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Danny Nolan – Flying Pig Systems Archive
Danny Nolan.
Danny Nolan - Ready to run Simply Red show with Wholehog II
Danny Nolan ready to run Simply Red show
Wholehog Memories

Danny Nolan

How/when were you introduced to the Wholehog?

I think the first time I saw the Hog was at Northfield Road. My Brother Steve had an office there and I was always doing stuff with SpotCo.

What was your first impression of it?

Very impressed. We had been suffering with many bad DMX desks and dedicated moving light controllers. The Hog 1 was a new approach, new concept, new era.

What show did you first use it on?

Bournemouth Festival of Lights! We used it on a small stage to run a quite a cheesy pantomime. It was the perfect place to to work out all the quirks. I remember Beaky getting really excited every time it crashed and finding all the things that needed to be fixed. I was a bit confused how happy he was when it crashed; they would fix it and it got better day by day. Again, the perfect gig for them to work it out.

Which firm supplied it?

SpotCo.

What other shows/tours did you use it on?

Peter Gabriel’s US tour. I was the programmer and operator but who really programmed it was Beaky. He came down to rehearsals in Box and stayed with us for a month. Button to button, he helped us put together a great show. We went through so many odd moments, like when the LD got fired, Peter falling down an open lift gate and so many other crazy things. Crazy ideas from all fronts, it was an amazing experience.

What did it do to make your job easier/better?

From what was already on the market the Hog 1 was a revolution. No doubt it made it way easier. It really was like nothing we had used before.

What was the best thing about it?

Stack synthesiser, cue lists, override buttons, fixture profiles, proper palettes, anything almost anywhere you wanted it. And, of course, the great guys from Flying Pig – they were always there when you needed them.

What was the worst thing about it?

The computer rack – you had to reseat the cards almost every day. Small price to pay really!

What’s your favourite Wholehog memory of that time?

Peter Gabriel rehearsals with Beaky. We had so much fun and I learnt so much. I will never forget it.

When did you last see a Wholehog desk? 

Two months ago at Upstaging in Chicago. Right there in reception, a monument to the modern lighting era.

Anything else that springs to mind?

Just a big thank you to all at Flying Pigs for doing what they did, to Pete Miles and SpotCo for believing in what they were doing and, finally, I feel so lucky to have played a small part of this amazing story.