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Unveiling the creative process behind Take That’s pre-rig waterfall truss from HOF

When global pop sensation Take That announced their "This Life On Tour" tour last year, fans knew they were in for a night they would “Never Forget.” Running from April to November 2024, the tour promises a spectacular blend of visual and auditory experiences guaranteed to captivate audiences worldwide. In this blog, we’ll dive into the creative and technical journey behind one of the tour's most stunning effects—a waterfall feature made from pre-rig trusses.


Take That Pre-Rig Truss Entedi Entertainment Technology Distribution UK and Ireland

ER Productions

ER Productions, the award-winning global experts in entertainment lasers and special effects, received the brief back in February 2024.

The vision was bold: create a durable, touring-friendly waterfall effect that could run for three to four minutes, producing a high volume of water while ensuring safety and reliability. The setup had to be durable, quick, easy to assemble, disassemble, and maintain a clean appearance. With just seven weeks from approval to delivery, the ER team had to design the system and swiftly source all necessary parts.


The team was led by Technical Director Tom Vallis, who was responsible for the initial pre-rig concept and ideas on making the effect a tourable solution. David Holmes, R&D Engineer, modelled the system using CAD software. This phase was crucial for visualizing the setup and ensuring all components fit together seamlessly.


HOF Logo

Tom Vallis explained, “We opted for HOF’s MLT THREE Pre-Rig truss due to their renowned strength and durability. The setup included suspending custom water tanks (260cm wide) within 3-meter sections of MLT THREE Trusses, supporting up to 3 tonnes of water across a 9-meter span.”



ER Productions Pre-Rig MLT Three Truss Waterfall HOF


Steven Macey, Electronics Engineer, built the control panel that allowed for intricate management of the waterfall effect. Each enclosure featured a 32A 3-phase power input and pass-through, along with DMX In/Thru, enabling multiple sections to be daisy-chained for various waterfall lengths. The MLT THREE design also allowed for future curved effects without needing additional truss spacers or angle sections.


Each tank contained two pumps controlled via DMX and released around 1,000 litres of water per minute onto the stage waterfall tray. A bespoke frame securely held the tank within the truss, allowing precise adjustments to ensure the trays were perfectly level. Electrical Cabinets were located at the end of each truss section, which housed DMX decoders, VFDs (Variable Frequency Drives), relays, and other control components.


This innovative setup not only enhanced visual appeal but also provided flexibility and control over the water effects.


Once the design was approved, the units were assembled at ER’s Dartford head office, where precision and attention to detail ensured the system's reliability and performance.

Pre-rig truss waterfall Take That ER Productions HOF MLT THREE

Reflecting on the project, Tom Vallis stated, “The system performed flawlessly. The pre-rig trusses, transported using HOF’s MLT THREE folding dollies, allowed our technicians to set up quickly and efficiently to maintain the show's tight schedule.”


“Our collaboration with HOF proved invaluable. Their engineering team was prompt and thorough, helping determine the feasibility of various configurations to best suit our needs. We purchased the trusses through HOF’s UK and Ireland distributor, Entedi."


"Working with the Entedi team is always a pleasure - their support and responsiveness were crucial in meeting our tight deadlines."


Marcel Wijnberger, Technical Manager at Entedi commented "Since the HOF brand joined our portfolio, we have seen the MLT range become one of the UK & Ireland's preferred pre-rig truss. It's great that the team from ER have come onboard, it is a testament to the technology in, and versatility of the product." 


Emma Howorth, Entedi's customer support, remarked “It’s always a pleasure collaborating with the ER team on their innovative stage designs, and we can’t wait to work with them again on their upcoming projects.”


Tom Vallis concluded, “Creating the waterfall effect for Take That’s "This Life On Tour" was a challenging yet rewarding endeavour. As we look forward to future projects, this experience underscores the importance of innovation, collaboration, and precision in bringing creative concepts to life. The lessons learned and the relationships built during this project will undoubtedly pave the way for even more spectacular special effects in the future.”

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