NASHVILLE, TENNESSEE – “Music City Midnight” returned to the Bicentennial Capitol Mall State Park with a massive lighting package once again provided by Bandit Lites. Nashville Convention & Visitors Corp reported the largest turn out in the event’s ten-year history, with approximately 175,000 to 200,000 in attendance to ring in 2019 with live music from Keith Urban, Peter Frampton, Brett Young, and Judah and the Lion and a dazzling music note ball drop.
“Bandit Lites has been involved with the Nashville New Year’s Eve project for well over a dozen years,” said Bandit Lites Vice President Mike Golden. “Each year I stand amazed with Erik Parker, Chris Lisle and Mark Anderson for their complete focus on making this event more spectacular each and every year. This year was especially impressive due to the volume of gear and technicians; without a question it was the most calibrated production to date.”
Returning lighting designer Erik Parker of Chris Lisle Lighting Design tackled the massive event with a two-fold focus: the stage and the site, looking to craft something that would energize the crowds as well as look fantastic on camera for NBC’s live broadcast.
“For the stage, my goal was to create a big look for the people hanging in the front as well as those hundreds of yards back,” said Parker. “For the site we wanted to make it safe, but also add energy and create that New Year vibe across the whole site.”
Bandit Lites supplied more than 1300 fixtures for the concert, site lighting and famous Music Note drop (what Parker calls “the real focal point of the entire event”) including Elation Paladin, Chauvet Rogue RH1 Hybrid, GRNLite Par 64, VL 3500 Washes, VL 6000 Beams, Chauvet Illuminarc Panel 80 LED wash, Showline Nitro 510C, VL 3000 Washes, Robe BMFL Wash Beam.
While last year’s concert goers faced freezing temperatures, the production team battled flash flood warnings, tornado watches and a severe thunderstorm.
“Mother Nature has an amazing way of reminding us her power every year,” said Parker. “The biggest translation into the design is the use of mostly IP-rated fixtures for the areas that will be sitting out in the elements. This was a BIG lesson I learned the first year I took over as designer and it’s saved our butts many times over.”
Audience lighting consisted of Elation Paladin, Elation SixPar 100 IP65, Chauvet Illuminarc Panel 80 LED wash and ETC Source Four Pars while delay lighting was provided by additional Elation Paladins.
Brett Young, Chris Janson, Judah and the Lion and CMA Entertainer of the Year Keith Urban took to the Jack Daniel Stage which featured ETC Source Four 26 degrees, Lycian M2 Spots, GLP X4, Elation CuePix WW4, Claypaky Mythos, Claypaky B-EYE K20, Claypaky Sharpys, Robe BMFLs, Elation Colour Chorus 12 and Nitro 510C fixtures.
“Site-wide we relied heavily on Elation Paladins for general area light and color,” explained Parker. “Those fixtures were real rock stars for us! We also had some RH1 fixtures, VL3000 wash, BMFL blade, VL3500 wash, VL6000, and Elation SixPar 100IPs to add color, texture, and beams around the entire site. The stage was a mixture of ClayPaky B-EYES, Robe BMFLs, GLP Impression X4 units, Claypaky Sharpys and Elation Cuepix WW4s.”
Bandit Lites crew consisted of twenty-one on site techs, including Patrick Cowden, Nikki Dotson, Terese Fensler, Jon Houle, John Lucksinger, Craig Richter, Mark Scherer, Steve Strickland, Ty Veneziano, Ryan Waldron Elizabeth Weller, Scott Wesson, Justin Wilk, Chaz Martin, Joey DiLeo, Andrew Ellis, Savannah Harden, Jessie Hochinyavong, Clayton Peavey, Bryan Place and Brenna Rae. Additional support came from Bandit Project Manager Matt King.
“Under the leadership of Butch Spyridon and David Spencer of Music City, Inc, this event has grown to an immeasurable size but because of the years of us all working together the production comes across as seamless,” Golden said. “It is our honor to be associated with this event and we look forward to what they envision for 2019.”
“We really had a great crew out there,” finished Parker. “They all rolled with the punches and had great attitudes about the whole thing. On show-day we had a massive storm roll through in the middle of the day. Team Bandit was very diligent about securing everything around the site and making it safe and ready for the rain and winds. As soon as it passed, with two hours to doors and still some light rain, they worked hard to bring it all back to life: everyone handled it so well!”
Production Managers: Chris Lisle and Mark Anderson
Lighting Designer: Erik Parker
Stage Festival Programmer: Aaron Luke
About Bandit Lites, Inc.
Bandit Lites is a global leader in the entertainment lighting marketplace. From touring productions to fixed installations, Bandit Lites has a full staff of highly trained professionals to deal with all types of lighting needs. Bandit’s global presence will insure seamless transitions no matter where your next show takes you. More information available at www.BanditLites.com