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Kinesys Gets Around with GES
Sweden – Automation and a Kinesys system was right at the heart of Palle Palme’s spectacular lighting and video design for Swedish pop supergroup GES’s popular 2022 tour, which culminated in a month-long residency at Stockholm’s famous Cirkus venue.
The band, which features three of Sweden’s biggest singing stars, romped through a playlist of greatest collective and individual hits, and to keep the energy and pace pumping throughout the set, Palle’s design included two circular lighting trusses: ten metre and three diameters that moved, plus a five metre diameter semi-circular LED screen which flew in and out at strategic moments.
“Automation was an essential element of this show’s aesthetic,” commented Palle, who wanted the additional dynamics of movement to make the stage design really rock. “It was an ideally suited performance environment for the extra visual thrill of automation,” he stated.
The two circles and the lighting on them physically interacted beautifully and fluidly throughout the performance, controlled by automation operator Emanuel Hochholzer using Kinesys Vector control.
The Kinesys system, which also featured Elevation drives working with eleven 500KG EXE hoists, was specified and supplied by Sören Durango at Sundsvall based Scandinavian Rigging Service.
Palle wanted to use the three-dimensionality of automation to change the shape and architecture of the stage space. With over 40 cues in the Vector console. This started subtly, building up to more extreme and intense moves towards the end of the set with the circles pitching dramatically.
“It is important to make everything fun in this show, so having the ability to move the whole rig offered so much more scope for engaging the audience and keeping them guessing as to what might happen next,” commented Palle, adding that all of the songs were “fantastic” material to light and to animate.
The LED screen was used judiciously in around a third of the songs in the set, so when not in use, it flew out of the way leaving the stage neat, clean and uncluttered.
Both circle trusses were rigged using four 500kg EXE hoists running with Kinesys Elevation drives with another three deployed for lifting and lowering the LED screen truss.
Emmanuel, a freelance lighting and automation technician and programmer, has been working with Palle for several years, and noted, “Kinesys is an excellent system and I enjoy working with it every time.”
From a practical point of view, he finds Kinesys easy to programme and intuitive to use especially for those with a lighting background. Learning to set the system up is also “relatively straightforward” and he enjoys programming quickly once this is complete.
“Above all, the kit is reliable,” he observes.
Emmanuel first encountered Kinesys about 12 years ago and has been working regularly with the products on automation projects for the last two years for numerous shows and events both indoors and outdoors, dealing with all sorts of weather. The Kinesys systems have always been “very stable and solid.”
The GES tour had been running throughout 2022 by the time they moved into Cirkus for their pre-Christmas residency in December.
photos: Louise Stickland
7th February 2023
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