Reba McEntire’s tour continues through to April next year (Michael Ares Photography)
USA - The colourful, richly textured 3D set created by the team at Lüz Studio casts a powerful spell on audiences at country star Reba McEntire’s current arena tour.
The production design does more than provide an attractive backdrop for the beloved star’s performance, using artificial Intelligence and other tools, it creates an immersive environment that she lives in during her 100-minute set. At times, the setting seems so real that it looks as if the performance is taking place “inside” an actual structure instead of on a stage.
Critical to making this look work is the position of the set’s big video screen in relation to the stage, the band and the artist herself, according to Lüz Studio’s Matthieu Larivée, the tour’s lead designer. “Positioning the lighting rig in this set-up is very important,” he explained. “When the lighting truss structures are too far away from the screen, the screen looks like an actual screen, which is not what we want. Our aim is to use the riser and lights in a way that loses the edge of the screen -- that’s when something special happens. Sometimes content creators are lighting their assets with soft boxes. The stage should not be lit this way if you want 3D to work. You need to create shade, drama and then match it to the stage lights.
“David Rondeau who’s been at Luz for 15 years and helped me choose fixtures and check angles, has been instrumental on this tour,” he said. “I’m also grateful to Pierre-Luc Bedard our programmer, and Andy Knighton our LD plus many more.”
Helping the Lüz design team accomplish this impressive look are 30 Chauvet Professional Maverick MK3 Profiles, which, like the rest of the lighting rig, were supplied by Bandit Lites. “We used the Mavericks for all of our floor units,” said Larivée. “We wanted to have the same fixture on floor to be able to have only one language. Because we are playing arenas, we wanted 220 degree sight lines so when we do a single gobo look to extend the video content, it looks immersive. This is definitely what we got with these fixtures.”
In addition to adding depth to the stage with gobo patterns, the Maverick MK3 Profiles were used to create beautiful monochromatic palettes. “I’m a monochromatic guy,” said Larivée. “I like to use a single colour wash and a single no colour backlight on the artist. The colours in this tour were chosen based on the video, not necessarily to match the colour but to be within the same family.”

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