t have to spend time programming or trying to explain how it works. I’ve never met an LD who can’t program an Avolites.”
“The two touchscreens on the Sapphire Touch get you to your groups and palettes fast and with more than enough faders so you don't need to change pages. The quick sketch is great as its fast and makes a difference from boring generic text labelling. I love the fact you can now have speed master for your Shapes.”
Also present on the Great Stage was Immersive’s latest camera feed control technology ‘Ai Multi-View’, from co-founder Ralph Lambert. Multi-View allows the ability to have full control over multiple camera feeds on complex installations, with only one Ai operator performing three functions at once, as Camera Director, Vision Mixer and Server Operator. Multi-View has been used for several big name acts this year including Fat Freddy's Drop, Public Enemy, Morcheeba and Foxes.
Controlled via a Sapphire Media console, Ralph used 4 HD/SDI inputs on an EX8 to capture and mix feeds from 4 camera men on The Great Stage. Using Multi-view, it was possible to apply Open GL effects to each feed, and to VJ different content library media over multiple live camera feeds on a single screen.
Further Avolites consoles were found across the site at Temple of Boom, Colosseum, Dance Off, Where the Wild Things Are, and Badger Woods Stages, controlled by Dan Williams, Paul De Villiers & Stu Barr, Sam Akinwale & Toby Lovegrove, Luke Avery & Sarah Payne, and Matt Jeffson respectively.
Avolites & Avolites Media MD Steve Warren was in the mix at Secret Garden Party and was proud to have the companies in support again:
“We have supported Secret Garden Party for many years now and it never ceases to amaze me how it has grown whilst retaining its boutique vibe and dedicated following.
“The festival has quickly become one of my favourites and it was a great pleasure to get down there, support our friends and view our equipment being used in new and innovative ways such as Ai Multi-View.
“We pride ourselves on being able to provide robust, intuitive, easy to use products that enable designers to realise their visions and for programmers and creatives to bring them to life on stage reliably and quickly. We are as committed to this mission today as we ever were and promise to remain so for a long time to come."
Avolites & Avolites Media would like to thank: Jenn Webber, Dave Thomas, Dave MacMasters, Alex Ryan, Jason Tuffin, Hayden Williams and the rest of the Colour Sound Experiment team for their sterling work on the festival.