RADlite on UK's Pop Idols Tour

Peter Barnes, lighting designer for the Will & Gareth (the UK's Pop Idol TV show winner and runner-up) tour, is using a RADLite video and effects manipulation system on their current 24-date sold-out UK arena tour. The RADlite sections of the show are an integral part of a complex and slickly choreographed multimedia performance where lighting, visuals, sound, the Pop Idols themselves, band, and dancers amalgamate in a dynamic, eye-catching, presentation.

RADlite can be controlled by any DMX lighting desk, and Barnes is using an Icon Console with which he's also running the lighting. The RADlite system itself is supplied by the tour's production video contractors XL Video UK, and sits in the video rack backstage. Barnes jumped at the chance to experiment with the new product after using the demonstration system available at Avolites. "The idea of a video system that can be controlled from a lighting desk by the lighting designer or operator is brilliant," he states.

RADlite can combine any number of images and vector shapes with digital video, color backgrounds, and text. Barnes is using some custom video images produced specifically for Gareth's set, and also drawing extensively on the RADlite's built-in selection of graphics and effects. The system is controlled just like a moving light, giving the operator the ability to apply colors, shapes, and effects such as rotate, zoom, pan/tilt, and fade video in and out in time to music, in real time. It can also be sent to different screens simultaneously--in this case up to eight screens.

Barnes mixes the patterns and effects at the lighting desk which sends DMX back to the video rack, where it's picked up and output to screen by video director Blue Leach, who's also running a live five-camera shoot plus pre-recorded footage through a GVG4000 console. The show's onstage LED screen splits into eight sections and has four distinct looks. Barnes and Leach worked together to pick the best numbers in which to utilize the RADlite, and also collaborated on the general look of the effects being generated.

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