Today, Erik Lammers from Stagelight is talking to us about his experience producing shows and supplying equipment for events across Europe. The past 15 years Stagelight have managed to successfully realize visions for magnificent theatrical shows to touring performances at festivals.
Furthermore, long experience doing brilliant productions for Symphony Orchestras such as the historical Limburg Symphony Orchestra and Orkest of the Royal Dutch Airforce has made them renowned to beautifully convey emotions of classical music into atmospheric lighting effects, resulting in remarkably well composed shows.
Concerts with symphonic Orchestras are known to be rather modest and kept classy in regards of effects. Today however, we notice increasing incorporation of largescale lighting shows and video in performances. This requires designers and producers to work closer than ever together and focus on great communication to maintain a good balance between the elements the audience will focus on. A lighting designer’s vision for a spectacular show must not remove focus from the instruments being played and at the same time there must be enough time to admire the video being played.
Stagelight has experienced this exact thing when working as supplier of sound, lights and rigging for “Elvis live in Concert – The Wonder of You”. A great production with 11 shows across Europe.
According to Erik, to successfully realize a concept as it was envisioned, good communication between the customer, project manager and designers is key. By keeping lines of communication short, Stagelight’s designers can incorporate their own creative ideas when taking care of for example lightplot and audiodesign because of the possibility to directly discuss and receive feedback from all areas of the production. In most cases those people are also working the first day(s) setting up the production continuing to keep communication short. A fundamental principle for Stagelight is that their company can only be as good as the people who work there. Therefore, the well-being of the employees is very important.
“In a collegial atmosphere everyone must feel valued, allowed to express enthusiasm and dedication for the productions to maintain great quality, creativity, flexibility and customer orientation.”
Whether Stagelight continue operating the equipment or not, Erik tells us it is very much appreciated by customers that they always are available stand-by for troubleshooting. As a result of great communication, even the most challenging preproduction plans yield harmonious and enjoyable shows.
Because Stagelight both produces and supply shows with equipment it is important to use equipment that will maintain their standard of operations making sure effects are spot on at all time.
“It creates a one shop feeling that enables great flexibility, if a customer wants to add something to the show, we can quickly and easily provide that. Our goal is to have all effects look brand new from the first to the last show.”
An essential part of communication is listening. Not only will careful attention to what a director is saying about how his show should look help create brilliant shows, but learning by listening and watching other lighting professionals working with prominent festivals and theatre productions is also a highly effective way to become inspired and to learn about new effects and technology, Erik points out.
“Learning from others and sharing ideas is a necessary thing to amplify knowledge and creativity.”
I share a large interest in new technology with my colleagues and right now we see huge development of LED-fixtures. Staying updated with the latest news and quickly gaining experience using this equipment opens up new possibilities for us to produce never-before-seen shows. We work a lot with Robe, a manufacturer which proved themselves to be a precursor in designing great moving-lights. Recently again with the Mega Pointe, Erik explains.
Robe invites Lighting designer Andy Webb to speak and teach on their Theatre Tour which is giving lighting professionals a chance to test their new products such as the Mega Pointe and to see the effects live. Swefog’s distributor Controllux, is hosting the annual event in the Netherlands. Jeroen from Controllux explains how the Duramax 1k8 was used this year to showcase the superb result of beams and colours from the Mega Pointe in a calm, and well distributed haze.
The haze is at its core a lighting designer’s canvas. For artful and beautiful lighting to be showcased great clarity and sharp colours has to be put onto a truly high resolutive haze. Erik tells us that the calmness and reflective properties of Swefog’s TrueColour haze is the finishing touch they look for to keep the lighting spheric with the music and songs the Orchestras play.
“The invisibility of Swefog haze is great, this together with the equal distribution of the haze makes it perfect for accentuation of the right atmosphere through colors of the fixture.”