EC Series™ LED Panel Ease for One Direction UK Tour

August 27, 2012

After release of their debut album in 2011 – last year’s fastest-selling debut album in the UK - British-Irish boy band One Direction hit the road on a theatre tour beneath an HSL-supplied Martin rig of MAC 101™ and MAC 2000 Wash XB™ moving heads with dynamic graphics across Martin EC-10™ and EC-20™ LED video panels.

Quick and easy
Lighting designer Dave Lee centered a 23' x 10' EC-10 screen as a key part of the show’s impactful visuals and acknowledges the simple set up of the LED video system. “We needed a 10 mm screen that was quick and easy to put up,” he stated. “The show is all about the screen and footage and the ease of building this screen makes it the only choice. No big dollies, just flight-cased panels that are clipped into place without having to climb the screen to cable the panels, quick and easy. This was essential for a theatre tour where load-ins can take a lot longer than an arena tour due to the bad access of small stages and a lift necessary to get equipment on stage.”

Fast panel processing with P3
Dave incorporated Martin’s 20 mm pixel pitch EC-20 LED video panels in his design as well, using them to mask the front of two onstage risers.

“I love the Martin screen for a number of reasons,” he continues. “Besides the ease of use and quick and easy building of the screen, configuring each panel is fast. It’s not necessary to have the same panel in the same place each day as the P3 processor makes addressing each panel very fast.”

All media content across the EC panels was driven through Martin’s award-winning P3 System Controller, an advanced video signal processor with the ability to micro-align the LED display while treating the screens like lighting instruments through direct DMX control of brightness, color, pixelmapping and more. The P3 also makes setting up an LED screen straightforward and intuitive.

Touring sense
“I’ve seen a lot of video screen over the years and I have to say this is the first one that makes sense for touring. There is no cable nightmare, no data nightmare, you clip it together and it just works. It’s the quickest screen I have seen! We also chose them as it kept all the lighting and video from one supplier,” Dave comments, who says that LED techs /engineers Tom and Luke Levitt had the build of the screen down to a T.

Mike Oates, Director at HSL Group, lighting vendor for the One Direction tour and one of Europe’s fastest growing lighting rental companies, commented, “We were very happy to be working with Production North and Show Producer Louise Doyle again, and of course with the band, who always produce a great live show with real entertainment value. Dave’s ideas are always interesting and fresh, and our ongoing strategy of investment in the latest technologies - including Martin Professional - means we can offer designers and artists the best integrated lighting and screens packages to meet their full visual concepts.”

Also in the One Direction lighting setup were 27 MAC 101™ LED wash lights mounted in banks of three on drop wires. “These were suggested by HSL as a better lightweight alternative to the GLP,” Dave says. Fifteen MAC 2000 Wash XBs and 14 Atomic 3000 strobes with Atomic Colors scrollers completed the lighting rig.