Event Gear wins TPSA Award
was a proud moment for MJ Event Gear when they were
nominated for various categories at the TPSA Awards
held on Monday evening, 21st August. It was even more
exciting when MJ Event Gear scooped up the award for
the Favourite Lighting Rental Company, sponsored by
The prestigious nominations included MJ Event Gear for
the Favourite Technical Staging Company. Members from
the MJ team were also praised, with Francois van der
Merwe and Johnny Scholtz nominated for Lighting Designer
of the Year and Willie Bothma nominated for the Best
Newcomer Lighting Designer of the Year.
“It felt awesome to win,” commented Mike
Jones, who also attended the TPSA conference held earlier
in the day and provided the necessary lighting for the
awards ceremony thereafter. “I am very proud of
the guys at MJ. It’s their hard work that made
this possible,” he said.
MJ Event Gear also walked away with the TPSA award in
2004 and are pleased to be recognised for their role
in the industry.
The TPSA (Technical Production Services Association)
is an association of members who operate within the
Live Entertainment / Events Industry. Please visit www.tpsa.co.za
for more information.
Event Gear lights ‘YELLO’ for MTN and
announced their sponsorship of $65 million to
FIFA to secure their position as the official
telecommunications sponsor for FIFA 2010 and MJ
Event Gear was asked by AV Tech to design the
entire ground support structure and supply no
less than 250 lights! AV Tech was contracted by
Idea Lab to oversee all technical.
Everything happened pretty fast, from a phone
call on Monday to a load in on Tuesday! There
was no time to relax with most of the crew working
through the night on Tuesday and then again on
Wednesday for the ultimate Experience in yellow.
Thursday night saw some high profile guests attending
– Tokyo Sexwale, & Ivan Khosa to mention
but a few.
MJ’s Dale Strydom and Mike Jones put their
heads together and came up with a fantastic design
using a ground support system that would be covered
with a Bedouin tent, supplied by Nomadic.
Once the ground support was up, Operator Willie
Bothma was given free reign with the Lighting Design.
MJ Event Gear was proud to be part of such a great
Porsche 911 Turbo launch
a larger interior, a distinctive aerodynamic exterior
and the ability to reach 100 km / h in a mere 3.9
seconds, heads turned at the launch of the new Porsche
Some 250 invited guests consisting of Porsche owners
and club member were introduced to the new 911 Turbo
at Summer Place.
Event Gear’s Vaughn Marti says a successful integration
was put together between the music score on the DVD
and live artists performing on various instruments including
a trumpet, piano and violin in the Apollo Room. The
artists accompanied the DVD, with the intention of comparing
a musical symphony to the running of the car’s
smooth and dynamic engine.
MJ was responsible for the lighting and the Production
Management, ensuring that the technical aspects of this
show, from the stage, draping, lighting and video screen,
ran without a hitch.
Shrimpling leaves MJ after four years and will be
missed. We would like to take this opportunity to
wish her everything of the best and much happiness
for her future.
Smit is our new Operations Administrator.
Dina has lived in London for the past 18 months, prior
to that working for a logistics company in Cape Town.
We are pleased to have her on board and hope she enjoys
a long and happy time with us
we mentioned in our previous newsletter, our very
own Francois van der Merwe was off to Germany for
the production of “Africa’s Calling”,
aimed to promote the FIFA World Cup in Africa in 2010.
It seems there is never a dull moment when Francois
is around. “I was standing when suddenly I heard
a big bang and the barrier moved past me,” he
said referring to the car which unscrupulously interrupted
the event. “There was screaming and shouting
and cops moving past.”
Thankfully Francois and the team with him were not
injured. As for the actual show, it was well received
and we look forward to 2010.
is always amazed at how generous a society can
be especially in a time of crisis. The hearts
that help raise R130 000 for Jenna Clarkson,
the five year old daughter of Billy Clarkson
from AV Worx who tragically died recently, were
As a tribute to Billy, MJ Event Gear initiated
a fundraising event held at their premises on
the 30th July. The response from sponsors, people
who attended and donated and of course the wonderful
team who put everything together was truly inspirational.
“I was overwhelmed that people’s
hearts were so big,” said Mike Jones.
“The industry gave back to a guy who was
a great AV person. We raised R130 000, but once
all the pledges have been paid, it should increase
to R150 000.”
The funds will be managed by a financial institution
and invested for Jenna’s tertiary education
or as a back up should she need it beforehand.
With Barry Hilton keeping guests in stitches,
and in perfect South African style, a lamb on
the spit for lunch, live entertainment and an
auction, this was truly an unforgettable afternoon.
Thank you to everyone who gave. Please visit
for more information on contributing to this
is off to PLASA,
the London based tradeshow in September, to keep
up to date with the latest trends and technology
in all disciplines from lighting to sound and
going window shopping,” laughs Mike. “I
have been to PLASA a good couple of times and
it’s always great to network with the companies
I have met over the years.”
will be meeting up with some of the larger rental
companies to see how things are done on that side
of the world.
last did you visit the drive-in? Well the Veldskoen
Drive-in was the place to be on Saturday, 19th
August from 2pm for the premiere of The Fast and
the Furious Tokyo Drift, held by Ster-Kinekor
This hip hop occasion included a performance by
Skwatta Kamp and some of YFM’s
finest DJs keeping the vibe upbeat. Car enthusiasts
thoroughly enjoyed finding out whose car had the
best (and loudest!)sound followed by the much
anticipated movie screening.
MJ’s Ryno Kotze and Sidney
Keke catered for the stage sound requirements
for both the band and the DJs.
heads together and finding out how different countries
manage their small businesses in regard to strategies,
ideas and Experiences, was what the Tri-Nations Summit
on Small Business was all about.
Held in August at the International Convention Centre
in Durban, the participating representatives were from
India, Brazil, and the host of the conference, South
Africa’s SEDA (Small Enterprise Development Agency).MJ
Event Gear, with Vaughn Marti at the helm, were commissioned
Girl Events, to provided the sound, lighting, trussing,
rigging and three screens used for the conference as
well as the general Production Management.
were wined and dined at two gala dinners preceding the
daytime conferences which were attended by 500 delegates.
The first evening’s entertainment was by the Durban
Divas, the George Mari Band, a well established KZN
Jazz band, the KZN Youth Wind Band and DJs. For Vaughn,
however, the second gala evening was very special indeed.
It was held at the uShaka Marine World’s Phantom
Ship, which of course is an enormous and beautiful aquarium
- one of the five largest in the world. “This
really was one of the best venues I’ve ever seen,”
said Vaughn. “Guests were surrounded by tanks
with fish swimming inside. "