For the eighth consecutive year, west London based Entec Lighting supplied lighting equipment and design services for one of the UK’s most popular boutique music and arts festivals – Larmer Tree – set in the fabulous environs of Larmer Tree Park Gardens near Salisbury on the Wiltshire / Dorset borders.

In addition to this, Entec created a stunning bespoke light sculpture – Fish – as the centrepiece of a selection of curated art works on display in the forested areas of the site. Fish was in located in The Pond and featured a three dimensional work made from  Chinese metal fish each individually outlined with LED strips and hung off curved trussing sections.

Illuminating these general art display areas so the works can be enjoyed after dark is a major part of the Festival’s lighting brief.

In addition to getting arty this year, Entec  provided lighting equipment and designers for three main performance areas and kit only for three others.

Entec’s crew of five were Project Managed on site by Richard Hutton, and helped create five fabulously successful days of performance culture, music and eclectic entertainment in beautiful surroundings with glorious weather!

Main Stage

Tony Austin was brought on-board to look after the creative elements here.

The stage itself was a 15.5 Serious Structures Orbit for which he produced an upstage / downstage finger truss configuration comprising four runs of truss all hung at jaunty angles. This looked funky and made excellent use of the space and roof curvature as well as being highly flexible in terms of getting light all over the stage, and accommodating the requirements of the various headline acts.

The moving lights were a mixture of Martin MAC 700 Profiles and MAC 250 Washes, together with Studio Due CS4 ACL bars and several bars of 6 PARs. Eight Showtec Sunstrips which were used for audience illumination / blinding duties – making a refreshing change from Moles.

Integrated into the Main Stage’s overall space was the Garden Stage –  an original 1880 wooden singing theatre stage deck, measuring about 25 x 15 ft with a roof and curved back wall which is graced with a large mural. This was architecturally lit with six i-Pix Satellites, plus four outdoor LED PARs for artist key lighting. The line-up included a series of live and DJ sets most of which were scheduled during changeovers on the Main stage .. ensuring the entertainment was truly non-stop! The Garden Stage lights were all hooked into Tony Austin’s Main Stage Avolites Pearl console.

Over in the Big Top, Entec’s Sudip Shrestha worked his magic, again using an Avo Pearl for control on which he was running eight Martin MAC 300 and ten Clay Paky Alpha Spot 300 moving lights plus Atomic strobes, PixelLines, ETC Source Fours … and four-lite Moles for the audience participation bits!

He also looked after a projection system featuring a Barco R10 projector, video scaler and a 12 x 9 ft fast-fold screen, installed to accommodate four out of the five headline acts who used video in their performances.

Entec supplied a Tomcat ground support system in the Big Top to fly the PA, which also provided additional lighting positions.

The Acoustic Roots Arena (ARC) was designed and run by a combination of Doug Flude and Jonathan Cope, who worked shifts to ensure there was always someone fresh at the lighting desk as the venue operated non-stop daily from 10 a.m. to 2 a.m.

The rig was made up of four 6-lamp bars and six ETC Source Four profiles, with a deliberately generic lighting design in tune with the acoustic vibe of the space, for which the 11 pm to 2 am slot was filled with a succession of stand-up comedy acts.

The Club, located in a 60 x 40 metre clear-span marquee embraced a dual role – a film theatre in the day and a full-on EDM club from 11 p.m., specifically for which it was fitted with special sound insulation!

It was lit with a combination of Martin DC1 effects projectors, fuzz lights and Batmink LED PARs, chosen because they work really well on sound-to-light triggers. Four ETC Source Four PARs were deployed for key lighting on any daytime theatre shows.

Entec provided an identical projection system to that in the Big Top, used for the movie screenings by day and for VJ’s video content during the club.

The Social was a low rise stretched tensile fabric structure that looked rather cool! It was creatively lit with a small stage rig including 12 i-Pix Satellites washing up the walls and providing coloration for the stage, all run from a six channel manual desk. Deco PARs were used as work light for the bar and for front stage light. Adding  some glamour were two Optikinetics K4 oil wheel projectors and six pink and blue MBIs dotted around.

Around the site Entec planted a mix of 400W coloured MBI’s, i-Pix Satellites, Batmink LED PARs, Showtech Chameleon LED battens and six 2500W Studio Due CityColors.

The crew started rigging on the Monday and had to have everything ready for a lunchtime kick-off on the Wednesday. The biggest challenge was the substantial size of the site – walking up and down it certainly kept everyone fit – apart from which it gets easier to negotiate each year as they become very familiar with it. The other bonus this year was good weather! Although the heat had its own issues, all agreed that it beat the rain and mud of the previous year!

Says Hutton, “It’s a very special festival and we all love working on it. The family vibe is great, it looks fantastic, there’s something for everyone and we all enjoy ourselves as well as working hard – more gigs like this please!”.