The first of Robe’s new ROBIN DLF LED Wash lights to go on tour in the UK were just ideal for Rob Sinclair’s lighting design for The Human League’s recent UK tour – which incorporated ten of the PLASA Innovation Award winning fixtures.
The rig also contained several other Robe fixtures, including five DigitalSpot 7000 DTs, which together with the DLF Washes, were used to illuminate and project on to a scenic back wall above and behind the band, constructed from ten Airformance Design ‘Waben Blocks’. The concept of utilising the Blocks originally came from lead vocalist Philip Oakey, who had seen these at a festival during the summer and thought they would look very cool onstage – which they did! All lighting and digital lighting equipment for the tour was supplied by Blackburn-based HSL – who have the largest stock of Robe fixtures in the UK – and like to ensure that all their clients have the latest technologies available to choose from. The lighting was rigged on three trusses. Sinclair sought a fixture that was light in weight and high in output specifically for hanging on the front truss as he wanted to be able to isolate and neatly light areas of the Waben Blocks. HSL’s Project Manager, Mike Oates. suggested he check out the DLFs, which had just been delivered to HSL – and were the first available for touring in the UK. A demo followed and Sinclair realised that the framing shutters in the DLFs were perfect for the precise ‘barn-door’ style framing of the Waben Blocks that he had in mind, and also for producing the vibrant palette of colour effects that he wanted to throw onto the Blocks. “They are nice and bright and can produce a fabulous array of colours,” he comments. The tour also featured 28 x Robe LEDWash 600s, which were dotted over all the mid and back trusses, together with 12 ROBIN 300E Beams, six positioned on the back truss and six on an upstage riser. The two types of fixture colour match each other seamlessly, while the different beams are a great contrast. Lighting and video was operated on the road by Lighting Director Chris Steel using a Chamsys MQ100 console with a Wing. Steel is equally impressed with the DLF Washes, He likes the zoom (5.5 – 60 degrees) and comments generally that, “They are fantastic lights”. The mid truss was on a Kinesys automation system which started in the down position and then raised out to reveal the band at the top of the show. The video content was loaded into the heads of the DigitalSpots – an immaculate solution in this case - and run from the lighting desk. It primarily consisted of ambient and texturing type footage created by Sinclair and his design team, which was edge-blended together in the DigitalSpots and flowed over the Waben Blocks, giving them a real 3D ‘spatial’ dimension. For the European section of the tour ahead of the UK dates, HSL supplied a specials package of 12 Robe LEDWash 600s.