Pro-Light-News Touring & Rigging

Versatile rigging and Kinesys automation system for UK Tour of 'Sinatra'

Summit Steel specified and supplied production rigging and a Kinesys automation system to the “Sinatra” tour, which has just finished an extensive UK leg, following a London West End run. Summit was initially contacted by Tour Co-ordinator Nick Levitt to provide the automation system and associated rigging – trusses and motors – needed to fly video screens and scenic pieces. The automation system and trussing was purchased by show producers 3A Entertainment due to the length of the tour. Summit also supplied 40 rental motors for the tour – a mix of 1 and ½ tonne Lodestars and ¼ tonne Prostars - plus all rigging and control. The trussing supplied consisted of 80 metres of ladder beam, 40 metres of Total Fabs Tracking Truss and 40 metres of JTE SuperTruss.
Summit’s Chris Walker was project manager and rigging designer for the tour; this entailed fitting a large and complex show, with a flown weight of 16 tonnes in its full format, into 15 diverse arena and theatre venues. Only rarely was the rigging plot duplicated from one venue to another. Each week everything was carefully re-spaced, the flown rig was adjusted to fit the available venue grid loadings and spreader trusses were installed as necessary; Sinatraitinerary was the heaviest production ever to go into many of the venues on the itinerary.
The nine axis Kidneys system with Vector control was specified for its reliability, flexibility and smoothness, and operated on the tour by Gareth Williams. It included one custom winch supplied by Kinesys, complete with a Velocity drive unit, and eight Kinesys Elevation 1+ drive units. This was used to move two LED screens and two projection screens throughout the show. Williams had 136 automation cues in the busy show, and there were usually multiple elements moving in every scene. The Kinesys system also had to be adapted and reprogrammed at every venue in order to accommodate the different rigging configurations.
Screen A was made up of 7 x 7 modules of Barco ILite LED and weighed approximately 750Kgs. This was moved left and right and up and down with three axes of Kinesys, an encoded motorised beam trolley for the tracking, and two high speed, 1 tonne Liftket hoists for the up/down movement.
Screen B was 5 x 6 modules of Barco ILite LED, again tracked by a motorised encoded beam trolley, and raised and lowered by the custom winch.
Screen C was a custom roll-drop rear projection screen measuring 12 metres wide by 5 metres high, which filled the entire upstage portal and was made by Brilliant Stages. It unrolled/rolled up with a maximum speed of 1 metre per second on a single motor, powered by a further Velocity drive and controlled by the tour’s Vector system.
Screen D was a smaller rear projection screen, approximately 7 x 2 metres in size, housed in a frame made by Total Fabrications, which was raised and lowered on three Kinesys wired 100Kg Liftkets.
All video equipment for the Sinatra tour was supplied by XL Video, audio was a combination of Autograph and Britannia Row, and production manager Nic Rea oversaw the whole operation on the road.
Screens had to be moved around the stage for the Sinatra production
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