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Avoiding metal cliches

February 22, 2019

UNITED STATES     Drummer and vocalist Brandon Saller played an active role in designing the set for metal band Atreyu’s In Our Wake tour, creating six vertical “pipes” surrounding the stage. He worked with lighting designer Megan Alksninis hoping to transcend the clichés often associated with hard rock shows,…

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Bandit helps celebrate Outlaw

February 22, 2019

UNITED STATES      With over 25 artistes paying tribute to Willie Nelson at the 18,000-capacity Bridgestone Arena in Nashville, the production needed to complement the performers rather than distract from them, says lighting designer Mark Carver. Emmylou Harris, Alison Krauss, Dave Matthews, Sheryl Crow and John Mellencamp, were among…

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Blackmagic for Groban intimacy

February 22, 2019

WORLD Creating an intimate feel for Josh Groban in large performance spaces such as US’s Madison Square Gardens (cap. 18.600) in New York, or the UK’s The O2 (21,000) in London, required a simple setting, says video director Stuart Mercer. His company, Vis-a-Vis Video, used manufacturer Blackmagic Design to supply…

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Nexo covers all venues

February 5, 2019

EASTERN EUROPE    Touring with a 40-piece symphony orchestra in a range of venues, Smokie needed a sound system flexible enough to cover expansive arenas and smaller theatres. Playing venues including the Czech Republic’s Tipsport Arena (cap. 13,150) in Prague, Hungary’s Papp László Budapest Sportaréna (12,500) and Slovenia’s Hala Tivoli…

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Leonid Agutin uses dLive for 50th

February 5, 2019

RUSSIA With an array of supporting musicians including guitarist Al Di Meola, provision for a live DVD and the need to record audience ambience, sound engineer Robert Boim needed an desk with unlimited mixing possibilities and ease of use, for the 50th anniversary concert by singer Leonid Agutin. He chose…

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Nashville ‘energised’ for NYE

February 5, 2019

UNITED STATES      Acrowd estimated at between 175,000 and 200,000 attended Music City Midnight in Nashville, to see artistes including Keith Urban, Peter Frampton and Brett Young at the annual New Year’s Eve celebration. Erik Parker of Chris Lisle Lighting Design says his focus was two-fold – to energise…

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Garrix’s new balanced approach

February 5, 2019

WORLD While industrial chic and an LED “plus” sign remained from dance music artiste Martin Garrix’s previous tour, lighting designer Gabe Fraboni abandoned the asymmetry of that outing for his latest string of concerts, going for a symmetrical look. He also wanted to draw the audience into the action and…

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Brooks enters virgin territory

January 2, 2019

WORLD      Lighting for country singer Garth Brooks, at Notre Dame Stadium (cap. 80,800) in Indiana, required a design that would look good on television, says lighting designer Bob Peterson. He needed 100 fixtures for the CBS Television coverage in addition to the 300 deployed by the production, which…

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Shania in motion with MagicPanel

January 2, 2019

WORLD      Constant motion and changing looks were the brief for creative director and lighting designer Rob Sinclair for Shania Twain’s Shania Now tour. He based the show on five automated LED video cubes which each served as a platform for dancers and band members. “With the band, the…

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Newton gravity for Clockenflap

January 2, 2019

HONG KONG The 60,000-capacity Clockenflap festival in Hong Kong needed audio processors on its main (Harbourflap) and second stage, capable of handling a complex series of inputs and outputs for multiple artistes, according to audio designer  Davide Linzi. Featuring artistes including Erykah Badu, David Byrne, Roni Size and Interpol, the…

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Going immersive in the Bowl

December 4, 2018

UNITED STATES      A performance by Bon Iver at California’s 4,500-capacity Santa Barbara Bowl aimed to treat the audience to an “immersive” audio experience beyond that delivered by a traditional left/right hung PA, according to front-of-house engineer Xandy Whitesel. He wanted to present the band, whose sound combines genres including folk,…

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Cheek glows under Sharpys

December 4, 2018

FINLAND Staging two shows to announce his retirement, Finnish rapper Cheek deployed 1,000 square metres of video wall at the 60,000-capacity Lahti Ski Jump Stadium, in a show broadcast on national television to an estimated one million viewers. A temporary amphitheatre was constructed under the ski jumps while the 60m…

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Keeping the crowd in sight

December 4, 2018

WORLD      Keeping the energy high throughout performances of up to three hours was the priority for lighting designer Dan Hadley on the Foo Fighters’ Concrete and Gold Tour, which visited venues such as Canada’s Scotiabank Saddledome (19,300) in Calgary, the US’s Sprint Center (19,000) in Kansas City and…

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Chemical highs ‘reach out and touch’ audiences

December 4, 2018

WORLD      Large-scale dancing robots, a long-standing feature of the Chemical Brothers’ live show, were supplemented by an “effervescent” visual experience combining new ideas and vintage visual gags, according to co-designer Marcus Lyall. Working with colleague Adam Smith, Lyall created a film-influenced show, introducing characters in the video with…

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Elation at Imagine Dragons’ shows

December 4, 2018

WORLD Acentral, vertical beam of light which forms the focus of Imagine Dragons’ Evolve LP artwork also provided the basis of the band’s stage set, with lighting and production designer Mitchell Schellenger deploying a series of angled video screens to evoke imagery from the album. Five high-resolution screens were positioned…

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Achieving spectacular safety

October 31, 2018

WORLD     With a stage dominated by 13m high video screens running on an oval trackway, which parted to reveal the performers behind, Beyoncé and Jay-Z’s production team placed safety at the top of their priorities alongside spectacle. The On The Road II (OTR II) tour designed by entertainment…

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Dead & Co on cue throughout

October 31, 2018

UNITED STATES      The show and visuals director for Dead & Company, Christopher Ragan, says he designed the lighting for the group’s tour of “iconic” venues after careful listening to its songs in the studio. Formed by members of 1960s group The Grateful Dead with singer-songwriter John Mayer, the band…

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Aiming straight and low with Elation

October 31, 2018

FRANCE      Lighting and art director Alexandre LeBrun chose to forgo extensive overhead lights for rapper Nekfeu’s tour, opting instead for horizontal lighting at stage level, creating a wall of light, which he says could be set up quickly and reliably. Seeking a strong fixture versatile enough for an…

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Bass is king at Gold Rush

October 31, 2018

UNITED STATES All-night electronic dance music (EDM) festival Gold Rush required a sound system able to deliver prolonged bass energy for artistes such as Deadmau5 and Steve Aoki, according to Chris White, of audio provider Sound Image Phoenix (SIP). The four-stage, 10,000-capacity event, held at the Rawhide Western Town Events…

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Full stadium sound-around for alt-J

October 1, 2018

DENMARK      Concert-goers attending alt-J’s Relaxer show at New York’s Forest Hills Stadium (cap. 12,000) experienced sound coming from all directions and, at times, the sensation of the vocals being whispered in their ears. The effects were created by the new L-ISA Immersive Hyperreal Sound system by L-Acoustics, which…

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