Top Model 2018 - Fashion & Awards Show

Hilton London Metropole Hotel - London

Top Model 2018 is a prestigious fashion event hosted for 2 days in the Hilton London Metropole Hotel. With a proven track record of discovering new model talent, launching careers and creating dreams, Top Model is the biggest show of its kind in the UK.

DPS were brought on board to bring the show production to the next level. After 9 years of events, the Top Model designer was looking for a fresh approach and a new style for the ever growing show. DPS re-designed the technical production which went onto to help produce some of the best shots ever seen on a Top Model runway.

In keeping with tradition tried and tested lighting techniques, DPS set about lighting the runway from a central point - a much desired request by the Top Model designer.


Hilton London Metropole Hotel’s Palace suite sadly doesn’t have a very high weight capacity in the roof, nor does it offer very flexible rigging points. As a result, DPS were required to build a structure that will span the entire runway and provide multiple points from which to hang lighting fixtures.

Utilising Prolytes H30V box truss, a ground supported structure was created using two goal post style end sections and a single span of truss linking them together. In addition to the ground supported structure, two rigging points provided a little more support to reduce any deflection in the single truss span.

The truss structures end goal post measured 6m wide. DPS supplied a unique rear projection screen that was fastened to the inside of this 6m goal post frame. The result was an impressive 5.3m x 3.1m screen, illuminated by a Panasonic Laser projector with a specialist 0.3:1 ratio mirror lens that went onto display video’s and graphics designed by the DPS AV department.

Lighting the runway and providing eye candy effects for the after party was a combination of LED, discharge and Tungsten fixtures.

On the runway, Prolight COB Par Led fixtures with Barn doors provided an even clean wash of light which lit the models from head to toe. A further 6 DTS NRG LED wash lights gave impressive beams of colour for intro effects and many after party lighting states.

Six Martin Mac 700 moving head profiles filled the room with beams from all angles and also doubled up as the lighting source for the all important central mirror ball. Custom glass gobos were projected around the room and across the runway from ETC Source 4 Zoom fixtures to provide that final touch of class.

Providing room ambience additional Prolight COB LED fixtures were deployed as up lighters, providing a soft intense wash of light that's difficult to replicate with generic LED wireless up lighters. Backstage 150w metal halide HQI wash lights were mounted on tank traps and scaffold poles to provide a bright, cleanly lit environment perfect for the application of hair and make up.


In the world of audio, DPS installed eight D.A.S Audio Event 210 elements coupled with four Event 218A subwoofers. This provided a versatile system for speeches, walk in music and a truly great sounding PA for singers and the evenings DJs to perform through.

The use of an array style box was carefully considered over a point source alternative. The result was a powerful system that didn't require any delays in the room and therefore took up less valuable seating space while still achieving an even distribution of sound throughout the audience area.

The whole system was managed by a Linea Research ASC48 processor which gave flexible control with cross over points, limiting, delays and EQ. The show was controlled by an Allen & Heath QU16 which offered a comprehensive toolbox of audio controls perfectly suited for small acts and speeches.

Prolyte TopLine metric staging went down to produce a perfectly flat 2m wide runway. Imperfections show up easily in the highly detailed shots produced by the many media and show photographers on site, which is why DPS layered the staging with foam before the pristine white carpet, smoothing out every seam between the staging to produce a flawless runway.

Normal procedure would see large sheet of ply wood laid on the staging platform to remove any seams.The use of foam was a new process for underlying the carpet which had not been seen on a Top Model runway before. The result was less space and weight taken up in the lorry transporting heavy wooden sheets which made for a more efficient pack and less fuel burnt. A win win for all!


What our client said

“DPS helped to produce a fresh new look to this year’s Top Model and were part of one of the most successful events when it came to money raised for Children with Cancer Charity. Moreover, the runway lighting helped our photographers go on to produce some of the best shots ever seen on a Top Model runway. We are looking forward to developing an exciting new design for next year’s Top Model UK with DPS as our technical production company”.