On September 6, 1997, a unique show by the famous musician Jean Michel Jarre took place as part of a large-scale celebration of Moscow’s 850th anniversary on Vorobyovy (Sparrows) Hills. The performance was held on the square in front of the main building of the Lomonosov Moscow State University. The show had two names: “Moscow – Road to the XXI Century” from the Russian side, and “Oxygen in Moscow” from the French production team.

JSA took an active part in the preparation and implementation of this great project not only in the capital of Russia but also in world practice. JSA had initially the status of a supporting staging company, but during the project became the main local technical partner for the production of this event. That is when JSA received recognition as one of the leading production and technical team, specializing in the organization of technical issues and production management.

JSA was responsible for a wide range of administrative and technical tasks for the project. A month before the beginning of the show, the company hired over 600 workers, especially for installation works, and invited about 30 employees to perform administrative functions. In addition, the company bought for this show its first set of stage structures Layher, intended for the construction of high towers for the installation of projection, light, and sound equipment. Five towers were mounted (two of 22 meters high, two of 24 meters high, and one of 27 meters high), and about 12 additional small towers for sound delay lines.

JSA worked closely with the artist’s production team led by producer Roger Abriol and his chief technical assistant, Michel Marseguerra. The JSA management communicated with Jean Michel Jarre’s assistant named Fiona de Montagnac (today Fiona Commins) about administrative issues.

The big JSA team was involved in the installation of all structures, a technical campus, make-up tents, awning coverings, installation of security barriers, and a staircase tower, supervised the installation of show equipment on the roof of the Moscow State University building, laying pipes for water, power supply cables, initial accreditation for personal, safety issues and cooperation with services security, works of cranes, forklifts, stagehands for unloading and loading equipment including set for show production, transport and courier issues and much more.

STACCO was involved from the French side in the engineering and design work. JSA constantly exchanged with them information about how to link the event objects to the area properly. Company ESS (Edwin Shirley Stage) was invited to install the big stage. JSA provided stage workers for the building of this structure. Also, for this event, JSA produced the first 100 meters of safety barriers for spectators (JSA Crowd Barriers).  The author of the development and creation of drawings was Alexander Strizhak. The safety barriers were established as a second line to restrain the audience’s pressure.

At the same time as the production of the Jean Michel Jarre show, JSA took part in mounting stage structures for another 10 different big events to celebrate the 850th anniversary of Moscow.

The official promoter of the Jean Michel Jarre show on Vorobyovy Hills was a specially created company “Jubilee of the Capital”. Its president Artyom Borovik (*) and at the same time the owner and head of the publishing holding “Top Secret” was the general producer of the event. This significant event took place with the direct support of the Moscow City Duma, the Moscow City Hall, and personally the Mayor of Moscow – Yuri Luzhkov. The project was supervised by Vice-Mayor Valery Shantsev and the Moscow Directorate for Mass Events, headed by Oleg Belikov and his assistant – Lyubov Babak. Below is a photo of the working meetings of Artyom Borovik and Anton Chukaev with the city administration representatives and representatives of the Main Department of Police.

JSA was invited to work on the project as a local production company at the invitation of the executive director of the company “Jubilee of the Capital” – Anton Chukayev. He already had some experience with the JSA team and knew about Alexander Strizhak’s positive reputation for his work at the Michael Jackson concert at the Dynamo Stadium in Moscow a year earlier (September 17, 1996).

JSA would like to express gratitude to Anton Chukaev for the invitation and collaboration on this remarkable event. Special thanks to his assistant, head administrator of the company “Jubilee of the Capital” – Sergei Gorodnichy, for his support and for accomplishing many difficult tasks on this great project. And also, many thanks to the administrator of the project from the company “Jubilee Stolitsy” – Yana Appazova (Gugunava) for good business communication with JSA.

In the photo below, Anton Chukaev (right) and Alexander Strizhak (left) discuss some production points.

JSA began preparations for the event six months before its start, the main active work began three months before, and the arrival for the installation took place a month before the show date. All project participants successfully and on time coped with the preparation tasks and management issues. On the morning of September 6, 1997, everything was ready for the start of the mega-show in the evening.

More about the Jean Michel Jarre show in Moscow (information and photographs) see here:

Версия на русском языке (часть первая):

Версия на русском языке (часть вторая):

Below is the official promo flyer about the event issued by the “Jubilee of the Capital” company for distribution among guests and sponsors who came to the exclusive show of the famous composer and performer Jean Michel Jarre on the occasion of Moscow’s anniversary day.

Some additional bonus materials are below: original drawings of Layher Allround Scaffolding towers by STACCO and drawings of the big stage by ESS. These are scanned versions of fax sheets, for there was no Internet and no correspondence via e-mail.

(*) Artyom Borovik
Artyom Borovik died at the age of 40 on March 9, 2000, as a result of a mysterious plane crash when taking off from Sheremetyevo airport, on a Yak-40 plane Moscow-Kyiv flight.
R.I.P and bright memory … JSA always remembers ….

© All photos and pictures are exclusive copyright JSA Stage Company.