Lighting designer Travis Shirley has tapped Coemar Infinity Wash XL fixtures for Enrique Iglesias’s world Insomniac tour based on his album of the same name. The international pop singer’s tour began in South Africa and Europe last year and will play South America, Central America, Mexico, and the US before heading back to Europe and then the Middle East.
With much of the Iglesias show based on video elements, the Nashville-based Shirley, who also acts as the tour’s set and production designer, selected Coemar Infinity moving heads to break through the preponderance of video. “Video looks great in a show, but it can be a little overwhelming,” he notes. “You really need lighting fixtures than can punch right through it. The Infinity’s beam attributes and color mixing deliver the big, bright look the show wants.”
It was Shirley’s childhood ambition to do lighting and at the age of 25 he has already fulfilled his goal of providing concert lighting designs and direction that create an experience inseparable from the experience of the concert. In 2007 Shirley was concert lighting designer for Smashing Pumpkins’ European tour and Rufus Wainwright’s North American and European tours.
Shirley was on tour with Wainwright when he was asked to meet with Iglesias whom he knew from a previous one-off show. Shirley found the singer to be “pretty open minded” in his concept for the tour, and they connected creatively and personally. “We’re actually very similar,” says Shirley. “We have mutual trust in each other, and I’ve taken control of a lot of the main components of the tour."
“Enrique is trying to get away from the stereotypical pop music show and get a little more into rock,” he explains. “A lot of pop artists are breaking out of their category. Enrique’s sound features loud guitar riffs and an amazingly high energy level, and he wanted to have a look that matched it.”
For the video side of the show, Shirley crafted a 120-foot soft LED screen with trusses and the largest quantity of Element Labs’ Stealth ever used on a tour. He deploys 30 Coemar Infinity moving heads in vertical rows of five. A grandMA console controls video and lighting.
“I used the first-ever Infinities with the band Disturbed; Inner Circle’s Gary Mass convinced me to give them a try, and they’ve been a solid kick-ass light ever since,” Shirley reports. “Of the 150 lights on Enrique’s tour the 30 Infinities are the only ones that haven’t needed to be replaced. They’re solid and don’t need maintenance every day. I knew I liked them, but didn’t know they’d handle this well. I can’t imagine doing a show this size and not using them. This is the biggest show I’ve done and the best.”
Shirley believes Infinity represents “the next wave of lighting with the beam attributes they’ve introduced. The focus you can get out of them is amazing. And the color mixing is great. I can’t say enough good things about them. The Infinity is a fixture I’m going to design shows around.”