Christie Lites and representative Martin Kelley supplied the Xtylos fixtures, featuring Claypaky’s proprietary RGB laser source, for the arena tour supporting the American folk rock band’s Brightside album. The tour played dates across the UK and Europe before moving to North America for the spring and summer, wrapping at Wrigley Field in Chicago in September.
Haslauer has worked with The Lumineers since early 2019. Production designers, Sooner Routhier and Robert Long of SRae Productions came onboard in 2016 and have three tour cycles to their credit. Routhier suggested that Haslauer use the small form factor Mini Xtylos HPE in his rig following her success in deploying them for Coldplay.
Haslauer mounted 48 Mini Xtylos HPE atop the whalebone scenic pieces on stage, right in front of a circular video wall. An additional 18 Xtylos were positioned on the FOH truss. “We were asked to repurpose the large, circular video wall with its geometric frame. It was important to give it a new identity so we painted it silver and lined it with some LED neon. The ‘Brightside’ album cycle branding features a particular blue colour that lends itself to cooler metal tones and neon accents,” Routhier said.
“We wanted to frame the circular video wall and surround the band with an additional scenic element. The whalebones pieces were just a shape that fit perfectly with the circular wall and curved band risers. We added an Austrian curtain upstage; repurposed drapes from the previous tour formed various curved masks for the upstage video wall, the drapes’ fabric creating a buttery effect next to the hard lines of the wall.”
“Mini Xtylos HPE did an excellent job cutting through the videowall. I really don’t know what other light would have worked there – they were so compact and powerful. The fact that the beams did not get lost is really quite unique,” Haslauer reported. “Also, the ability to have a throw distance of several hundred feet while seemingly not losing any intensity was incredible.”
Both the Mini Xtylos HPE and the Xtylos were responsible for the jaw dropping moment in the show when the mirror ball was revealed. “There really is no other light out there that would have given us the same wow effect created by all the Xtylos on the mirror ball at the same time,” he said.
Routhier added: “The Xtylos were the main inspiration for the mirror ball! We knew that they would create an unbelievable effect. Creative Director, Nicholas Sutton Bell wanted to surround the mirror ball with a stylized version of the Brightside star logo. We designed a four-part ‘chandelier’ to surround the mirror ball and match the surround on the videowall. It all came together beautifully and was a huge feature in the show. The mirror ball was brought to three different positions via TAIT Nav hoists during the show, so the Xtylos and Mini Xtylos HPE positions had to be perfect every time.”
The fixtures proved to be robust touring lights, too. “Due to the way the set carts had to go into the truck the 48 Mini Xtylos HPE had to be taken off every day and put in cases,” said Haslauer. “Even with that extra handling the units always worked.”
Suppport from Claypaky for the Xtylos line was “amazing,” he added. “I understand the only people who had the Mini Xtylos HPE in North America at the time were us and Carrie Underwood’s residency in Las Vegas. In the beginning our Lighting Crew Chief, Austin Bloomsfield was in communication quite frequently with Claypaky to work out a few things after which the fixtures were rock solid.”
“We at Claypaky are deeply appreciative of innovative designers like Sooner and Ian choosing our Xtylos family of fixtures for their work. It takes faith and trust to embrace cutting edge technology for touring shows and we are honoured that they showed both to us in specifying these lights,” concluded George Masek, Claypaky Strategic Marketing Manager.