On a mission: grandMA2 at Urbana 12
Lighting programmer Jason Greene about the advantages of building a show ahead of time using grandMA2.
grandMA2 went on a mission shortly after Christmas when almost 16,000 people gathered in St. Louis for Urbana 12, the triennial student missions conference held by InterVarsity Christian Fellowship/USA. Dodd Technologies Inc. furnished the grandMA2 full-size as part of its lighting, audio, video and scenic support for the event’s arena show.
With the theme of God’s “Great Invitation,” the conference ran at the America’s Center and Edward Jones Dome. Attendees had access to more than 100 workshops and over 250 mission organisations and seminaries exhibiting at Urbana 12.
Dodd Technologies was responsible for supporting the three main stages for the show: one for the worship band, one for drama and skits, and the center stage for speakers and business activities.
“We used one giant rig with 280 moving heads, which was set up so they could use some or all of it as they bounced back and forth from stage to stage,” explains lighting programmer Jason Greene. “We tried to plan for the size of the rig given the time constraints of programming. We had an hour or two in the morning to program each day, but there were so many cues and transitions.”
Building the show ahead of time using grandMA2 onPC with grandMA 3D MA Lighting’s free visualizer software gave the Dodd programmers a good leg up, however. “It was very helpful for the client and gave us a good idea of what everything was going to look like and how it was going to work,” says Greene. “It was huge to be able to start programming before we even left the office.”
Deploying two grandMA2 full-size consoles enabled the programmers to work double duty without stepping one each other’s toes. “The grandMA2’s user modes allowed us to do that,” Greene reports. “The MA NPU (Network Processing Unit) and MA 2Port Nodes were also handy. We had a lot of stuff out on the house, including five circle trusses. We had to get signals to a lot of places, and grandMA2’s functionality was great about getting the signal from the console to the lights.”
Networking was key to a smooth and easy show, he adds. “It was a very large room and networking allowed us to go over a very flexible and dependable medium. We were also capable of going over fiber. Having all these elements communicate with the console and all work together was huge.”
Andy Meghanhoffen was the lighting designer for the show at Urbana 12. A.C.T. Lighting is the exclusive distributor of MA Lighting in North America.