West London, UK based rental company Entec is supplying lighting designer Mark Wood with a lighting package and video projection package for his tour with hot new UK indie pop songstress Marina & The Diamonds, currently enjoying the massive success of her debut album, "The Family Jewels".
Wood's elegantly crafted and intelligently executed show matches the rich visuality and dynamics of Marina Diamandis' stage performance, adding theatricality, drama and creative texturing to great stagecraft with a minimal but diligently thought out rig.
He was recommended for the designer's role in April this year and started touring with the band in June, kicking off with a festival run which now continues with 2 months of headliners around the UK and Europe.
Apart from the music, which ranges from mean and moody to colourful and poppy - which really inspired him, a practical starting point was that the lighting rig had to be versatile enough to fit into a variety of venues from off-beat clubs to obscure theatres and other performance spaces, as their promoter has a refreshing penchant for staging shows in more unusual venues.
He was given a creative blank canvas on the lighting, but Diamandis herself was heavily involved in commissioning the video content, some of which was edited by Wood, and she generally takes a keen interest in how the show looks and sounds, following through a genuine passion for putting on a good show.
He built the basic elements of the show from a collection of idiosyncratic looks. An example of this is during the song "Robot", for which Diamandis wears UV make up and is lit in saturated UV blues from the different fixtures, for a spacey, 'other worldly' look.
The lighting rig consists of a set of 6 ClayPaky Alpha Spot 300 HPE moving lights, which are mounted on different height cases and on the drum riser across the back of the stage.
In front of these are 4 scaff poles approximately 8 ft high, onto which are mounted 4 x PixelLine LED battens, covered with 2 different grades of diffusion filter. These are pixel mapped and also have video run through them.
There are 4 x ETC Source Four profiles behind the key band members, used for silhouetting and cool back-lit breakup effects.
Four half mirror balls are dotted around the stage - in a randomly organised fashion - used during the grand finale of "Guilty", so when they are hit by a number of narrow beamed fixtures from the floor and the air, they form a diamond shape around where Diamandis is standing onstage.
Two Martin MAC 300 wash fixtures sit at each upstage corner of the stage, used for low level cross lighting, making a nice dynamic contrast to the high level washes.
For the 2 London shows - at The Roundhouse in Camden and just down the road at The Forum in Kentish Town, Entec supplied a Novalight Nova Flower 2K fixture, which was placed upstage centre. This is used during "Rootless" for a fantastically powerful epic rear breakup effect.
For the Forum show, Entec also provided 8 Vari*Lite 2500 spots as part of the overhead rig.
Wood issued a basic spec for overhead lights to all the venues on the itinerary, which were either provided from their in-house stock or sourced by the local promoter. These were hooked in to his Chamsys MagicQ console, along with the touring rig.
For video, Entec is supplying a 14 x 9ft upstage fast-fold screen. In the 2 songs with no footage, shadows of the musicians are cast onto the screen using the downstage MAC 300s.
The Christie 10K Roadrunner projector is rigged at FOH, and all the video content is stored on a Hippotizer V3 media server, triggered from Wood's desk.
Wood is really enjoying the tour and working with a band that is up for visual invention and experimentation.
He is also tech'ing the rig himself, and says of Entec, "I have had excellent service - all the kit has been well prepped and maintained, which is crucial when you're working alone on an intense schedule. Entec is a great company to work with - friendly, accessible and very well organised".
For more press info on Entec, please call Louise Stickland on +44 (0)1865 202679/+44 (0)7831 329888 or Email [email protected]'. To contact Entec direct, call +44 (0)20 8842 4004 or check www.entec-soundandlight.com.