Dynamic productions call for top-caliber design and deployment of lighting. As with all projects in AVL production, the key is developing an appropriate artistic vision and then making it happen through effective use of available technologies. Let’s take a look at some recent lighting projects of note.
Seal World Tour
A mixture of Philips Vari-Lite fixtures are providing the hub for a visual fusion of lighting, video and automation on Seal’s current world tour.
London-based lighting designer Theo Cox, who has designed lighting for concerts by performers such as Bon Jovi, Kylie, The Killers and The Rolling Stones, has specified VL3000 Spot and VL3500 Wash luminaires, with the addition of VL2500 Wash luminaires for key lighting and kickers, and VL2500 Spot luminaires for back lighting.
“I chose Vari-Lite fixtures because they are reliable, bright and offer the level of functionality and familiarity I require,” explains Cox. “The VL3000 Spots were the main workhorse luminaires and I specified them for their wide zoom and brightness. The VL3500 Wash luminaires provide a great chunky beamage, rather than just wishy-washy wash and the tight column beams had no problem cutting through, even when I used deep saturated color downstage of video screens.
“The VL2500 Wash fixtures offer the intensity and zoom to work as band keys and give me the scope I need in terms of color.”
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An LED starcloth and 32-inch mirror ball have also been incorporated into the design, complementing Cox’s tasteful beam structures, fluid movement and sharp timings. “The VL2500 Spot as band specials are perfect mid-range lights with exactly the attributes I require to give each band member a multi-use backlight,” says Cox.
The tour completed its first Australian and U.S. legs earlier this year before moving on to tour Europe for the remainder of 2012. “This was a great opportunity to design a beautiful, vibrant show for an artist I really respect,” says Cox. “I am extremely happy with the result.”
Muse On Tour
Oli Metcalfe is the first lighting director to use the new High End Systems Hog 4 control system for a recent tour by Muse, when he swapped it in for his Full Boar console.
“My show transitioned straight from the Full Boar to the Hog 4 with only minor modifications required in the view and the setup, just because of the bigger screens on the new desk,” he explains. “I’ve now done three shows on the Hog 4 and it’s been flawless. It’s really fast and responsive, and it’s a great interface because you’ve got so much screen space to lay out your tool set, and put everything just where you want it.”
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His design is distinctive for its creative implementation of video surfaces across a giant articulating pyramid. To facilitate the pyramid’s movement, Metcalfe is using the Kinesys K2 system. The lighting, rigging and motion control elements are supplied through Neg Earth Lights.
XL Video is supplying video, and Brilliant Stages built the pyramid structure and stage.
High End Systems TechnoArc luminaries also augment the design, with ten of the fixtures discretely recessed within the stage as one of the show’s many unique elements. “I was looking for a wash light that could be recessed so that only the front of the head was popping out,” Metcalfe says. “I chose the TechnoArcs because they’ve got such good output to power ratio. They’re brighter than a 1,500-watt wash light, and that just shows you boldly the advances in optical technology that High End have always reached for.”