Dubai, UAE: Key decision makers from the regional entertainment, event, media and creation industries are gathering in Dubai, as the Prolight + Sound Middle East 2018 trade fair opened today (23 September 2018) to wide fanfare.
The 3rd edition of the annual three-day event runs until 25th September 2018 at the Dubai International Convention and Exhibition Centre, with 42 exhibitors from 10 countries displaying 120-plus brands, representing a healthy 50 percent increase over the previous year.
A number of debut exhibitors and countries are participating at the dedicated showpiece event, underlying its growing global appeal in a Middle East and African professional Audio Visual (AV) solutions market that’s currently estimated to be worth more than US$5 billion.
Among the debut exhibiting countries this year are the USA (Gator Cases), Canada (Stageline) and the Netherlands (ADJ), while Clay Paky, a subsidiary of the German lighting manufacturer Osram, will also be present with its professional lighting systems for the entertainment sector.
They’re rubbing shoulders with many of the exhibition’s returning heavyweights, including Germany’s MONACOR INTERNATIONAL, Czech-headquartered Robe, and FBT Elettronica from Italy, as the spotlight shines of the latest technologies and developments in one of the world’s most exciting emerging market places.
Ahmed Pauwels, CEO of Messe Frankfurt Middle East, the organiser of Prolight + Sound Middle East, said: “The Middle East is a rising destination for the events and entertainment industry.
“With the region continuing to feature as an important stop on the annual calendar of leading international performers, demand for top of the rung professional audio and visual equipment will continue to rise.
“This is even more evident in the UAE, where the professional AV market is estimated to be worth US$707 million in 2018, while Saudi’s nascent entertainment sector will be another major drawcard, as the Kingdom earmarks US$64 billion to be injected into live events, theme parks, cinema, cultural attractions and tourism over the next decade.
“The momentum is building and will continue to expand in both the fixed spaces as well as further events and productions, and Prolight + Sound Middle East fills the essential need in the market that is reflective of the enormous developmental energy that is currently driving the regional sector,” Pauwels said.
A returning key focal point this year at Prolight + Sound Middle East is the 2nd Events Technology & Entertainment Development Forum, where 24 thought leaders are sharing their ideas on how the UAE and the wider region can continue its rise as a major destination for large scale entertainment, sporting, business and cultural events.
Among the highlights today was an Experience Session with La Perle by Dragone, Dubai’s only permanent theatre performance, along with key insights into the award-winning installation of a complete sound system in Abu Dhabi’s Sheikh Zayed Grand Mosque.
Elie Khairallah, Technical Director at Venuetech, oversaw the installation of the new complete sound system for Abu Dhabi’s Sheikh Zayed Grand Mosque. Khairallah said installing a state-of-the-art sound system customised for 24/7 continuous operability had some unique challenges.
“In such an iconic project like the Sheikh Zayed Grand Mosque, where the walls are in special marble covered in gold and precious materials, we had to take extra precautions to avoid any damage,” said Khairallah.
“The other challenge was working after 10pm since the Mosque remains operational during the day with visitors from all over the world. In the end though, our greatest satisfaction was in providing the highest performance and exceeding our expected simulation, and to handover the project within the timeline.”
Meanwhile on the exhibition floor, UAE manufacturer ATEÏS Middle East was another first-time Prolight + Sound Middle East 2018 exhibitor looking to make the most of its participation.
Managing Director Hussam Al Haddad said the show was the perfect fit for ATEÏS’ pro audio products: “Audio is our main product and it’s in our company DNA,” said Al Haddad. “We’re innovators in this segment, whether it’s voice evacuation systems, PA (public address) systems, or professional audio systems. It’s our core business, and as Dubai is our home, Prolight + Sound Middle East is our show.
“Obviously, we’re presenting our brand ATEÏS, but we’re also exhibiting our other innovative brands such as the Terracom system, which is an IP-based PA system. For line arrays, we have the Messenger Pro, and we also have high end pro audio speakers from Sound Tube.
Al Haddad also highlighted another of its innovative brands, Boutique: “Boutique is our core focus at Prolight + Sound Middle East,” he added. It’s the first self-healing voice evacuation and PA system. This means it has a unique feature that allows it to heal itself from the network in case one of its components failed.”
Prolight + Sound Middle East is the region’s foremost trade fair dedicated to technologies and services for the entertainment, events, creation and media industries. It returns with its successful Dante training workshop by Audinate, where AV professionals can gather more in-depth knowledge about key design concepts and common technologies deployed in typical medium-sized Dante networks
Prolight + Sound Middle East is the fifth instalment of the international network of Prolight + Sound events worldwide, and is co-located with Light Middle East 2018, the region’s dedicated exhibition, conference, and awards for lighting design and technology. More information is available at: www.pls.ae.messefrankfurt.com.