Curtain closes on the Life Ball

Curtain closes on the Life Ball

Always one of the most colourful and flamboyant charity events in the social calendar, the 26th and final Life Ball, Europe’s biggest event supporting people with HIV or AIDS, chose a rainbow theme to celebrate the event’s aim for unity in diversity. Attracting stars and performers from across the globe, the Ball attracts enormous crowds watching the arrivals at Vienna’s stunning Rathausplatz, as well as countless more watching worldwide. 

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Capturing the spectacle of the red carpet procession and the opening ceremony, which took place on a stage in Rathausplatz outside the venue, was live production specialist AV Professional, for its client Puls Multimedia Productions, who took responsibility for the technical implementation, lighting and AV. 

Curtain closes on the Life Ball

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Senior media technician, Didi Bartel, took responsibility for the technical set up that delivered IMAG coverage for the crowds outside the event. “At the venue, we were producing content that was taken out to six big screens; two on the sides of the main exterior stage and four delay screens,” begins Didi. 

Curtain closes on the Life Ball

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“We worked with a five camera set up, including three main operator units and two PTZ cameras delivering shots of the onstage interpreters and a wide screen for the backstage monitors. We also handled the dynamic LED backdrop for the stage show during the opening ceremony, which was produced with a Pandoras Box media server.”

Curtain closes on the Life Ball

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Signal management was handled through a Smart Videohub 40x40 matrix, which provided a flexible routing solution on the multicam live production.

The live mix was cut on an ATEM 4 M/E Production Studio 4K paired with an ATEM Advanced Panel, and Didi explains, this set up allowed the team to meet the Ball’s key requirement for accessibility across all areas of the production. 

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“As well as interpreters on stage for most of the ceremony, there was also German language subtitling during all foreign language segments, and so we had to ensure that these elements were incorporated into the live mix, as well as making sure we captured the amazing onstage spectacle,” he continues. 

Curtain closes on the Life Ball

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Adding: “The ability to control the switcher from different devices came in very handy for the multilayered program mix, as I could switch cameras on the hardware panel, while other operators controlled other onscreen functions simultaneously for a seamless production.”

Curtain closes on the Life Ball

“This was the last Life Ball, and we were incredibly proud to be able to cover such an important event,” concludes Sascha Stiebitz, CTO, AV Professional. “The Blackmagic Design equipment not only gave us a reliable live video system, but also allowed us to truly capture the colour and joy of the Ball and broadcast the same experience out to the huge crowds who come to watch each year.”