The curtain has fallen on PALME Middle East 2007, the region’s professional sound, light, music, audio visual and systems integration exhibition. Exhibitors at the show, which took place at Dubai International Exhibition Centre (DIEC) from May 20-22, are already eagerly anticipating an enhanced performance next year.
According to organiser IIR Worldwide, more than 7,000 visitors attended the three-day event. With 272 exhibitors representing 800 companies at the fifth staging of PALME, the show secured its reputation as the largest gathering of entertainment industry professionals throughout the region.
Darren Brechin, Group Exhibitions Director, Entertainment & Installation Technology Group, IIR Worldwide., commented, “PALME has grown from strength to strength and, as expected, this year’s event was the biggest ever, not only in terms of the number of exhibitors but also in footfall. A veritable ‘Who’s Who?’ of industry professionals visited PALME to keep abreast of the latest trends in products, innovation and creativity.”
Covering the entire spectrum of the entertainment and event management profession, PALME consists of three dedicated vertical shows, each catering to separate but complementary sectors – Install, Event 360 and MUSAC.
Install lived up to its billing as the Middle East’s unique showcase of audio visual installation and integration technologies. It featured applications for residential and commercial projects and included a special area for residential smart technology.
First time Install exhibitor, Tom Martin, Business Development Manager from Bose, commented, “We’ve launched several new products at PALME, including the L1 Series 2 personal amplification system for musicians, and the DS series of surface mounted and flush mount speakers.
Graham Hendry, Director of Business Development at Scottish speaker manufacturer Tannoy, an Install regular, said the show was the key to opening up the region for them.
“Without PALME we would have to spend a lot more time traveling around the region to gain access to the consultants. Now we can simply meet at the show.”
Amongst the new products showcased by Tannoy, were two speakers originally developed especially for the local market – the CMS 401 ‘Eyeball’ directional ceiling speaker and the small in-wall IW 4DC.
Meanwhile, the Event 360 component of PALME was the destination of choice for event organisers and professionals involved in the staging of high profile concerts and corporate events in Dubai.
Having already staged a magnificent laser show at the Doha Asian Games in 2006, LOBO Laser and Multimedia Systems, provided one of the highlights with a live production of the spectacular laser water show “Amaceon”.
Alexander Hennig of LOBO, remarked, “Saudi is a particularly important market for us with a lot of events going on there, so PALME is ideally positioned to promote LOBO to potential Saudi customers.”
Also exhibiting at the Event 360 component of PALME was 3D Décor Middle East, a design studio that provides innovative room decoration for corporate events. Amro Al Qubaisi, Managing Partner with the South Africa-based company, said, “Our enlarged stand this year enabled us to meet more people. The quality of visitors was very pleasing so next year we will double our presence yet again.”
Over at MUSAC, the Middle East’s unique showcase of musical instruments and accessories, UAE-based Thomsun Pure Music also reported brisk business with a larger stand. “This year we nearly trebled the size of our stand and still there were times when you couldn’t move for visitors,” said Tyler Smith, the company’s Executive Director.
Thomsun Pure Music was launching its Sabian cymbals, which are used by rock stars such as Chad Smith of the Red Hot Chilli Peppers, and to showcase world leading brands such as Yamaha, LP and Line 6.
One of the highlights of MUSAC was the final of the 'PALME 2007 DJ of the Year’ competition, designed for the most creative DJs in the Middle East. Scooping the coveted title and a chance to attend the 'Global Gathering' music event in the UK, courtesy of Virgin was DJ MO TIGER aka Mohammed Saad.
Another high profile event at this year’s PALME was MELDA, the inaugural Middle East Lighting Design Awards, run in association with the international architectural lighting journal “mondo*arc”. With over 80 entries contesting just eight awards, competition was fierce. However Lighting Design Partnership International was honoured with the Middle East Project of the Year for its outstanding presentation of the Barr Al Jissah Resort, in Oman. Judges felt they had set new and exciting standards for the lighting industry, by fusing both architectural and entertainment lighting into a creative hybrid.