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Basketmouth plays Wembley with multi-camera production values

Basketmouth plays Wembley with multi-camera production values

The sell out show Basketmouth Live @ The SSE Arena, Wembley was not only a high octane gig for the Nigerian comedian but a night of great success for live video producer Johnsons Creative.
Produced by Whytelion, and Barons World, Basketmouth Live has become a fixture on Valentine’s Day proving a massive hit among the afro urban community in Britain.

Previously held at Indigo O2 and Hammersmith Apollo, the change of venue to the 10,000 capacity SSE Arena also triggered a change in live video producer.

When Whytelion approached Johnsons Creative’s Uchenna Johnson, who had handled production management at previous comedy and concert events, she didn’t let them down.

“I’ve done live directing and mixing before as well handling camera crew but this event was a step up in every department,” she says. “I really wanted to push myself and do something of high quality for Whytelion. That’s when I called VMI.”  Familiar with the hire company from previous experience, Johnson sought a solution that would pack considerable bang for buck.

“I went along to the VMI New Products Day and saw the new Libec Swift Jib 50 being demoed. It seemed perfect but I didn’t think we could afford it, particularly with the robotic head. Nor did I think we could get it in time since this was very last minute, so I was delighted when VMI upgraded us.”

The Libec Swift Jib 50 is a telescopic jib arm with Remo 30 Robotic Head capable of achieving a maximum height of 2.8m/9ft. This was complemented with three Sony PMW-200 XDCAMs and a PMW-300 with a longer zoom before returning to VMI to have a personal demonstration of the Sony Anycast mixer. 

“I’ve used mixers before but not this model so the demo was really handy for me to familiarise myself with the control surface and its functions. It gave me the confidence to work with the mixer on the day.”

Johnson coordinated the whole production. One camera operator worked behind the scenes to record artist interviews and another worked front of house to film vox pops of audience guests giving their reasons for attending and their reactions afterwards.

She directed the live mix, shared on screens around the venue, using three cameras including the jib-mounted camera on the stage.

“I made sure we got to the Arena several hours before the show so I could walk the venue with the camera operators and do pre-runs,” she reports. “We did some kiss-cams which went down well. Everything went very smoothly.

So much so that Whytelion have already indicated that they will work with Johnson on the production of next year’s Valentine’s Day show. “They said they were impressed with what we were able to achieve. I was under a lot of pressure on the day and I couldn’t have done this without VMI’s support.”


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