Introducing Melissa Nelson.
Melissa is the Operations Manager of the rigging and automation team at OMNIA Nightclub in Caesar's Palace in Las Vegas. Melissa is in charge of ensuring the team is prepared all of the production elements every night. This could include aerialists, go-go dancers, flying scenery & projection screens, 6L Champagne Bottle drops, and oh.. not to mention a massive 8 ring kinetic chandelier flying over thousands of people dancing.
Each part of the system is inspected before use to ensure the safest environment for patrons to enjoy their night under the kinetic chandelier. As for what they are looking for? "We are looking for any discrepancies within the wire rope, rigging points, winch, and cladding. Any irregularities within Navigator are observed before it can be used in the show."
Mel's team consists of rigging and automation techs who carry out the various responsibilities for each show night. "They all have expertise in safe rigging practices and are versed with production backgrounds." She adds, "Safety is the team's first priority, and we try to find a balance between making the production happen all while doing it safely."
Mel adds, "the same tests are performed for aerial points as would be an axis on the chandelier." In other words, the chandelier points are as safe as a human!
During the night Mel is stationed in front of house at the TAIT Navigator Pit. We asked her exactly what she is monitoring, and she gave us the scoop.
"Notifications concerning any errors or E-Stops. Monitoring load values for the points and position of each axis on the chandelier. Heavy sway is observed, as it can be overlooked by the operator, generally focusing on the production value of the show. "
Mel is looking at hard data concerning the weight distribution of the winches and the sway variance as the production stunts begin to add up. She is in charge of tapping the breaks when needed to keep everything from getting out of control.
See Mel and her team bring the room to life any night OMNIA Nightclub is open, in Las Vegas, NV!
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