Fall Out Boy ramps Up Mania Tour with Claypaky
Thursday, 18 January 2018
fall-out-boyThe size and scope of the tour marks “the next chapter in the band’s history”
USA - Fall Out Boy has embarked on their sold-out arena Mania Tour whose North American leg kicked off in Cleveland in October and wrapped in Phoenix in November. UK dates will follow in the first quarter of 2018.
The rock band has had five consecutive Top 10 albums. The new tour, in support of their Maniaalbum due out in January, features hip hop artist blackbear and actor-rapper Jaden Smith.
The size and scope of the tour marks “the next chapter in the band’s history”, notes production designer Robb Jibson of Chicago-based So Midwest, Inc. “It’s a much larger endeavour than previous tours with lighting, scenic, pyro and visuals. We had 14 trucks in the first load out and hope to get that down to 12. Typically, we’ve had six to eight trucks in the past.”
Large numbers of Claypaky Mythos 2 and A.leda B-EYE K20 fixtures play key roles in the lighting rig with Jibson showcasing their versatility throughout the show.
The overall concept for the tour is “very clean, symmetrical and linear,” says Jibson, with “no set on stage. The ‘Mania’ visuals for the record cycle are very linear and the show mimics that.”
Complex staging adds dynamics and keeps the band moving from the main stage down a thrust to two additional automated stages – all in one linear plane from the downstage edge. The content deign makes extensive use of LED video to display hand-drawn illustrations, found live-action footage, CGI animations and IMAG content.
With so much activity up and down the arena Jibson was challenged to design a lighting rig of appropriate scale and functionality. “There’s a lot of square footage to this show,” he says. “We have positions to cover it everywhere.”
Large triangular-shaped trusses form a roof of lighting over the main stage. Seventy-foot trusses line the sides of the arena, a truss hangs over seats at the Back of House, and trusses bookend the short sides of the arena.
Jibson deployed large complements of Claypaky fixtures on Fall Out Boy tours in 2013 and 2015 when he used Sharpys as FOH spots and tapped Mythos for washes, key lighting, effects and follow spots.
For the Mania Tour he selected 64 Mythos 2 fixtures, which are mounted on the triangle truss, the side trusses, the B stage and the bookend trusses.
Jibson is mixing 74 Claypaky A.leda B-EYE K20s with Mythos in the same positions. “The B-EYEs are such versatile fixtures,” he says. “They’re really bright and the pixel mapping inside is really interesting. It’s like having a 64-pack box of crayons – there are so many things you can do with them.”
VER in Glendale, California is the lighting and video vendor for the tour. The So Midwest team also includes content creator Josh Stone, content producer Kyle Flaharty and chief animator Matt Barker with a host of other freelance talent.
Francesco Romagnoli, Claypaky area manager for North and Latin America, added, “Robb is one of the most innovative designers we’ve worked with and we’re always thrilled when he incorporates our fixtures into his plots.”
(Jim Evans)

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