Thomas Jackson / TyneSight Photographic

Elation supports BME stage and next generation of lighting professionals at SXSW

Elation was proud to support the British Music Embassy (BME) stage at this year’s South by Southwest (SXSW) conference and music festival in Austin, Texas. Partnering with the Academy of Live Technology at Production Park, Elation lighting was used to illuminate the stage and artists while serving as a valuable training ground for the next generation of lighting technicians and operators.


The BME stage is a high-profile platform at the renowned festival and is run on behalf of the UK Government International Department for Business and Trade. It provides a valuable showcase for the UK's best emerging acts and has played host to a number of artists who went on to global fame such as Amy Winehouse, Sam Fender, The 1975, and more.


The Academy of Live Technology (ALT), a unique higher education institution providing specialist degrees, short courses and bespoke training for the next generation of live experience professionals, is supported in partnership by Elation to provide the latest in cutting-edge industry products and equipment for use in educational courses and training purposes. 


Students at ALT experience learning and teaching on industry-integrated campuses on Production Park in Wakefield, West Yorkshire (UK), and Rock Lititz (Pennsylvania, USA), where many of the world’s biggest stars, shows, and brands come to create, innovate, experiment and rehearse.


As an ongoing partner of the Academy of Live Technology, and Production Park, Elation was pleased to supply 18 PROTEUS LUCIUS, 18 PROTEUS RAYZOR BLADE S, and 8 RAYZOR 760 for use on the BME stage, all provided by Elation’s US office. Ant Forbes, Studio & Events Manager at Production Park, and a professional production crew complemented by a team of ALT degree students, built and ran the BME stage over the course of the SXSW week.


“SXSW is world renowned as a launching point for promising talent and we were honored to have had the opportunity to throw our support behind BME and the up-and-coming British artists that played this year’s festival,” commented Graham Hill, Business Development Manager at Elation. “As an ongoing partner of the Academy of Live Technology, and Production Park, and its education program, we were more than pleased to put some of our latest professional lighting gear in the hands of students for use on the prestigious SXSW stages. It is invaluable real-life experience that will certainly contribute to shaping the careers of the next generation of live event professionals.


“Our support in helping ALT develop a much-needed pool of skilled talent within the industry is essential, while it reinforces our belief and commitment to education and professional development. It's not just about supplying equipment; it's about investing in the future of the industry.”


“The support from Elation this year on the BME stages was absolutely amazing, supplying the team with a great range of IP-rated fixtures – much needed in the Texan storms we faced!” explained ALT Alumni, Bradley Nicholson. “I particularly enjoyed working with the 18 PROTEUS RAYZOR BLADES paired with the PROTEUS LUCIUS spots. I had a great selection of high-intensity fixtures and effects to play with for each of the incredible artists over the SXSW schedule. The in-country support the team received from Elation was brilliant, with an Elation Rep coming down to the venue on multiple occasions to give us a hand and to help me get the most out of the fixtures.”


ALT students and crew, armed with the experience gained from being part of the BME stage at SXSW, frequently go on to achieve profile positions in the entertainment technology industry. Feedback from this year's festival suggested that it was the best BME at SXSW yet, with Elation's support and top-tier equipment proving to be invaluable.