S Club
Friday, 22 March 2002
S Club 7 have recently completed a UK arena tour. Considering it’s only a matter of months since their last outing, it’s to the band’s credit that they decided to create a whole new image for this tour. The impressive set, designed by Hattie Spice (no relation to the Girls) and co-ordinated by Charlie Kail, included not only a series of lifts and moving elements, but a massive over-audience catwalk. To rig the show, rigging contractors Summit Steel used 220m of James Thomas trussing, along with 55 CM Lodestar hoists. These were used to provide backdrop, side screen, tracking screen and catwalk support trussing, as well as cable bridges and hoists used during daily fit-up for the scenic elements.

Total Fabrications Ltd were called in to manufacture the catwalk deck and handrail to fit the truss structure supplied by Summit Steel. "The catwalk was suspended using 26 Summit hoists fitted with position encoders and our remote load monitoring system," commented Summit’s Jon Bray. "By using QMotion’s K10s computer hoist command system we were able to ensure safe, accurate and repeatable positioning of the catwalk."

A massive 70sq.m LED screen, supplied by XL Video, dominated centre stage, made up of Generale Location 25mm modules. This split in two, with each half moving sideways to form a dramatic upstage entrance. The screen tracking was controlled by QMotion, again supplied through Summit. The system, designed and built by QMotion to Chris Walker of Summit’s specifications, is driven by a QMotion custom tailored ‘SC7’ winch - a truss mountable winch originally built to Summit’s specifications for last year’s S Club 7 tour.

The stage was flanked either side by two 20 x 15 metre ‘soft’ screens, with projected sources from Barco ELMs. Each of the 18 songs in the set featured video. Some involved abstract footage, much of which was created ‘live’ as the tour progressed and video director Leach sampled video snapshots from the actual performance. At other points it was precisely cued pre-recorded footage being beamed onto the screens. The cameras included two hand-helds, two in the pit and one out front, and XL also supplied Leach with a Cartoni Dutch head for the weirder angles. With 21 people onstage - 7 band, 7 dancers and S-Club 7 - Leach had an extremely hectic show to cut and mix.

In the LD chair was Pete Barnes. Working with a rig supplied by LSD Fourth Phase, he made deft use of the largely Coemar and Martin-dominated rig. The sound was supplied by SSE, with Jim Ebdon mixing FOH on a Midas XL4. The L-Acoustics V-dosc rig was powered by Camco amps. Monitoring was taken care of by a combination of Innova Son’s Compact Live and a Midas Heritage 3000.

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