With nine studio albums, 26 singles on the Billboard charts, and five number one hits, Gary Allan is one of country music’s hottest stars on tour today. Mixing a blend of country and rock-and-roll, Allan delights himself in delivering a high-impact and exciting show. On the 2014 “Set You Free” tour, Allan and his design team are maintaining that same tradition with lighting designer Brandon Quisberg using Showline SL NITRO 510 luminaires from Philips Entertainment, provided by Elite Multimedia, to achieve a wide variety of powerful and dynamic looks.
“This is my first tour with Gary Allan and we wanted a big show with a big feel,” began Quisberg. “We needed a rock show that was very in-your-face and we wanted to do a lot of strobing. The audience needs to feel the music and that’s where the Showline SL NITRO 510 luminaires really help us out. With the SL NITRO 510 you are not handcuffed to what most other strobes in the market are limited to and you have a wide array of tricks that one fixture can provide.”
“I have been with Gary Allan for about two and a half years now and this year we really wanted to have a big impact for our live shows,” said Production Manager Sean Gary. “Our physical set up at each show really changes and our rig has to be adaptable to a wide array of locations. We have to get the most out of each light no matter where we are loading into and in my opinion this is the biggest draw of the SL NITRO 510 luminaire. It’s extremely versatile doing so much more than just pop and flash.”
At the beginning of the design process for the tour, Quisberg and Gary put the equipment package out to bid and it was Elite Multimedia that both won the bid for the tour and convinced the tour to try the SL NITRO 510 luminaire.
“In the past, we have had multiple vendors for the tour, but this year we wanted to go to one provider to really get the biggest bang,” explained Gary. “In the end, Elite Multimedia really meet our needs the best in terms of gear and support. They are a rapidly growing company with a great sales team and working with them really felt like home.”
Quisberg added, “When we started looking at strobe fixtures, Elite Multimedia suggested the Showline SL NITRO 510 luminaires, and I immediately feel in love with their zone mapping. We were looking to configure our strobe fixtures in a vertical hang and the SL NITRO 510 fixtures zone mapping abilities allow us to complement the various effects going on in the full design. Also, due of the wide range of venues that we play, the SL NITRO 510 fixtures are ideal because they help on power consumption and we can put them on the same circuit.”
“Working with Gary Allan has been such a pleasure,” said David Venus, Director of Marketing for Elite Multimedia. “They are a camp that knows what they want to accomplish and will allow us to introduce new fixtures to make that happen for them. When they came to us and said we want a lot of strobes, I introduced the SL NITRO 510 to them and they were blown away with how much punch it provided and its versatility.”
So as Quisberg started putting the lighting design together, he and Gary were in unison about how the show should look at feel. Wanting to give audience members the biggest show they had ever seen from the artist, they were extremely excited about how the SL NITRO 510 luminaire would be a valuable asset in achieving numerous creative looks.
“We wanted it to look like an arena show in every single venue we go to and we wanted to make sure the audience gets the show they deserve,” continued Quisberg. “In this design, I love using the zone mapping of the SL NITRO 510 since each fixture can break up into the six individually controlled zones, but I also love the versatility of the fixture. They can have fantastic chase patterns or I can use them at full on for crowd blasts. I really love the flexibility of the SL NITRO 510 luminaire.”
Gary agreed, “This was my first time working with the SL NITRO 510 luminaires and while Gary Allan is technically a country artist he leans more towards the rock-style of music. He likes a lot of flash and a lot of pop, and when Elite Multimedia showed us the SL NITRO 510 fixtures and we were immediately blown away by everything that they can do. These fixtures give us many more elements to our show over a traditional strobe luminaire and their versatility is outstanding. We use the SL NITRO 510 luminaires in many different ways and they look great.”
The Showline SL NITRO 510 from Philips Entertainment is a cutting-edge, LED- based strobe that provides intense bursts of light and dynamic effects with over 1300 high-powered LEDs which produce 68,000 lumens of output. Additionally to ensure maximum performance and an even distribution of light throughout a performance, the SL NITRO 510 includes features such as continuous-on, continuous full strobe, plus a built-in quick-connect system that allows them to easily connect together in both horizontal and vertical orientations maintaining a perfect pixel pitch alignment of each fixture’s six programmable zones.
Quisberg continued, “I love how the SL NITRO 510 turns on in an all-white, like a white LED PAR, and we actually use them in this application for back lighting. There is a song called ‘Ain’t the Whiskey’ which has a very somber feel to it, and the only fixtures that are on are the SL NITRO 510 luminaires in pure white. As the audience only sees the backlight of the artist and each band member, it gives the song a fantastically eerie and somber feel and because of their continuous on capabilities, the SL NITRO 510 fixtures work perfect for this application.”
Continuing in the United States through September and then heading overseas to Australia for a six show engagement, the Gary Allan “Set You Free” tour is currently selling-out houses at every stop. With a different venue almost every night, it is not only the versatility of the SL NITRO 510 that is proving its worth, it is the overall performance of the luminaire that is setting it apart from all others on the market.
“Being a one truck tour the SL NITRO 510 fixtures are fantastic,” explained Gary. “They are smaller than the previous strobe we were going to carry, they pack a bigger punch than our previous strobe, and they certainly don’t draw as much power as our previous strobe. For the wide array of venues that we go into, we can use the SL NITRO 510 luminaires every time and they lend a way to get the impact that we couldn’t have had with other strobe fixtures. We like them so much and they are such a cool fixture, we recently called Elite Multimedia and ordered additional SL NITRO 510 fixtures for the tour.”
Quisberg concluded, “Easily stated, the SL NITRO 510 luminaire is one fixture that a designer can put in their arsenal and you can pull off about six different tricks with one light. They can operate in a line array function, you have the zone mapping function, you have the white LED PAR function, you have the powerful strobe functions, you have the chase patterns, and it’s all at a very lower power consumption. The reliability of the SL NITRO 510 is phenomenal and they really make this design look great.”
Showline from Philips Entertainment is a complete range of LED luminaires designed for the entertainment industry providing a strong feature set and rugged construction combined with high-performance LED sources. Setting a new standard, all Showline luminaires are designed to work seamlessly together to match color, dimming and operation, and designers can rest assured that every Showline product adheres to the same specifications and performance. For more information on the Showline family of LED luminaires, visit www.philips.com/showline.