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15/01/2007

XL Video Hit The Right Notes For Placebo

Lighting designer Ivan Morandi produced a highly inventive, fully integrated lighting and visual show for Placebo’s recent UK and European arena tour, with video equipment and crew supplied by XL Video UK.
Morandi produced all the pre-recorded video content himself which was stored on two Catalyst v 4 digital media servers. He also wove feeds from 16 cameras into the mix – an amalgam of Toshiba mini cams and Panasonic DV cam units with remote pan and tilt heads. The two types of video sources and lighting were meshed together into a seamless and provocative collage of images and ideas.
XL Video’s Des Fallon project managed the tour and commented: “It’s always good working with someone as creative as Ivan. He puts a lot of intelligence and thought into his work – and the results speak for themselves."
The video system was being looked after on the road by chief engineer Alastair MacDiarmid, with John Shrimpton – another XL regular - as camera crew chief.
Morandi designed fourteen projection screens into the stage set – eleven sized 10 x 7ft that frame the stage, and one custom 30 x 7ft widescreen upstage, fed by two High End DL2 moving projectors. The other 11 screens were all fed by Barco R12 and R18 projectors supplied by XL and rigged onto a variety of different trusses including four very high up in the roof for the top row of screens, trimmed at 45ft.
The cameras were clamped all over the stage where they could get interesting pictures of the band. At the core of the system were the two Catalysts and two Leitch matrix switchers. The first matrix controlled all the camera inputs and the switching of the cameras or Catalyst to the projectors. The second matrix controlled the capture inputs into the Catalyst, allowing them to be processed before being output to the screens.
Richard Bleasdale wrote a special Catalyst control module to integrate the Leitch within the system – so it appeared as a fixture personality on the Hog iPC desk on which Morandi ran the show.
MacDiarmid condensed the control system down to one rack which managed all the scan conversion, camera switching and camera control.
Sound was supplied by Canegreen.
(DS/SP)
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