4 Mar 2014

How to control a follow spot with a joystick, Martin-style

Jeff Morgan of Lots of Watts Central Coast received an unusual request from a local Seniors Club for a remote controlled follow spot. It was required because the roof height at the rear of their venue was low plus a large, traditional follow spot was too much for club members to physically handle.

Jeff’s brief was to provide a remote follow spot that could follow people across the stage whilst being operated with a joystick. After a year or more of wading through ideas and products to fit into budgets and ease of use, Jeff decided that a Martin MAC Aura was the best solution.

After a demo from Show Technology, the client saw that the MAC Aura was not only bright enough but  low power enough to attract some funding from the local government which is encouraging clubs and the like to use energy efficient products.

“The Aura had a great spot-like beam that worked well as a soft edge spot,” commented Jeff. “It is being controlled on a laptop via Martin Light Jockey so they can use the LJ Manager. This allows a picture of the stage to come up whenever the laptop is turned on and presets on that picture replicate positions onstage. At any stage the lamp can be taken over manually and can follow those around the room.”

Jeff reports that with great support from Show Technology, the job was very well received by those learning to use the lamp and control.

“A far as I know it’s the only MAC Aura being used solely as a follow spot,” he added. “However, the MAC Aura goes so wide it can also cover the stage to be used as a colour wash.”


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