Robe T2 Profiles make No Noiz for Perth ballet
Tuesday, 4 May 2021
robe-west-australian-ballet-thedan1-pBallet at the Quarry
Australia - The first Robe T2 Profiles to arrive in Australia went to Perth-based lighting and visual rental and production company What Noiz and made their debut on the lighting rig designed by Matt Marshall for West Australian Ballet’s As One: Ballet at the Quarry.
This was performed as part of the 2021 Perth Festival at the Quarry Amphitheatre, an outdoor rock quarry in Perth’s coastal suburb of City Beaches.
What Noiz’s founder and owner Benjamin Fry explained that they had been looking for a powerful LED profile for some time. They loved what they saw in terms of features and functionality with Robe’s T1, but wanted something with just a bit more brightness and then along came the new T2 Profile.
The purchase was completed in time for the West Australian Ballet’s 2021 summer season with its three dynamic works combining ballet and contemporary dance.
4Seasons was a stirring existing work choreographed by Natalie Wier; Heartache was a collaborative re-working of six different pieces delivered by the company dancers and artistic team, with a concept created by artistic director Aurélien Scannella and principal rehearsal director and artistic associate Sandy Delasalle; and Moment of Joy was a new piece presented by West Australian Ballet principal dancer Dayana Hardy Acuña and soloist Juan Carlos Osma.
This outdoor venue, formerly a working limestone quarry, dates to colonial times, and West Australian Ballet is the resident company there every Perth Festival season.
The company’s lighting designer Matt Marshall was delighted to be the first in Australia to use the T2s, having already used the T1 Profiles on various projects.
“I needed a shuttering profile with a wide zoom range and decent output so the T2s seemed perfect,” he commented, adding that it was tight freighting the T2 fixtures to Perth in time with the current COVID border control measures making the process protracted, but they arrived just in time!
Six of the eight T2 Profiles were positioned over the stage and used as specials and for shuttering large rectangular shapes across the stage, with the other two downstage on the front truss and used as front light and texturing positions to assist if any of the choreographers wanted additional front light.
The units were “specifically distributed to allow for all the shuttering shots I needed, but still flexible enough to be a standard rig for additional movement”.
Being outdoors, the technical production has certain givens in terms of positions and power, and Matt utilised the theatre’s standard ground support setup and worked hard to make all the elements realise the design, which also involved several house fixtures lighting the limestone cliffs behind the stage. With a little bit of extra budget, he changed the usual tungsten side light to LED to produce saturated side lighting for one of the pieces.
For the work that needed the shuttering, it was an ideal solution to be able to do this remotely on the fixture rather than waiting for crew to climb the truss to focus lamps!
However, the feature impressing Matt the most on the T2 Profiles was not actually a factor in this production because they were outdoors, but the lack of noise.
“The absolute silence makes it such a great fixture for theatres or concert halls. Conductors worldwide will simply love these fixtures,” he declared.
In addition to the T2s, 12 Robe Spiiders were on the lighting rig, together with an assortment of conventionals.
The main challenge of the project for Matt was evoking the intimacy of a ballet performance on an outdoor stage and achieving that in a very short tech week frequently interrupted by rain. He worked alongside Rhys Pottinger, programmer from West Australian Ballet.
The schedule was further complicated by a COVID shut down for a week just as the company’s opening night started.
It was decided to continue with the season, which was sold out, keeping performers dancing and easing the public back into the concept of going out to enjoy live performances again, with extra shows scheduled to accommodate everyone.
His lighting crew for the As One: Ballet at the Quarry season was led by head of lighting and audio, Neil Webster alongside Adrian Wright, Dillan Kuiper and Peter Young.

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