One of rock ‘n roll’s most eagerly anticipated comebacks is reality as The Police kicked off an international reunion tour on May 28th in Vancouver, Canada. Lighting designer Patrick Woodroffe turned to the Martin MAC range for the 30th anniversary tour, the band’s first in 24 years.
Touring in support of a recent greatest hits release, the three-member band is delighting fans beneath a Martin rig of 40 MAC 2000 Washes, 18 MAC 700 Profiles, 11 MAC 250 Washes, 8 Atomic 3000 strobes and 18 LittleBig 3.5 Xenon fixtures. An uncluttered yet effective set design has been rendered dynamic with a prodigious amount of color and movement from the Martin rig working with LED screens mounted above the stage. Lighting vendor for the US leg is Upstaging with Neg Earth handling the European portion of the tour.
Two ovals - the stage itself mirrored above by a truss with LED tubes - make up the stage set. Inside the truss oval are three, straight lift trusses that fly in and out. The stage ovals incorporate ribbon lifts that move to perform several different designs. Working together with Patrick is associate lighting designer and lighting director Daniel Nolan. He explains product positioning and fixture choice. “The MAC 700s are located on moving towers (ribbon lifts) and were chosen for their small but powerful profile beam. They have good CMY color mixing and gobo effects. The 250s are used as stage set fill lights across the front of the stage and were chosen for their small size and good powerful CYM mixing.”
MAC 2000 Washes are incorporated into the rig (16 indoors and 24 outdoors) for audience lighting. “They were chosen for the robust and powerful light that has become quite famous for its reliability,” Daniel says. “It has a great zoom from wash to tight spot and the best amber from any 2K wash light. The Martin lights have been brilliant with very few problems.”
A particularly emphatic effect comes from high-powered LittleBig 3.5s, exclusively distributed in North America by Martin Professional, Inc. “The LittleBig’s are used as big search light effects. They are split with 12 on oval trusses and 6 on the floor stage right and left. They have great beam effects and very good color scroll CYM mixing. They also have fast movement and a nice beam strobe effect.”
The Police are playing across North America this summer before heading to Europe and beyond.
Lighting Designer: Patrick Woodroffe
Associate Lighting Designer / Lighting Director: Daniel Nolan
Tour Manager: William Francis
Production Manager / Co-set designer: Charlie Hernandez