Marcel Bezuidenhout, the owner of Cape Town-based Audio Engineering, was flying under the radar, since forming his company in 1998, while he retained his clients and steadily built a collection of professional equipment. That changed when he was the first in South Africa to take ownership of a black Prolyte Verto truss system and four Prolyft Aetos two-ton chain hoists.
“I do fly under the radar and I’ve never advertised,” Bezuidenhout said. “But, I want to change that. We do many international shows which people don’t know about, such as the two world tours with the Mandela Trilogy, which is a musical tribute to the life of Nelson Mandela.” Bezuidenhout was also one of the first in the country to own DiGiCo, Waves Audio and Quest.
When Paul Hatfield from Prolyte visited the country early in 2018, he and Robert Izzett of DWR (Prolyte distributors in Africa) popped in at the Audio Engineering warehouse. “We chatted and Paul asked if I would be coming to Frankfurt,” Bezuidenhout recalled. “When I attended Prolight and Sound a few months later. I was shown the Verto, and it looked great.” Prolyte ran a special deal on their stand. Anyone who ordered Verto at the exhibition was offered the trussing powder coated in black for free.
“I had wanted black truss for a long time and I thought this was the moment to make the leap,” said Bezuidenhout. While the Audio Engineering team have not yet used the new Verto on a gig, they are amazed at how it works and are contemplating more stock in future. “It’s not just the look of it, but the actual connection mechanism that is revolutionary,” Bezuidenhout commented. “The speed to get the system up is impressive, and there is no noise.”
He currently has 8 x 3s, 8 x 2s, and 8 x1, 8 halves, four corners and dollies. The only challenge for Bezuidenhout was from other rental companies. “For this reason, I ordered the Verto only in black… this will be a complete system” Bezuidenhout said, “Once others in our industry start adopting Verto I’ll go with the standard silver Verto trussing.”
Owning three different trussing brands, Audio Engineering is currently selling off old stock and only keeping their existing Prolyte pieces. They also have Prolyte decks comprising of 18 Perspex and 60 wooden units. Brand new to their retinue are 4 Prolyft Aetos two-ton hoists and chain motors. “The recommendation came from Denzil Smith from MGG Productions,” Bezuidenhout explained. “We were at the Prolyte stand at Frankfurt. I had recently bought a Meyer PA system, which is some of the heavier speakers on the market, and I wanted something to lift them. Denzil said that out of all his motor stock, Prolyte were his most reliable hoists.”