DENMARK – TV lighting designer extraordinaire Kasper Lange was ‘blown away’ by the power of the Clay Paky fixtures used in his highly efficacious lighting design for TV event of the year, Eurovision.
Denmark based Lange worked with Eurovision’s creative director Per Zachariassen to create a huge, structural lighting design that complemented the show’s titanic ‘diamond’ stage. Lange crafted a clean, architectural lighting look that allowed the angular stage to ‘open and close’ creating a dynamic mix of open and intimate lighting looks.
“The brief for the show can be summed up in two words – big and simple,” explains Lange. “The contest was open to almost 40 different nations and each nation’s set needed a different lighting look. The challenge for us was to make each song look unique but also to introduce an organic flow throughout the show and not create a ‘mash’ of 37 songs.”
A crucial part of a much larger lighting rig, Lange specified 178 x Clay Paky Sharpy Wash 330 fixtures to frame the set’s giant 110 x 30 metre LED back wall. The powerful punch of the Sharpy Wash added further definition to the wall whilst reflecting the sharp lines of light that ran throughout the Eurovision set.
“For this element of the design I wanted a small but very powerful wash fixture to sharply frame the large back wall LED screen,” continues Lange. “The Sharpy Wash 330 was the natural choice and in fact it turned out to be the biggest work horse of the show. The fixtures are just incredibly reliable, – throughout the entire two month production period for Eurovision we didn’t have a problem with a single one, needless to say I was totally blown away.”
In addition to the Sharpy Wash 330 Lange specified 32 x Clay Paky Alpha Beam 1500s as part of the huge lighting package supplied by a collaboration of Danish hire outfit LiteCom and global production house PRG.
The Alpha Beam 1500 belongs to the special category of fully automated ACL fixtures, in addition to its high luminous efficiency (185,000 lux at 10m) the fixture also holds a powerful effects engine for shaping and animating the beam for intense long distance and mid-air effects such as those seen in Lange’s Eurovision design.
“Because we had a spider cam filming the stage from above we couldn’t rig any trusses below 30 metres,” explains Lange. “This meant we needed a fixture with a throw powerful enough to cover the whole 30 metres. PRG introduced Clay Paky’s Alpha Beam 1500s to me because of their solid, super concentrated long throw beam. I was very impressed by the fixtures, they were the perfect tool for the job.”
Austria won the 2014 Eurovision Song Contest thanks to Conchita Wurst with the song “Rise Like a Phoenix”, and now will organize the next edition of this great musical event.