Speakers & Panellists
Group Head of Health & Safety for Earls Court & Olympia Venues
As Group Head of Health & Safety at EC&O, Michael has responsibility for the Safety and Welfare of everyone coming to the Venues. A Chartered Member of IOSH, he sits on the British Standards Technical Committee for Imaging. He has 20 years experience as a Safety Professional in Construction, Facilities and Event Management. As Chairman of SAGE, the Safety Advisor's Group in Entertainment, he facilitates the UK's largest specialist Safety group in Events.
Rhino Rigs, Consultant & Trainer
Rinus ('Rhino') started in 1970, doing lighting & sound in a rock venue. An inherited interest in structural strength made him swing to rigging in the early 80s, since which has become his core business, in every possible aspect. Since 1994 he has participated in rigging & safety standardisation committees in Holland and abroad. In 2000 he was co-founder of ARGH, the first in the world to support professional entertainment riggers.
Nick Barnfield is a qualified engineer with extensive experience in staging, rigging and temporary structures. He joined Showquip in 2003 as Technical Director with roles including equipment design, as a structural engineer, rigging & safety consultant to the wider entertainment industry in NZ. Most recently, he has been closely involved with the new arena production of 'How to Train your Dragon' at the Vector Arena, Auckland.
Roy was the first rigger in the United States to undertake large arena tours. He started performing and rigging in an amateur circus in Florida in the late 1950's. He worked as a professional circus performer for several years as Roy Zacchini 'The Human Cannonball', and as a trapeze flyer and catcher, trampoline artiste and rigger. Roy was the first 'Disney Rigger' for a new tour called 'Disney on Parade' in 1969. From there he spent a few years working on Broadway shows and in 1975 started touring large scale rock and roll tours and was also the production rigger for the Winter Olympics at Lake Placid. Now, 50 years later, Roy is still rigging conventions, tours and corporate events.
After founding his company in 1989, Chris was collecting various experiences on the road as a tourrigger in europe. In 2001, he was asked to work in a task force to create the german education standard in the rigging industry, which was converted in 2004. He was also involved into the evaluation of the education standard in 2010. Today he is working as a lecturer, consultant, tourrigger & houserigger at the exhibition centre wiesbaden.
Senior Technical Manager, EC&O Venues
Adrian graduated from the Technical course at RADA in 'the good old days' (when it was a death trap, before they re-built it).
He spent the next 5 years of his life slogging up and down the motorways of pre lottery funded Britain, visiting every cash-strapped flea pit in the country.
A nasty incident resulting in ballet dancers being scattered across the hard shoulder of the M4 made him decide to stay at home more. Home for the next 12 years turned out to be The Royal Albert Hall where Adrian finished up as Senior Technical Manager. He is now Senior Technical Manager for Earls Court & Olympia.
Adrian's pride and joy is his impressive collection of Certificates of Attendance at Working @ Height safety courses.
Gert Jan Brouwer has been involved with the entertainment industry for more than 25 years. He is Managing Director and founder of Frontline Rigging and the Director of ZFX Europe. An active member of the international rigging community, he is a member of the CWA 15902 committee, chair of both the Dutch event industry certification body (SKEN) and of the event rigging committee of the Dutch Standards Institute (NEN).
HSE Construction Division,
Head of Construction Sector and Policy
Gavin Bye has worked for HSE since 1989 and has a wide range of inspection experience. He currently heads HSE's Construction Sector and Policy Unit which, amonst other things, is responsible for HSE policy on construction isues, production of HSE guidance for the industry and directing the activities of Construction Division's field Inspectors.
In almost 35 years in the business, Chris Cronin has had a hand in pushing forward many of the developments we take for granted. From the days of PAR cans and Raylights to the T2 safety truss, and from the Medium Duty truss to Take That's 'Big Man', Chris has applied his enthusiasm and ingenuity to products which have benefited thousands of projects all over the world. Having started his career with James Thomas Engineering in 1978, Chris left to start Tomcat Ltd in 1985, before founding Total Fabrications Ltd (TFL) in 1989, later expanding to become Total Solutions Group (TSG). In all that time, Chris has been at the forefront of the entertainment staging industry, developing flexible, safe trussing structures.
Delstar Engineering Ltd,
Head of Mechanical Engineering and Design
Neil is a Chartered Engineer with wide experience in entertainment technology, including senior roles in leading rigging and trussing companies as well as founding a company undertaking engineering design for entertainment-related applications and exploring design management methodologies for wider use in industry.
He's been involved in standards development for industry-specific lifting equipment and is a member of the IStructE's advisory group on temporary structures.
Neil is head of mechanical engineering and design at Delstar Engineering (part of the Stage Technologies Group) which has built a solid reputation as a design and manufacturing specialist, producing high quality stage engineering and rigging equipment.
Robert Dean, founder of ZFX Inc., started out as an apprentice Flying Director in 1990. He views the entertainment world (if not the entire world) through the lens of performer flying. This view does not lose focus on the fact that the rigging aspect is often the easier part of the job and that flying performers is not like flying objects. During the last 22 years he has added the most ancient of special effects to thousands of productions. He started ZFX in 1994 and has grown it from a one-man operation in a two-car garage into a global company with 50 kilted employees bent on world domination. (Yes, he is very American.)
Marketing and Business Director
Cristiano Giavedoni has more than two decades of experience in the industry, start¬ing as a light technician and subsequently moving through the ranks of product management and general management. He has been Rigging and Truss Product Manager at Litec and Business development manager and General Manager at Columbus McKinnon Corporation – EMEA Lifting Entertainment Division.
Additionally, Mr. Giavedoni has been part of CEN Workshop 25, tasked with developing a European Standard for Lifting and Load-Bearing Equipment for Stages and other Production Areas within the Entertainment Industry (CEN15902).
He is part of MHE3/13, The British Standard commitee for Entertainment Lifting Equipment Standard and Code of Practice.
Tom has 25 years of experience across many sectors of the industry.
The Early Years: Trained in Technical Theatre at Bristol Old Vic Theatre School, went on tour for 10 years.
The Middle Ages: Grown up job project-managing large shows with large budgets.
This Century: Qualified as a safety practitioner and continuing to live the dream as an independent consultant.
Trained as a Mechanical Engineer specializing in Material Science in Italy, Amedeo Guizzi began his career as a Technical Organizer for numerous international festivals and events. After attaining his Masters in Technical Director of Live Entertainment at the Ecole Nationale Supérieure des Arts et Techniques du Théátre (ENSATT) in Lyon, France, Mr. Guizzi worked as a Project Manager and then a Technical Manager at LITEC-SSE from 2004. In early 2011, he founded BLUMANO, a specialized engineering group providing services to the staging, events and entertainment industries. Mr. Guizzi has been heavily involved in developing Italian standards for the entertainment technology industry with UNI Milan.
Prolyte, Technical Director
Marc Hendriks was educated as a civil engineer and has been working at Prolyte since 1993. His role as Technical Director means he is responsible for all R&D and training activities. He is the Chairman of the European CWA 15920-2 "truss standard", is a member of the German working group that re-wrote the SR-1.0 and SR-2.0 code of practices and is a member of the Dutch-eventsafety-standardistion group.
Chris has worked in the entertainment industry for almost 40 years. One of the founders of rigging training in the UK Chris also speaks and writes about rigging and related subjects. In 2010 with PLASA Events he produced the world's first Rigging Conference now held annually in London.
Unusual Rigging, Managing Director
Alan Jacobi LVO began his career at The Oxford Playhouse, later joining the lighting department of the National Theatre. In 1983, after working as a freelance electrician and gaining an extensive knowledge of event production, he formed Unusual Rigging Ltd where he has remained the Managing Director ever since.
Director, Momentum Engineering
Abigail co-founded momentum in 2005. She has worked on a wide range of projects from small bespoke architectural projects to multi million pound mixed use development schemes. In recent years she has specialised in the Sports, Venue and Entertainment Sectors, and has worked closely with production teams and specialist rigging contractors on the engineering and delivery of a variety of temporary structures and events.
Stage Technologies, Director of rental services
Ted Moore has led Stage Technologies' rental services division since the company was founded, becoming Director in 2004. In the course of his career, Ted has worked on lighting, automation and rigging systems for touring gigs, live and filmed TV, film shoots, corporate events and conferences. Ted is closely involved in the development of emerging business in the rental sector and continues to expand and broaden potential product applications throughout the theatre industry and other live entertainment markets.
Educated as a civil engineer, Matthias Moeller worked over 15 years for a german Prolyte distributor before he joined the Prolyte Group in 2011.
In his position of Technical Director Germany he is product-specialist for all brands of the Prolyte Group in the german market.
He is representative of the DTHG (german theatre association) for rigging and temporary structures, member of the CWA 15902-1 workgroup and member of DIN, igvw and ARGEBAU.
Thornton Tomasetti, Vice President
Scott G. Nacheman, MSc.Eng., AIA is a Vice President in the Chicago, USA office of Thornton Tomasetti. His diverse professional experience includes the investigation and repair of existing structures, in addition to many facets of emergency response and structural stabilization efforts. Scott coordinates the firm's Property Loss Consulting Practice within the Midwestern region with responsibilities for response and condition assessment of damage caused by fires, hurricanes, tornados and structural collapses, including managing the investigations of the failures of the outdoor rigging structures at the 2011 Indiana State Fair and 2012 Downsview Park, Toronto collapse incidents. In addition, Scott has served as a firefighter, fire lieutenant and instructor in New York and Illinois as well as a Structures Specialist with regional, state and Federal Urban Search and Rescue (US&R) Task Forces.
M.A. Richards & Company
Malcolm Richards trained as a Civil and Structural Engineer and has since been responsible a range of commercial, retail, military and leisure projects. He began to work in the entertainment industry around 30 years ago engineering tours and equipment and hasn't stopped since. He now works exclusively in the entertainment and leisure field on local and international projects.
'Flip' Sandell has worked for the HSE since leaving the Army in 2000. He is currently working in HSE's Entertainment and Leisure Sector and has the brief for live music, theatre, film, broadcasting and fairgrounds.
Current work includes rigging with long link chain, Tallescope rescue and reviewing and rewriting HSE guidance.
Self employed rigger, graduated in Technical Physics at Delft University.
Currently involved in a workgroup within the Dutch Standardisation Institute (NEN) that writes Codes of Practices for the Entertainment, like the NPR 8020-13 Riggingplan. Other current work: Risk Assessments, fixed installations, structural calculations, (load) measurements & research and trainings / education.
Outback Rigging, Managing Director
Managing Director of Outback Rigging Ltd since starting the company in 1993. Outback is responsible for Rigging Management in a number of significant UK venues. Currently chair of the PLASA National Rigging Advisory Group which has managed the development of the PLASA National Rigging Certificate over the last few years.
Worked for several years as a freelance rigger in UK and Europe including installations of Cirque de Soleil shows in the RAH. Became 'Technical Show Manager' at RAH, then ran away with the Circus in 2005 first as Head Rigger (acrobatic), then TD, then PM, now 'Tour Equipment Director' responsible for provision of all show and infrastructure equipment to Cirque de Soleil 11 touring shows.