UK Tour of The Curious Incident of the Dog in the Night Time Employs Avolites Dimmers

by Michael Eddy

A bespoke dimmer world dolly system using three Avolites ART2000 dimmer racks is proving the perfect solution for the ongoing UK and international tour of the National Theatre's multi-award-winning production of The Curious Incident of the Dog in the Night Time.  

Since first appearing to great acclaim in 2012, the play has picked up an enviable clutch of awards including seven Olivier Awards for its West End run and five Tony Awards and seven Drama Desk Awards for its Broadway production. 

Providing the touring production with a reliable dimming, power distribution, hoist, and pyrotechnical control system is a unique dimmer world system designed by the tour's production electrician, Chris Mence. British rental company, Hawthorn, supplied the three Avolites ART2000 dimmer racks that made-up part of Mence's dimmer system alongside their provision of the tour's entire lighting element.   

"The dimmer world system enables us to roll in the entire lighting control and mains distribution package in one hit," says Mence. "It's a plug-and-play solution with the Avolites ART2000 racks providing the dimming control for the production's lighting elements."

Mence has been involved in The Curious Incident of the Dog in the Night Time since 2014 when the show was relaunched into the Gielgud Theatre following initial runs at the National's Dorfman Theatre (formerly the Cottesloe Theatre) and the Apollo Theatre in the West End. The established electrician continues to work on the tour as it embarks on its first international leg following a successful UK run.

"The dimming requirements for The Curious Incident of the Dog in the Night Time tour changed as we moved over to new LED fixtures for the lighting rig in January 2017," says Mence. "The ART2000 units offer a Hot-Patch system. The system is easily changeable and made integration much simpler."

ART2000's Hot-Patch system allows each channel of each multicore output connector to be patched to any channel. It incorporates a battery-operated lamp test indicator, making faults easy to find when the same circuit powers more than one fixture, even when there is no mains power available. "The Hot-Patch system is a tool that we simply couldn't work without," says Mence.

Other features of the ART2000 rack include full DMX patch and merge (two DMX lines), dimmer curve, and limit selection options per channel, power OK indicators and Analog Volt and Amp metering or optional Digital metering. The ART2000 also features a single-pole connector or P17 CeeNorm mains input and loop out options, with RCB or optional ELDC selectable earth leakage protection. "The system is a good, solid touring dimming and distribution solution," says Mence. 

Localized versions of the ART2000 dimmer product are available to meet regional requirements, with alternative Hot-Patch connectors and/or arrangements, as well as with different multipole connector types and wiring to suit a wide variety of countries and regulations.

"We're honored to be on board for both the International and UK tour of The Curious Incident of the Dog in the Night-Time," comments Mark Burnett, Business Development Manager at Hawthorn. "The ART2000 racks are the industry standard and a truly reliable and popular workhorse within our rental fleet. It's a privilege to have them out on the road with such a prestigious show."

The Curious Incident of the Dog in the Night Time tour completed its UK run on September 16 2017 and is now embarking on its international leg that will include The Netherlands, Canada, Australia, and Asia. 

Further information from Avolites: