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HSL sets the controls for Floyd tribute band

It's said of the 1960s that, if you can remember it, you weren't there. The same may be true for Pink Floyd concerts. Those anxious to remind themselves have plenty of opportunities - such as with Brit Floyd, who are being supported by HSL.

UK rental company HSL continues its busy concert touring season, supplying lighting and video projectors to the latest leg of the Brit Floyd UK tour – a brand new show celebrating the musical legacy of legendary progressive rock band Pink Floyd.

Brit Floyd under the musical and creative direction of Damian Darlington is hailed as one of the most authentic Pink Floyd tribute bands. A spectacularly Floydesque style lightshow, which is equally as original in its own right, has been co-designed by Dave Hill and Neil Trenell, with Trenell going out on the road operating.

The project is managed for Blackburn-based HSL by Mike Oates. “Supplying a Pink Floyd show of any description is a lighting company’s dream,” he said, “considering they were such great technical innovators and responsible for evolving the whole concept of integrated visuals into a powerful, emotive, experience. In the process, they put the whole idea of touring and show ‘production values’ on the map.”

Taking its visual inspiration from the Pink Floyd’s landmark 1994 “Pulse” tour, the structural appearance of the stage is based around a 15 metre wide arch made from A-type trussing, with 2.5 metres of spreaders in the middle, and a projection screen upstage masked to fit the shape of the arch.

Also upstage (and fitted inside) of the arch is a 6 metre diameter circular truss with a stretched projection screen. Both the circle and the arch trussing provide the main lighting positions, together with a front truss, with the remainder of the fixtures deployed on the deck.

The key to the lighting design is optimising the rig to create lots of depth and a sense of ‘largeness’, making it go a long way and still keeping plenty of surprises in store for each number and the end section, which builds to a crescendo with the classics “Bricks”, “Comfortably Numb” and “Run Like Hell”.

The lighting also has to complement the video projections onto both the circle and arch, which were custom-created by Bryan Kolupski.

All the moving lights are Robe ROBINs.

Curving elegantly around the arch are 22 Robe ROBIN 300 Beams plus nine 2-cell Moles and five Martin Professional Atomic strobes. The trussing is toned with 12 i-Pix Satellite LED ‘bricks’.

Around the perimeter of the circle are another 16 Robe ROBIN 300 Beams, together with eight 2-cell Moles and eight Satellites, again to highlight the metalwork.

On the front truss are four Robe ROBIN 600 Spots and five ROBIN 600 Washes to cover the stage, with 10 ETC Source Four profiles for key lighting the band, which usually features a line up of nine or ten people. The three Sanyo XF47 projectors (one for the circle and two for the arch) are also hung on the front truss.

The rest of the lights are on the floor – eight Robe ROBIN 600 Spots arcing around the upstage edge for aerial and gobo effects. Ten Jarags are positioned in between the backline and used for a variety of effects throughout the set, and there are also four Atomic strobes and 22 short-nosed PARS on the deck, including a run of PARs across the front of the stage.

Trenell runs the show from an MA Lighting grandMA2 full size console, which also fires two Hippotizer media servers playing out all the video content to both screens, which is present through 85% of the performance.

While the overall concept for the design was to replicate the style and feel of the “Pulse” phenomenon, some new and contemporary Floydesque elements were introduced to both lighting and the video content.