Stage and Sound

How your event can deliver top performances with the right selection of suppliers

Adam Morton, designer
Bullet Stage
07725 181374

What advice can you give an event organiser?
Get in early! Great crew and kit can make an event run effortlessly. If you’re interested in a particular supplier, chances are other people will be too – ask them to pencil your event in their diary and mutually agree on a date by which you will realistically be ready to confirm.

What is the USP of your product?
Our iconic Airstream trailer stages are totally unique on the market. This, coupled with the professionalism, experience and attitude of the crew has enabled us to punch above our weight in the industry, with our stages now recognisable installations at some of Britain’s most prestigious events.

Our stages are adapted classic Airstream trailers, which gives us an obvious USP. For our clients and their audiences, the Airstream stages offer a stage that looks great as soon as it’s in position, whereas other small to medium trailer stages can sometimes look a bit boring if there isn’t a big budget for lights and stage dressings.

Bullet stageWhat options do you have for small, medium and large budgets?
Our stages can be set up in under 20 minutes by one operator and come equipped with basic lighting included in the price, making it a very cost effective solution for smaller events. From this starting point we can scale up our sound and lighting systems to an appropriate level for the size of event, and have the capacity to cater for much larger events as well. We take pride in our ability to deliver a pro concert level of service for ordinary budgets, and love being able to make an impact on the visuals and sound of well considered small festivals and events.

Please mention an event that has used your product and how it performed
Last season was an interesting one for us. As well as our continued festival presence, we also provided stage and sound at several race events, including the British Grand Prix where we took prime position in the VIP lounge garden of the British Racing Drivers’ Club. The stage looked completely at home in the garden next to the selection of vintage racing cars, and it played host to some past greats of Formula One.

On the Saturday night the Drivers’ Club booked a function band mostly made up of members of Jamiroquai. Our PA equipment and engineers matched the professionalism of these top flight session musicians and we received compliments on the flawless sound on stage and out front. It was a very proud moment to see both band members and audience absorbed in the music.

Amelia Riordan, director
01223 870935 

What advice can you give an event organiser on procuring a stage?
The two main considerations for any event organiser when booking stages are the size of stage required and the visual appeal of the chosen staging. Think about the expected audience numbers and the kind of stage requirements that your performers and acts will expect. Once this has been established, and you know the size needed, you must start to consider how you want your event to look. What kind of atmosphere and scene are you aiming for? The visual impact of an event can really set the tone from the start.

What is the USP of your product?
Employing a cohesive look across an event site adds to an effective visual impact. We supply a wide range of Matrix Modular Marquees alongside our signature saddlespan structures. Both ranges are produced in Canada by the same manufacturer, using the same fabric and parts, enabling us to supply an event with structures that coordinate in style. The structures are bright white, modern and funky looking – a welcome change from standard A-frame marquees. Using the two products together will give the event a slick look and avoid a mismatch of different styles. The modular nature of our structures enables the event organiser to design structures unique to their site and event.

GigtentWhat options do you have for small, medium and large budgets?
Our saddlespans are available in a range of sizes from the S2000, which is perfect for smaller stages and budgets, to its bigger sibling the S5000, and up to the impressive Duo-Span and the whopping Tri-Span models for larger events and budgets. All of the saddlespans have beautiful architectural curves and create a stunning centrepiece for event organisers to work with.

Last year we decided to add another low to medium budget product to our range in the form of the XLR Mobile Stage. This is a great option for one day, urban and town centre events as it can be installed in a couple of hours and can be erected on all surfaces and on sites with limited space.

Please mention an event that has used your product and how it performed
The first ‘Countryfile Live’ event in 2016 used both saddlespans S2000 and S5000’s as stage covers for its celebrity chef cookery demonstrations. They were a great success and this year they have chosen to use the matching Modular Marquees for their food court areas to tie in with the demonstration stages. The overall impact is to create a defined foodie area within a much larger event.

Another exciting new event for 2017 is ‘Pub in the Park’ in Marlow, headed up by celebrity chef Tom Kerridge. The organiser, Brand Events, has chosen both saddlespans and Matrix Modular Marquees, giving the event a fresh, vibrant and enticing appeal. Having sold out within days, the event looks set to be an enormous success!

Chris Hannam, owner
07831 437062

What advice can you give an event organiser on stage safety?
Allow yourself plenty of time and ensure you have the experience and training to deal with such matters, it’s all in the planning.

Guidance on procurement, design and use by the Institute of Structural Engineers is essential reading for anyone involved in booking staging and event production.

Band on stage
Pic: Getty Images

Since 2015 the CDM (Construction Design Management Regulations) have applied to the event industry, this means special regulations apply to events where structures (including stages) are being erected and used. The correct documentation must be in place and certain people will be duty holders under the regulations, including the end client who must ensure a number of duties are carried out.

Most modern lighting and audio systems are now flown (suspended), this is also a very specialist operation known as ‘rigging’. If this is not carried out by experts (National Rigging Certificate holders) it can be very hazardous indeed. The stage structure needs to be capable of withholding the planned weight loadings and all rigging equipment must be tested and inspected.

Temporary power supplies (generators) and distribution must meet BS 7909: 2011 code of practice for temporar electrical systems for entertainment and related purposes. Your average electrician and construction site generators and distribution do not meet these standards, and a specialist entertainment contractor needs to be engaged who can test and sign off the work to BS 7909. This is not the place for your mate who happens to be an electrician!

How can you help?
Stagesafe is a pioneer in event safety and introduced the Safety Passport scheme to the industry. Fully qualified, fully insured, and with over 35 years’ experience including production, stage and tour management.

What options do you have for small, medium and large budgets?
Options are dictated by legal requirements, the same laws and regulations apply regardless of the size of the event.

Please mention an event that has used your product and how it performed
Most recently Stagesafe was involved on a World tour with Duran Duran and has also consulted on several George Michael tours.

Richard Wilson, project manager
Impact Production Services (IPS)
01908 657950

What advice can you give an event organiser on stages, sound and lighting?
Having a suitable stage makes a huge difference to any performance, as it is usually the focal point of the event. It needs to be large enough to meet the requirements of the performer and to be suitably visible to the audience. If band changeovers are taking place then space needs to be allowed for this, along with monitor positions and consideration for performer and equipment access.

Sound needs to cover the audience area at an appropriate volume and the equipment needs to meet the requirements of the performer’s rider.

Lighting can range from basic illumination to a full show in its own right, and specification will vary depending on the time of day of the performance and the artistic aspirations for the show (and don’t forget about house or site lighting for before and after the show).

When enquiring about a production, the important details are the event dates, details about the event location and size, the type of performer and any specific rider requirement, and the anticipated audience numbers.

What is the USP of your product?
IPS can supply a large range of equipment and services, from a single element to full technical production. With a range of different outdoor roof stages available, along with huge rental stocks of staging, rigging, lighting, video, sound and power equipment, IPS can put together a package for all kinds of event requirements, and this can lead to combined transportation and crew, keeping costs down. All IPS staff are trained and competent, and hire equipment is meticulously maintained and from leading manufacturers so a high quality and safe production is guaranteed.

Impact Production ServicesWhat options do you have for small, medium and large budgets?
Starting from an equipment only hire of staging (that can be collected and returned to our warehouse in your own van for less than £100) to a full technical solution produced for your event, IPS has equipment and solutions for all budgets. Guide prices for outdoor roof stages are on the IPS website and we can add sound and lighting packages to suit your requirements.

Please mention an event that has used your services
IPS supplied a full technical production package for a series of running events, supplying outdoor structures, lighting, sound, generators and power, along with all technical crew, travel and logistics. IPS had great feedback from these events and supplied versions all over the UK.

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