Ian McKellen On Stage Tour

Sound Moves had the time sensitive operation of building and delivering two crates consisting theatrical stage props needed for the legendary Sir Ian McKellen On Stage tour.

  • Project date: 01.11.2019
  • Client: ATG Productions
  • Business sector (i.e. Music Touring): Touring Theatre
  • Event: Ian McKellen On Stage
  • Operator(s): Tom Golubovic, Andy Milton
  • Sales Person: Travis Medland
  • Routing: London – New York - London
  • Contents: Theatrical stage Props.
  • Shipment weight: 394 kg
  • Mode (i.e. Air/Ocean/Land): Air


Sound Moves UK had to pull out all the stops on an exciting project that would see us build two bespoke wooden crates, supply dedicated vehicles, organise express airfreight and provide 24 hours extensive monitoring, in particular to the customs clearances.

The two crates consisted of theatrical stage props needed for the Ian McKellen On Stage Tour. Loading took place at the Harold Pinter Theatre in London before being sent on to the Hudson Theatre in New York and finally being returned back to the Harold Pinter, in time for pre-show preparations.


We were unable to build the crates onsite due to limited access and space. The cargo would also have to be inspected physically to confirmed measurements, weight, highlight any restricted items and visualise different ways the items could be secured inside the crate, maximising space and reducing size. This will later help avoid any last-minute altercations or to discover we can’t get the goods out of the venue once they have been packed.

The short period of time we had to collect and deliver the crates between the New York and London shows proved to be the most challenging. As with every shipment, the opportunity for delays, oversights and unforeseen events to arise are countless. The real concern for this shipment was any one of these could be a potential show stopper. There was no room for error and we knew dedicated vehicles and express bookings alone couldn’t guarantee the crucial delivery date


When working on the first movement (London to New York) We had our packing specialists visit the Pinter theatre one month prior to the collection date to assess the requirements for the items being shipped along with how accessible it was to move the goods in and out of the venue once they had been crated. The crates themselves were later constructed at the packers’ facility using fumigated materials and taken to the theatre one week before collection was needed. The cargo now safely secured into the crates were flown out to New York.

Knowing time was a key factor, we arranged for the driver to be onsite at the venue an hour before the show finished. He was able to load the crates 23:00 that night and deliver them straight into the airline during the early hours of the morning. We already knew the weight, size and information for the customs so we were able to issue the paperwork, submit the details and pre lodge the entry while the driver was on route. Our operations team at origin and destination had to work around the clock, staying attentive to take fast and direct action to any issues or obstacles. This also included numerous of phone calls to both the airline and customs offices, until the plane had departed with our cargo confirmed onboard.  

Key Facts:
• 2 x Bespoke Wooden Crates
• Total Gross Weight 394 kg
• Express Airfreight Shipment

• London – New York – London

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