Less than a month from the show, in Frankfurt from April 10th to 12th, we talked about the 2018 edition with Michael Biwer, Group Show Director Entertainment, Media & Creative Industries (Musikmesse / Prolight + Sound) di Messe Frankfurt Exhibition.
Connessioni – What are the news of Prolight + Sound 2018?
MB – In addition to numerous renowned new exhibitors, such as Bosch Rexroth, NEC Display Solutions and Aluvision, Prolight + Sound offers several premières in the complementary programme of events. Thus, the Immersive Technology Forum will be held for the first time within the framework of the fair on Thursday, 12 April. There, experts will offer insights into technological innovations that blur the boundaries between reality and virtual perception, including 3D audio, virtual reality and holography. Another innovation is the Future of Audio + Music Technology seminars on Friday, 13 April, which spotlight subjects having a decisive influence on the future of music production and live performances. For example, there will be lectures on touchscreen control for studio and stage, wearable technologies, artificial intelligence and machine learning.
C – What are the initiatives that will be proposed again this year?
MB – Many of the established events will be held again in 2018. For instance, the Prolight + Sound Conference, a professional-development event aimed at both newcomers and experts with many years of experience. The programme will be more international than ever before with around 50 percent of lectures being held in English. Moreover, there will be a special area for the presentation of Livestream and Vitec video-production and streaming solutions: at the New Media AV Live Production Forum, visitors will be able to see demonstrations of ready-to-use production chains, from the camera to live distribution. As last year, the outdoor exhibition space will have an area for showing LED walls, mobile stages, tent systems and PA systems under real-life conditions.
C – Considering that the world of entertainment is rapidly evolving, how Prolight + Sound wants to manage these changes?
MB – Without doubt, the live-entertainment business is driven more by innovations than almost any other. With the professional-development events mentioned before, we single out future-oriented subjects and give visitors the chance to get ahead through knowledge acquisition. But that’s not all. Because we hold the fair in cooperation with the industry, we can also offer exhibitors top presentation options for their innovative solutions. For example, the Manufacturers’ forum, a lecture platform for pioneering technologies and best practices with contributions from companies such as ArKaos, Audinate, Gerriets, K-Array, Klippel, Prolyte Group and Wireless Solutions. Additionally, we support exhibitors with the organisation of special areas for the presentation of future-oriented technologies via specific projects. For instance, there will be demonstration areas by, inter alia, d&b Audiotechnik and Astro Spatial Audio on the subject of immersive sound.
C – What are the advantages of organizing the trade-fair duo Prolight + Sound and Musikmesse concurrently?
MB – There are profound synergies between the music industry and the live entertainment and AV media-technology sector. This is especially evident on the sales side because numerous musical-instrument retailers and wholesalers also sell event technology. By holding Musikmesse and Prolight + Sound concurrently on three days, manufacturers of appropriate products have the chance to meet potential customers they will not find at other fairs. Moreover, semi-professional and professional technologies are coming ever closer together, especially in the audio segment. The two fairs give visitors the chance to discover a very wide range of products and themes at the same time and place. In this connection, there will be a hall that, for the first time this year, is part of both Prolight + Sound and Musikmesse: Hall 4.1 concentrates the ‘Audio, DJ + Recording’ segment in one place and presents products that are relevant not only to studio operators and professional audio users but also to musicians.
C – Are there new services for visitors in the new website of PL+S? If yes, what are they?
MB – The new Prolight + Sound website has a clear ‘mobile first’ approach. Thanks to the complete redesign, it is now much easier for users of mobile devises to navigate and find relevant information. Additionally, the website is more simply structured than before. Regardless of whether the visitor is looking for tickets, exhibition-space offers, hall plans or travel information, they can navigate to all points with just one click. Services such as the exhibitor search engine and the event tool are also easier to find.
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