Grammy Block Party Throws Down With Bandit Lites

Photo: Larry McCormack/THE TENNESSEAN

NASHVILLE, TENNESSEE- Music City held its annual Grammy Block Party with lighting provided by Bandit Lites. The private event for members of the Recording academy was held at Owen Bradley Park May 13 and included performances by Chris Young, Kacey Musgraves and Martina McBride. Two-time Grammy award winner Jim Lauderdale hosted while cast members of ABC’s Nashville mingled with the crowd and even performed on stage.

Lighting designer Mike Marcario utilized Martin Mac 2000 Washes for the downstage front wash, along with Martin Mac Auras and GRN Batten 3-36's for the mid and upstage bars.  He also included 8-lite moles and par 64's downstage for audience light and key light, respectively and operated a GrandMA 2 console.

One challenge Marcario prepared for was the weight factor. Due to the mobile stage and the fact that the long summer days meant most of the set times would take place before the sun set, the chosen fixtures needed to both be weight-friendly and still pop in the daylight.

“The Mac 2000 Wash has always been a preferred wash fixture for me because they are quite versatile, feature heavy, and have great color temperature correction,” explained Marcario. “Bandit's GRNlite line is always an obvious choice for this event because they are extremely bright, and light on power consumption. I had never used the battens in the air before, and can say I was not disappointed - they have a very even wash, which worked well to cover the stage.  The Mac Aura is a wonderful fixture for many of the same reasons - very bright, low power consumption, feature heavy, and it possesses that great ‘aura’ eye candy effect we've all come to love.”

While some events may have specific requirements for each headlining artist, Marcario was given free reign.

“(Production manager) Chris Lisle has been the production manager on this event for many years, and he always does a fantastic job making sure each artist is well taken care of,” Marcario explained. “It was a fantastic lineup of talent and musical ability, but also a fantastic group of people to work alongside.”

“Bandit Lites is always a preferred vendor of mine,” added Marcario. “Gear can come from anywhere, but Bandit is unparalleled in its people - on the shop floor and in the business office.  In this whole process, I was never told "no", whether it was a fixture substitution or needing a few extra clamps day of show. Brent Barrett is my client rep, and he has been encouraging and working with me since I started in this business. Matt King was the project manager for this event, and I always enjoy being on a gig with him in that role because I know I don't have to worry about if the prep is done correctly - it always is. Adam McIntosh was my tech, and his knowledge, confidence, and personality helped the event go as smoothly as was possible.” 

Between the incredible performances, good food and socializing, the 16th annual Grammy Block Party concluded as a complete success, one Bandit is proud to be a part of.

“The Grammy Block Party is a remarkable and respected event that I look forward to attending each year,” said Brent Barrett, Bandit’s Business Development Officer. “Mike and Chris crafted a spectacular show befitting such a prestigious event, and I’d like to extend the deepest of gratitude to Lyn Aurelius, the Senior Regional Production Manager for The Recording Academy, for inviting Bandit to be involved.”

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.  

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