Vari-Lite VL1600 Profiles energise Aida Musical

Photo: Herrick Goldman

VL1600 Profiles from Vari-Lite brought a blend of rock and roll energy and theatrical dramatics for Herrick Goldman’s design for the STAGES St. Louis production of the musical, Aida.

When the team at STAGES had to replace some older fixtures at the last minute, production manager Josh Aune approached Logic Systems. “We used the Vari-Lites because of a recommendation from our local rental company,” explained Aune. “Their owner, Chip Self, has been our go to person for years and knew what our needs where.”

When approached for the production, Self recommended the Vari-Lite VL1600 Profile. He explained, “I’ve used the VL1600’s in a variety of applications. I continue to be impressed with the quality of the light, and the flexibility of the fixture.”

“What a wonderful upgrade!” Goldman added. “The VL1600s have a tuneable white source with a wide colour temperature range. We have a number of different fixtures in the rig, and the first thing I needed to do was match all the whites, and the tuneable source on the VL1600s made that easy.”

Aida, the musical, blends an eclectic selection of musical styles, from Motown to gospel to pop and beyond. In the production for STAGES St. Louis, director Luis Salgado: “wanted the lighting to feel like an AC/DC concert,” said Goldman. “His choreography lends itself to dramatic poses, which of course informed the rock concert lighting that we all strived for. We also used dramatic isolation, low angles for dance, and Disney colours and effects for big musical numbers.”

The low angle front lighting was supplied by VL1600 Profile. “The zoom and optics are beautiful on the VL1600s, as are the shutters. The fixture is so very precise. This low angle position always conflicted with the proscenium arch so having quality shutters was a must.” Goldman explained.

The fixtures were used as a low angle side front light, in which they provided both visibility and sculpting that made the colour rendering of the skin tones a priority. “We have a very diverse cast and colour temperature is important,” continued Goldman. “The VL source made this so easy. The quality is beautiful. I especially like being able to dial in a CMY colour and then modify it ‘behind’ the colour by tuning the source.”

The VL1600 Profile fixtures were provided to STAGES by Logic Systems, and Aune spoke highly of their assistance. “Logic Systems is and has been an outstanding company to work with and they continually go above and beyond for us every time.”