A complement of Coemar lighting fixtures helped create the big-show look fans expect from country music legend Garth Brooks. The singer gave a series of nine, sold-out concerts in Kansas City from October 31 to November 15. Inner Circle Distribution is the exclusive distributor of Italian-made Coemar lighting in the US.
The concerts included a simulcast to local cinemas which later aired on cable’s Great American Country network as the 90-minute special, Garth: One Artist, One City, One Night, his first televised concert since 2001. Lighting designer Dave Butzler, who has been working with Brooks since the early 1990s, employed Coemar iWash Halos, Coemar Infinity Wash XL moving heads, and Coemar ParLite LEDs for the shows, his first time working with Coemar fixtures. Bob Peterson served as lighting consultant for the concerts.
“Dave asked that we design a unified show from day one,” notes Peterson. “The concert, cinema, and television needs were married from the first sketches. “The challenge was to fully embrace all the energy of the audience, which is almost as powerful as Garth and the band's performance—people on their feet singing every word from the time the house lights go down to when they come back up. The energy between the stage and crowd is amazing. We wanted to capture all that energy, give the wide shots a huge rock show look, all while keeping Garth and the band in portrait light.”
Peterson says the Infinity Wash XLs, which were located in the main overhead rig, supplied much of the big rock-show look. “They were very bright and vibrant with powerful beam effects,” he reports. “I personally like a lot of negative space. The infinity is able to do excellent beam graphic and effects and big washes when needed, its great for both purposes.”
“They were great effects lights, with a nice, tight beam,” says Butzler. “I love the narrow beam and colors. And the fact that a wash light can give you beam shaping is pretty cool. Since one performance was also for television, we did a lot of aerial beam focus which helped fill the audience and make it interesting.” The Infinity Wash XL, a 1400W wash light, features a CMY color mixing system, effects, 6-80 degree zoom, indexable beam shaping in 360 degrees, pan/tilt, and full-range dimming.
A complement of iWash Halos were on hand for perimeter and raking light on deck. “The halos do a wonderful job transmitting greens and blues, very impressive for a tungsten source,” says Peterson. “We had a warm tungsten look on deck and cold arc from the overhead rig; an excellent contrast between sources.” The iWash Halo is a high-performance tungsten light with a full CMY color mixing system, rotating filter for 180-degree beam shaping, 8-52 degree zoom, pan/tilt, and full-range dimming.
The ParLite LED offers infinite colors generated by a convergent RGB color system, electronic strobe, four different automatic programs of color changing and fading, 12, 30 and110 degree lens options, and full-range dimming.
The array of Coemar fixtures, supplied by Bandit Lites, “held up quite well over the 15-day stretch,” Butzler notes. “They were great—nice to work on with no problems. The color temperature was really, really saturated and worked well with the other lights from other manufacturers. I was very impressed by them and can see applications for them in bigger stage shows.”