CHICAGO - For Justin Bieber's Believe tour, Tom Marzullo, production designer and tour production manager, turned to Strictly FX for pyro, lasers, confetti and fog effects. “The laser looks that are on the Bieber show are extremely artistic. You’re not going to see (them) anywhere else,” said Strictly FX visuals director and partner Ted Maccabee.
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CHICAGO - When it was time to put Justin Bieber back on the road for his current “Believe” tour, a production filled with pyro, lasers, confetti, fog and more, Production Designer and Tour Production Manager Tom Marzullo turned to the creative experts at Strictly FX for their expertise. “Strictly FX is always my first call, for the service and creativity that I’m looking for. They’ve been my go to effects provider for several years,” explains Marzullo.
Pyro from Strictly FX - in the form of gerbs and sparks - are part of the first moments of the show, when an image of Bieber appears then takes flight over the audience. The first song of the set, “All Around the World,” is awash in effects, including lasers, comets and confetti airbursts - a pyro effect that drops confetti over the audience. “They’re not your typical way of doing a confetti drop,” Marzullo said. “If everyone is doing standard confetti, let’s not,” explains Strictly FX Partner and Bieber Effects Designer Mark Grega.
There’s also an automated whirling waterfall of pyro that appears during “Believe,” red hot flame projectors in “Never Say Never,” and gerbs in “She Don’t Like the Lights.” During the final moments of the last song of the production, Bieber’s hit “Baby,” comets and mines explode upstage. The pyro is controlled by Strictly FX’s Reid Nofsinger. “Reid is a consummate professional whose main goal is 100 percent perfect shows night after night,” says Grega.
The intricately programmed lasers are one of the visual backbones of the production. There are three high powered RGB custom lasers: one upstage center, and one each upstage left and right in the wings, as well as two green diode lasers on the thrust. “I would say we use the lasers more than most. The pyro and the fog are accents, although there are some times in the show where they’re the signature of foundation look of one of the numbers that we do,” explains Marzullo.
The lasers, programmed by Doug Cenko and assisted by Nick Meyer, are intricately woven into the lighting cues of the show.??“The laser looks that are on the Bieber show are extremely artistic. You’re not going to see (them) anywhere else,” says Strictly FX Visuals Director and Partner Ted Maccabee. The lasers can be found during “All Around the World,” the “One Time, ” “Eenie Meenie,” “She Don’t Like the Lights,” “Beautiful,” “Never Say Never,” “As Long As You Love Me,” “Believe,” “Boyfriend,” and the finale, “Baby."
“For the tour, the collaboration we had with lighting co-designer Chris Kuroda allowed the lasers to look unique and play an important role within the overall design,” notes Grega.
The production also includes thick white fog courtesy of two low smoke generators in “Catching Feelings,” and eight cryojets that are used during “Never Say Never.” Eight specialized electric snow disposal systems distribute what appears to be snow over the audience for almost eight minutes during the acoustic medley that includes “Be Alright” and “Fall.”
Justin Bieber’s “Believe” tour is on the road until April of 2013.