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Opeth Sorcery and Ambersphere
UK – As part of their European journey, Swedish band Opeth opted for a single show at Wembley Arena for their UK audience. Magnus Boyd has been lighting the band for the last 18 months. The show at Wembley was a part of the Sorceress World Tour. The first portion started in the US with twenty odd shows and continued in Europe. “During the tour, we have done special extended sets (at Radio City and Belasco in LA) featuring songs from the Deliverance and Damnation albums before the third at Wembley. The final extended set will be at the Sydney Opera House in February. These are impressive spaces that really deserve a large production; the design didn’t change much, we just doubled what we would normally have in the rig.”
Boyd hooked up with High Wycombe based rental company Siyan Limited to deliver his touring and Wembley show lighting requirements which is an overwhelmingly Clay Paky affair, with MA control and with a surprise appearance of Ayrton Dreampanel Twins, all exclusively distributed in the UK by Ambersphere Solutions.
“Magnus was looking for a supplier who stocked Clay Paky fixtures and MA control systems,” opens Tom Grant, project manager. “He and I had some initial conversations by email about his requirements and ball parked some figures/specs and we went from there.” Boyd’s final specification comprised of K20 B-Eyes, Mythos, Sharpys, Alpha Wash 700s and Stormy CCs, along with an MA2 Lite and NPU control system.
“The current design is pretty much a complete break with previous tours,” explains Boyd, “I wanted to bring in hybrid fixtures that could give me more versatility; I have used Mythos, Stormy and B-Eyes extensively with other productions and they fit the job perfectly for Opeth. The Stormy was selected for its 'xenon-esque' look and reflector. I wanted the Atomic look without the power consumption. The colours also give a refreshing look in combination with the reflector. B-EYEs have been a favourite since they were launched. The lens system and rotation give brilliant air effects as well as the punch the lamp gives in wash mode. As for the Mythos, its flexibility is brilliant. The light is crisp, the beam is sharp and the gobos pop even when zoomed pretty far out. Tom suggested the Alpha Wash 700s as the right choice for a front truss wash and he wasn’t wrong.
“Then myself and Petter Nilssen had a brainstorm and decided to try out the Ayrton DreamPanel Twins. The DreamPanels were chosen to replace a relatively well used three-part video wall setup. Almost every song in the set included their use but as they are so versatile, we were able to change looks continuously, starting out with content relating to the songs and progressing into more abstract material that would include fixture movement. For the encore, all hell breaks loose with some beautiful abstract video, rotation and full use of the LED side of the fixture. Content was created from a mix of video designers – Sorceress artwork by Travis Smith animated by Scott Rudd, abstract artwork created by Pekka Stokke at LJOS AS and some content created by myself with footage from Jonas Åkerlund.”
On the control side, Boyd has been a regular MA user for the last 15 years. Siyan provided a grandMA2 Light with a pair of MA NPUs. “The MA2 light gives me everything I needed for this run despite being designed/pre-programmed on an onPC Command wing and a full-size grandMA2 in Oslo. As we were not using the Dreampanels in full extended mode, there was no need for much expansion so the Light suited me fine. In regards to the NPUs, the MA solution for networking is pretty much all I need. They make it easy to incorporate house rigs to my design and offer a stable network for my touring package. In addition, networking with other consoles for programming/backup is a dream with them in the package.”
For the Wembley show, Siyan supplied the crew in addition to the extra lighting. Crew chief Matt Morris along with Dan Everitt and Mark Baruch. Boyd is full of praise: “All the gear was in mint condition and Tom was very on the ball as project manager; if we needed anything it was sorted instantly. From concept to plan to build and finally tour, they have been there every step of the way supplying information, ideas and support. Altogether a very enjoyable experience indeed. They do need a better coffee machine in their warehouse though!”
photos: Siyan Lighting
24th January 2017
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