One of the fastest growing companies in the live event production industry very much does business the old fashioned way — largely based on quality work, trust, character, and, yes, a handshake. This commitment to exceeding customer expectations has made John Wiseman’s Chaos Visual Productions the “go to” source for cutting edge live video playback and video capture services for many of today’s leading recording artists — John Mayer, Katy Perry, Enrique Iglesias, Keith Urban, Toby Keith, Tom Petty, Green Day, Beyonce, and Justin Bieber, among many others. In fact, the two-year-old company was cited as the Video Company of the Year by industry peers when it received the 2010 Parnelli Award.
“For us, it always has been and always will be about the work,” Wiseman explained. “When we are retained for a project we give our word that our clients can and will receive the highest level of creativity backed by the highest levels of support. No excuses, ever.”
Last summer Wiseman found out that his insurance underwriter, Take1 Insurance, the entertainment arm of U.S. Risk, Inc., and the carrier they underwrite for, the entertainment division of one of the world’s largest insurance carriers, has the same commitment to standing by its customers. Wiseman’s Chaos Visual Productions had ten tours out on the road last summer, and one of the biggest was the John Mayer “Battle Studies” Tour, a massive world tour to support his 2009 album of the same name. The tour performed 122 shows in 331 days and encompassed the United States, Canada, Europe, Asia, Australia and New Zealand.
Chaos was hired by tour production manager Chris Adamson and production designer Marc Brickman to provide the live video playback for each venue on the schedule. Together Chaos, Adamson, and Brickman created a 50’ wide X 20’ tall LED video wall composed of 45 Martin LC 2140 panels, along with four Barco 20k projectors that shot onto a custom screen, and a four-HD camera system to capture and playback the concert to the audiences. “It was definitely an eye-popping display of state-of-the-art video technology in action,” Wiseman explained, but there was one hitch. “The video wall was designed for indoor use.”
On July 25, 2010, on an otherwise beautiful sunny day, the decision was made to put up the wall in an outside venue. And that’s when Mother Nature showed her sense of humor. Once the wall was up and ready to go, the sky turned grey, then black, and a monsoon-level storm literally blew in and destroyed the $1-million video wall in a matter of seconds. “The winds came up out of nowhere and whipped the wall around like it was a rag doll. We were devastated by what had happened and, frankly, we didn’t know what to do. Fortunately, we spoke with our insurance broker, Paul Lopez of Snapp & Associates, who placed our business through specialty underwriter Take1 Insurance, and from the minute the accident happened he never ever left our side.”
Not only did Take1 work directly with the carrier to honor the claim on the video wall, it continued to cover the remainder of the tour and all of the other tours that Chaos had out on the road. “We all have our insurance company stories,” Wiseman noted. “And unfortunately many of them are not good ones. Well, this is one of the good ones. Take1 came to our defense and fought the good fight for us. They restored my faith in the insurance industry, not to mention in mankind!” Wiseman joked. “As far as I am concerned, Take1 is a partner in the business with us. They’ve proven their willingness to stand by us in the same way that we stand by our clients, every day, without excuses.”
According to Paul Lopez, “Chaos has been a client since it was formed in January 2009. When they were starting out, I sat down with Chaos CFO Rich Oster and we found that their previous policy, from a provider not specialized in the entertainment industry, was insufficient and left them vulnerable to substantial losses. So we crafted an air-tight, and in this case, water-tight policy that keeps them protected all the time, no matter where their business takes them — anywhere in the world.”
Take 1’s specialty program has designed inland marine coverage, among other specialty covers for the entertainment industry, that automatically applies everywhere in the world, without the need for additional riders or endorsements. It eliminates co-insurance, thus protecting 100 percent of the insured value of the equipment covered; provides automatic replacement cost valuation; allows for separate limits in key individual coverage areas like owned equipment, equipment rented from others, equipment in the insured’s Care Custody and Control (CCC), and equipment in transit; flood coverage for equipment in transit; and blanket limits that eliminate the need for clients’ to itemize each and every piece of equipment, cable, LED panel, etc. being covered.
Chaos Visual Productions formed in January 2009 under partners John Wiseman, Chris Kaman and Chuck Burtzloff. The company has since provided specialized video production services on several major world tours as well as on the sets of several Hollywood blockbuster movies.