Live@Work - 18_CW41 - 3. Report: The open air Disco

School summer festivals usually offer a varied program with something for everyone. It was the same at the summer party of my former school. After performances by the various school orchestras, the evening was rounded off this year with an open-air disco. But the weather would like to see, that the open air disco would take place for the first. It was quite warm, but punctually at 3 p.m. the sky opened "his doors" and thunderstorm-like rains fell over the school grounds. This meant stress for Technical Club of my school, as they had to bring the technology to safety before the rain would maybe destroy something. That's what it looked like only afterwards, as if the disco had to be cancelled. But as heavy as the rain was coming, as fast the fairground was dry again. That's why the disco could still take place after all.

For the disco, two tripods were used, on which a total of 4x Showtec LED-Par64 18-Q4 and 4x ADJ Dotz Par were attached to one T-Bar each. In addition, two Futurelight DMH-160 (spot moving heads) and two Futurelight EYE-7 RGBW Zoom (wash moving heads) were used for bringing some dynamics on the dance floor. In order to get the moving heads to the required height, we placed a stage pedestal at the highest position to the left and right of the DJ area and attached a heavy classroom table to each pedestal. This was a bit improvised, but had the necessary stability and would have stopped also with a lateral push against the table.

For the control DMXControl 3 with the Midi-Plugin, a Nodle-Interface and a Native Instruments Traktor F1 in MIDI-Mode was used. Unlike practically all my other events, I had to mix the light here live. That's why I decided on a modular design of the cuelists, where color, dimmer and movement are stored in separate cuelists so that they can be mixed flexibly and lighting scenes can be put together. The cuelists were divided into five cuelist groups (LEDs dimmer, LEDs colors, MHs dimmer, MHs colors and MHs movement) and the groups were set so that only one cuelist per group could be active at a time. To further simplify the control, I used a function that is added by the MIDI plugin in DMXControl 3: dynamic executors. If the MIDI plugin is active, these appear in the Input Assignment. They always point to the executors on the currently active executor page, which means that all executors can be accessed with only a few dynamic executors. Thanks to the MIDI plugin, the executor page can also be changed using buttons. The combination of both functions allows quick and easy access to all cuelists via executors, with each cuelist group getting an executor page. In addition, the speed of the cuelists and the grand master were on several knobs and faders, and various strobe effects were on several buttons, so that only the console could be used for live operation.

Unfortunately the setup was not perfect yet. The current MIDI plugin at this time did not have the necessary stability in connection with DMXControl 3.1.2, which is necessary for a longer period of time. Apparently many simultaneous actions on the MIDI-controller led to problems in the MIDI plugin, on which the GUI hung up. This problem occurred once during and once after the disco. Closing the GUI and connecting a newly started GUI to the kernel does not help, because the corresponding connections in the Input Assignment are not reloaded. So only a reloading of the whole project helped, which inevitably led to an end of the currently active cuelists. Hopefully this will change in the future also with new DMXControl 3 version and such a set-up will run more stable.

Regardless of the challenges, it was a beautiful evening and the guests were exuberant until the end. So the rain at noon was already long forgotten...