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Liverpool spectacle goes 'green'

The Liverpool [England] Culture Co.'s Nov. 20 spectacle to turn on the city’s Christmas light display for 15,000 attendees was powered by lively stage acts along with environmentally sensitive, "green" generators from locally based Pyramid Electrical Services. Event manager Eddy Grant wanted to test the new, 100 percent naturally powered bio-fuel generators, with a view to using them on all upcoming events.

The "Switch On" was staged on the steps of St. George’s Hall and featured performances by ex-Atomic Kitten Liz McLarnon and soccer stars John Arne Riise and Tim Cahill. When they collectively pressed the large scenic button, it triggered the lighting of more than four miles of illuminations plus a 120-foot Christmas tree pyro sculpture designed by Fantastic Fireworks, built around the adjacent 140-foot Wellington Column.

The event also launched the "Love Liverpool" recycling campaign. The bio-fuel running the generators is made from reprocessed vegetable waste. It is 100 percent natural and does not emit exhaust fumes, the event sponsors said.

“We wanted to use the stunning natural architecture of the location as a natural stage set,” said Grant, who led the Culture Co. events team, working with production manager Stu Stalker and his company, Event Design Logistics. The custom-built stage was integrated into the steps of St. George’s Hall by Chester, England-based Prism Lighting, which also supplied the front-of-house tower and accessible viewing platforms. Manchester-based Audile provided sound and lighting for the show.

The lighting design included the architectural illumination of the front of the Hall, which was achieved by using 12 High End PC beams to shoot up the columns, and 8 Studio Due CityColors to wash the wall behind. Stage lighting included four ARRI floods attached to the FOH tower for key lighting of the performers, and four vertical bars of PAR 64s onstage for a general stage color wash. Four Martin Professional MAC 550s were used to project LCC’s partners’ logos onto the fascia of the Hall. All lighting was controlled by Matthew Ransfield running an Avolites Pearl 2000.

Pyramid Electrical Services supplied the two bio-fuel generators used for the event--one 140 KVA and one 60 KVA set.

Together with some hard power from St. George’s Hall, this supplied all site and production power, allowing Pyramid to deal with all electrical requirements, electricity distribution and cabling.

“This is the first time we’ve had these available,” said Grant, “and we are all keen to use them where possible in the future."

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