Lighting designer Andy Mahaffey specified a Jands Vista T2 console, running the next generation Vista v2 software, to control nearly 100 moving lights plus a large generic rig for the 2011 “Pepper Live” event, a week of performances staged at the Centenary Theatre, Berkhamsted, Hertfordshire, UK.
This high profile annual event, which is always sold out, raises money for the Pepper Foundation, a charity that funds the Pepper Children’s Nurses managed by the Iain Rennie Hospice at Home Service. They provide professional home care round-the-clock on a call-out basis for seriously ill children throughout the counties of Hertfordshire and Buckinghamshire.
In his day job, Mahaffey is a technical product manager for High Wycombe based A.C Entertainment Technologies (AC-ET), the exclusive UK distributor for Jands, and so is very familiar with both Jands range.However, with one of the leading UK film and TV lighting rental companies – Panalux – providing the lighting equipment for the event, he could have used any console he wanted.
“I didn’t even think twice about the console choice,” said Mahaffey, who ran the T2 with a Vista S3 console running as a full tracking backup. “I needed something that was powerful, simple and fast to program, and completely reliable to run. Talking to people using Vista v2 every day, I had complete confidence that this was the right tool for the job and am only too happy to show that I ‘practice what I preach.’”
He also had to use a console that he knew the show’s two operators would be able to learn quickly and feel comfortable about being left to use. Once again Vista v2 software was an ideal solution. “It’s easily possible to learn and operate competently in a day” he qualifies “meaning I could confidently leave the show in their hands for the run.”
With over 1,000 cues in the T2 by the time the show programming was complete – including an impressive 200 alone for the finale of Meat Loaf’s classic “Bat Out of Hell” – it was essential to be able to programme fast and accurately.
The moving head count included 22 Martin Professional MAC 2K Washes, 26 MAC 600 Spots, 16 MAC 250 Kryptons, 16 VARI*LITE 3000 Spots and eight High End Cyberlights – the latter a favourite for some vintage rock ‘n’ roll effects. In addition to these fixtures, there were about 70 channels of dimming, some scrollers, 20 Active Sunstrips and ten Atomic 3000 strobes.
“Vista v2s combination of power and simplicity really does give users of all levels the ability to get the most from whatever technology they have on stage, and let everyone concentrate on creating a great looking show rather than on programming a desk,” said Jands Europe’s Neil Vann. “Before choosing to use anything else, take a look at just how far Vista has come, and how much you could be missing out on.”
Photo credit: Standalone Images