Marconi branded OB Van launched
At a celebrity launch function at Sydney’s Queen Victoria Building last night, Ben Starr (pictured) and business partner Patrick Kayrooz unveiled a state of the art Mercedes Benz OB van, which is now available for stations to hire.
Starr told radioinfo there is already a lot of interest for the van, which is named in honour of the Elettra Marconi and bears the Marconi family crest.
In the 1920s, Guglielmo Marconi turned on the first electric lights in Sydney’s Town Hall by remote control using a radio signal transmitted from Italy. It was part of his experiments to prove that radio waves would transmit around the curvature of the earth. In keeping with the ‘remote control’ tradition, Elettra Marconi launched the Radio Rover in a message from Rome at the function.
“My father dedicated his life to radio and so have I,” she said. “My father created history with his invention… and I would also like to acknowledge the contribution of the late Ernest Fisk, for his contribution to wirteless in your beautiful country. Their legacy lives on…
“Tonight there is another landmark, I am delighted to launch the Marconi Radio Rover just across the road from the Sydney town hall where my father created history, when from his radio station on board the boat Elettra he touched a key which sent a signal to Australia and switched on the thousands of lights in the Sydney town hall to open the electrial and radio exhibition of that year.
“I congratualte my dear friends Ben and Patrick so that once again the name Marconi is linked to broadcasting… with the Radio Rover.”
Starr and Kayrooz have also produced a documentary on Marconi, which will be launched later this year.
The OB van is equipped with a Wheatstone desk, Voxpro editor and a playout system. It is made to accommodate a production team as well as the announcer, and features pop up tv display screens for stations to show logos, advertising, or show information during the OB.
Promoting the launch, Elettra Marconi spoke to Alan Jones yesterday on 2GB, about her famous father.