San Holo at Red Rocks

by Mike Wharton • in
  • Event Lighting
  • September 2019
• Created: September 10, 2019

Share This:

A combination of seven 22W and nine 12W RGB lasers were positioned on the truss and stage deck.

David Singleton is the man behind Production Collective, a creative “front” under whose guise he provides lighting design, production and video design, tour management, production management and more. Comprised primarily of production creatives, the young company has been established for just six years, working with clients all over the world.

The beginning of this year found Singleton working as the production manager on the European leg for Sander van Dijck, a Dutch producer better known as San Holo. This artist was nominated at the Electronic Music Awards in 2017 for New Artist of the Year.

24 Pinnacle Productions KOR LED battens were placed vertically on eight-foot-high pipes across the stage.

Holo has further gained international recognition for his remix of Dr. Dre’s “The Next Episode,” which currently has gathered over 175 million views on YouTube. His single “Light” recently achieved Gold certification status in several countries while his debut album — Album1 — launched in the Top 10 of the Billboard Dance/Electronic Albums chart upon release.

Following a team change, Singleton was asked to take the helm of the existing design on tour, which included festival dates as well. Holo’s management also hired Singleton to come onboard to create four different shows for the DJ in 2019, culminating in a show at Red Rocks.

“Red Rocks was a one-off show, in the sense that it fell in amongst our festival shows,” says Singleton, “But this was a unique prep and design, with the added impact of needing to design all of the production elements —lighting, video, audio, and staging.”

San Holo’s current production manager, Jeff Meuzelaar of Pinnacle Productions, suggested Singleton use Brown Note for this show following previous success with them on other shows. The fact that Brown Note is the preferred vendor at Red Rocks solidified their choice. “It all made perfect sense,” said Singleton.

Dubbed “red rocks1,” Singleton created a scaled-up version of San Holo’s touring show based around Album1. Singleton brought in an associate lighting designer for this show, Kyle Kegan of Voyage Productions. Between them, the show was completely re-programmed, with all brand-new video content made under Singleton and Thorwald van den Akker’s direction by Brent Bucci of VJCLA.

“This show was quite a different process for me,” says Singleton. “As Red Rocks1 was based on a previous concept devised by an old team (designed for much smaller venues), San & Management wanted to keep this theme for the Red Rocks show. So my challenge was to take their ideas and implement them in a completely new design scaled to suit the venue. This, along with the addition of a few new songs, meant working very closely with the team to ensure we did justice to the original concept.”

GLP JDC1 Strobes and SGM Q7 Strobes line the risers and wall.

‡‡         Getting Down To It

“We only had a tight window of two days to do this within San’s schedule, so being prepared was crucial for this to be a success,” Singleton adds. “Our relentless touring schedule meant lots of late-night or less-than-ideal times for conversations about the details. Each song needed quite intricate programming to complement the incredible musicianship on stage. San is huge on making sure all of the many accents are met in one way or another.” As such, the design featured a wide variety of different tools to make this possible.

Strategic choice of fixtures plays a major role in design across the board, perhaps more so at Red Rocks due to the unique outdoor setting and atmospheric changes. With the Album1 concept as their canvas, Singleton and Kegan created a multiple level stage deck set, clad the full width with Absen C7 LED Panels. Upstage of this are three 12-foot-square Absen C7 LED walls, which provided a backdrop to the show. To give them the best success on a one-day, one-off show with no programming time in the dark, Singleton based the design around bright and versatile fixtures, which Brown Note readily supplied.

“The core design is quite diverse,” says Singleton. “With just a single performer on a large, multi-level stage carrying the entire show, a wide variety of looks is required to complement each song. At different points I need the ability for any given fixture type to cut through another. Some looks are big and beamy (what you may expect from EDM), where others become far more theatrical with a simple wash, gobo breakups across the stage and audience and tight back lights on San.”

For his workhorse spots, washes and beams, he chose a combination of 30 Robe BMFL Spots, 13 Martin MAC Quantum Washes and 24 Robe MegaPointes, “all of which pack an incredible punch, and are packed with features, which help me create interesting moments throughout the show,” Singleton says.

The three flown trusses, three upstage LED walls and the upstage riser were lined with a combination of 21 GLP JDC1 and 12 SGM Q7 LED strobes. Singleton lined the flown truss with 33 blinders, 12 GLP X4 Bar 20’s and 24 X4 Bar 10’s. On the floor there were an additional 24 KOR LED battens from Pinnacle Productions, placed vertically on eight-foot-high pipes across the stage.

Brown Note supplied the production elements.

“Every unit in the rig works in multiple ways throughout the show — we really give all of them a run for their money, utilizing the features they offer,” Singleton says. “Timing is absolutely everything. The speed all of these fixtures work at is really important when trying to hit specific accents as is required in this show. For example, we frequently use a BPM synchronized strobe look across the rig. In order to do this so it’s perfectly in time, you need fixtures capable of keeping up. Without them, this effect would look terrible. All the fixtures out of Brown Note’s shop met these rigorous conditions.”

The Red Rocks show was live-streamed in full on YouTube as well. This meant changing the way Singleton normally provides key light for Holo, as the artists works all of the performance area. To maintain coverage throughout the show and make sure he had the most flexibility for the film crew coverage, Singleton had additional Martin MAC Quantum Washes and the new Elation Seven battens strategically spaced across the right, left, and down stage edge areas.

For the pièce de résistance, Singleton specified a vast array of lasers supplied by Grady Nouis and Mike Morgenstern of Amazing Lasers, based out of Denver. A combination of seven 22W and nine 12W RGB lasers were arrayed to create “some incredible looks,” Singleton says. “Grady and I go back many years, having worked together on multiple tours over the last decade. We get the way each other works, and for tight deadline shows like this, trust is crucial in your team. After some initial consultations I gave the guys quite a bit of creative freedom to produce fully time coded laser looks throughout the show. It looked spectacular!”

Singleton and Kegan created a multiple level stage deck set, clad the full width with Absen C7 LED Panels

The show is entirely time-coded for lights and video. Control came from a pair of MA2 full size consoles with additional NPU’s for parameters. Rather than the standard master and backup setup, the design team ran these slightly differently, with Kegan taking control of different intensity groups and making sure the show ran on one console, leaving Singleton to look after key light and the timecode on the other grandMA2.

Via Ableton Live, San Holo quite literally is able to take full control of the show, triggering and manipulating each track on MIDI controllers on stage when he likes. “There is no set routine to this,” says Singleton, “especially when it comes to the gaps between tracks or on-the-fly accents and effects. He’ll do whatever he wants, and it’s my job to keep on top of it.”

Video ran through a main and backup Resolume media server, with the MA2 consoles triggering all the media in Resolume. This provided the ability for MA2 to merge Art-Net data coming from Resolume for all the pixel products on the show. All the pixels were mapped spatially in Resolume, and custom content was created by Brent Bucci (VJCLA), adding a dynamic depth to the whole show.

“Any creative team will know how daunting it can be doing a fully live-streamed show with no dark programming time, full Live Stream and no rehearsals,” says Singleton in closing, “but with Brown Note’s support as part of the incredible team we had in place, it was a success.”

San Holo at Red Rocks

Crew

  • Production Manager: Jeff Meuzelaar/Pinnacle Productions
  • Tour Manager: Stacy Wiseman
  • Production & Stage Design: David Singleton, Jeff Meuzelaar
  • Lighting, Video, Staging, Rigging: Brown Note Productions
  • Brown Note Productions Team: James Watt, Sara Knutson, Ryan Knutson, Ben Shapiro
  • Lighting Designer: David Singleton
  • Associate Lighting Designer: Kyle Kegan/Voyage Productions
  • Video Content Designer: Brent Bucci/VJCLA
  • Lasers: Grady Nouis, Mike Morgenstern/Amazing Lasers
  • Stage Manager: Chris Bullock/Pinnacle Productions
  • Special Effects: Pyromix
  • Management: Heroic

Gear

  • 2       grandMA2 Full consoles w/2 NPUs
  • 30     Robe BMFL Spot ETL’s
  • 24     Robe MegaPointes
  • 19     Martin MAC Quantum LED washes
  • 19     Elation Seven Batten 72’s
  • 21     GLP JDC1 LED strobes
  • 12     SGM Q-7 LED strobes
  • 33     ProCan 2-Lite blinders
  • 108  Absen C7 7.5mm LED panels (for 3 video walls)
  • 42     Absen C7 7.5mm LED panels (for riser facades)
  • 2       Resolume media servers
  • 1       Networking setup w/Luminex products

 

Share This:

Leave a Comment:

The Latest News and Gear in Your Inbox - Sign Up Today!

Check Out Some Past PLSN Issues