PLASA and ABTT Announce Joint Convention for 2021; PLASA Focus Leeds Postponed Until 2022

PLASA (Professional Lighting and Sound Association) and the ABTT (Association of British Theatre Technicians) have announced a collaboration that will bring the 2021 editions of both the PLASA Show and the ABTT Theatre Show under one roof from September 5-7 at Olympia London.

For 2021 only, this partnership between the two associations aims to reduce pressure on the exhibition calendar as the industry’s ecosystem recovers from the impacts of the pandemic, and will bring the broad sector together for one landmark event.

As previously planned for 2020, PLASA Show 2021 will debut at Olympia’s largest hall, the Grand. The ABTT Theatre Show will run in its own defined space, retaining its unique identity, and celebrating the ABTT’s 60th anniversary.

The spacious Grand hall will also make room for more inspiring stands, more show features, and perhaps most importantly, extra aisle width for visitors to move around freely and safely.

PLASA Focus Leeds, due to take place from May 11-12 at the Royal Armouries Leeds, has been postponed for a second year. Following careful consideration of the uncertainty around the U.K.’s lockdown restrictions and the complex challenges facing the industry, PLASA has made the decision to only present the London-based PLASA Show this year and is very excited to be able to work with the ABTT in order to collaborate with the ABTT Theatre Show.

By consolidating the trade show calendar to a single date line, both PLASA and the ABTT are confident they will deliver the most beneficial and supportive event for the sector.

Furthermore, to maintain industry energy and connection, PLASA is pleased to announce a second edition of PLASA Online from May 10-14. The popular online event made its debut in 2020. The ABTT, which has been supporting the industry with online seminars over the past twelve months, will also be collaborating in this and hosting some sessions.

More information on how to register and watch the program will be announced soon.

Peter Heath, managing director of PLASA, comments:

“With everything our industry has faced in the past 12 months, we have thought long and hard about how best to serve our exhibitors and visitors in 2021. We couldn’t be more pleased with our partnership with the long-serving and respected ABTT, who will bring their usual high standard of technical knowledge to PLASA Show this year, as well as our second PLASA Online this May. We are of course saddened that Leeds must wait another year, but we believe that our strategy for 2021 is absolutely the right thing to do while our industry recovers.”

Robin Townley, CEO for the ABTT comments:

“We are very much looking forward to joining forces with the PLASA Show this year to create a meeting place for the whole industry to get together. The ABTT will have its own distinct area and will be creating the same friendly atmosphere that our visitors love about the ABTT Theatre Show. We look forward to seeing exhibitors and visitors, old and new, and to celebrating our huge 60th anniversary milestone.”

For more information, and to be the first to know when event registration opens, visit and register your interest at

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Andrew Leyenhorst is the Assistant Editor for Professional Sound and Professional Lighting & Production, and related online channels.
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