Johannesburg based Gearhouse South Africa (GHSA) – the largest full technical production facility in the southern hemisphere – has invested in 150 of Robe’s latest moving lights including 54 x Pointes, 36 x LEDWash 600s, 24 x DLXs, 24 x DLFs and 12 x DLSs.
The DLFs and DLXs went straight on to the current series of ‘So You Think You Can Dance’ which is being recorded at the Renaissance Centre in downtown Johannesburg and broadcast on national TV by SABC, with lighting designed by GHSA’s Robert Grobler.
The LEDWash 600s join GHSA’s existing rental fleet – which already contains a large quantity of LEDWash 600s. Stuart Andrews, Head of Lighting at Gearhouse SA comments, “You simply can never have enough of these versatile fixtures”.
Since its launch in 2010, Robe’s LEDWash has become one of the most successful products in its class, and is now routinely appearing on international lighting specs as the default ‘LED wash fixture’.
GHSA services many top artists who are now regularly visiting South Africa on their world tours and so it’s important to have the most popular products available to ensure that Lighting Designers and Directors can have their rigs matched as closely as possible.
Another parameter informing GHSA’s decision to go with Robe and in particular what led Andrews to choose the LED products, is his belief in the quality and advantages of well designed and engineered LED fixtures and the role that they can play in productions both now and in the future.
Related to this is also the smaller size of Robe’s DL series luminaires, which means more fixtures can be practically fitted into tighter spaces or those challenged for weight loadings … and achieve better results.
The DLS profile in particular was chosen for its shuttering capabilities. This is vital for shows and events adopting the popular format of wide screens upstage and presenter / anchor downstage / in front of it, where it’s essential that the key lighting is neat, tidy and bright.
Andrews actually thinks that it is Robe’s new multi-purpose Pointe that will become a real ‘star of the show’ – and he’s certain that they will be investing in more of these soon!
Again he mentions the small size, light weight and all round adaptability – it can be used as a Spot, Beam, Wash or FX unit.
“All the LDs on our upcoming shows who have been offered Pointes in place of other fixtures they have initially spec’d have really welcomed them,” says Andrews. “The small size again gives the unit a real edge, it is packed full of creative features and it’s something properly different”.
Robe’s Pointe was launched at Prolight+Sound in Frankfurt in April 2013 and since that time has become the brands fastest ever selling product, with over 10,000 orders placed in the first four months of production!
The bottom line for any busy rental company is always reliability and that’s also an area where Robe has always excelled.
GHSA’s consignment of Robe fixtures was delivered by South African distributor DWR, a leading professional lighting sales company with an unpatrolled reputation for excellence in the country.
Duncan Riley from DWR comments, “The decision to invest in LED technology on such a scale was a bold one for Gearhouse and I think it’s a sign of the times and will set new trends in the rental market! Any new bulb will look great initially, but they start to degrade after a while – so it’s a decision based on long term economic efficiency as well as being better for the environment”.
Over time, GHSA’s commitment to Robe’s new and LED technology will preempt other cost reductions as well, including the requirement for less – and smaller - generators on events which will consume less fuel, smaller vehicles will be needed to transport the kit, smaller trusses will make rigging quicker and less complex etc., etc.
Photo shows DWR’s Duncan Riley on the left and Gearhouse SA’s Stuart Andrews on the left.