Engineering and automation specialist WIcreations has developed a new stage elevator added to its existing range – TP05 – which is debuting on the current European tour by Italian singer-songwriter, rapper and superstar, Jovanotti. Belgium-based WI was approached by the tour’s production designer Claudio Santucci of Gio Forma who, in addition to the general scenic design - wanted a unique way of being able to move the artist back and forth between the main stage and a B stage located out in the audience, just in front of the FOH position. He came to WI for a robust and reliable solution, where the project was managed by Hans Willems.

The new elevator is based on WI’s Spira lift which gives super-accurate positioning and can support the same load – up to 1.5 tonnes - whatever the elevation / height of the lift which goes up to 5 metres.

TP05 was already in development, however once the decision was made to use it on this tour, the process was prioritised, completed and followed by all the relevant testing and certification requirements.

This was one element of a two part automation proposed and provided by WI for the production which also involved a 10 metre span of their rotating TP02 bridge.

This is designed for touring productions and optimised for quick get-ins and outs. It’s an extremely strong, solid structure yet compact for transport, fully automated with hydraulics and managed by WI’s flexible control system.

This is positioned at right angles to the end of a central thrust coming out from the stage. The artist sashays along the runway first, and then onto the fully decked WI bridge / rotating arm, complete with automatic handrails which rise up as soon as the bridge starts lifting.

Simultaneously to the bridge moving upwards, the TP05 rises up from the floor to the same height, with a full DJ set up on top.

The bridge chorography forms the transition between a slower song and the vibey pumping DJ section of the show.

The rotating bridge / arm starts moving around, transporting Jovanotti from the end of the thrust - complete with Sharpy moving lights underneath to emphasise the bridge being pushed up - right above the heads of audience sending fans completely wild and allowing the star to get right among them.

It deposits him on the B stage and then returns to its ‘home’ position.

The TP05 elevator has a 3 x 3 metre platform on top and all the pre-installed kit so he can mix and DJ this section of the show. At the end of this, the lift lowers, he exits the platform and walks back through the crowd to the bridge and thrust area … enjoying more adulation!

Both elements were operated through one of WI’s special control systems with two WI crew, Mathias Eycens and Jesse Zaenen – co-ordinating everything.

“We enjoy a great relationship with Claudio and Gio Forma and his projects are always interesting and spectacular. When we spoke about this one, we realised it was an opportune time to get the TP05 built and added to the standard WI automation rental inventory,” comments Hans.

He explained that the challenges were in getting the elevator finished and certified in time and dealing with the myriad of health and safety documentation and paperwork needed. Italy has some of the most stringent regulations in Europe, and this task required painstaking detail and diligence, for which WI is also renowned in addition to building rock solid products.

The highly visual and fun Jovanotti show tour continues to WOW crowds through the summer. Lighting is designed by UK-based Paul Normandale and incudes some 12 impressive bespoke chandeliers which contain Squirrel-cage bulbs and lasers.

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