Blitz creates son et lumière for Oxford college
2 October 2003
UK - AV rental specialist Blitz created a week-long son et lumière event in the atmospheric setting of Oxford's Oriel College. The show, entitled '1326 And All That', was a specially commissioned narrative of the college's history and featured a dramatic 100ft by 50ft projection onto the façade of Oriel's Front Quadrangle, combined with theatrical lighting effects, narrative voiceover and a cast of characters from the college's past.
Blitz project managed all technical aspects of the 45-minute show, using E\T\C UK to create scroll artwork with historical material from the college's archives. Projection onto the towers, turrets and arched windows of the 360-year old buildings was via two 6k PIGI projectors, each fitted with double rotating scrollers. To achieve the correct projection angle the projectors had to be manoeuvred into a room at the top of a narrow stone spiral staircase, with just 5mm of clearance in places. The image designer for the PIGI show was E\T\C's Ross Ashton with Karen Monid programming the projectors.
Peter Edwards carried out the lighting design for Blitz, creating a range of dramatic backdrops, including back lighting the college chapel's spectacular stained glass windows. A number of rooms in the quadrangle were also selectively lit to bring to life key moments in the narrative. Blitz partnered with Hawthorn Theatrical to provide lighting equipment, including four MAC 500s, four MAC 600s, 12 Studio Due City Colors and 40 ETC Source Four Zooms, driven by an Avolites Sapphire desk and Art 2000 dimmers.
The sound design for the event was handled by Blitz associate, Derek Zieba, who used eight d&b E3s, four C4 tops and two C4 subs driven by a Yahama 02R sound desk. Blitz sister company, Arena, provided temporary seating for 250 guests positioned in two tiered banks, with specially raised canopies to assist with lighting angles. The event was devised and directed by Avril Lethbridge and project managed by Blitz's Alan Macdonald.
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