XL Video UK has supplied lighting designer Rob Sinclair and production manager Dermot Lynch with a Barco MiTrix screen, plasma screens and cameras for Keane’s UK arena tour.
Sinclair is an innovative LD who believes in the full integration of video and lighting into his show, “It’s important to make the two elements fit and work seamlessly together,“ he states.
Sinclair has always asked XL to look after his video requirements, and the company has been involved since the very first Keane tour in 2004.Looking after the tour is Des Fallon who “is a gentleman and an account handling legend,” enthuses Sinclair.
Fallon comments, “Rob’s designs are always different, diverse, interesting, and a real pleasure to work on.”
Keane’s show features eight 50” plasma screens on stands ‘surrounding’ the band as part of the stage set for some time.
At the end of 2006, Sinclair saw a transparent screen in action at the MTV Awards and immediately realized its creative potential for when Keane stepped up to arenas. At this point he spoke to Fallon, who demonstrated the new MiTrix to him, which is extremely durable and one of the brightest such screens on the market.
They used 30 columns of MiTrix, making up a 50’ wide upstage wall with a 24’ drop which was staggered at different heights to give the full screen a ‘tattered’ look both top and bottom. “It’s fantastic!” declares Sinclair. “Bright, full of contrast, and a real surprise when revealed—It’s virtually invisible before then.”
The whole MiTrix screen weighs just 2.14 tons and is rigged from an A Type truss hung on three motors.
XL supplied three crewmembers: Neal Ogilvy, Matt Gourd, and Brecht Moreels.
There were eight cameras: one at FOH, one in the pit, one onstage, four remote dome cameras and a mini cam dotted around the stage. “We tried to get a grainy, surveillance look, matching the expensive manned cameras to the cheap CCTV ones,” explains Sinclair.
The cameras were fed into three V4 Catalyst digital media servers, two running the plasma screens and one running the MiTrix as eight separate inputs. These were all graded, controlled and cut by Sinclair from his Jands Vista console, which was also controlling all the lights.
The same Catalyst systems, supplied by Scenographic (LD Andi Watson’s new company), were used to store and replay pre-recorded footage, graphics, animations, and effects.
Special playback content was created for the show by Sinclair and Tom Palliser from Whitehouse Pictures.
Video was used for most of the performance, with the screen really coming into play as a source of drama and excitement during the second half, with huge edgy camera mixes of the band, combined with provocative graphical playback images and animations.
Sinclair is hoping to take the MiTrix to all Keane’s summer headlining shows, “It should be ideal: light, easy to rig, water resistant, windproof and looks stunning,” he concludes.