Finland – More than 60,000 fans packed into Finland’s Lahti ski jump stadium over two nights to experience rapper Cheek perform special farewell shows. The sheer scale of the shows prompted the promoters to call them ‘Finland’s biggest concert production to date’. They marked Cheek’s retirement from the music industry, with his final performance broadcast on national TV to an audience of one million.
The production was a huge undertaking. A special amphitheatre-shaped venue was constructed under the imposing ski jump slopes. More than 1,000 square metres of video screen surrounded the stage, creating a 60-metre wide wall. The backbone of the ambitious lighting design was created using 155 Claypaky Sharpys.
Pekka Martti served as lighting designer for the shows, alongside Ari Levelä, who also designed the stage and video walls. The duo has been working with Cheek since early 2017.
“I always come back to Sharpys, especially for outdoor shows, because they are so powerful,” says Martti. “Strong beams created the base of the whole lighting show – I used the Sharpys’ laser-like beam to create mountains of fly-in and fly-out effects on the stage, out into the audience and through the air. The ‘ACL’ style big beam effects I could achieve with the Sharpys looked really great on the large stage and in the surroundings.”
The staging for the two shows was inspired by the hugely successful Game of Thrones TV series, featuring a ‘castle’ structure enhanced by the huge video walls.
“Due to the brightness of the LED panels, I needed a fixture that could cut through with a lot of punch,” Martti continues. “Many of his songs are very different from each other, so colour played an important role in changing the look of the whole stage.
“In fact, I believe that one of the best features of the Sharpy is the colours, compared to other beams which have a fixed colour wheel. Everybody was really happy.”
The Sharpys were rigged on H Frames around the stage, in configurations of four to 11 fixtures. The Claypaky fixtures were supplied by Bright Finland.