HSL’s new Robe ColorSpot and ColorWash 700 ATs were literally delivered from the Czech Republic, unpacked from their boxes, tested and cased up to go on tour with “much tipped” New York indie rockers Brand New.

Lighting designer Sarah Landau was initially recommended to HSL by Mainlight Industries at the end of 2006, when seeking a video based solution to realise her design for the band’s upcomingUKtour – their biggest production outing to date.

Further research revealed that HSL carried a large stock of ColorKinetics iColor Tiles … and Landau thought they would be the hire company for her.

HSL’s Mike Oates says, “We’re all very excited to be working with Brand New and Sarah – there’s a real buzz about the band, and Sarah is extremely talented and has a great career ahead”.

Landau comments, “Mike and HSL have done everything possible to make the tour smooth, efficient and enjoyable on the lighting front. The pre-production was really detailed and meticulous – it’s been a real pleasure”.

Apart from the new Robes, HSL also supplied 35 ColorKinetics iColor Tiles and a Catalyst digital media server, which are the video element that Landau wanted to integrate into her design. These are arranged in 7 columns of 5, hung off the rear truss. They are used as lightsources as well as effects in their own right, skillfully and subtly woven into the visual mix.

The new Robe fixtures were the core of the rig, and were used for everything. Landau has used Robe 1200s before and was keen to give the 700s a run, with which she’s very impressed.

In keeping with the band’s request to keep it theatrical, stark and moody, there’s an emphasis on back lighting. The lights are arranged across two trusses and on the deck. There’s 3 Robe ColorWash 700 ATs and 2 ColorSpot 700 ATs on the downstage truss and 7 CS 700s on the upstage truss, plus 6 on the floor and another 4 on top of four vertical truss towers onstage.

ColorWash 700s were also placed at the bottom of each iColor Tile column.

The Robe’s 700 Spots are supplied – as standard – with an additional selection of ‘custom’ gobos, and these were fitted at HSL, offering a range of the bolder, more traditional graphics effects – like radials, spirals, lines and triangles.

The 700s were used for all types of functions and effects. Landau made the most of the animation wheels to create fire and water effects. The Washes were used to sweep up the backdrop (aluminium mesh sourced from Home Depot) and also to silhouette the band and backline.

The lighting mimicked the often intense moodswings of the band’s set. Frenetic and flashy one moment, melancholic and reflective the next and wild and rocky the next, with Landau coaxing an incredible range of looks out of the very versatile rig. She also used some interesting and unusual colours in a refreshing and dynamic mix of atmosphere, style and drama.

The iColor Tiles were run via the Catalyst, triggered by Landau’s GrandMA console. She’s created a host of bespoke show content using the onboard library clips as starting points, treating and manipulating them within the system, which again give enormous scope.

In addition to all these elements, HSL also supplied Six I-Pix Satellites to tone the four upright trusses, two Unique Look hazers and a Jem ZR33 fogger, all trussing, rigging and motors …. and two fabulous crew – the Dream Team of John Lahiffe and Peter Barber.

Date of issue : 22nd February 2007.

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