Pixels synchronises film screens

Pixels provides BrightSign media players to achieve “amazing technical worldwide premier of renowned artist’s latest work

Dunstable, 5 August 2013. Pixels, a European distributor of digital media players and AV systems, today announced that it has supplied 11 synchronised BrightSign HD220 media players for the premier – which opened on 2 August – of a new work by Michael Nyman which will be a major installation at the Summerhall arts centre in Edinburgh.

The BrightSign HD220 is normally deployed in digital signage applications – but on this occasion, the absolute accuracy and reliability with which it can deliver content to a screen was put to a very different use. Michael Nyman – one of Britain’s most celebrated and innovative composers, and, latterly, a film-maker – wanted to take his extensive familiarity with Dziga Vertov's silent 1929 masterpiece, "Man With a Movie Camera," (itself an experimental film with no story and no actors) and “re-imagine” it by replaying it on eleven screens – with each version subtly different.

“Nyman’s ten films share identical frames which are synched exactly to the original film and additionally all of the films share a common soundtrack written by the artist and composer,” said Paul Robertson, Curator at Summerhall. “All ten films and the original work will be able to be viewed from a single view point in the gallery space or the visitor may walk amongst the screens and monitors.”

“This will be a spectacular and arresting experience of sound and vision,” continued Robertson, “and an audio-visual event of amazing technical complexity which has never before been attempted anywhere in the world before this premiere at Summerhall.”

Pixels does not just distribute and resell BrightSign media players. The company prides itself on the value that it is able to add that can extract the maximum possible performance and usability from the media players, specialising in adapting the equipment to the requirements of the most exacting customers.

“For this project, being able to synchronise what appeared on each screen was fundamentally vital to the effect that Michael Nyman was trying to achieve,” said Norman Garland, Managing Director of Pixels. “Using the BrightScript scripting language, we created synchronisation scripts for the players very similar to what we would create for a demanding digital signage installation. Also, as we would often do with a digital signage installation, we loaded the content – 66 minutes of movie, or about 8GB of data – onto each player, and thoroughly tested the 11 players for accurate synchronisation before dispatching the system to Summerhall.”

Media for the work was produced and edited by Max Pugh, who has numerous credits as a documentary film-maker for the BBC and Channel 4. “I chose the BrightSign players because, working alongside Norman Garland at Pixels UK, the technical team at Summerhall in Edinburgh were able to guarantee their suitability for this show,” said Pugh. “The synchronisation we managed to achieve with them was absolutely spot-on, and helped to deliver a visual effect that can only be described as amazing.”

The BrightSign media player is characterised by highly reliable performance at a very affordable cost. A powerful media-handling platform with robust interactive capabilities and compelling ease-of-use, it is widely deployed in challenging digital signage – and other – environments around the world.

About Michael Nyman

As one of Britain's most innovative and celebrated composers, Michael Nyman's work encompasses operas and string quartets, film soundtracks and orchestral concertos. Far more than merely a composer, he's also a performer, conductor, bandleader, pianist, author, musicologist and now a photographer and film-maker. Although he's far too modest to allow the description 'Renaissance Man', his restless creativity and multi-faceted art has made him one of the most fascinating and influential cultural icons of our times. www.michaelnyman.com

About Summerhall

Summerhall is a recently established arts venue presenting high-quality theatre, literature, visual art, music and film events, in the former Dick Vet building of Edinburgh University. www.summerhall.co.uk

About Max Pugh

Max Pugh is a dual nationality French / English filmmaker who divides his time between London and rural France. Max began his career at the BBC as a producer trainee and then went freelance, making documentaries on a diversity of subjects, from arts and music to geopolitical issues for the BBC and Channel Four. He became part of Yeast Films a collective of filmmakers and video artists that released documentaries for theatrical distribution as well as music videos, live stage shows all over the world and art installations. www.maxpugh.com

About Pixels

Pixels specialises in supplying HD and standard definition digital media players and visual display technology for the digital signage, professional AV, presentation, broadcast and information display markets. Pixels is an authorised distributor for BrightSign and has been supplying and supporting BrightSign’s products to the UK and European markets since 2009. For further details contact: Norman Garland: ngarland@pixels.uk.com or visit www.pixels.uk.com.  Call +44-1582-515253.


Press Contact:  

Elaine Hodson

Neesham Public Relations

Tel: +44 (0) 1296 628180

Email: elaineh@neesham.co.uk

Photo caption - images courtesy of Max Pugh

Pixels supplied and synchronised 11 BrightSign media players to show the latest work of Michael Nyman across screens at Summerhall, Edinburgh, a new installation that opened 2nd August 2013.

Further images and a video are available upon request.