Event Gear and Technical
Expertise Update


Issue 8 - September 2006

MJ Event Gear wins TPSA Award
It was a proud moment for MJ Event Gear when they were nominated for various categories at the TPSA Awards held on Monday evening, 21st August. It was even more exciting when MJ Event Gear scooped up the award for the Favourite Lighting Rental Company, sponsored by Screen Africa!
The prestigious nominations included MJ Event Gear for the Favourite Technical Staging Company. Members from the MJ team were also praised, with Francois van der Merwe and Johnny Scholtz nominated for Lighting Designer of the Year and Willie Bothma nominated for the Best Newcomer Lighting Designer of the Year.
“It felt awesome to win,” commented Mike Jones, who also attended the TPSA conference held earlier in the day and provided the necessary lighting for the awards ceremony thereafter. “I am very proud of the guys at MJ. It’s their hard work that made this possible,” he said.
MJ Event Gear also walked away with the TPSA award in 2004 and are pleased to be recognised for their role in the industry.
The TPSA (Technical Production Services Association) is an association of members who operate within the Live Entertainment / Events Industry. Please visit www.tpsa.co.za for more information.

MJ Event Gear lights ‘YELLO’ for MTN and FIFA
MTN announced their sponsorship of $65 million to FIFA to secure their position as the official telecommunications sponsor for FIFA 2010 and MJ Event Gear was asked by AV Tech to design the entire ground support structure and supply no less than 250 lights! AV Tech was contracted by Idea Lab to oversee all technical.
Everything happened pretty fast, from a phone call on Monday to a load in on Tuesday! There was no time to relax with most of the crew working through the night on Tuesday and then again on Wednesday for the ultimate Experience in yellow. Thursday night saw some high profile guests attending – Tokyo Sexwale, & Ivan Khosa to mention but a few.
MJ’s Dale Strydom and Mike Jones put their heads together and came up with a fantastic design using a ground support system that would be covered with a Bedouin tent, supplied by Nomadic.
Once the ground support was up, Operator Willie Bothma was given free reign with the Lighting Design. MJ Event Gear was proud to be part of such a great occasion

New Porsche 911 Turbo launch

With a larger interior, a distinctive aerodynamic exterior and the ability to reach 100 km / h in a mere 3.9 seconds, heads turned at the launch of the new Porsche 911 Turbo.
Some 250 invited guests consisting of Porsche owners and club member were introduced to the new 911 Turbo at Summer Place.

MJ Event Gear’s Vaughn Marti says a successful integration was put together between the music score on the DVD and live artists performing on various instruments including a trumpet, piano and violin in the Apollo Room. The artists accompanied the DVD, with the intention of comparing a musical symphony to the running of the car’s smooth and dynamic engine.

MJ was responsible for the lighting and the Production Management, ensuring that the technical aspects of this show, from the stage, draping, lighting and video screen, ran without a hitch.

Staff update
Dina Smit

Justine Shrimpling leaves MJ after four years and will be missed. We would like to take this opportunity to wish her everything of the best and much happiness for her future.
Dina Smit is our new Operations Administrator. Dina has lived in London for the past 18 months, prior to that working for a logistics company in Cape Town. We are pleased to have her on board and hope she enjoys a long and happy time with us

Feedback from Germany

As we mentioned in our previous newsletter, our very own Francois van der Merwe was off to Germany for the production of “Africa’s Calling”, aimed to promote the FIFA World Cup in Africa in 2010.
It seems there is never a dull moment when Francois is around. “I was standing when suddenly I heard a big bang and the barrier moved past me,” he said referring to the car which unscrupulously interrupted the event. “There was screaming and shouting and cops moving past.”
Thankfully Francois and the team with him were not injured. As for the actual show, it was well received and we look forward to 2010.

When hearts unite

One is always amazed at how generous a society can be especially in a time of crisis. The hearts that help raise R130 000 for Jenna Clarkson, the five year old daughter of Billy Clarkson from AV Worx who tragically died recently, were no different.
As a tribute to Billy, MJ Event Gear initiated a fundraising event held at their premises on the 30th July. The response from sponsors, people who attended and donated and of course the wonderful team who put everything together was truly inspirational. “I was overwhelmed that people’s hearts were so big,” said Mike Jones. “The industry gave back to a guy who was a great AV person. We raised R130 000, but once all the pledges have been paid, it should increase to R150 000.”
The funds will be managed by a financial institution and invested for Jenna’s tertiary education or as a back up should she need it beforehand.
With Barry Hilton keeping guests in stitches, and in perfect South African style, a lamb on the spit for lunch, live entertainment and an auction, this was truly an unforgettable afternoon. Thank you to everyone who gave. Please visit www.jennaclarkson.co.za for more information on contributing to this cause.


PLASA Tradeshow
Mike is off to PLASA, the London based tradeshow in September, to keep up to date with the latest trends and technology in all disciplines from lighting to sound and staging.
“I’m going window shopping,” laughs Mike. “I have been to PLASA a good couple of times and it’s always great to network with the companies I have met over the years.”
Mike will be meeting up with some of the larger rental companies to see how things are done on that side of the world.
Movie premiere
When last did you visit the drive-in? Well the Veldskoen Drive-in was the place to be on Saturday, 19th August from 2pm for the premiere of The Fast and the Furious Tokyo Drift, held by Ster-Kinekor Junction.
This hip hop occasion included a performance by Skwatta Kamp and some of YFM’s finest DJs keeping the vibe upbeat. Car enthusiasts thoroughly enjoyed finding out whose car had the best (and loudest!)sound followed by the much anticipated movie screening.
MJ’s Ryno Kotze and Sidney Keke catered for the stage sound requirements for both the band and the DJs.

Tri-Nations Summit
Putting heads together and finding out how different countries manage their small businesses in regard to strategies, ideas and Experiences, was what the Tri-Nations Summit on Small Business was all about.
Held in August at the International Convention Centre in Durban, the participating representatives were from India, Brazil, and the host of the conference, South Africa’s SEDA (Small Enterprise Development Agency).MJ Event Gear, with Vaughn Marti at the helm, were commissioned by Go Girl Events, to provided the sound, lighting, trussing, rigging and three screens used for the conference as well as the general Production Management.
Guests were wined and dined at two gala dinners preceding the daytime conferences which were attended by 500 delegates. The first evening’s entertainment was by the Durban Divas, the George Mari Band, a well established KZN Jazz band, the KZN Youth Wind Band and DJs. For Vaughn, however, the second gala evening was very special indeed. It was held at the uShaka Marine World’s Phantom Ship, which of course is an enormous and beautiful aquarium - one of the five largest in the world. “This really was one of the best venues I’ve ever seen,” said Vaughn. “Guests were surrounded by tanks with fish swimming inside. "

MJ Event Gear 344 Oak Avenue, Ferndale, Randburg Johannesburg 2194 South Africa
Telephone + 27 11 326 2291 | After hours +27 82 891 5599 | Facsimile +27 11 326 2296
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