Thx for the response. Long story........here it goes....
QLab is an excellent piece of software from a company called Figure 53, that is used for show control in a lot of theatres. The basic version (free download) can be used for two channel audio. The version I currently use is updated with a "video license", so I can trigger/animate/fade videos/stills that I use as backdrops during the shows. At the moment I use QLab to run audio (backing tracks/sound fx) and videos/stills, however would like to use the midi functionality in QLab allowing me to use and store Midi messages to for instance trigger light cues (or anything else with Midi functionality on board).
More info on QLab: http://figure53.com/qlab/
The set up I'm thinking about:
a) Software to program light cues on my computer in advance of a show including the functionality to build a virtual rig and preview light settings on screen (e.g. like Capture or WYSIWYG or Easy View).
b) Software should be capable of managing standard fixtures and dimmers but also moving heads, scanners and smoke machines. In smaller set ups I can work with one universe (512 channels), however would like to have more available in case required.
c) I would like to be able to print the rigging set up and all my settings (including DMX channels etc), so I can send this to the theatre technician in advance so he/she can use this when starting the rigging work.
d) Once arriving in the theatre, I connect my MacBook to the theatre set up via DMX and (ideally) the thing should work.
e) During a show I want to (next to controlling audio and video) send Midi Show Control messages from QLab triggering the light cues so the light software or external DMX interface will have to have MIDI functionality.
f) For performance reasons I prefer to run only QLab on my MacBook and therefore think I need an external DMX interface with at least Midi IN on which I can store all my light cues (an example would be the LanBox).
g) Unless it's possible off course to run the light software on my MacBook next to QLab and send internal MIDI messages which then are send out through a USB to DMX interface. This would depend on whether or not running two programs at the same time (QLab and Lights) would be too invasive on performance.
I hope this clarifies my ideas.