Italian showman and superstar Vasco Rossi – Il Blasco – was back with another monumental Live Kom tour including six sold-out nights at Milan’s San Siro stadium.
Leading the creative production team was lighting designer Giovanni Pinna, who has worked with the artist for many years as part of a talented team ensuring that the live shows are constantly exciting, interesting and innovative and meet the massive public expectations each year.
Giovanni chose to use over 340 Robe moving lights – 152 MegaPointes, 122 Spiiders and 72 LEDBeam 150s – to assist in that huge visual impact. Video screens/content director and disguise server operator Marco Piva and disguise tech whizz Nicolas Di Fonzo worked directly for Giovanni who also collaborated closely with live camera director Peppe Romano from Except to create the WOW factors and aesthetic highs.
Above the central section of the stage was a video ‘header’ which split into four sections that tracked into different configurations. The riser layout, central runway and walkways below were part of a new stage design by Gioforma. The roof lighting was completely new, with an 18 x 8m grid providing the main over-stage lighting positions – upstage of the 4 x moving LED header pieces – with a 24m front truss, plus lighting ‘top pods’ stage left and right tucked in between the side screens. With this much LED in the environment, Giovanni needed super-bright light sources and that’s why he chose the Robe fixtures.
The little LEDBeam 150s once again proved themselves to be agile and flexible, carefully deployed across the riser positions on the decks and along the front lip of the stage in the footlights position.
The MegaPointes and Spiiders were scattered all over the rig – on the main grid, in the side pods and along the impressive back wall, which featured scenic mesh banners and had the whole surface area outlined in square and rectangular shapes utilising LED strips, a look revealed during some of the more architectural moments.
This element was coordinated with Vasco himself. When the setlist was decided on, the first of three sections were filled with some of his big rock-out power anthems which were ideally suited for lighting that works best in daylight.
“Using all these Robe fixtures helped achieve the powerful, clear, coherent feel I wanted to set the scene at the top of the show. When I ventured into a few colours during a couple of the slower numbers, even contending with daylight their visibility was amazing!”
On the third number he required storing reds and blues to underline the narrative of Good & Bad, and the Spiiders and MegaPointes delivered this dramatically and effectively on cue.
As they had gained around two metres downstage for this stage and set layout, the finely tuned focusing of the LEDBeam 150s along the front and on the runways became increasingly significant as they were the only real physical front light apart from six 4Kw front follow spots. They gave excellent coverage of the band, maximising the zoom in the short throw distance, and they also augmented overhead key lighting.
Giovanni had a big input into the playback video content, and what appeared when onscreen during the show – so he could match this perfectly with lighting cues – and ensure the two medias worked slickly together throughout to reinforce the sheer power and magic of Vasco’s performance.
ER Productions supplied lasers to Giovanni’s spec, including LazerBlades and BB3s, all controlled by Giovanni’s grandMA2 full size console, plus five 15W units run separately by Harry Boyde using one of ER’s Pangolin Beyond systems.
This year they canned the confetti, CO2 blasts and flame jets and instead opted for two breath-takingly effective pyro moments. The first was at the end of “Rewind” when a 125m wide gerb fountain ignited along the back wall of the stadium … and then a jaw-dropping firework finale during the last number ‘Albachiara’ – one of his most famous songs – brought the show to a highly adrenalized an epic close.
Vasco’s core creative team also included FOH sound engineer Andrea Coresellini, who together with Giovanni and Marco Piva has worked with the artist for over 10 years. They share an incredible imaginative synergy that helps Vasco’s legendary live performances continue to stun and amaze existing and new fans year on year.