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Sector Focus

Recent Sector Focus

Travelling in style

6 December 2019

With more acts touring, doing multiple festival appearances across Europe and needing their  production crews to get into venues early, renting high-quality tour buses isn’t a luxury anymore, it’s essential to keeping the show on the road. Claire Bicknell reports As the touring business has grown and matured across the…

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The art of practice

18 November 2019

Rehearsal studios offer a lot more than just spaces to run through a stage performance or break-in some new material, they’re also used for video or social media content, album launches and showcases, with some of the leading players in the sector having spent decades developing a service that covers…

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Far, far more than just a ticket

22 October 2019

It’s a dynamic and fast-evolving sector driven by ever expanding  technological advancements, enabling event organisers to sell more tickets, more quickly and broaden the buying experience of the music fan. Survival depends on market share, as booking fees are the only income, so competition is intense. Claire Bicknell reports. Ticketing…

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Shining lights

25 September 2019

Ever since emerging artistes in the late-‘60s and early-‘70s built their own lights from Party Four beer cans with reflector bulbs, impressive lighting has been an essential factor for any self-respecting concert act. Fortunately, the UK is blessed with some of the best lighting hire suppliers in the world, as…

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Screen revolutions

27 August 2019

LED screen technology is being used for far wider purposes than just content, being an integral element of the set and lighting design too. Screens are also delivering immersive and social experiences for the audience, with the tech getting a lot lighter and more flexible. Claire Bicknell reports With LED…

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Carrying a heavy load

24 July 2019

As the imagination and aspirations of artistes and their set designers seek ever-more impressive productions, the consequences quickly impact on the country’s leading rigging companies, who have to undertake some very serious calculations and then make it happen. Claire Bicknell reports Operating safely is a staple element of the live…

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Trucking all over the place

25 June 2019

Few people wonder how all that stage gear turns-up for a concert, let alone the hundreds of tons of equipment at major festival sites or stadium shows. But fortunately, pioneered by the owner of a former bread delivery firm in the ‘70s, the UK is home to many of the…

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The backup specialists

20 May 2019

It may have started with the simple hire of a few amps, speaker cabinets and an old drum kit, but those now engaged in the hire of backline equipment have generally expanded the services they offer far beyond stage gear and the leading companies say they have never been busier….

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Anywhere, any place, any time

12 April 2019

Whether it’s for larger scale tour groups of 100 people or more or smaller productions, travel arrangements need an expert in control, as disruptions need to be addressed instantly or shows can be lost, with significant cost implications. Thankfully the UK has some of the most experienced live show touring…

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Show me the accounts

18 March 2019

As touring becomes an ever-more important part of a successful artiste’s career, having an expert accountant on board is absolutely essential. It’s not just the varying rates of local income tax, even across the European Union, there are sales tax issues, performance royalty calculations to watch and currency fluctuations to…

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The sound of music

23 January 2019

Good sound has always been important, but not always guaranteed in the old days. With the speed of technological advances in recent years and the growing expectations of audiences, not to mention artistes, audio hire companies have to ensure they are always ahead of the game.  Claire Bicknell reports. With…

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Homes from home

18 December 2018

The potential challenges of Brexit are on the minds of most tour bus operators, although a spokesman for industry body the Confederation of Passenger Transport believes a rational outcome is likely prevail after 29 March. Meanwhwile, operators interviewed all seem to be experiencing growth.  Allan Glen reports Ask any tour…

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Practice makes perfect

22 November 2018

In a sector where enterprise and ingenuity were the essentials to get started, it’s no surprise that the creators of the country’s leading rehearsal spaces saw wider potential and expanded into a host of related services and situations, as Claire Bicknell reports. Having the right ambience and added value touches…

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Driven by demand … and technology

9 October 2018

Arguably the most dynamic sector in the business of live music, the UK’s crowded concert ticketing market is dominated by several major players. But innovative smaller operations are holding their own, thanks to emerging technology, and ambitious newcomers are always on the horizon. Christopher Barrett reports Ticketing is a huge…

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Lighting the way

19 September 2018

New technology, environmental issues and EU regulations are all impacting the live show lighting sector, but its leading figures and companies are adept at embracing change and are enjoying a buoyant market, as Christopher Barrett reports. Concert and festival lighting is evolving at a remarkable rate. Led by continual innovations…

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Big screen stars

7 August 2018

The rise of LED technology has seen screens become a ubiquitous element of concert and festival productions, both behind the artiste and either side of the stage at larger events, with specialist companies providing additional content as well as social media interaction.  Christopher Barrett reports Everyone knows that LED screens…

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Taking the load

9 July 2018

With event productions becoming more elaborate and with increasingly complex staging and design, rigging companies are delivering their specialist services with ever-expanding technical skills – and safety is the top priority in this high-risk sector. Claire Bicknell reports.   Operating in a sector where working safely is paramount, rigging companies…

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Keep on trucking

4 June 2018

Trucking operators are reporting record business as huge festivals and major concert tours continue to sell well, demanding the delivery of vast amounts of equipment. This despite firms facing challenges ranging from a lack of drivers to rising fuel costs. Chris Barrett reports Using the tag-line “You Rock – We Roll!”, Edwin…

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Backing the band

8 May 2018

As the live music industry continues to grow, with ever more festivals and stadium shows, specialists in supplying backline – the gear artistes use on stage – have been in a race to keep up with technological advances, not to mention musical trends, diversifying into other services along the way. …

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Always on the move

10 April 2018

Even if everything runs smoothly, the routine business of booking accommodation and flights around the world for tour groups of up to 100 or more people requires nerves of steel, 24-hour availability, as well as considerable experience and expertise. Chris Barrett reports When it comes to keeping the show on…

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