Award Winning Performance by Astera at AHA Event

Canberra-based Elite Event Technology (EET) supplied full production – lighting, audio, video, and staging – for the 2021 Australian Hotels Association (AHA) Awards, which took place outdoors for the first time as 450 guests enjoyed the fantastic environs of the Pialligo Estate and the gorgeous gastronomy of one of Canberra’s top restaurants in a truly immersive setting that embraced the natural beauty of the ACT region.

EET’s Darren Russell designed lighting for the event in which he has been involved for the last 15 years. He made the most of the flexibility of 46 x Astera AX1 PixelTubes and 16 x Astera AX5 TriplePars for illuminating the tables, flora and fauna, and helping to build a magical atmosphere for the evening.

The AX1s were mainly used on the tabletops where they served as long, elegant centrepieces, providing subtle but practical ambient illumination for dining, chatting, and enjoying the evening.

The AX5s were dotted around and used to light trees and other foliage elements in the gardens, creating colour washes across the space and also bathing the areas in naturalistic white lighting.

“Wireless and battery-powered operation made Astera an obvious choice for an event and application like this,” commented Darren, mentioning that the fixtures’ IP65 rating was a welcome contingency should the weather have proved challenging!

Multiple tables were set up outside the main building to accommodate all the guests. With not much power available in this area, Astera again proved a great solution. No generators were required, which can be noisy and distracting as well as adding to the costs.

Due to prolonged torrential rain the week before, the venue space and configuration were changed two days ahead of the show, but this did not faze Darren and the team, as using AX1s and AX5s meant they had all the flexibility at their fingertips for a total redesign of the event layout at short notice … and were still able to light it beautifully using the same tools. The only other stage lights were eight high powered moving lights.

It was precisely for these styles of events that Darren first looked at and invested in Astera, a process that started a couple of years ago via Astera’s Australia and New Zealand distributor, ULA Group.

EET now has over 200 x AX1s in its rental inventory and over 100 x AX5s … the latter purchased in the last year even despite the pandemic. In fact, Darren’s even more recent Astera orders in April 2021 mean that EET now has the largest rental stock of Astera fixtures in Australia!

He loves the products for their “fabulous quality, good engineering and thought-through design.”

Darren is pleased to report that a lot of their regular corporate work has returned strongly albeit with a few key differences to deal with the ever-fluid Covid rules and regulations, and while concerts, gigs and music festivals are also coming back, the pace is slower as organisers take a cautious approach and deal with the additional logistics.

Like most people everywhere and in whatever industry, Darren’s hopes for 2021 include “getting back to some sort of normalcy soonest!”

Photo: © Darren Russell