When Gus Martinez set about designing a light show for Mexican trio Marca MP’s recent California tour, the LD began envisioning how his favourite colour combinations would play off against the band’s unique blend of banda, mariachi, and ranchera music. He also pictured in his mind, a unique scene for the artists’ entrance on the stage.
The way Martinez envisioned it, the band would emerge from an elevator, flanked by runaway lights, while a variety of spots and washes illuminated the crowd, creating instant contact with their famously loyal fans.
Happily, that’s precisely as it played out at large venues like Ontario’s Toyota Arena, filling Martinez with an indescribable feeling. “One of my favourite looks was the entrance,” said Martinez “I imagined this moment throughout the entire time I was designing the show. Seeing it come to life is an almost inexplicable feeling.”
Helping Martinez turn this vision into reality were 170 CHAUVET Professional fixtures, including the Maverick MK3 Wash, Maverick MK2 Spot, Rogue R3 Beam, and Rogue R2 Wash, all supplied by Hardwired Productions.
Following the stirring entrance scene, Martinez built the emotional power of the show through a combination of vivid colour combinations, commanding columned looks, fast moving, dramatic light angles, and well-timed atmospherics.
“In general, I like to keep my design as simple as possible, while still being able to create powerful moments,” said Martinez. “Having different effects interact with each other is one way to make this happen. I used my 24 Maverick fixtures flown over the stage and 16 on the floor to play off one another. I also used my Rogue R3 Beams above the stage to emphasise CAD. For bringing focus to the different musicians on stage, I used the Rogue R2 Wash. Everything was coordinated very smoothly.”
Also coordinated smoothly was Martinez’s lighting design with the large video wall that ran across the back of the stage and the video columns that flanked it. “I like to play with different combinations of video and light,” said Martinez. “This gives the stage a stronger presence.”
Through much of the show, this evocative stage presence was enhanced even further by some very immersive and dreamy colour combinations, most notably mixtures of various purple jewel tones. “One of my favourite combinations is purple and white,” said Martinez, who notes that he began seeing how this blend of hues would look in his mind’s eye “from the moment the design process began.”