CMT's live Ultimate Kickoff Party was staged in the Kay Bailey Hutchinson Convention Centre in Dallas
USA - CMT's live Ultimate Kickoff Party launched the first College Football Playoffs with a glittering show, which also marked the US TV debut of Clay Paky's new Mythos fixtures, a highly-advanced hybrid light which serves as a 470-watt spotlight and an extraordinary beam light.

Production designer/lighting designer Mike Swinford obtained 146 Mythos fixtures from Nashville-based Morris Light & Sound, which offers a large inventory of the new lights. As a spot, Mythos has an outstanding large beam and zoom optimized for focusing; as a beam light it remains parallel for its entire length even at great distances. Mythos is smooth, fast and very quiet with a completely redesigned indexed visual effects disc.

Swinford and Morris Light & Sound president and CEO David Haskell were introduced to Mythos when A.C.T Lighting vice president of sales and marketing Brian Dowd invited them to Clay Paky's factory in Italy. Dowd orchestrated the visit, accompanied them on the trip and arranged demos of the new fixture. They were among the first people to ever see the fixture and immediately thought it was amazing. Haskell ordered 240 Mythos lights, and Swinford was first in line to use them.

"I was shopping for something new and great for the upcoming Kenny Chesney tour," Swinford recalls. "Then this job for CMT came up, and I asked David if we could use the Mythos for the 'Ultimate Kickoff Party' first. He said sure, but the lights were so new they didn't have cases yet."

Haskell notes that Morris Light & Sound "does a lot of work with CMT, so we were happy to be able to offer Mythos on short order. I always hesitate to use a brand new fixture on live TV, especially so many of them. But my confidence level was high enough that Mike decided to give Mythos a go."

Swinford was impressed by Mythos low power consumption, lightweight, incredible brightness and versatility - qualities he needed for the Ultimate Kickoff Party. The 90-minute concert special was staged in the Kay Bailey Hutchinson Convention Centre in Dallas and headlined by Toby Keith, Lady Antebellum, Brett Eldredge, Jake Owen, Maddie & Tae, Thomas Rhett, and Big & Rich.

"The show was primarily lighting-driven," Swinford says, "although we had some low-resolution screens in the truss structure to display graphics. Mythos dominated the rig and was supported by some LED Flares. With Mythos I was able to get everything I wanted from a single fixture: huge graphic looks - like Sharpy on steroids - the ability to zoom out for nice texture with gobos and the ability to soften the edges for a pseudo wash-type look. I was confident that Mythos could be the one light that does it all."

Francesco Romagnoli, Clay Paky area manager for North and Latin America, added, "This is a great project for one of our first Mythos applications. Mr. Swinford, Mr. Haskell and Mr. Appel are all great artists and collaborators and we're thrilled with the result they got from our new fixture. We also thank A.C.T Lighting for their valuable work and commitment to making this happen."

(Jim Evans)

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