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World Cup Closes with First Large Format Projections in South Africa

PLSN Staff • Projection Connection News • July 29, 2010

JOHANNESBURG – The Closing Ceremony for the FIFA 2010 World cup at Soccer City stadium, Soweto, Johannesburg, featured the first large-scale video projections to be integrated into a live show in South Africa. The visual extravaganza that brought the tournament to a close just before the Final was produced by the VWV Group. UK-based The Projection Studio's Ross Ashton was appointed as projection consultant for this aspect of the show by Mik Auckland, part of a specialist team from Jack Morton Worldwide.

 

All the projection hardware and software solutions were supplied by E/T/C Paris working for Gearhouse South Africa, the event's main technical contractors, who also supplied lighting, audio, rigging and power for the Closing Ceremony, wrapping up one of the most widely-watched World Cup championships.

 

Ashton's role included overseeing the projection process, from selecting the equipment supplier to helping Johannesburg-based content providers, Ministry of Illusion (MOI), optimize the imagery to work on a monumental scale.

 

On site, he worked closely with the E/T/C Paris team led by Patrice Bouqueniaux, with whom he has collaborated before. He also worked with the show caller and the host broadcasting service (HBS), providing information about which video clips were coming up next.

 

"It was a huge privilege to be asked to work on this, and all the visual departments including lighting really pulled out the stops to ensure it was a memorable show fitting the occasion," Ashton said. "E/T/C Paris are the best known experts in this field, and it was great to be working with them again, and also with MOI, who produced an impressive array of images."

 

The 55-square-meter projections, positioned in the middle of the field on a cloth covering the grass, were delivered by 18 x Christie 18K Roadster projectors mounted on two platforms flown in the roof of the upper concourse of Soccer City, along the east and west sides (the long sides) of the stadium. The projectors were configured in 16:9 format and rigged in three stacks of three to cover the field, which was divided into six target zones.

 

The content varied from digital scenery like lakes and mountains to colorful graphics, moving patterns and texturing and flag insignia. PIP video replays of the sporting action were inserted into the overall picture, and all these and other images helped push along the fast-paced 30 minute narrative.

 

Each projector received its own video feed and keystone correction to eliminate discrepancies between their optical centers, enhancing the smoothness and brightness of coverage across the surface area.

 

E/T/C's OnlyView PC-based system was used for control, programmed and operated by Yan Kaimakis. Eighteen active OnlyView servers, one per machine, were used, with another 18 running as a hot backup system. Data was distributed via a fully-redundant networked system.

 

Footage for the stadium's two Lighthouse high resolution LED screens was edited by locally-based VLS and also output via the OnlyView system. A field projection feed from OnlyView was also sent to the host broadcaster to be available for their mix.

 

For more information, please visit www.projecting.co.uk.

 

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