Providing the magic behind the scenes


The annual Loeries Awards are an exceptional display of the best of African creative talent, which includes not only those being awarded but also those who labour behind the scenes to ensure the event is of the highest standards. Creative Feel spoke to one of the Loeries’ sponsors, Gearhouse, which looks after all technical and production aspects of the event. 

Creative Feel: Gearhouse has been involved with the Loeries in varying degrees since 2005. Please tell us a bit more about the partnership? How has it changed over the years? Why have you chosen the Loerie Awards in particular?

Gearhouse: It gives us the opportunity to showcase how technology can be used to reinforce the brand message and we have the presence of the creative community as a whole. Obviously, as creatives and innovators ourselves, being part of an event that celebrates and recognises the vast creative talent we have on the continent and locally, is close to our hearts.

CF: What does Gearhouse’s involvement usually entail? With regards to planning and logistics, what does an event like this take to pull off from a production perspective?

GH: We provide lighting, audio, AV, rigging, power, trussing, LED screens, staging, some set elements and cameras to the main awards, the judging, the red-carpet area, registration area and seminar as well as smaller associated events around Durban. 

The event draws on the combined resources of a couple of companies within the Gearhouse Group, namely Gearhouse SA (Johannesburg and Durban branches), LEDVision and Sets Drapes Screens, pulling top crew members from each region to do what they do best. 

It involves a lot of logistical planning as each area is setting up or running at different times and not only is equipment moving from one region to another, but it is also sometimes moving from one event space to another on site. Planning for the next year begins around six months ahead of the date.

CF: Both the Loeries and Gearhouse are about innovation and constant evolution, will there be any new technologies or innovations that Gearhouse will show at the Loeries this year?

GH: We brought in some of the latest LED technology this year. It seems to be the product that is most utilised for advertising work and obviously the crisp clear imagery of LED ties in with the visual requirements of the ad industry.

CF: What is Gearhouse’s role in the advertising industry outside of the Loeries? Are there any particularly exciting projects you have worked on?

GH: We have provided a lot of LED to ad shoots such as Vodacom, Gillette and Mercedes-Benz Vans, as well as film work. The latest being Maze Runner 3: The Death Cure, which used 400 x ROE Visual RS1200 LED strips, built into the futuristic sets.

We are also frequently called on for sets, power or rigging for TV work and for product launches where an experiential element is required.

In today’s competitive landscape, brands are looking for ever more inventive and innovative methods of reaching their target markets and, as a result, the event experience has become an effective vehicle for influencing client perception and purchasing behaviour. As technical supplier to the advertising market, we have found that our clients’ expectations go way beyond the provision of technical equipment and services and that very often the trend is to contract the supplier as technical partner and creative solution provider from inception. 

When the technical supplier is involved from the outset in technical concept and design, the result can be not only an unforgettable, interactive and stimulating visual experience but will also be completely aligned with the brand message in look and feel. 

CF: Is there a particular aspect of the Loeries that you look forward to every year?

GH: It is always a buzz for us to see great creative work integrated with the latest technology. It’s what inspires us and the Loeries gives us that year after year. 

Story reprinted courtesy Creative Feel Magazine

Photo courtesy The Loeries

Aug 23, 2018

The Gearhouse Group of Companies