Three years after its planned Middle East debut was postponed due to COVID-19, Ultra Abu Dhabi finally arrived in the UAE capital, taking place at Etihad Park on the weekend of 4-5 March.
The festival has spawned spin-offs in the likes of Japan, South Korea, Brazil and Peru since its 1999 Miami debut, with A-list DJs and increasingly audacious production values a given wherever it goes. And the inaugural Abu Dhabi event was no different, with the two-day spectacle playing host to some of the biggest names in EDM, including Calvin Harris, Skrillex, Afrojack and Armin Van Buuren.
Ensuring the production matched the quality of line-up was MediaPro International, which provided a turnkey technical solution, delivering audio, video, lighting and rigging to the organisers’ specifications. “Ultra knew exactly the design they wanted to execute for the Abu Dhabi show,” explained MediaPro’s COO, Shaam Pudaruth.
“We had our Special Project Director, Hugh Turner, on the job,” he added. “Having worked on multiple international events including the FIFA World Cup 2010 South Africa Opening Ceremony, as well as the FIFA World Cup 2022 Qatar Concerts and Closing Ceremony, he was the ideal person for the job.”
The video-heavy stage design required multiple custom frames to accommodate the unusually shaped LED screens, which were made from Unilumin UGC04 panels. “The main challenge came from the LED and its rigging,” Pudaruth recalled. “With multiple screens of different shapes and sizes hanging overhead, our video and rigging team worked closely, using custom frames and a detailed rigging plot to ensure that the design was delivered exactly as requested.”
The supply also included an extensive lighting rig featuring Robe BMFL Blades, MegaPiontes and Spiiders, CHAUVET Professional Color STRIKE Ms, and Astera Titan Tubes, with MA Lighting grandMA3 and Avolites Pearl Tiger Touch II control options. The PA meanwhile was an L-Acoustics K-Series system, with DiGiCo SD10 for control.
“The show was a massive success in terms of attendance and of course the way both stages looked,” Pudaruth concluded. “We look forward to seeing Ultra return to the region very soon.”
Photos: MediaPro International