Canada’s hit series “Revolution,” airing on TVA and the biggest dance competition ever broadcast by Quebec television, used Claypaky Xtylos to showcase the dynamic moves of the dancers facing off against each other for a $100,000 cash prize. Claypaky Xtylos is a compact moving beam light with unique optical and chromatic characteristics featuring a tailor-made RGB laser source.
“From a lighting perspective, the idea that we ran with for the show was to be consistent with other contemporary dance shows while also leaning into more variety because contemporary dance doesn’t always lend itself well to mass television audiences,” explains Lighting Designer Jonathan Barro.
“‘Revolution’ prides itself on presenting different styles of dance going head to head, so we wanted to create a space where all these dancers could express themselves in the best way possible. With that in mind, we got into the specific movements of the dancers and landed on the name ‘Revolution,’ which stems from a moment in the show where we freeze the action in mid-air. We watched a lot of other dance shows and while we can appreciate these movements with our eyes, we wanted to freeze certain positions to really be able to appreciate the small details in these magical moments.”
Barro notes that the first two seasons of the show utilized Claypaky Mythos fixtures, which worked very well. But for the latest season, he says, “We wanted a moving-head that had more saturation and the ability to move faster. There are a lot of quick movements in dance, and the Xtylos has an exceptional speed. The moving head was able to match the jerky and punchy movements when the music and dances were cut.
‘Looking at the colors, the Xtylos has a saturation that I haven’t been able to find in other moving-heads,” he adds. “Specifically in terms of the reds, there is really no comparison out there. Normally we have lots of technical problems when using reds, and the show is really based on that color.”
Barro also praises the Xtylos beam. “It has an incredible length. It seems as if it doesn’t respect the laws of lighting nature: It continues infinitely with incredible color saturation. The rendering of the blues, greens and reds is really impeccable.”
He points out that the dancers performed on a circular stage where there were a several layers of lighting. “The Xtylos were part of our first layer, which was right behind the dancers. They were positioned on the floor, which permitted us to do all kinds of fanning.”
Overall, Barro and his team were “impressed with the fixtures’ performance. The speed and precision of the Xtylos beam was extremely impressive. With other fixtures that do key lighting and backlighting the beams come out like a ton of bricks. But with the prism, we have a nice variety of beam widths, and the speed of the Xtylos was really exceptional.”
Barro gives kudos to Montreal-based SoftBox Integration, which supplied the Xtylos.
Yves Archambault was the Director of Photography at TVA.