This year’s Hero World Challenge at the world-famous Albany Resort generated considerable media attention since it marked the return of Tiger Woods to competitive golf after a 15-month hiatus. Glitzy dinners and parties associated with the tournament, which benefits Woods’ namesake foundation, also captured headlines. Contributing to the glamorous atmosphere of these A-list guest festivities was a lively and colourful lighting design by Paul Francis Aranha that featured a bevy of fixtures from Chauvet Professional.
The owner of Spectrum Light and Sound, Aranha used 60 COLORado colour washes and 38 Rogue moving heads, as well as Ovation, Nexus and STRIKE series fixtures to add unmistakable visual pop to the tournament’s opening and closing night parties, its Pro Am dinner and a special Indian-themed night. “Lighting and scenic elements were essential to creating a unique atmosphere at each event,” he said. “The overall look of the Hero Events was extremely diverse, including a traditional Indian stage, a wild and immersive Junkanoo and Carnival opening party, and a loud and energetic nightclub feel on the beach at the closing party. We had to have a very flexible rig to create four unique nights.”
Aside from demanding a flexible lighting rig, the multi-facet Hero Challenge celebrations also required a well-coordinated effort from a versatile and talented team. “It takes a special team to be able to handle the challenges presented by working in the Bahamas on the beach where anything can go wrong,” said Aranha. “This was especially true at an event like this one, which had so many different facets to it. Building a team with experience working in this kind of environment was critical. Shawn Siethel, our Lighting Designer, deserves a lot of credit for making this a success.”
The Spectrum Light and Sound team adjusted their rig to account for a variety of different “floor plans” during the four-day event. “For the opening party, we had to have an open floor plan, because guests needed to move freely between east and west tents on the Albany beach to allow them to experience the full Junkanoo and Carnival-themed entertainment,” said Aranha. “However, for the closing Party, we closed off our ‘west tent’ from the beach to keep more energy on the dance floor.”
Spandex sails flanking the dance floor were used to close off the tent for the closing party, which featured a high-octane performance by hip-hop legend and former Will Smith collaborator DJ Jazzy Jeff. Cut and stretched from rolls, the sails were secured to trees with fishing line and tie straps. This arrangement gave Aranha greater design flexibility by allowing him to adjust the sails to create the optimal shape and coverage.
Closing off one end of the tent from the beach made it necessary to create a visually exciting backdrop for the DJ Jazzy Jeff performance, while using non-intrusive lighting positions. Aranha and his crew accomplished this goal with help from 16 Nexus 4×4 panels. “With their flexible mounting options, the Nexus fixtures provided us with a great opportunity to create an exciting vibe between an iconic DJ and our guests,” he said. “At the same time, they enhanced the backdrop for guests dancing on the beach in the Bahamas.”
The evocative Bahamian breeze and beachfront setting of the opening and closing parties played off beautifully against the glittering lights that energised the dance floor. Aranha created a pulsating nightclub atmosphere on the floor by sweeping it with richly coloured light from 12 fast-moving Rogue R1 Spots and six Rogue RH1 Hybrids. For added eye candy, he hit the floor with four blinding STRIKE 882 LED strobes. A pair of Ovation E-190WW ellipsoidal’s was used to key light performers during the parties, and 117 Freedom Par Quad-4 RGBA wireless battery-powered fixtures from Chauvet DJ bathed the entire area in colour. Enhancing the mood on and off the dance floor were atmospheric effects provided by four Amhaze and four Vesuvio RGBA units.
“We used the same dance floor rig for the opening and closing parties,” said Aranha. “Both parties were also beautifully colorised by the Freedom Pars. Being wireless and battery powered, the Freedom Pars gave us a great deal of flexibility. We could position them in places that otherwise would have been inaccessible. The net result was we got complete colour coverage.”
At the Pro Am dinner, which was held on the Albany beach, Aranha relied on his lights to create a subtler environment. Using TRUSTT trussing, he set the dinner area off from the rest of the beach and accented it with rich natural colours that changed to reflect various tones at different points during the evening. A collection of 24 COLORado 1 Solo, 45 Freedom Par Quad-4 RGBA and 108 Freedom Par Quad-4 IP fixtures provided this colour backdrop. Ovation E-190WW LED ellipsoidal’s was used for key lighting.
“The Hero World Challenge was one project, but from a lighting perspective, we covered a very wide gamut of events,” said Aranha. “It was very gratifying for us because of the teamwork our crew displayed and also because it showed the power of light to adapt to different demands and transform any setting.”