Over 100 ADJ Fixtures Illuminate Main Stage At New Welsh Festival, SV Arena

Earlier this summer, Welsh production company figure of Eight Events Ltd. deployed a rig comprised almost exclusively of adj lighting fixtures for the main stage at the new SV Arena Festival in Powys, Wales. The impressive rig featured Focus Flex L7 and Vizi Beam RXONE moving heads alongside 32 Hex Panel IP led wash fixtures, Encore Burst 200 led blinders, and a combination of 18P Hex IP and 7P Hex IP led pars.

Running alongside the Royal Welsh Show, a highlight of the British agricultural calendar, this year SV Arena replaced the former Young People's Village (YPV). Located close to the main show ground, it provides a place for younger attendees to camp and enjoy evening events hosted in a 2,500 ‘big top’ tent. The 2023 program featured a tribute bands night, Ibiza foam party, well-known Welsh DJ Huw Stephens, and live performers including Irish singer-songwriter Marty Mone.

Lighting for the event was provided by full-service production company Figure of Eight Events Ltd, which also supplied power, rigging, draping, and staging. The company was founded in 2014 by Rich Rayner, who has spent his entire working life in the event production industry. With eight full-time employees, Figure of Eight has developed an enviable reputation and become the ‘go to’ event production company in South Wales for clients looking to source multiple services from a single supplier. The company has invested heavily in ADJ lighting equipment over the past five years, and now holds an extensive rental stock of fixtures.

“We have been utterly blown away by the products from ADJ over the last few years,” comments Rich, “they are so, so good! Mike Coles, our Operations Manager, is pretty damn good at striping down kit and looking at how it is constructed, and he can’t fault them. The build quality really is good, especially considering the price of these fixtures. We can get a lot more bang for our buck with ADJ, which then allows us to offer a better and more competitive service to our clients, but without compromising on quality.”

For the SV Arena main stage, Rich designed a floor-stranding truss structure featuring 135-degree corners that meant the rear wall of the stage wrapped around the performance space. From the truss, he hung wire ladders loaded with moving heads, which ensured a dynamic backdrop that looked great not only for audience members watching from the center, but also those located off to either side. Each of the eight ladders – four running across the back and two positioned on each of the angled side sections – featured a pair of ADJ’s Focus Flex L7 LED wash-zoom fixtures. Each powered by seven individually controllable 40-Watt 4-in-1 RGBL color mixing LEDs, these compact, quick and punchy fixtures were used to fill the stage with vibrant color washes as well as tight color beam effects.

“We bought the Focus Flex L7s new this year to replace a well-known competing wash beam fixture, which were starting to develop problems,” explains Rich. “The Focus Flex is smaller, quicker, and brighter, which we know for a fact, because we A-B tested them. It’s a really good, lightweight, compact, multi-function beam, with a fantastic zoom range, and a great price point.”

Above, below, and between the Focus Flex L7s on each ladder were three of ADJ’s best-selling Vizi Beam RXONE dedicated beam fixtures. Powered by a potent Osram® Sirius HRI 1R discharge lamp, focused through precision-engineered optics into an intense 3-degree beam, each of these extremely quick and compact fixtures generate a piercing column of light that will travel up to 100 meters. For SV Arena, the fixtures were used by Lighting Operator and Programmer Lewis Hounsell to create a wall of aerial effects behind the main stage performers as well as to shoot beams out over the heads of the crowd.

“The RXONE is a phenomenal bit of kit, it’s just brilliant, especially in the hands of Lewis on the desk” enthuses Rich. “For our work it’s often a numbers game; you can either have 12 of a big-name fixture from another company or 24 RXONEs from us, for customers it’s a no-brainer! Because these are in no way inferior heads, they offer a solid feature set and perform flawlessly. Not only is the RXONE incredibly bright, light, small and fast, but it has stood the test of time. Anyone can come out with a nice little fixture that is cost effective and looks great on paper, but then issues can develop after they’ve been out on a few gigs. We’ve had the RXONEs for years. They’ve been outside on ice rinks, they’ve been on winter trails, they’ve been on rock ‘n’ roll, they’ve been in dusty fields, and we just can’t break them! The RXONE is a great, workhorse bit of kit that you know is going to do its job and put a smile on people’s faces.”

In addition to the moving heads, a significant quantity of 32 HEX Panel IP static LED fixtures were also used to create additional color washes as well as eye candy effects on the stage. Four of the fixtures were positioned in a portrait configuration on six of the truss structure’s vertical legs. Each featuring 32 x 12-Watt 6-in-1 color mixing LEDs, arranged into eight independently controllable sections, this powerful and versatile wash fixture offers a beam angle of 24-degrees and can be used to output a vast array of solid colors or eye-catching chase patterns.

For stage blinders, Rich utilized ADJ’s Encore Burst 200 LED-powered twin cell fixture. 24 units were deployed across the stage set as well as along the downstage front truss, which hung from a pair of the tent’s support pillars. Featuring a pair of high output 110W warm white (2700K) CREE COB LEDs, this unit offers the same effect as a traditional halogen lamp blinder without the need for dimmer racks and with the added advantage of far more exacting control. Its Tungsten Mode replicates a halogen dimming profile to create a ‘classic’ blinder effect, but the fixture can also be flashed on instantly, and even strobed, to provide far more creative potential.

“The Encore Burst 200 is really bright, very versatile, and – again – great value for money; bang for your buck, nothing comes close in my opinion,” Rich states. “We bought them as blinders but then we discovered what a great strobe effect they can create. On a show like this, we now don’t bother with dedicated strobes. We can get such a great strobe effect with 24 of those on stage, using single cell control, that there’s just no need for traditional strobes anymore. We’ve essentially got 48 cells of strobe and, if we stagger them and spread them out, the strobe effect is absolutely stunning – we were blown away with how good it looked.”

Completing the stage’s lighting rig were two different LED par models. Four 18P HEX IP units were rigged to the stage right and stage left trusses, to provide side fill wash, while four additional fixtures were deployed directly on the stage using their integrated scissor yoke floor stands. These fixtures were moved to accommodate the different act’s stage setups and primarily used to illuminate the drum riser. In addition, 12 of the smaller 7P HEX IP model were used to warm the stage’s truss structure. Both par fixtures, as well as the 32 HEX Panel IP, feature the same 12-Watt 6-in-1 color mixing LEDs and are therefore ideal for use together on the same production.

“It was great to walk into a new event, working for a client that trusts us and to know that it would look great… and it did, concludes Rich. “There was just no question in our minds that those fixtures, in that configuration, wasn’t going to make a big impact! Good kit, combined with a trusting client, driven crew, a strong rig design and Lewis as our  operator meant that there was no doubt that we were on to a winner, and the clients were absolutely over the moon with how the stage looked.”

SV Arena

Production Company
Figure of Eight Events Ltd

Production Manager
Rich Rayner

Lighting Programmer & Operator
Lewis Hounsell

Production Electrician and Rigger
Adam Sansom

Ewan Jones, Jack Elderfield, Jack Edwards, Chris Exton and Andy Thomas