|Bandit Lites UK is supplying lighting equipment to Production North for the current Busted arena tour.
It’s the first time Bandit has serviced the Busted contract, which is being handled by Lester Cobrin from the UK office.
“It was fantastic to be awarded the contract for this tour especially amidst stiff competition,” said Cobrin, who has previously worked with Busted and Production North on the band’s 2003 theatre tour and their spring arena tour. Bandit also worked with the same team on the recent McFly theatre tour.
Busted’s Lighting Director Graham Feast has worked with the band since they started. The overall visual equation was a tripartite collaboration between Feast, Peter Barnes, who created the video playback visuals, and production manager Iain Whitehead, who developed the set concept. The show is underpinned by a visual coherence created by all departments working together – a fluid collage of style and spectacle.
The basic lighting brief was to make it look like a 'big rock show.' The stage reveal includes large amounts of metalwork and trussing. There is over 1,000ft of trussing and an upstage tracking LED video screen that splits into three. The working stage width has been increased from the previous arena tour to bring an epic ‘widescreen’ feel.
The rig features 83 Martin MACs – 41 2K profiles and 30 2K wash fixtures and 12 Mac 600s. There are 22 Martin Atomic strobes, thirty-two 8-lite Moles with scrollers and 31 PAR 64 toners with scrollers for all the various lengths of trussing. The set – built by Serious Stages – contains 220 Raylites, also overseen by the lighting department.
Bandit has also supplied four 3K Syncrolites, three Lycian 1200w HMI truss spots, three Lycian 2K FOH spots, four DF50 smoke machines and – just to ensure the meteorology is spot-on – four ZR33 smoke machines & fans.
Feast operates using a WholeHog II console with two overdrives. All the playback video sources – which includes ‘wallpaper’ graphics and effects as well as specially shot footage of the band - is stored on a Catalyst digital media server. This is run via the lighting desk, and fed to live video director Ruary MacPhie to output to screen and amalgamate with his IMAG visuals. The visual equation is completed by a series of meticulously timed pyro cues – including the firing of 15,000 ping-pong balls from four cannons into the audience in the finale - courtesy Pyro Junkies.
Bandit supplied all-Avolites dimmers to the tour, and for practicality and efficient time and cable management, there are three dimmer positions – stage left, stage right and stage centre. The set lights are dimmed at the centre stage ‘dimmer city’, fed by a 250A three phase supply. The stage left and right dimming positions deal with all the roof and stage floor lighting fixtures, each fed by a 400A 3-phase supply.
The band utilise a small stage area at the end of a 30 metre thrust for the acoustic section of the set, for which a tidy box truss of lights is lowered in to make an intimate space.
Graham Feast said: “As always, the service and support from Bandit has been exemplary. It’s a joy to work with Lester and the rest of the team.”