The show, the third partnering of BAM and the Red Hot organization, was a benefit for World AIDS Day—a cause Red Hot has supported since its first concert in 1990. This year's NOLA-themed event featured a powerhouse lineup including Dr. John, Irma Thomas, Kermit Ruffins, Ledisi, Marc Broussard, Ivan Neville, Partners-N-Crime, Roger Lewis, Phil and Keith Frazier, James Andrews, Trombone Shorty with his band, Orleans Avenue, and others.
Red Hot and See Factor came together for the fourth time with this event. Previously, See Factor provided the lighting for Red Hot + Riot in 2006, Red Hot + Rio in 2008—both at BAM—and the organization's Dark Was The Night concert at Radio City Music Hall in 2009.
For Red Hot + New Orleans, the set featured giant necklaces of silver beads, reminiscent of the beads thrown from floats at Mardi Gras parades, looping down from battens above and strategically scattered across the stage floor. One full-stage plastic screen across the upstage area provided close-up views of musicians and other NOLA-style visuals.
See Factor pulled out all the stops for the 2010 event, bringing a full complement of lighting equipment from the company's extensive inventory:
• A full-size grandMA2 control console
• 8 GLP Elation Impression Rz120 lights
• 1 High End Showgun
• 10 Robe 1200at Color Spot
• 4 Color Kinetics Colorblaze 72” LED fixtures
• 12 Color Kinetics Colorblast 12” Powercore LED fixtures
• 12 Wybron Color Ramii Color Scrollers
• 16 Brass PAR 64's
• 108 Silver Altman PARs On Thomas Pre-Rig Truss
• 24 ETC 19Ëš Lekos
• 7 ETC 5Ëš Lekos
• 2 Robert Julet Follow Spots
• 4 100' Fesstoon Strings
• 2 50' Fesstoon Strings
“The overall intention of the lighting plot was to properly light the list of amazing artists, while creating a colorful, festive, New Orleans atmosphere,” said Alban Sardzinski, staff lighting designer at See Factor. “We used Colorblazes and Colorblasts to frame the video content being projected, and used LEDs to change the colors rapidly or slowly in relation to the video and music being played.”
Using the Elation Impressions gave Sardzinski some distinct advantages over conventional fixtures. “With the Impression Rz120s, I could use one fixture for multiple positions,” he said. “I could zoom out to light the beads that were close by, and then zoom in to light the beads across the stage. Of course, I also had the ability to have a pan or tilt ballyhoo to create additional movement on stage.”
To place all the control at his fingertips, Sardzinski selected the grandMA2 full size console. “This is an amazingly powerful console,” he said. “I had the ability to choose my own layout and customize every button, fader, and screen. The multi-touch screen was a great asset to the show. I put up a window of virtual faders where I kept key-light Lekos. This gave me the ability to highlight solos, and not eat up the faders.”
More information about See Factor is available at www.seefactor.com, or by calling 718-784-4200.