LumenRadio unleashes creativity by ditching cables at Eurovision 2024

Those outside of Europe and outside of the entertainment industry may not be aware of the Eurovision Song Contest, but it is a broadcast seen by over 160 million people worldwide. To put that in context, the Super Bowl, the most-watched show in the USA, averaged 123 million viewers in 2024. This makes Eurovision Song Contest the world’s largest TV broadcast.

For those in the know, Eurovision conjures up visions of a grand production, incredible songs, (as well as not-so-incredible songs), and a whole lot of over-the-top, drama-filled zaniness. Now in its 68th year, Eurovision caps a series of individual contests in each participating country designed to let the people choose who will represent them in the final, which this year was held on May 11.

Some of the most talented technicians in the world come together to produce this epic broadcast. It is of such scale that planning for next year’s show starts almost as soon as the current year’s event has finished, long before it is known who will even be performing. This is a unique process in the entertainment world since most concert tours are designed with one artist in mind. Eurovision, however, must be a robust staging concept that allows for each eventual artist’s individual show.

For Germany’s stage show, wireless DMX lighting was needed to illuminate the fire pits from behind

When producing a broadcast that will be seen by hundreds of millions, versatility is a key component, making wireless DMX a go-to solution. When Creative Technology, official event supplier, reached out to discuss the challenges of this year’s production, the LumenRadio team along with our OEM partners jumped into action.

Creative Technology initially reached out about the most critical issue they were facing – camera fill lights. Eurovision deployed seven Steadicams and shoulder cams to capture the performance for the broadcast. Each camera was equipped with Aputure MC Pro battery powered pocket lights that featured LumenRadio’s TimoTwo OEM modules for their DMX data reception.

With the concert-style lighting constantly changing, the cameras needed to have an adjustable light source to maintain the video quality being captured. Controlling them wirelessly allowed for full movement of the Steadicam Ops, freeing them to focus on getting the best shot. Using cables was never an option – and with LumenRadio’s technology it was possible to ensure reliable performance.

Wireless DMX was also used by the camera crew when filming the artists in the green room. Situated behind an automated video wall where there was a lower level of lighting, Astera Hydra panels were assembled into handheld arrays to provide fill light so the cameras could get a properly lit shot for the audience at home.

Wireless lighting panels were needed in the crowded green room which was located behind a video wall

While those uses maybe not be obvious to viewers, the others were on full show. When Ireland’s Bambie Thug took the stage, they were encircled inside a chandelier of over 50 candles. For this prop, electronic candles were built and rigged with data from a LumenRadio Luna transceiver. This made the unit battery-powered and portable, reducing the time needed for changeover from one act to another. It also allowed the chandelier to fly above the stage. Articulating lighting pods with both lighting and video elements moved around the room to create different looks. These are the situations where wireless frees designers and technicians to make the most of a spectacle.

Without wireless DMX, the chandelier centrepiece of Ireland’s performance could not have been moved around as freely

Two of the other Eurovision acts, representing Germany and Greece, utilized Astera Hydra panels for fill light and effect strobing. All cut free from control cables thanks to LumenRadio’s CRMX technology. According to Emil Højmark, Head of Lighting at Creative Technology, LumenRadio was the perfect solution.

Lighting using wireless DMX were used by the crew to create up-close flash lighting effects to mimic social media apps during Greece’s performance

“Using cables for these types of stage shows would be a big no-no – not only would it limit creativity, but it would also be dangerous. Being able to accomplish this wirelessly really makes a huge difference to the end result,” says Emil. “Not only that, but LumenRadio’s technology gave us the high-level of reliability we demand and performed flawlessly during the broadcasts.”

On-the-ground support was handled by LumenRadio Head of R&D, Michael Karlsson, and Product Specialist, Kent Hellberg.

“Events of this scale always bring unique challenges and opportunities,” says Michael. “But with the integration of our technology in other manufacturers’ equipment and its flexibility of frequency handling, we are always in a position to create the best possible solution.”

“Having spent my career working in technical event production, Eurovision is the single biggest event of the year and failure is not an option,” explains Kent. “While the shows I was involved in before joining LumenRadio may not have been the same level of production as Eurovision, we trusted LumenRadio’s technology just as much no matter what the size of event. It was a great experience to help support the Eurovision team this year in Malmö.”

Wireless DMX equipment used during Eurovision 2024

3 x LumenRadio CRMX Aurora as transmitters (one in the green room and two on the main stage)
1 x LumenRadio CRMX Luna as receiver
7 x Aputure MC Pro (with LumenRadio’s TimoTwo built-in)
9 x Astera Hydra (with LumenRadio’s CRMXchip built-in)