Elf - A Christmas Spectacular - Arena Tour
Case Study: Jon Conway Productions - UK
The West End and Broadway musical based on the Hollywood film Elf has been transformed into an arena show that toured the UK in December 2018.
Starting in Cardiff and then moving to Birmingham and Nottingham the production starred David Essex in the role of Buddy the Elf’s father, and Martine MuCutcheon as Buddy’s girlfriend Jovie. Tam Ryan played Buddy the Elf.
Jon Conway Productions needed to source suppliers for full production including sound, lighting, video, and rigging. They chose Adlib – a “one-stop” supplier of technical which made it easier than co-ordinating separate companies for each technical discipline.
In addition to supplying equipment and technicians, Adlib was also engaged to look after the lighting and sound designs.
Adlib Lighting Designer Tom Webber was responsible for the lighting design as well as programming and operation of the show.
Sound Design was handled by Richard Sillitto with James Jewry programming and operating the show. Hasanne Essiahl joined the team as audio system tech.
Video design was by Blue Lint and Amazing FX, operated by Adlib video engineer Rob Bickerstaff.
With Adlib handling sound and lighting design as well as all of the technical requirements, there was a significant amount of pre-production work involved in the project. This included designing and building a bespoke redundant Q-Lab playback system for audio and 4k video playback as well as programming the Allen & Heath dLive audio console.
In terms of equipment, the FOH audio system comprised L-Acoustics Kara with flown SB15 subs. Coda Audio HOPS8 foldback monitors. Adlib supplied 18 channels of Sennheiser wireless belt packs with DPA headsets.
Lighting was operated by Tom Webber on a grandMA3 full-size console with a grandMA3 Light as backup. All of the lighting fixtures were supplied from Adlib’s own stock and included Mac Viper Profiles, Mac Viper Washes, Clay Paky Stormy CC, Clay Paky Sharpy, and Robe 100 beams.
Adlib’s Unilumin 5mm LED video wall was configured as two 4m x 4m screens and one 7m x 4m screen all flown from Kinesys hoists allowing them to move during the show. These screens were managed using Adlib’s Barco E3 processors and 4K processing racks.
Camera wise, two Sony HSC cameras on box lenses at FOH alongside a Panasonic Robo Cam and a wireless backed camcorder for the Central Park news reporter scene provided IMAG.
Over 90 points of rigging were required for audio, lighting and video to over the main stage, thrust and b-stage. Kinesys hoists were used exclusively, with the LED screen hanging on Libra Load Cells to allow constant load monitoring of the rigging system.