2021 TAIT Yearbook

28 “I went out to help get it sorted using a couple of TAIT’s welders and I thought, ‘these guys are really good,’” says Tony. The two companies aligned perfectly from a cultural perspective and also had similar visions for evolving their product offerings. “We started out with folding gate risers, but you couldn’t really build the larger stage sets that way, so I designed a hook and channel decking system. It goes back to pleasing the crew if you can. We created systems that fitted in regular size dollies, on any trucks, on any containers, and could be put together quickly and easily with minimal tools. It was similar to what Michael was doing and has done with Mag Deck, with the idea that you could build as big a stage as you wanted to very quickly.” Throughout the '80s and '90s, Brilliant worked on some of the most iconic shows of the period, including what was possibly the world’s first ‘in the round’ show for Def Leppard, the epic ‘falling pylons’ from Metallica’s Load tour (with TAIT providing staging), and the technically and visually groundbreaking Rolling Stones Bridges to Babylon tour. “Bridges to Babylon was one of those moments in rock and roll history,” says Ben. “Before I was part of Brilliant, I always looked back at that and thought, ‘you guys are geniuses.’” During the 2000s, Brilliant collaborated on numerous projects with Litestructures, a company owned by the Brooks family. The family ultimately acquired Brilliant Stages in 2013 and Ben began to build the company we know today, creating spectacular shows for the likes of Take That, Shawn Mendes, Hugh Jackman, and Beyoncé and Jay-Z. Since that first collaboration in the '80s, Brilliant’s relationship with TAIT has remained as solid as ever and, in 2019, many years after those first pan-Atlantic projects took shape, the Wakefield team formally became part of the TAIT family. “Working at Brilliant has been a constant evolution. It’s been a team of people who are really willing to push the boundaries and to walk into completely uncharted territories totally unfazed, knowing that we will deliver something amazing at the end of it. That’s what our team in Wakefield is all about for me.”