Above: Soundstar’s owner, Per Larsson.
Swedish full production and rental company Soundstar, based in Skövde, invested in some of Robe’s MegaPointes and Spiiders at the end of last year as they needed lighting fixtures with “more punch” than their rental stock at the time.
The company – normally – delivers audio, lighting, video, rigging, and has an OB-truck, for the full complete technical solution, and is working on a wide selection of corporate and industrial events and conferences. It was founded in 1991 by Per Larsson initially as a DJ service company and has steadily grown into a solidly well-respected production house.
“We wanted fixtures weighing around 25kg for easy handling by one person,” explained Soundstar’s Daniel Wiklund.
They looked at various brands “and felt that Robe had a bigger advantage in weight and output, and they are also multi-purpose luminaires!”
They completed several projects with the new Robe lights before the Covid-19 lockdown including two big conferences for Volvo Cars, and a 40-year celebration event for Swedish home improvement store JULA which included a couple of thousand employees from around the world. Both these events were at Skovde Arena.
The Robes were also on a 60th birthday event for Benders, Sweden’s biggest roof tile manufacturer, hosted at one of the company’s facilities in Uddevalla, and another project was the Sweden Game Conference, a forum for games developers, experts and start-ups, etc., also staged at Skovde Arena with an international audience.
Since then, naturally everything has changed! And while Sweden took a different approach to its lockdown in going for ‘herd immunity’, like everywhere else in the world, large scale events also came to a standstill.
Since this time, Soundstar has produced some internet / web shows and other stream-based events utilising their OB-truck and their Robe fixtures.
When not busy with these activities, Per, Daniel, and the team have been extending their warehouse and offices into a 500 square metre purpose-designed space which should be ready for the winter if everything goes to plan!
Soundstar first bought Robe products around 2002 – when Robe initially launched as a brand – with some 250 Wash XTs and 575 Wash XTs for rental stock, and early on they also installed Robe MS Zoom 250 XT compact moving heads and the then-popular Spot 250 XTs and DJ scan 250 XTs.
More recently it was the proactive work of Robe’s Swedish distributor Bellalite that convinced them the newest technologies being produced by the Czech-based manufacturer were better than the competition!
“So, we gave it a shot and have not regretted it at all!” concludes Daniel. “Robe is very reliable, and we appreciate the awesome after-sales support.”
During the lockdown, Daniel states that their biggest challenge has been to survive ”mentally” in terms of thinking about and imagining how the industry might be after the pandemic, together with real practical concerns about how long it will last and how exactly the event industry might recover and get back on its feet. All unknown questions causing plenty of anxiety and consternation right now.
What Daniel misses most is “Standing behind a lighting console on a BIG live event or live concert, hearing the production-manager in my intercom saying ‘3, 2, 1, GO!!!’ and then the roaring crowd!”
Hopefully, we are starting to see small signs of hope that some of this live event activity will be safely possible to resume in the medium-term future.