July 13, 2013
“The Package,” the current New Kids on the Block tour includes more than just the members of the band. It also includes two new pieces of gear that merge lighting and special effects from Strictly FX.
Boy bands are traditionally fond of effects, and so are the New Kids on the Block. So when Production Designer Butch Allen and New Kid Donnie Wahlberg, who is very involved in the production, wanted something new for the tour, Strictly FX had just what they were looking for. “Butch and Donnie wanted a party atmosphere for the production, and we had something new that fit the bill perfectly,” notes Ted Maccabee, Partner and Visuals Director at Strictly FX.
The first effect, which is an integral part of the show, is the LED Cryojet, which is a part of a number of songs, including “Block Party,” “You Got It (The Right Stuff),” “The Whisper,” “Heat it Up,” “Cover Girl,” “Games” and the finale, “Hangin’ Tough.” “Our proprietary LED Cryojet is a color changing, DMX controlled unit that gives designers the ability to create an endless variety of cryojet looks,” Maccabee explains. The LED Cryojet is a 27 pound unit that is 18” tall, and runs on either110 Volt or 240 volt power. For New Kids, the six units are located around the main stage, which is located out in the audience.
On the New Kids on the Block production, there are six large LED Confetti Duster units, which are located, like the LED Cryojets, around the main stage. “The LED Confetti Duster is a fan based small confetti unit that shoots white confetti out but it also has LED ring around it that lights the confetti, and gives designers the opportunity to change the color of confetti without actually purchasing colored confetti, which can be quite the cost saving measure,” explains Maccabee.
The LED Confetti Duster is comes in three different varieties: the large unit, which weighs 27 pounds, features colored LED’s and sends the confetti 20’ feet into the air. The unit is controlled by an a/c box, and is ground based. The short unit shoots confetti 15’ into the air, weighs 21 pounds, has colored LED’s and is controlled by a 3 pin DMX connection. Finally, the white LED unit features only white LED units, shoot s the confetti 10’, and is also controlled via DMX. All units are for use with 110 power only.
The LED Cryojet and the LED Confetti Duster aren’t the only effects sprinkled liberally throughout “The Package.” There are 16 Double Barrel Streamer Launchers, 6 MKll Venom Flame Units, 6 Confetti Cobras, 30 3’ Latex Balloons, 2 RGB Arctos Diode Lasers, 1 Blitz Laser, as well as a myriad of pyro, including silver gerbs and silver waterfall gerbs. In fact, there are effects of one kind or another- and sometimes several- in more than half of the show. “This is our third year working with The New Kids on the Block, and their creative use of effects really makes the show memorable,” concludes Maccabee.
The New Kids on the Block tour continues until the beginning of August. The crew out on the road includes Duane Nowak, Richard Brisson and Michael Scheirer. For more information on the LED Cryojet or the LED Confetti Dusters, please contact Strictly FX.