Logo ESC aka Eurovision Stockholm 2016

EUROVISION tv

 

 

 

 

 

 WELCOME TO THE 10TH EDITION OF THE EUROVISION DIARY!



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April 2

Wazz up music lovers!
Last day of freedom................ we're moving into our hotel tomorrow afternoon and from Monday morning, we're locked up at The Globe for almost six weeks. I guess it will be almost summer before we get out of there! I'm sure some of you ask yourself, why on earth are they moving into a hotel, when they live in Stockholm? Well......... it's quite simple. Eurovision as a production is extremely demanding, and you need to get into the bubble. You simply can't have your daily life interfering with your job during these six weeks. Plus, of course, my home in Stockholm doesn't come with a lobby bar........ not yet at least.......

3 globe

Here she is! The tallest spheric building in the world! The Stockholm Globe Arena! Its grand opening was on February 19, 1989, and the first artist ever performing a show in here was Gary Moore. Rest in peace Mr Scarface! Few bend those strings as you did. BUT, it was also the home of Eurovision Song Contest 2000. My VERY first TV show! And also the show that put my name on the international map and has generated adventures for me all around the world ever since. I owe my entire career to this show!

jons

We were so young and innocent back then............ Here is Fredrik Jönsson with the Virtuoso. This was the first REAL gig this puppy did (referring to the desk).

ola

But I was really cool already back then! Check it out! Double radios must count for something...............

19 lookup

Anyhoooooo, that was then, now is now! It's a new year and a new show, and we've spent tons of hours doing site surveys in the building, making sure that all we want to do actually fits. For some strange reason we always end up staring into the ceiling..........

20 swefin

Besides the travels to tradeshows, we've also been around looking at what different manufacturers have to offer. Here is the gang in Belgium, visiting Barco. Nice touch with the flags! From left to right- Tobbe Magnesved - Technical Manager for staging, Fredrik Jönsson - Lighting Designer, Frida Arvidsson - Production Designer, Viktor Brattström - Production Designer and our token Finn, Mikki Kunttu - Video Content Designer, hence the white and blue flag........

5 frida

I think it's important for you to know what Frida looks like in a hard hat.........

4 viktor

 And Viktor too! Having a blog is just such a great tool for making new friends!

21 fredrik

Back to Barco! We found plenty of cool stuff at their factory, but it was bad timing. This ¨small¨ projector is laser driven and has an amazing contrast. But....... it does not travel that well......... and it weighs more than a dead horse........But some day!

10 svt

Ok, back to reality! This is our production office at SVT. As you can tell, we are REALLY busy!

8 svt

No really, the picture above is from the first day we got access to the room, which used to belong to the SVT workshop. Now it looks like this.If you can guess who sits behind the giant M, you will win a t-shirt! Send your guesses to: This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it.

6 floorlight

It feels like we've done a million tests in this project so far, just to make sure that our plans will hold up once you take them out of a drawing and into reality.
Like this one: How long does it take to melt a Sharpy?

7 led

Or this one? How do you color match the LED floor with the LED wall when the wall has a darkened diffuser?

9 coolshot

Or......how the hell (can I say hell in here????) did we do this!?!?!?!?!?

 33 camera

Needless to say, all tests are done on camera, using the same broadcast equipment as we will in the show, to make sure it works under the correct conditions.

Ok folks, kids are hungry, and so am I, so I got to go!

Stay out of trouble, and may the force be with you all!

 

 

 

April 1

Happy April Fool's Day! You may or may not find a prank or two on this page so keep an eye out!

So here we go again.... For those of you new to the Diary, we report on the daily activities leading up to the Eurovision Song Contest with regards to the lighting, staging, video, sound, pyro and God knows what else. This year is the 61st ESC and if you've never heard of Eurovision, you can learn more than you need from our friends at eurovision.tv.

We usually tell you what we did the day before so don't get confused! If things are super crazy we may fall a day behind but we always manage to catch up. And hey, if you're ever bored, you can read the diaries from 2009 (Moscow), 2010 (Oslo) and 2013 (Malmö). Just go to the M & M home page and look under References. The menu at the right runs in order backwards from the top down, with the most recent on top. If you have questions or comments, you can share on our facebook group "What Could Possibly Go Wrong?" We have to approve posts, but that's only because last summer a bunch of people started posting porn and fake Ray-Ban ads (thank you Marian Sandberg for the heads up on that!)

Anyway, we'll be loading in to The Globe on Monday, April 4, so I wanted to take a few days to share what we've been doing so far, because we've been working on this project since August!

11-olafred

Every year when I'm involved, I really try to push the creative team to try new grounds, to do the unexpected, and be bold enough to do stuff that has never been done before. Needles to say, the creative team is always on board with this! So, how do you do the new and unexpected? Well........ using brand new technology that has not been used before is the easy way out! Having that said, me and our lighting designer, Fredrik Jönsson took a plane to a remote island outside the mainland of Europe. It's a strange place, where they drive on the wrong side of the street, and claim that steak and kidney pie is really good! For those of you that are still interested of going there after hearing these shocking things, the country is United Kingdom, and the city we chose to go to was London. We went there to visit the PLASA show, and oh my, it's actually not in London at all............
Anyway............. we had 5 days on this island on a river that has not seen a living fish since 1743, outside of London. Great five days indeed with lots of meetings, and finding several potential toys that could take this show to the next level!

 

12-rehab

Next stop was Las Vegas and the LDI show. We stayed at the Hard Rock hotel, and the pool bar service was horrible, and everyone working there was butt-ugly............

 

13-fredvegas

But we finally found a place that served decent apple juice, and Fredrik smiled again.

 

14-canyon

We had an idea of mounting moving lights on a helicopter and flying it around the venue during the grand finale of our show.

 

15-olaaaaaaa

So, one helicopter ride was ordered and off we went!

 

16-copter

Experiment failed completely becuase we ran out of gas and had to land in a big pit in the middle of nowhere. Lucky for us, the local Indian tribe had both chips and champagne, so we could tolerate it.

 

17-vegas

Back in Vegas, we thought it would be a great idea to see what happened if you took a Clay Paky Hepikos, took it to the top of a skyscraper and turned it on. Turned out that we woke up half the hotel 500 meters away............SORRY!

 

18-lobster 

Work hard-eat good. And what would be more obvious to order than a lobster when you are in the middle of a desert!? We had a great week in Vegas, and we DID actually visit the tradeshow floor every day. All and all, we found a LOT of fun things during these two trips, and you'll see several of them put to use in our show within the next couple of weeks.  But for now, I'll ask you this, since we are in some sort of ocean theme here at the end of todays update: What do sea monsters eat?????? FISH & SHIPS!

Until tomorrow..............

Welcome to Eurovision Diary 2016

Wow! I can’t believe that this is the 10th edition of the Eurovision Diary!

This diary started in 2002, when we did Eurovision in Estonia, and my idea was that this would be a great way for the family and friends of my crew to see what our daily lives were like. Since the crew was from Sweden, the first year it was written in Swedish. But directly after that show, one of our technical partners, High End Systems, came back to me and asked if I could do next year’s edition in English. It turned out that they were sitting in Austin, checking it every day, without having a clue what the hell I was talking about. But at least the pictures were funny…… Mind you, the word “blog” did not even exist back then!

But that was the past, let’s focus on the present, and the present involves this small thing called The Eurovision Song Contest! My name is Ola Melzig, and I’m the Technical Director of the largest music television show in the world. I would like to welcome you to our world, where you can follow our daily lives from now to May 17, and watch us trying to tame this beast!

Three weeks into this project, on September 27th, I’d just taken my son to his morning ice hockey practice, when I got a text message from our LD Fredrik Jönsson. From that moment on, everything changed. Our beloved friend, colleague and partner in all kind of various crimes, Pontus "Bullen" Lagerbielke had passed away. He lost his battle to cancer, and it all happened SO fast. I don’t remember much of the days after. It’s all a blur. And up to this day, it still feels unreal that he is no longer with us. Besides all the shows and tours he did worldwide, Bullen managed to cram in 6 Eurovision Song Contests in his busy schedule as assistant Lighting Designer, and/or operator for lighting and/or video. Bullen was that kind of guy. Whatever you asked him to do, you know he would do it 110%, and better than anyone else. And he would always do it with a smile on his face, well, unless catering sucked, which has been the case on too many Eurovisions to be honest…… We did 5 Eurovisions together, the first one in Tallin, Estonia, back in 2002, the last one in Malmö 2013. He was also a permanent member of Fredrik Jönsson’s FOH on Melodifestivalen the past 6 years. Needless to say, Bullen was one of the very first people we booked to do the 2016 Eurovision Song Contest. I know that I speak for the entire production team when I say that you have been missed in every single step of this production, Bullen. Thanks for everything you did for all of us for all these years. Thanks for the joy, the passion, the knowledge, the experience and the laughter, and all your absolutely brilliant ideas.

This show, we do in honor of your memory. I know this is a bold statement, but we are about to do the best, and most spectacular Eurovision ever.

Rest In Peace our dear friend.

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Contact Ola Melzig

  • Europe  +46 704 104 343
  • US +1 719 466 1785
  • ola {at} m-m-pr.com

Contact Joan Lyman Melzig

  • Europe  +46 708 204 767
  • US +1 719 466 1784
  • joan {at} m-m-pr.com