UK - A spirited drum and bass performance by BRIT Award winners Rudimental marked the official end of this year’s Sundown Festival, but the buzz created by the three-day event at Norfolk Showground lasted far longer with inventive pictures and ebullient comments flooding social media. The euphoria was easy to understand, given that music fans were starved for live festival experience following the 2020 pandemic lockdown.
Sundown Festival 2021 delivered all they were looking for, serving up three days of ‘colourful costumes, raucous fun and performances by more than 65 different acts, all in a safe environment’. Providing a colourful visual setting for this welcomed experience was a lighting and production design by Bigabox Productions that featured a broad mix of Chauvet Professional fixtures on three of the festival’s four stages.
Selected from Bigabox’s own inventory, the fixtures were chosen to provide the maximum level of flexibility to accommodate the personalities and styles of the various bands and lighting designers who contributed to the Sundown experience. Prominent in the mix of luminaires were the Maverick MK1 Hybrid, Maverick MK2 Wash, Maverick MK Pyxis, Rogue Outcast 1 Hybrid, Rogue, Rogue R3 Beam, and STRIKE 4.
“There was huge anticipation for the event this year in light of the lifting of Covid restrictions, and we were determined to provide a fantastic visual show for the guests,” said production manager Dean Graves of Bigabox. “Our selection of Chauvet Professional fixtures provided us with a variety of multipurpo
UK - TSL Lighting has invested in Elation Professional’s Paladin Cube, a compact LED floodlight with IP65 protection that marks the company’s first purchase into Elation’s product range.
TSL is a stage lighting company that operates across the UK and beyond. In operation since 2006, the company provides quality lighting, rigging and design for a wide range of live events, working from a modern facility and warehouse in Basingstoke.
“We chose the Paladin Cube for its size, shape, output, availability and price,” stated TSL managing director Sam Tamplin. “We’re happy with it and think it'll be a good little workhorse fixture for us indoors and outdoors.”
The Paladin Cube is a compact LED floodlight with IP65 protection that has versatile use as a wash light, blinder/strobe or eye candy effect. It houses nine 15W RGBW cells for a full spectrum of colour options, including high-impact white light, and features multiple pixel zone control.
After arranging a demo through Elation’s exclusive UK distributor, Entedi, TSL chose the unit and immediately sent them out on an outdoor winter walk project. “Cally and the Entedi team were great in organizing demos and managing the purchasing process during a difficult time,” Tamplin says.
The Netherlands - Eindhoven University of Technology (TU/e) is one of the leading technical universities in Europe. The school’s auditorium, the heart of the campus where students attend lectures and presentations of all types, recently received a lighting upgrade of Elation luminaires specified and installed by AV company Houben Souren.
Houben Souren was contacted by TU/e after university personnel had heard about a recent LED lighting installation at the Maastricht Exhibition and Convention Centre (MECC), an auditorium lighting system potentially similar to what they required.
“The university was interested in the installation and the types of lights we used there [Elation Fuze Profile and Colour 5 Profile] so we invited them to Maastricht to see the project for themselves,” explains Tijs Verfurth, operations manager at Houben Souren. “It turned out to be a good real-world demonstration and they were quite impressed with the system.”
Houben Souren consequently contacted Bert Schmeits, key account manager Benelux at Elation, who worked with Verfurth to arrange a product demonstration at the university with the Fuze Profile, along with lights from three other manufacturers. Other Elation fixtures also took part in the demo, including the KL Fresnel 8 and DTW Par 300.
The Fuze Profile and a cold-white version of the LED moving head, the Fuze Profile CW, were selected as the principal luminaires for the lighting upgrade. Useful wherever a fully automated ellipsoidal fixture is required, the Fuze Profile houses a 305W RGBMA LED engine
UK - The panto season is back with a bang after waiting in the wings during 2020 as the country squared up to COVID-19, reigniting all things panto like slapstick comedy, toilet-brow innuendo, gawdy sets, psychedelic vibrance and total craziness for which it’s known and appreciated, with lighting designers around the country delighted to be back working on this peculiarly English and highly expressive genre of performance.
None more than Andy Webb, who chose an all-Robe LED moving light rig for UK Productions’ spectacular Cinderella staged at the Waterside Theatre in Aylesbury, Buckinghamshire.
For Webb’s first time working in this theatre - following five successive panto seasons up to 2019 at Blackpool’s Theatre Royal - the lighting rig was specified so he could present a new televisual style of panto lighting, with lots of fabulous neutral skin tones juxtaposed against the vibrant colours demanded by panto narrative and style.
“Flexibility is always the key to lighting a panto as the real-time onstage programming and tech’ing schedule is traditionally tight, and that’s why I wanted the Robe fixtures in there because I knew I could achieve the depth, detail and levels of expectation of this production,” he explains. The show is directed by Chris Nelson, who is also playing one of the Ugly Sisters characters.
Andy’s rig includes Robe Esprites and Spiiders as the Spot-Wash ‘base’ luminaires, with 10 Esprites and 17 Spiider wash-beams distributed across the overhead LX bars.
It is also the first panto Webb h
UK/USA - WILA Lighting has announced its expansion into the US market. WILA Lighting’s growth into the US market has been facilitated by its close affiliation with Experience Brands, a global lighting conglomerate comprised of medium-sized production and innovation facilities that work closely with its specific markets. The goal of the group is to combine the experience, capacity, and capabilities of the individual businesses to achieve maximum service and performance to the customer.
Benefitting from Experience Brands worldwide distribution network, extensive product facilities, and shared infrastructure, WILA Lighting will complement the extensive Experience Brands’ portfolio, to fulfil project requirements across a range of sectors.
Earlier this year, WILA achieved recognition for its green credentials with the confirmation of its status at the highest level of Carbon Neutral+ standard.
Matt Vogel, chief executive officer at WILA Lighting, comments: “Expansion into the US is a significant step for WILA Lighting and one we have been working towards for some time. Our products have already been specified for several high-profile US projects, and it is fantastic to see the strong appetite in the market for our extensive product range. We are delighted to have the support of Experience Brands and the individual businesses that make it such a worthwhile enterprise.”
Chris Stockton, CEO at Experience Brands, adds: “WILA Lighting is a fantastic company, and we are proud to be able to offer WILA products here in the US. As a fast-growt
USA - Pentatonix, the three-time Grammy Award winning a cappella group, just wrapped their 18-date Evergreen Christmas Tour 2021 where 45 Ayrton Khamsin-S profile luminaires served as the main fixtures for the show. Ayrton is exclusively distributed in North America by ACT Entertainment.
The Evergreen Christmas Tour 2021, in support of the new Pentatonix album called Evergreen, kicked off 27 November in Baltimore and wrapped on 23 December in Grand Prairie, Texas. It was their first Christmas tour since 2019, the coronavirus pandemic having side-lined last year’s event.
Production and lighting designer, Travis Shirley, who heads Travis Shirley Live Design in Houston and Nashville, has been working with Pentatonix for the last nine years. “It’s been quite a journey,” he says, “seeing them grow to where they are selling out arenas around the world. After last year’s Christmas tour was cancelled, it was time to rejoice with a new show full of the energy and love Pentatonix is known for.”
Shirley says the art direction of the Evergreen album informed the design of the show. “Choreographers and creative directors Lindsey Blaufarb and Craig Hollaman and I were inspired by the album artwork, which pays homage to the 1960s with silver tinsel and retro clothes,” Shirley points out. “Then I channelled the look of The Johnny Carson Show and the Tom Hanks movie, That Thing You Do for the era’s lighting and scenography. We ended up designing around several curtain tracks starting with a metallic silver drape, then a vin
UAE - The United Arab Emirates marked 50 years as a nation with 50 days of celebrations, culminating in a spectacular live show from Dubai’s Hatta Water Dam in the Hajar Mountains featuring a floating stage and drone-launched fireworks, produced by live event specialists, LarMac Projects.
The show charted the country’s history in the lead-up to its inception in 1971 and across the subsequent 50 years.
For the country’s Golden Jubilee, the creative team - led by artistic director and designer Es Devlin and LarMac executive creative producer Jo MacKay - knew that the boundaries of possibility needed to be pushed to their limit.
The initial show was live streamed on 2 December and followed by 10 additional performances that took place between 3-12 December, featuring specially composed songs and poetry, drone-launched fireworks, a light show, water displays and 5.1 surround sound ‘to convey the relationship between people and nature, and the ties between Emiratis, their homeland, and the environment’.
“This year, Es’s creativity was the most technically audacious and emotionally ambitious in order to deliver a country's attitude to its past and future,” says Jo MacKay.
LarMac enlisted a team of 650 creative, cast, technical and safety personnel from 100 countries to bring Devlin’s designs to life.
"The whole show floats, the audience floats," says Es. "We explored some new ways of using less pyrotechnics to elevate the fireworks into the air, using drones to lift them to a height, then a combination of drone and fi
USA - Earlier this year, the filming of Marvel Studios’ newly-released Spider Man: No Way Home found lighting programmer Scott Barnes once again firing up his Hog 4 lighting control setup, as well as bringing some new Hog 4 HPU Hybrid Processor units for the production.
Well-known for his use of Hog 4 control on Marvel’s films and other movies, Barnes said he approached the shoot for No Way Home quite similarly as he has in the past, but with ‘the biggest addition and MVP of the show being the HPU processor’.
Barnes explains, “I was fortunate enough to beta test the HPU during the pandemic lockdown, and even more fortunate to get the very first two off the assembly line to bring onboard Spider-Man. My systems tech, Derek Page, provided our standard Rack Hogs, I provided two HPUs, and then he ended up adding another HPU towards the beginning of our schedule.
“Spider-Man was the perfect show to break in the new HPU. We used every bit of processing power those things could deliver. The show was loaded with lighting effects, and we must be a little more manageable with our Hog servers now, because we want to make sure that the HPUs get used on the stages that need them the most. The Rack Hogs were used for the lesser rigs. It's also been very nice to be able to use any of the Rack Hogs or HPUs as extra processors too.
“As was their typical setup, the team installed the servers (Rack Hogs or HPUs) on each of the stages they were using. We were at Trillith Studios, formerly known as Pinewood, just south of A
USA - The millions of viewers around the world who tuned into ABC’s broadcast of New Year's Rockin' Eve with Ryan Seacrest, enjoyed all the familiar sights of this Times Square event. But for the team responsible for lighting the talent on the stand-up platforms during the show, ringing in 2022 represented a big departure from tradition.
“This was the first time in the show’s 50-year history that host positions weren’t lit with HMI fixtures,” said Mike Grabowski, lead designer for The Lighting Design Group, which was responsible for lighting the platforms at Military Island, and the Bertelsman building, as well as the Powerball setup for the broadcast.
In place of these fixtures, Grabowski and his team lit host Ryan Seacrest and other talent with 12 Chauvet Professional onAir IP Panel2 soft light fixtures, which, like the rest of the rig, were supplied by 4Wall Entertainment.
“We need something very bright to get us to a level that could hold its own against the blaring intensity of Times Square’s LED screens, but we also needed something soft, flattering and nimble,” said Grabowski. “Thanks to the onAir panels, this was the first time were able to edit colour temperature, without having to run up and swap gel, which was huge. Aside from this, we were also able to run a little less heavy power, which was also great. We also tossed in the intensifiers with the onAir panels to squeeze the beam down a bit, which worked out very well.”
In addition to their enhanced performance, the onAir IP Panel 2 units met the criteri
Venezuela - The latest hit single from Justin Quiles La Botella has inspired a challenge among his legion of devoted fans that calls on them to dance to the rhythmic sways of this song with a bottle on their heads without having said bottle fall.
While his fans may accomplish this feat with varying degrees of success, maintaining a sense of equilibrium seems to come quite naturally to this Puerto Rican born star, not only in his smooth moves on stage, but also in the way he balances different musical influences in his reggaeton sound.
Both were on full display this December when Quiles made his first Venezuelan appearance in six years, giving a concert, with production managed by Oz Shows, at the Universidad Santa María in Caracas.
Moving effortlessly with him throughout his 16-song set was a vividly colourful light show designed by Jeremy Danis of Oz Shows, with production by Edgar Figuera and programming by Milton de la Cruz that featured 50 Chauvet Professional fixtures.
Anchoring the rig were its 24 Rogue R1 FX-B fixtures. The RGBW linear units, each with five pixel mappable and independently controlled moving heads, were arranged on an overhead truss grid that spanned the entire width of the stage.
Some of these fixtures were flown on horizontally oriented truss, while others were positioned on vertical lines. This configuration opened a broad array of design options, something Danis and the production team took full advantage of by orienting the independent moving heads in multiple directions.
At times the design
USA - Dancesport is a growing discipline at all levels. From local dance competitions to a myriad of popular dance shows on television to its inclusion in the 2024 Summer Olympics, the world has embraced dance as sport.
Dance America Productions, an independent production company based in Tampa, FL, specialises in dance events of all types and has worked many of the genre’s competitions for years. Owned by Nina Kimbrough, a dancer herself, the company carries lighting, sound, pipe and drape, and LED video wall, plus the all-important portable dance floors that range from 2,400-6,000sq.ft.
Kimbrough uses a system of Elation LED luminaires (SixPar 300 and Cuepix Blinder WW4) with a clever airwall mounting system to provide high-quality lighting at dancesport competitions around the country. “The dance floor is the stage so it needs to be lit properly,” Kimbrough states. “It needs to light the dancers and the space in which they are dancing in a bright, even illumination that doesn’t blind and with minimal hot and cold spots on the floor. It needs to provide the proper colouring for the dancers, and finally it needs to support photography and videography. I get all that from my Elation lights.”
Traditional side-light positions for dance floor events - single truss towers on or near the corners of the dance floor - pose a number of problems, according to Kimbrough, who prefers to forego towers whenever possible. “You want even illumination, but that is hard to do with towers. When you light from towers and project from the corners, it is
USA - Busking your way through an Atreyu tour requires many skills and attributes. High on that list is flexibility as the band weaves a mix of different musical influences into their metal-driven sound.
Cody James has demonstrated such nimbleness in his time running lightshows for the quintet, supporting them note for note as they rip their way through their multifarious musical blend. His adaptiveness was on full display in Atreyu’s 29-city Fall Baptize tour, which ended on 16 December.
Not only did James keep pace with his client’s music, he also adapted his show to a wide range of stage configurations, as the tour wove its way through a diverse mix of venues, from the Palladium in Worcester, MA and the Majestic in Detroit, to the Skyway Theatre in Minneapolis and House of Blues in San Diego. Helping him accomplish this without a hiccup was his ChamSys MagicQ MQ80 console.
“Every single day there was a placement change for fixtures, or another challenge, like my FOH position being all the way house left by the bathrooms,” said James of JDI Productions. “It was an adventure every day - and I enjoyed it very much. The MQ80 held up great in this aspect. It made it simple to deal with a variety of different house rigs. That was one of the brightest gold stars on its checklist for me.”
The fixture library and cloning features of his MQ80 were invaluable to James on this tour, which was made in support of Atreyu’s eighth studio album. “Without a high quality fixture library, each day would have been a struggle,” he said. “On t
Spain - The second edition of the Umbra Light Festival in Victoria-Gasteiz took place between 12-14 November. The festival was born with the intention of introducing both visitors and citizens to the world of urban lighting art, in such a way that the public could experience and interact with the latest artistic and technological expressions of this field. The festival encompassed artistic expressions of digital visual art, interventions in urban space and new technologies.
The festival took place in the historic centre of the city (La Almendra), where a total of 19 artists were able to present their works and filled the city of Vitoria with light, colour and music.
Digital illustrator Coaner Codina transformed the central Plaza de la Virgen Blanca into a colourful underwater space. An imaginary and dreamlike world brimming with light and colour that covered the ground and façades of water into fantastic creatures to emphasize the overfishing and pollution of our seas that threaten the sustainability and biodiversity of our planet.
The work of Rebeca Sánchez and Miquel Clot, based on a large structure located in the monumental Plaza de los Fueros, was made so children could interact by dancing and jumping around the installation. This installation featured two Prolights PanoramaIP AirBeam.
International designer Ezequiel Nobili turned the medieval wall of Vitoria Gasteiz into a poetic and harmonious landscape that revealed the union between heaven and earth. This installation featured 12 PanoramaIP AirBeam and four PanoramaIP WBX.
Austria - The Vienna State Opera House in Austria - also home to the Vienna State Ballet - has invested in new Robe Forte HCF LED moving lights and Forte HCF FollowSpots.
Vienna State Opera purchased 10 Forte HCF luminaires and four Forte HCF FollowSpots which work in conjunction with a customised RoboSpot control system, explained deputy head of lighting Robert Eisenstein.
The Opera House has a busy repertory schedule, and these Robe luminaires - delivered via Robe’s Austrian distributor Signal - replace the old manual-focus generic FOH tungsten fixtures with brighter, more adaptable, and more sustainable lights, and have upgraded the traditional follow spots in this impressive 1,709 seat and 567 standing capacity Renaissance Revival styled venue which opened in 1869, when it was the first building to be erected on the Vienna ring road!
With a throw distance of 50m to the stage from the FOH positions, they needed the most powerful and the quietest fixtures.
The fact that the FOH gallery lights no longer have to be manually focussed means valuable between-production changeover times can be saved by having moving lights, and that the system is hugely more flexible for accommodating the needs of all productions.
Robert and his colleagues are all delighted with the results, as are the visiting lighting designers who have so far benefitted from using the new system.
RoboSpots were first tested in the house three years ago when a system was rented in for the Vienna Opera Ball.
The Opera House follow spot slots rooms are in t
UK - London welcomed in 2022 with a spectacular city-wide display, sending a message of thanks and hope to the nation and the world. Jack Morton, the global brand experience agency, helped to develop the original concept and worked in partnership with the Mayor of London’s office and a dedicated team of experts to create an extraordinary experience for the second year running.
The 13-minute show designed for home-viewing was broadcast live on BBC One and watched by a global viewing audience of millions.
Jack Morton’s creative show team worked in collaboration with On the Sly for the music production, Titanium Fireworks for the pyrotechnics design, and Skymagic for the swarm drone sequences.
Patrick O’Mahony, creative director of Skymagic, comments: “We were delighted to collaborate again with Jack Morton to design and deliver the drone light show for London New Year’s Eve for the second year running. Building on last year’s show, we have returned to the capital with a larger fleet and having developed our drone division both technologically and creatively. The 2022 show tells a celebratory story with an emphasis on three-dimensional formations, conceptual shapes and complex trajectories.”
Lighting for the event was designed by Durham Marenghi with Paul Cook as associate LD and programmer in Central London and Pedro Marcé Socias programming at The Old Royal Naval College (ORNC). All the lighting and lasers were pre-programmed and visualised on WYSIWYG and Depence2 to give the client and the BBC a clear indication of what they c
USA - When it comes to the lights in his rig, Dominic Lopenzo doesn’t hesitate to say that he is completely partial to beam fixtures, or more specifically the beam function in Chauvet Professional’s Rogue RH1 Hybrid.
“Beams have become my favourite, because they add so much energy to a room,” he said. “I find myself going to them often.”
Partiality to beams might not be unusual in a concert/touring designer, but Lopenzo is speaking as technical director of Grace City Church, a 750-seat house of worship with a distinctly modern touch located in Lakeland, Florida..
“Many people have described our services as being like a concert, and to our worship team and me that’s a huge compliment,” said Lopenzo, who comes from a concert background and still works at the House of Blues in Orlando in addition to doing his lighting duties at the church. “We pull a lot of ideas from concert lighting and apply them to a worship environment to create something that we feel is unique and engaging.”
Positioned on the stage deck, next to the drum and keyboard risers, the Rogue RH1 Hybrids in the church’s rig (between two and six depending on the service or event) are used to accent key moments on stage and to engage worshippers by directing crisp tight beams across the room.
“I used the beams extensively because of their impact,” said Lopenzo. “Our stage is approximately 60ft wide, and the width of the room expands considerably as it goes out. The beams fill space beautifully. We only have one floor, so I am able to point a lot
Ukraine - For Olya Polyakova’s The Queen of the Night show, staged at Kiev’s Palace of Sports in October 2021, a large array of Claypaky lighting fixtures gave a high-energy look to the concert and accented the royal design motif employed by the popular performer.
Yuriy Andrushchenko, drector of Feyeria, supplied lighting designer Vlad Cherepin with 62 Claypaky Sharpys, 54 Sharpy Plus, 32 Mini-B LED moving lights, 32 Tambora Battens and eight Scenius Unico spots for the concert.
“The central element of the set was a star-shaped crown suspended from trusses on moving motors, where we put the Sharpy fixtures,” says Dmytro Andrushchenko, stage designer of Feyeria. “Sharpys were very well suited to this application because they are small and easy to install and have a great effect in a large hall.”
Vlad Cherepin chose Sharpys, he says, “because they were perfect to make narrow beams and to repeat the contours of the crown in the air.”
In addition, Sharpy Plus created bright colours and unusual gobo effects, while the Mini Bs acted as bright fill-lights, he explains. The Scenius Unico fixtures served as front lights and profiles accentuating the singer and dancers while the Tambora Battens proved to be “powerful lighting effects tools” says lighting operator Ruslan Bondarev.
UK - A lot of music history has reverberated off the walls of The Brook in Southampton, a former Victorian pub turned live performance venue. Bill Wyman has jammed on its tidy stage, so too have Billy Bragg and other UK stars. Now a bit of the future is shining of its storied walls too, as GLS lighting has given the club an LED lighting upgrade with some 30 Chauvet Professional fixtures.
The change began during the COVID lockdown when The Brook’s director Nick Lewis saw an opportunity to define a new vision that would take the venue, which began hosting live music in 1994, to new levels whilst also committing to reducing its environmental impact.
Having worked with The Brook for over 20 years, local install specialists GLS were brought on board to transform the club’s outdated lighting system with a modern, flexible LED installation with the idea of enhancing its stage shows whilst also minimizing its carbon footprint.
Toward this end, GLS specified 10 Chauvet Professional Rogue R2X Wash, six Rogue R2X Spot, eight COLORdash PAR Hex 12IP and four Strike 4 fixtures, all controlled via a ChamSys MQ80 console.
With the primary focus of the family-run Southampton-based venue firmly placed upon audience experience and satisfaction, Lewis was all too aware of the importance of providing the two-tiered venue with a stunning up-to-date array of visual tools to award the artists on stage with a sense of grandeur one wouldn't normally expect from a venue renowned for its intimate and close-knit performances.
“The Brook is a venue that has
Norway - For the second straight year Nobel Week Lights Stockholm was presented as part of the city’s Nobel Prize celebrations from 4-12 December 2021. Dialog, the installation by lighting designer Fredrik Jönsson, utilised 30 Xtylos Aquas, the IP66-rated fixtures powered by Claypaky’s proprietary RGB laser source. Xtylos Aqua offers the same effects and features of the original Xtylos in a small and robust form factor designed for use outdoors.
Nobel Week Lights Stockholm was organised by The Nobel Prize Museum and featured some 20 artistic installations inspired by the Nobel Prize and its winners’ achievements.
Jönsson’s Dialog was located on Strömparterren, a small island in the centre of Stockholm near the royal palace and parliament, and visible across the city. It was inspired by the Nobel Prize in Physics that Charles K. Kao won in 2009 for “groundbreaking achievements concerning the transmission of light in fibres for optical communication”.
“The concept consisted of strong, animated light rays directed towards the sky. Bright moving light fixtures will produce a cluster of strong light rays similar to what happens on the inside of fiber optic cables,” explains Jönsson, a multi-award-winning lighting designer and head of Eyebrow Designs. “What we experienced was the light - full of information - animated, moving, pulsating, flickering and coloured in different sequences and patterns to symbolize the gigantic flow of information that daily passes through all the world’s fibre cables and binds people toget
UK - With government advice putting the decision-making onto the shoulders of the public and consumer confidence eroding as a consequence, the live events sector is stressed to the limit, says industry organisation #WeMakeEvents (WME).
Despite a devastating 2020 and a challenging 2021, businesses in the industry have worked hard to exceed revenues last recorded in November 2019 by the same month in 2021. But, says WME, the current climate has already eroded this by 80% during December 2021 and is forecast to continue through January.
From the UK’s first lockdown in Spring 2020 until summer 2021, companies in this sector only received around 12% of the Cultural Recovery Fund (CRF) awards whilst many of the freelance technical specialists who work in the industry are still catching-up on their finances, having had no work for over a year.
WME says in a statement: “While we are pleased to see the government recognise the existence and critical role of freelancers in the entertainment sectors, the chancellor’s announcement of £1.5m support will have little to no effect whatsoever. Added to this, local government grants are not sufficiently targeted to reach the supply chain, compounded by the ‘postcode lottery’ of these grants by the issuing local authorities, and exclusion for many within the recently announced CRF criteria. Over 25% of people had to leave the sector they loved over the past 20 months for more regular and dependable income to support themselves and families. Another talent drain like this will be fatal.
“While we fee
Czech Republic - Debuting in fall 2021 at the O2 Arena in Prague, Martin Hruška’s Queen Relived tQueen tribute show uses automated platforms, cubic structures and an array of ingeniously configured geometric structures to immerse audiences and bring them closer to the Freddy Mercury experience as performed by the band Queenie CZ.
“The show revolves around the concept of depth,” said Hruška, who designed the stage, lighting rig, and video graphics for the show, in addition to writing its storyline. “I wanted the automation platform to change perspectives, I had a long catwalk dive deep into the audience. The idea was to break down barriers and connect the people to the band and to the music of Freddy Mercury.”
A total of 16 trucks were used to transport the show’s gear into the arena. Accentuating the intricate web of shapes and forms was an intense 17-universe lighting and video design run by LD Lukáš Patzenhauer on the ChamSys MagicQ MQ500M.
Some of the massive rig’s lighting fixtures were arranged along the rim of the cubistic stage, others lined the dual catwalks or were hung from the venue ceiling, but most of the lighting intensity erupted from the seven giant geometric structures suspended in the air.
Directing intense beams of light in multiple directions, these fixtures gave the stage even more depth and texture, making Hruška’s patterns and shapes resonate with ever greater vitality. Stark colour changes from the overhead units reflected myriad moods on stage, whilst pixel mapped effects complemented the
USA - The Proteus Excalibur from Elation Professional is a powerful IP65 beam moving head fixture. The newest member in Elation’s Proteus range of IP65 automated fixtures, Excalibur’s power, long throw beam and wide front aperture make it suitable for creating aerial light columns, sweeping beams, throws of CMY colour, and prismatic/air FX rivaling existing Xenon searchlights, says Elation.
“Capable of creating effects as magical as its legendary namesake, the Proteus Excalibur is ideally suited for theme parks, cruise ships, outdoor special events, large-scale shows and concerts, or any situation where a massive beam or very powerful prism and flower effects are required.”
Excalibur is billed as ‘the brightest IP65 full-featured beam fixture ever created’, producing up to 200,000 lux at 20m (7,500 lux at 100m).
Rivaling existing Xenon searchlights and sky trackers, the Excalibur’s extremely narrow 0.8° beam ensures the fixture cuts effortlessly through the sky and is visible at great distances. The intense beam projects from an ultra-wide 260mm front lens as a massive column of solid, attention-grabbing light, a towering beacon that is impossible to miss.
A wide array of gobos and prism overlays allow for a large variety of dynamic sky animations. The upcoming integrated sky animation system allows the Excalibur to operate impressive aerial shows without needing an external DMX controller.
The Excalibur offers full CMY colour mixing plus 14 dichroic colours including CTO and UV.
The Proteus Excalibur uses Philips
Mauritius - Located in the Indian Ocean island nation of Mauritius, Lakaz derives its name from the locale Creole language term for home or house. It’s an apt description of the prevailing atmosphere at this well-known venue, where locals and tourists (over a million visit the island every year), feel right at home.
During the pandemic lockdown, the normally busy club, took advantage of the lull in traffic to make its atmosphere” even more inviting for guests by replacing its old fixtures with LED units from Chauvet Professional. Designed and installed by One Touch Domotics, the upgrade did more than make the club more inviting, it also provided Lakaz with an entirely new way to weave lighting into its entertainment offerings.
“Lakaz has been around for many years and is one of the most popular party spots in Mauritius, but it was time for a change with lighting,” said Emanuel Blais of One Touch Domotics. “The management of the club made the decision to take advantage of the pandemic closure to do a complete renovation. It was at this time that I was contacted to completely rethink the lighting of the entire place, up to the architectural lighting.
“The management wanted to bring a new look to the restaurant / bar with RGBW lights,” continues Blais. “They wanted to be able to change looks with lighting with the click of a smart phone. The club also wanted the updated lighting to be much more dynamic than before. They also wanted it to be used for various events other than lighting the usual club activities.”
Anchoring the pac
UK - Leeds-based rental company Production Light & Sound was founded in 2000 by the late Jason Salvin and is now headed by Sarah Buckmaster who has been working for the company for the last 16 years and a director since 2018.
The scope of the company’s work includes draping and staging in addition to lighting and sound production and embraces all areas of technical production - live music, concerts, festivals through to slick corporate and business events.
At the start of 2020, Production Light & Sound made a large purchase of Robe RoboSpots - four systems, complete with motion cameras - and were, like so many enterprises, looking forward to a bumper year ahead. Then came COVID.
“With theatres, venues now opening up, shows restarting and gigs, tours and events being scheduled and re-scheduled post COVID, we hope there’s going to be plenty of work ahead for the RoboSpots,” states Buckmaster.
The company also offer a range of Robe fixtures to work with the RoboSpots, including MegaPointes and BMFLs.
Sarah and the team had been looking for a remote followspotting solution for some time. “For all the safety and flexibility coupled with the additional speed and efficiency it brings to a show, remote follow spotting is definitely the future,” she comments.
They spotted a gap in the market for RoboSpots in their area, so it was a solid investment geographically, especially with the highly active arts and music scenes enjoyed in the North of England.
“It’s easy to set up, intuitive to use and being able to