Design Team

production design, co-set design: Joseph Farell
lighting design: Warwick Price
audio design: Chas Gerber
set design: Peter Spack
pyrotechnic design: Matt Peterson
video director: Alan Davidson
M-Box design: Drew Findley
LED image design: Gregg Eilers, Sue Herzberg, Droop Stoner
lighting programmer: Rob Smith

Primerica Gametime was the theme of the bi-annual international convention of America’s largest financial services company. Held in Atlanta’s Georgia Dome, with over 55,000 in attendance, the general sessions of Gametime represented event production on a grand scale. The client’s instruction to the design team was deceptively simple: “We want this to blow our people away…” The overriding design challenge was to work on a scale appropriate to the space, providing a visceral experience to our audience (many of whom were as far as 500’ away from the stage) while working within the budget constraints of our value-minded client.

By far the greatest design challenges and positive potential were inherent in creating an impact for the 55,000+ in the audience. Implicit in our instructions was the notion that there would be no “cheap seats” in the house. There were a total of 33 video screens. The main video screens (22.5’x30’) flanked the 135’ wide set and stage, ensuring a common point of focus. The set was a forced perspective “stadium-in-a-stadium” with its major element a 130’ wide by 16’ deep arcade that framed and supported a 120’ wide by 12’ tall Element Labs Stealth LED screen.

Every stadium needs a “Jumbotron,” and ours was a flown 36’x9’ Barco 10mm LED board. This up-center element was flanked on each side by two stadium “light pods” composed of 20 Martin MAC 2000 Wash lights. We were determined to incorporate as much LED video into the structure of the set as possible. We could, on demand, control the flow and scale of imagery on the set, screens, and the Georgia Dome’s permanent LED surfaces to completely immerse the audience in coordinated visual content. We extended six 36’ long LED “finger screens” into the house from the stage thrust to extend the imagery onto the stadium floor

Gametime was high energy all the way, so we chose JBL Vertec 4889 loudspeakers as our workhorse PA. Five clusters of 16 speakers were rigged 125’ above the floor to cover the upper bowl seating, and two clusters of three on a scaffold were used under the left and right screens to cover most of the floor. Additionally, a center cluster of 12 d vdosc were used as center fill for the floor seating, and another cluster of 8 d vdosc were used as delay speakers for the back section of the floor seating. Two clusters of 12 SLS LS8800 ribbon line arrays were employed to handle the extreme side seating sections in the upper bowl. JBL double 18” and Bassmaxx B3 horn-loaded subwoofers provided low frequency extension.

The FOH lighting truss needed to trim between 55’ and 60’ so as not to block the sightlines of the attendees, making the key lighting a challenge. In order to sufficiently light the 135’ wide stage area, 26 5kW Fresnels were used, and 18 5° ETC Source Four ellipsoidals lit the three lecterns. With many speakers walking the stage during their speeches, it was imperative that there was even light across the entire stage for video support. Two floodlight structures were a central feature of the “Stadium” set, and these provided all of the necessary backlight for the stage. Towering above a huge video wall, they were designed to look like floodlight banks while making a visual statement. Each floodlight pod housed 20 Martin Professional MAC 2000 Washes and 14 Atomic Strobes.

In such a high energy show, where the attendees are incredibly excited, it is very important to make sure everyone present felt like he or she were part of this huge event. The use of 16 8K and 16 5K Synchrolites spread around the stadium allowed for complete coverage of the stadium with huge ballyhoos. Fourteen of the Syncrolites were 246’ from the center of the stadium floor and trimmed at 135’ high. Martin Professional MAC 2000 Washes with PC lenses, Vari-Lite VL 3000 Spots, and Atomic Strobes added the necessary punch and glitz to complement the large video surfaces in the set.

Selected Gear

Lighting:

Martin Maxxyz consoles and wings
Maxedia media server with touchscreen
Martin Mac 2000 Washes
Vari-Lite VL 3000 Spots and VL 3500 Wash
8K and 5K Syncrolites
Atomic 3000 Strobes and Color Changers
Martin Stagebar 54S LED Strips
Color Kinetics ColorBlock LEDs
Color Kinetics ColorBlaze 72
5kW Fresnels

Audio:

JBL Vertec line array
L-Acoustics DVDOSC
SLS – RLA2 line arrays
Bassmax B3 Subwoofers
SLS 118xel Subwoofers and 8695 line array
Community 918 and M12
Danley SH50 Foldback monitors
Bose L1 line array (backstage announce)

Projection/Video:

Barco ELM R-20+ and
ELM R-12+ projectors
Barco 10mm video panels and MiPix panels
Element Labs Stealth panels

Video Cameras:

Sony D30/D35 camera kits with CA-TX7 & Canon YJ18x9 lens
Sony DXF-5 5” viewfinder with Canon MS21M studio controls
Vinten SD-12C Fluid Heads
Servo zoom control

Processing:

4 Mbox Extreme media servers
2 MA Lighting grandMA consoles