Distant Heat is an annual summer dance party that takes place in the beautiful desert of Wadi Rum in Jordan, a very unique setting for a celebration of this kind. The goal is to bring people together in an exquisite setting and help showcase Jordan as a peaceful destination. The all-night party hosts some of the world’s top DJs playing to a dancing crowd of 2000 partygoers from all over the world until sunrise. The event continues the next day with beach and pool parties at the Red Sea resort town of Aqaba, 50 kilometers away.
The 2009 event featured Glen Morrison and the world’s number one DJ, Armin Van Buuren, backed with rave-worthy lighting supplied by TriTec AV. TriTec built the lighting rig for the party consisting of a free-standing truss structure installed in the middle a spectacular yet challenging desert backdrop.
TriTec covered the structure in a variety of Clay Paky fixtures including 30 Clay Paky Alpha Wash 575 fixtures, 24 Clay Paky Alpha Spot 1200 HPE, and 16 Clay Paky Alpha Beam 1500 fixtures, in addition to strobes, lasers, LED pars and digital lighting effects, on two Avolites ART2000 dimmers controlled with one GrandMA full size console.
TriTec Senior Production Manager Rajai Khalil explained, “The spot & wash fixtures were all on the main truss grid with the beams spread down above stage level. Because the event is held in the middle of the desert, we used the Alpha Beams as beacons for a sky tracker effect to guide the guests to the party location, which was quite effective. During the event and as part of Armin’s entrance sequence, we used the spots to shine on some mirror balls and they were so powerful that they filled the area and mountains with star-like dots which were in line with the video. The Alpha Beams were also used to dance theatrically with the piano & zapping rhythms.”
He continues, “In a tough desert environment with lots of dust, the Clay Paky products held their composure well and we didn’t lose a single machine in the period of six days. The Alpha Beam 1500 may appear big, but is a super fast machine.”
Khalil later used almost the same setup for the AKON live concert in Amman in August. He shared, “AKONs lighting operator was really impressed with the Alpha Beams and was even comparing them to the High End Showgun 2500!”