Gearhouse Splitbeam, the South African theatre equipment rental company, have invested in 53 new ProLyft Aetos motors and 3 Aetos 24-way remote controllers to keep up with demand of upcoming theatre productions. The company was established by Alistair Kilbee and Ofer Lapid in 2010, who realised the challenges of long-term rentals and who wanted to provide the best professional gear at the best possible prices to their clients.
“We have sent the 53 new Aetos motors, along with 47 of our existing stock – a total of 100 Aetos motors – to the Philippines where they will begin a world tour,” explained Alistair Kilbee, managing director. “I will be joining the production in Manila in January 2019 as Technical Director, but will not be touring with the show, only flying in for load in/load outs as required.”
Investing in half tons and one-ton units, Splitbeam have gone for double brake units. “The double brake is an international safety requirement, so we have decided to upgrade our existing stock and purchase all new motors with double brakes so that we are not limited for touring purposes,” he explained. “In order to tour internationally, it is important to keep our standards high. The control is the most important part when it comes to operating motors, so it is worth every cent to go for superior quality and reliability. We purchased three Aetos 24-way remote controllers- these are a fantastic addition to our stock as they help to centralise control for the motors which is important when dealing with large quantities of motors.”
In addition, Splitbeam have invested in Eilon load cells. “The Eilon load cells are crucial in monitoring your load weights while lifting to ensure an even distribution of weight between motors. The great thing about the wireless Eilon system that we purchased is that the cells can be monitored continuously in real time via an iPad. This particular production has a complex rigging system, so the load cells will help to ensure the safety of the performers and longevity of our Aetos Motors.”
Splitbeam have been involved in a number of international touring productions such as Priscilla Queen of the Desert, Evita and The Sound of Music to name a few, and the team are very proud to have built up a good reputation in the industry both in South Africa and around the world. “It is not always easy competing with the equipment requirements, fluctuating exchange rate and logistics but these challenges are what we thrive on, and we are able to learn and continuously improve our service delivery as a result,” said Alistair. “Theatre is my passion and lighting is my background, so Splitbeam was originally just a lighting company specializing in Theatre rental. However, we have had to adapt to meet the technical needs of theatre productions and are very pleased to now be able to provide the full package, lighting, audio, AV and rigging as well as technical management services.”