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Rock band Queen are GaGa for BlackTrax “state of the art” light tracking solution

Michael Garwood 3 October 2017

System chosen to provide “unparalleled” levels of accuracy when lighting up band members, which include Roger Taylor, Brian May and Adam Lambert 

 If you’re an AV technician or manager looking to offer a lighting tracking service fit for a Queen, light tracking firm BlackTrax have the solution.

Rock band Queen (not HRH Lizzie Windsor) along with lead singer Adam Lambert, are currently part way through their 2017-2018 tour, wowing crowds across the US, Europe and Oceania.

In preparation for the tour, the groups set designers Stufish wanted to find new ways to showcase the band members through lighting. They turned to lighting expert Rob Sinclair, who has built lighting solutions for bands such as The Pet Shop Boys, Keane, Peter Gabriel, Florence and the Machine, Kylie Minogue, Miley Cyrus and Adele – who was asked to design the lighting.

Stufish based the stage shape (21m wide by 34m long) for the tour on Brian May’s iconic custom made guitar. It is, according to the company, the most technically advanced show it has created for Queen + Adam Lambert. The main feature is the eight-ton red chrome, oval-shaped ‘halo’ kinetic lighting rig above the stage and which allows for spectacular and dynamic lighting effects. It is 15m wide, 9m deep and 1.2m high, and has 94 moving lights embedded within a series of mirrored boxes.

“Follow spots offer very few options and can give variable results which, when you’re trying to deliver specific effects, can be enormously frustrating,” said Sinclair. “I knew there must be a better way of controlling some fairly complex lighting that could give me the repeatability which is a key element of any high-profile show.”

Sinclair teamed up with real time tracking firm BlackTrax , which claims to be the only solution available that can reliably deliver “state of the art tracking” on an “enormous” scale – such as a large arena.

BlackTrax is a vision-based system that connects to a range of third party applications, such as robotic lights and media servers to deliver unprecedented accuracy and repeatability.

Sinclair selected  Clay Paky Scenius Uncio lighting (pictured) and controlled them with BlackTrax, with all seven band members being tracked.

“Not only did BlackTrax give us that consistent repeatability, it also gave us the ability to create and deliver numerous effects and behaviours that would just not have been possible without it,” Sinclair added. “The BlackTrax system has performed flawlessly throughout the tour.”

 

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