The MTV Presents Levi's Jeans Staying Alive Concert played out in front of a live audience of over 20,000 at Cape Town's Green Point Stadium in South Africa late last year, and was later seen by millions of viewers around the world who watched a 90-minute, edited version of the benefit to promote AIDS awareness. Because the show had to satisfy both live audience and broadcast considerations, it posed numerous display and lighting challenges for producers and South African A/V equipment rental house Gearhouse South Africa.

Gearhouse supplied all the lighting, sound, structure, A/V, rigging, and power support for the event, which was headlined by Alicia Keyes, Usher, P. Diddy, and several South African Stars including Mandoza, Zola, Danny K, and many others.

The company provided two massive OptiScreen daylight LED units for the event — a modular LED screen system originally developed by the company's United Kingdom branch — mounted prominently on the stage, with another OptiScreen located behind the engineers' station at the venue, allowing those far from the stage action to see and hear the proceedings. The LED screens continually broadcast IMAG captured by five static video cameras and two moving cameras roving the stadium.

Lighting requirements were crucial, given that the concert was performed and taped for broadcast on a blustery evening in Cape Town. Among the lighting instruments used by Gearhouse lighting designer/operator Tim Dunn during the show were 50 High End Studio Spots, 12 High End Techno beams, and 300 PAR cans. For venue audio, Gearhouse utilized 64 Stacks Turbosound Flashlight units, eight Stacks Turbosound Floodlight units, MC + BSS Amplification, and XTA System Processing.

Dunn says Gearhouse solved the lighting challenge of satisfying the large, live audience and broadcast requirements simultaneously by relying on “a definite scientific methodology” that the company developed for the project.

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