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Over 9,000 sites light up in ‘Emergency Red’ to highlight plight of live events market

Over 8,300 participating companies – primarily in Germany – took part in #NightofLight2020

Over 9,000 buildings monuments and cultural sites, primarily in Germany, were lit up in ‘Emergency Red’ on June 22 for #NightOfLight2020, as part of a widespread initiative to highlight the plight of the live events industry at the hands of the coronavirus pandemic.

#NightofLight2020 was initiated and planned by a team of lighting and AV professionals led by Tom Koperek from Essen-based event marketing agency LK AG. Moving light manufacturer Robe lighting, supported by German subsidiary Robe DE, also assisted in supplying kit for some key locations from the current demo stock.

In addition to pre-existing installations already using Robe products, the company’s HQ in Valašské Meziříčí, Czech Republic, and the German office building in Munich were lit up in red to show solidarity.

It is estimated that the German events industry generates annual revenues of around 130 billion and employs up to a million people – figures that dramatically increase to around 200 billion with three million employees when including all the associated businesses.

The sector has effectively been shut down since March 10, with crowd gatherings banned and venues. As such, many companies have put business on hold indefinitely; employees have been furloughed or laid off; and hundreds of thousands of talented freelance workers are without employment.

Robe Deutschland’s marketing manager, Julian von den Stemmen, commented: “When I first read about #NightofLight2020 on social media, there were only a few participants, and the team at Robe DE immediately committed to taking part.

“Our main goal was to help amplify the event via our substantial social media outreach and through all our direct contacts, encouraging as many as possible to participate. Our colleagues were happy to spend their downtime in assisting their various associates with supplying demo units, and also to light up our office whilst enjoying a nice evening together. “With the factory in ValMez also joining forces, we experienced a truly magical night during which the whole industry felt united.

“Night Of Light 2020 has definitely raised awareness of the role and importance of the live events industry with the public and hopefully will also influence politicians.”

Robe Deutschland was involved directly in supporting four installations – including the Hornisgrinde Tower, a 206 metre high radio mast in Baden-Württemberg, part of the Rhine Valley located on the highest mountain in the Black Forest at an altitude of 1125 metres.

Among the multitude of lit buildings were significant monuments, like the Olympia Tower in Munich, an 290 metre high modernist architectural masterpiece and observation/comms mast in the centre of Munich’s Olympic Park area, which was lit up like a beacon with Robe fixtures supplied by Magic Event & Medientechnik GmbH. The thousands of participating companies in Germany were joined by colleagues in Austria, Switzerland, Hungary, Belgium, The Netherlands and the UK … including Clearsound Productions from Shipston-on-Stour (UK) which has led several UK-based lighting action events. On this occasion, they used four MegaPointes to light their warehouse red.

Olympia Tower
Florian Kroiss from rental and production company Magic Event & Medientechnik GmbH and Raphael Kurig, video technician at the Gärtnerplatztheater approached the team from Olympiapark. The lighting design was created by Florian K, Florian Eberle and Markus Keichel.

They used 68 Robe moving lights, 36 LEDBeam 150s, 16 MegaPointes and 16 ESPRITEs.

The Mega Pointes and ESPRITEs were positioned on the floor and on the Tower’s visitor platform. The tower mast was lit from below with the ESPRITEs and the underside of the first platform – at 150 metres – with the MegaPointes. 

The top section of the tower was illuminated with the rest of the MegaPointes and ESPRITEs located on the viewing platform. The observation deck is approximately 190 metres high and the top of the Tower towers above at 291 metres. The LEDBeam 150s were first pointed outwards in red. Later on, together with the MegaPointes, they pulsed onto the underside of the platform beneath the top of the tower in blue and projected a light cone over the very top of the tower. Lighting control was via a grandMA2 light and a grandMA3 light and power came from local supplies on the ground and on the tower.

Hornisgrinde Radio Mast
The temporary lighting design for the reinforced concrete tower – a network transmitter for Südwestrundfunk (SWR), the regional public broadcasting corporation serving the southwest of Germany – was created by Marcel Albrecht, their head of lighting. 

He spoke to colleagues from two companies, Trendlight Showtechnic from Achern and Cassiopeia Event Technology from Renche, who were both keen to join in. Albrecht, together with Manuel Brommer and Martin Heuberger – MDs of the two companies – dealt with all the permissions.

The project was also fully supported by Frank Scherer from Stuttgart Regional Council and head of Südwestrundfunk.

The planning and lighting design were extensively tested and visualised in Depence 2 by Brommer before specifying the lighting fixtures and determining their optimum placement.

Twelve Robe BMFL Washes and eight Spiider wash beam moving lights were used, positioned at 180 degrees around the tower so their power and brightness reached the top of the local landmark.

Vertical laser projections of the #NightofLight2020 logo completed the picture. They utilised the hard power supply at the site and a grandMA 3 console for control.

Robe Germany HQ, Ismaning, Munich
Robe DE’s smart office building in Ismaning, Munich, was turned a deep scarlet red with three Tarrantula LED wash lights for the shorter end walls, and nine Tetra2 moving LED battens for the longer walls, accompanied by four Spiiders – two at the corners and two each in the middle corners left and right of the entrance/bay windows. Two LEDBeam150s were used to light the entrance. 

Mettingen, North Rhine-Westphalia,
Robe Germany’s Olaf Nehrenheim supported two projects in Mettingen – involving the buildings of trussing and metal structures specialist manufacturer H.O.F. Alutec Metallverarbeitungs GmbH and Konzeptwerkstatt Merge GmbH, a popular workshop café and food concept in a tastefully converted former industrial space. He utilised a mixture of Robe MegaPointes and ESPRITEs for H.O.F. which were positioned inside the building in a design engineered by Dennis Klostermann from H.O.F., which ‘radiated’ lumens from within in combination with the LED floods from their permanent exterior building lighting scheme.

At the Konzeptwerkstatt HQ, the three outer walls were washed in a deep ruby red with Robe Spiiders, Tarrantulas, SuperSpikies and a T1 Profile.

Stadtkirche Ruhland 
Robe Germany’s Martin Opitz assisted Ralf Peter Petschke from event company Veranstaltungsdienst Petschke in lighting the dome of the Stadtkirche Ruhland, a listed building in the picturesque town in the southern Brandenburg district of Oberspreewald-Lausitz.

It was illuminated with Robe ESPRITEs, MegaPointes and Tarrantulas, which were positioned in the market square 150 metres away. The MegaPointe was installed at the back of the church tower and had to cover a distance of around 200 metres.