One of Germany’s most accomplished lighting designers, JoJo Tillman, has turned to GLP’s new X4 Bar 20s for the first time as a vital part of his stage concept for the annual Stunksitzung alternative cabaret at the Cologne E-Werk. This has formed part of the Cologne Festival for more than 30 years, and comprises around 50 shows which run up to the day before Lent begins.
The designer requisitioned 16 of the ground-breaking battens, which have brought about a paradigm shift since their launch last year. This is largely due to the density with which the 20 LEDs are packed into the 40-inch long bar, generating a broad pallet of pastel and saturated colors which allow for subtle graduated fades, and a 7:1 zoom range which enables it to be deployed equally as a narrow angle light curtain or a wide angle back- or wash-light.
Such versatility has allowed JoJo not only to animate the set walls but also deliver a strong backlight. He explained that previously he had been using older conventional lighting bars. “But these were giving us a headache during TV recordings of the show … so I did a little research and voila, I found the X4 Bars!”
Asked what he felt they were able to deliver that conventional battens could not, he replied, “Firstly it was the ability to tilt the light — this gave me acompletely new perspective on lighting some of the scenes. Secondly there was the zoom feature and then the extremely smooth color mixing. I really like all of the strobe and shutter effects that are possible.”
Owned and produced by a collective, comprising mainly actors and musicians, Stunksitzung is the biggest alternative carnival show in Germany. The four-hour long show features a cast of around 40 who between them provide a unique mixture of music, cabaret, dance and comedy for audiences of around 1400 people. The content of the show includes politics, the church and all other global issues and fixtures like the X4 Bar 20 have enabled him to personalize each set.
JoJo Tillman, whose relationship with GLP’s impression platform first began back in 2009, when he was seeking a washlight to tour with Peter Fox, sourced his latest inventory from Lightcompany which is now part of the satis&fy group.
The designer has since enjoyed a close working relationship with GLP and is impressed with the evolution of new generation products such as the X4 Bar 10 and 20, the new X4 Atom and X1. “They have definitely moved forward in terms of functionality and versatility,” he believes.
As such, he has specified special editions of the new X4 Atom, which will be used alongside the X1 on the upcoming tour by Lena Meyer-Landrut, who successfully represented Germany in the 2010 Eurovision Song Contest with her winning song, Satellite. “I will be using the X4 Atom as a close, low key-light effect, he reports. “GLP undertook a unique modification for that tour with all the fixtures in a smart white edition and no colors. It will be used to light faces and for small actions on stage.”