CPL at Glastonbury 2017

Photo: Ben Daure

Central Presentations Ltd enjoyed another glorious Glastonbury Festival of Contemporary Performing Arts, supplying projection to Arcadia’s giant recycled metal spider, which hosted their phenomenal Metamorphosis show.

The West Midlands based rental specialist also supplied a lighting and rigging package which was utilised across the lively Shangri-La late night area – which this year saw the Truth main stage emerge from the embers of the previous Hell, and the site expanding its daytime activities via the Shangri-La International Television Centre transmitting debates and discourse on DIY culture and a range of other topics.

A third area of the festival for CPL was delivering projection to the movie theatre at Williams Green, working with The Live Firm which screened Supersonic, a British music documentary directed by Mat Whitecross detailing the formative years of Oasis and the height of their success in the 1990s.

CPL’s Richard Burrow was on site to oversee operations and collaborate with the various technical crews involved in running these different areas on the creative edge of the world famous festival.

Arcadia                                                                                                                     The current projection system for Arcadia’s spider was originally designed by CPL for the launch of the Metamorphosis visual extravaganza in 2015 and comprises six Panasonic PT-DZ 21K projectors, each beaming onto the front and back of each of the three spider legs. Motion graphics – created by Tom Wall from blinkinlab – is mapped precisely on to the legs using a media server and the Metamorphosis show cues are all triggered by timecode generated by the overall show control system. The projectors were positioned in weatherproof hides on six platforms placed around the Arcadia arena, approximately 40 metres away from the imposing 12 metre high spider structure which is constructed from re-imagined industrial waste, so they had a serious throw distance.

CPL used six Connex 2-way fibre DVI/RJ45 fibre optic converter transmission systems which enabled both the data carrying the content to the machines and the projector control signals including on/off, colour settings, contrast, geometry control and other monitoring and feedback related to projector health to run down the same cable. This is a neat, robust solution designed for live events that saves time and reduces the need for unnecessary and unwieldy cabling.

Metamorphosis has been one of the most popular Glastonbury attractions since it launched two years ago and this year pulled record audiences of around 50,000 to witness the high energy narrative and see the forces of good and evil battle, complete with new age abductions, space age teleportation, dramatic transformations and general craziness. The show started at 11pm and delivered 30 minutes of imaginative shock & awe, followed by a sizzling hot DJ line-up for the Friday, Saturday and Sunday of the event becoming a force-field of positive energy, great vibes and superlative visual experience journeying everyone into the next day on Planet Glasto.

Shangri-La CPL renewed its long standing relationship with PF Events for the supply of kit to this eye-popping visual area with a skyline dominated by huge towers of trash and a reformed gas tower overlooking the fields of digital revolution including a 360-degree activist AV installation. The lighting equipment from CPL included Claypaky Sharpy and Mythos moving lights, Philips SL Nitro LED strobes and ARRI L5-C LED fresnels and the rigging comprised Prolyte H40 truss and Prolyft Aetos motors.

A Panasonic PT-RZ12K projector, a Barco PDS Switcher and Denon Blue Ray players from CPL provided the HD projection system for the movie screening, supplied complete with a 16 x 9 metre ft. screen. Immediately before this started, Noel Gallagher stepped in and engaged in a Q&A session.

Burrow concluded: “It is always fantastic to be involved in Glastonbury and to see the ingenuity, passion and creative technology that go into creating incredible environments and some amazing entertainment. With the festival taking a break in 2018, everyone was making an extra special effort and upping the ante in their production values to ensure everyone would have a memorable and long-lasting time catching the excellent vibes and enduring spirit of the occasion”.