The Judds Go Martin for “The Last Encore”

February 25, 2011

Grammy award-winning country music duo Naomi and Wynonna Judd bid their fans a final farewell on an 18-city tour that saw the reunited mother-daughter act performing beneath a large rig that included 17 Martin MAC III Profiles™, 22 MAC 2000 Wash XBs™, and 20 MAC 700 Wash™ fixtures, among other automated luminaires, all provided by Upstaging.

Production Designer John Featherstone of Lightswitch turned to a classic design, one that reflected the duo’s 1980’s popularity, yet with updated contemporary elements. The design also fulfilled The Judds’ wish to create an intimate setting suitable for more personal narrative, despite the fact the tour played in large venues.

Featherstone’s design for “The Last Encore” tour consisted of curved trusses lined with MAC III Profiles, MAC 2000 Wash XBs and other automateds, with MAC 700 Washes mounted on an array of vertical trusses. A large arched video wall backdrop was lined with more MAC III Profiles, as well as moving mirror fixtures.

An avid user of Martin gear, Featherstone incorporated the 1500-watt MAC III Profile into one of his designs for the first time. He stated, “With a big, bright LED wall we needed something that would slice through that with defined beams, something that could overcome a lot of light competition. The MAC III Profile provides the crispest, sharpest beam and gobo looks.

”He also appreciated another key component of the MAC III Profile’s feature set, a wide-range CMY color mixing system with fixed color wheel. “From super saturated colors that are rich and thick to feminine pastels, the MAC III allowed us to cover the wide variety of songs that The Judds sing, from ballads to rock and roll. The color mechanism in the MAC III gives you both.

”Lightswitch’s Dennis Connors programmed the rig on a Martin Maxxyz™ lighting console with video delivered via a Martin Maxedia Broadcast™ media server. Media content came from Lightswitch’s stock library as well as content creator Austin Shapely of Vision Visuals and included both retrospective material of The Judds and image abstraction.

“The Last Encore” tour played dates throughout December but has added select shows through January.

Production Designer: John Featherstone (Lightswitch)
Production Manager: Art Rich
Video Vendor: Vision Visuals
Lighting Vendor: Upstaging