LD Neil Trenell specified an Avolites Diamond 4 to control lighting and a Green Hippo Hippotizer digital media server for Lily Allen's recent UK theatre tour, which featured her largest production to date.

For the tour, the D4 Elite controlled 32 Robe Series 700 ColorSpot and Color Wash fixtures, 16 i-Pix Satellites (used for toning the front and rear trusses), five 4-cell blinders on the front truss, 14 strings of festoons, several hundred feet of rope light, five sets of Christmas tree lights draped over the backline, four mirror balls, and two compressed air confetti cannons. All lighting and FX equipment was supplied by HSL.

The D4 was also used to trigger Trenell's own Hippotizer digital media server, loaded up with content driving a 10x10m Soft-LED backdrop. The designer also runs the D4 Pilot emulation software on his laptop, which enables him to program, tweak, and edit the show when away from the gig. "It's been absolutely invaluable," he says, "especially when time is tight, which is increasingly common."

Trenell's lightshow for Allen has a bouncy, up-tempo carnival-esque feel to it, in keeping with her renowned spirited and lively performance style. He uses both the moving lights and the LED backdrop sparingly to maximize the effects, fused with plenty of bold saturated classic color combinations with a contemporary twist.

The Diamond is Trenell's desk of choice for major shows, and he says, "It's just brilliant having everything right there in front of you where you want it and at your fingertips. It makes it very simple to run and manipulate a show exactly as you like, whether you are completely busking or running a preprogrammed, cue-based show." Instant accessibility is only one of the things he likes about the console. He says that fixture exchange is excellent and helped him enormously in Europe when he was running the show on different systems each night. "It has a massive amount of power for a small footprint console," he adds.

Trenell has used the Diamond 4 ever since its launch three years ago, and knows the desk inside out. "The level of support from Avo has always been fantastic," he says.