The Commercial World

Posted: January 7, 2017 in Uncategorized

The commercial world? Well, it pays the rent..and it’s usually warm and dry – something not to be ignored at this time of year. The hours can be long, the client is always right and hotel carpets can present a challenge first thing in the morning.


Very rarely do I get a design brief – I work in small to medium scale events – often, if not always, making the design up as I open the flight cases… if I ever make up lighting designs.  The above picture is how we generally find a room – although properly rigged trussing as seen here is a rarity. To be fair, any trussing is a rarity.

This particular event was for an estate agency/surveying company and seemed to be their annual staff get together and briefing. Held at the Hilton Metropole on  the Birmingham NEC site – which was also hosting the European Elvis Championships – there was a day load-in, an evening dinner and then a whole day of presentations.


And it looks like the above after a day of toil. Lots of Chauvet LED battens along the back, the usual collection of profile and fresnels to light the stage area and lecterns and half a dozen Martin Quantum Washes to do all the whizzy bits for the presenters walking up… know the kind of thing I’m sure.

Many technicians find this kind of gig rather dull, but I actually quite like them. Often one learns something new and on this gig there was a particularly impressive female CEO – who not only answered some tough questions from the workforce, but joked with me about doing Pilates. There were two interesting keynote speakers: Mark Gallagher gave an interesting talk about F1 – and I have NO interest in F1 – including a very illuminating story about Dave the bus driver; a chap called Jim Lawless gave a presentation about his concept of “Taming Tigers”. This included some rather amusing footage of him falling off horses as he trained to be a jockey in a year. A good chap, he’d memorised everyone’s name in seconds – a skill I wish I could master. (Health warning: if you’re reading the book about the Chimp Paradox and Taming Tigers you may well need help……from a zoologist I would suggest.)

The clients seemed pleased and we had the truck packed by 1830 – we were even thanked from the stage by one of the senior managers . For those of you who like that kind of thing, here’s the circus leaving town.

20170106_165558 20170106_165546

  1. Simon Hirst says:

    Good to see your toiling coming to fruition. Hope alls well with you. I thought about you as I went across the Pennines on the train to Manchester today for a footy game and catch up with an old friend. Yes, I have just the one. 😉 Si

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