Green Hippo’s Hippotizer Media Servers were behind an ambitious and hauntingly atmospheric son et lumière event to celebrate Halloween in the historic city of York. Staged over three nights in two of the city’s picturesque locations – Castle Museum and Library Square – the project was the result of a collaboration between York BID (Business Improvement District) and Polestar Productions.
The event employed Karst+ Media Servers from Green Hippo and Epson 1755 projectors, supplied by Stage Sound Services and operated by Steve Jackson of InFocusAV, to deliver the spooky media creations designed by Polestar Productions. The challenges of the project will be familiar to many. “Outdoors, in the UK, at the end of October!” summarised Jackson, adding, “On top of that, the limited setup and programming time was an additional pressure.”
Despite the inherent difficulties, Castle Museum and Library Square were temporarily transformed by sound, light and dynamic projections, with content including a suitable line-up of ghosts, ghouls and monsters. Helping the projections hit their marks were MH11L Mirror Heads from Dynamic Projection Institute, in their first large-scale use in the UK.
Driving all the content and streamlining the programming, management and control of the media were the Karst+ Media Servers. “The Hippotizer Timeline component and the MultiController were really useful,” said Jackson. “We programmed the show in a Timeline, with the MultiController component running Art-Net output to control the Mirror Head units.”
The flexibility of Hippotizer’s Timelines and Preset Manager, along with the MultiController, which supports MIDI, OSC, TCP, and Art-Net, as well as a wide range of Automation protocols to enable control of external devices, proved reliable time-savers. “The Timeline feature and Preset Manager enabled scenes to be created and then built into a timeline for the show,” says Jackson. “We then used an Elgato Stream Deck, in combination with MultiController to run the timeline queues.”
He added, “The video files also contained audio, and the media player, with separate audio levels for the tracks, enabled for control of volume levels, separate from the rest of the programming. Ambient music tracks were used as a base layer for the soundscape, with elements of each video file which could be balanced as required.
Jackson concludes, “The flexibility and ability to map elements to user pins within Hippo enabled me to program the show quickly. Timelines pre-sets create the base queue structure, which can then be adjusted as required without the need for too many clicks in the interface.
“Another advantage of Hippotizer over other servers is the speed at which a state can be created within the mixes. Once this has been confirmed, it can be quickly stored to the Timeline and the next queue programmed. Future projects will include the introduction of SHAPE and 3D visualizer too.”