Belfast based Production Services Ireland (PSI) supplied lighting equipment, rigging services and crew for the 2010 Belsonic Festival - staged in Custom House Square, central Belfast, Northern Ireland.
PSI has been involved with the event every year, seeing it grow steadily since its inauguration in 2008. This year the promotion was a collaboration between Shine Productions and MCD. The 6000 capacity outdoor concerts were all a huge success despite the unpredictable northern Irish weather at this time of year!
PSI's Sean Pagel created a production design that covered the requirements of all 8 headlining acts - Kasabian, Paolo Nuttini, Florence & The Machine, the Stereophonics, Soulwax/2 Many DJs, Paul Weller, Biffy Clyro with special guests The Lost Prophets, and David Guetta, who brought the 8 shows over 2 weeks to a tumultuous close with an amazing high energy set that rocked the city. All of these brought their own LDs who supplied basic specs to Pagel in advance.
The stage measured about 12 x 12 metres with 6.5 metres headroom, so not a massive space for the calibre of the bands appearing. The biggest creative challenge for Pagel was "delivering a lighting rig that would cater for 8 world class acts, covering their essentials, whilst allowing them enough options to each create an individual and different looking show".
One of the biggest locational issues was the noise restrictions on site after 11 p.m. - as it is also a residential district - necessitating some very stealthy and quietly worked changeovers. Swearing and breaking wind were also strictly forbidden!
The roof also had limited weight loading, and trusses had to be hung in specific positions from the main roof supports - so this had to be worked around in the design.
Pagel and his team installed 3 overhead lighting trusses, a rag truss upstage for the backdrop and a 'reveal' truss midstage, which was also utilised for hanging screens. He chose to use Robe moving lights throughout - for their power and reliability, especially in challenging environmental conditions.
The back lighting truss was rigged with 6 x Robe ColorSpot 700E ATs and 6 x ColorWash 700E ATs, and 3 Martin Atomic strobes.
Downstage of this was the 'reveal' truss, complete with tab track, which could be rigged with a drape to go behind the opening acts if this was practical, and it also proved a handy rigging position for the screens brought in by 2 Many DJs and David Guetta.
The middle lighting truss contained 8 ColorSpot 700E ATs and 6 ColorWash 700E ATs, 4 Atomics and 10 x 2-cell Moles which were pointed into the audience.
On the front truss were 10 Robe ColorWash 250E ATs, chosen for their compact size, and used for stage and band washes and general illumination, and also as band 'specials'. There was another 3 Atomics on this truss, along with four 8-cell Moles, attached to the audience facing rail.
Also directed at the audience, were 10 x 4-lite Moles rigged to the stage legs and PA towers.
To offer more variety and flexibility for each band's show, PSI made a floor specials package available to all headliners, consisting of 6 ColorSpot 700E ATs, 8 ColorWash 700E ATs and 4 Atomics. Various combinations of these were used by some of the artists and 2 Many DJs brought in their own floor package.
PSI also supplied extras for Biffy Clyro and David Guetta.
Clyro's LD Jamie Thompson, ordered 9 Atomics, 12 x 2-cell Moles, 12 x Vari*Lite 2500 moving lights and three 4 metre high vertical trussing towers which were placed onstage.
For Dave Guetta's dance-tastic set - designed by Mikey Harkins - they moved the back truss to the front of the stage, removed all the floor based Wash fixtures and hung the screens (from XL Video) on the mid stage 'reveal' truss. Upstage of this, 5 vertical truss towers were installed, rigged with a total of 13 x 4-cell Moles and 12 Atomics.
PSI supplied an Avolites Diamond 4 Vision - running the new Titan software - as the main house lighting control desk, and also made available a Hog 3 and a grandMA full size. Some bands also arrived with their own touring consoles that were hooked into the system.
Pagel worked with PSI crew members Brian Crowe and Joe Byrne for the show run, with 8 extra crew and locals brought in for the get in and load out.
For more press info on Production Services Ireland, please call Louise Stickland on +44 (0)1865 202679 or +44 (0)7831 329888 or Email [email protected]'. Call PSI direct on +44 (0)2890 814858 or check www.productionireland.com