Over 350 square metres of Pixled LED screen is being used to spectacular effect on the latest sold-out stadium tour by Italian superstar Vasco Rossi - "Live Kom '011" - specified by lighting and visuals designer, Giovanni Pinna.
The Pixled F-25 and F-37L surfaces were purchased by Milan-based AV rental company Event Management specially for the tour, and supplied to them from Pixled Europe's HQ in Belgium. It's Event Management's first investment in the Pixled brand - although the company has used it on shows in the past.
For the Rossi tour, the Pixled is an integral scenic element of the show, which takes place below an imposing 37 metre high trussing structure. Fourteen columns of Pixled F-37L - a brand new flexible product - are positioned in two sections of seven either side of the stage at the back. These are on a Cyberhoist automation system that moves them between level one (the stage) and level two of the set. They can also move apart into seven individual segments or be run as one large surface per side. Each column offers 32 x 192 pixels which, when together, gives a total surface area of 448 x 192 pixels.
Two horizontal strips of Pixled F-25 - also on Cyberhoists - run across the front of the stage: they are each 20 metres wide by 2.4 metres high, and 832 x 192 pixels in total - split horizontally in the middle. These two strips can travel the full height between top and bottom of the 37 metre structure.
The front two main support legs of the triangular-shaped structure are clad up to 7 metres high in more Pixled F-37L.
With no actual 'traditional' scenery onstage, it is the video surfaces that create the setting. Combined with the movement and lighting, this creates a dynamic, constantly changing environment, shifting shape and feel for each song of Rossi's two and a half hour set.
Video runs throughout 90 per cent of the show, played out via two Catalyst media servers, each running layers. The content was custom-produced by Mikkel Garro Martinsen who worked closely with stage designers GioForma and Giovanni Pinna, who originated the show's multi video surface concept.
Once Pinna and GioForma had completed the stage design and this was accepted by Rossi, show producers Live Nation asked the technical suppliers to tender for the tour. When Event Management was confirmed as the video supplier, Pinna and Event Management's CEO Daniele Parazzoli immediately started looking at the various options for surfaces.
Pinna wanted a transparent mesh product so he also had the option of making it disappear by shining lights through. As soon as they saw Pixled demonstrated, they knew it was the right screen for the job.
Custom designed flightcases were built for the F-37L, which lifts out of the box, hooks onto the truss and is then hoisted into position in a fast, efficient manoeuvre. A crew of 12 technicians looks after the video, and it takes about 60 minutes to rig the seven columns of screen each side of the stage. The F-25 also travels in custom cases and is equally as quick to rig and de-rig, The F-37L cladding the structure legs is flown off a small fly bar on 250 kg motors (it is static for the show).
The Catalysts are being operated by Marco Denardi - all manually triggered cues -via a grandMA full size console, under the direction of Pinna, who is operating the lighting using another grandMA full size.