Robe Gets to The Pointe at MTV Upfront

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Robe at the MTV Upfront.NEW YORK CITY - LD Tom Kenny specified Robe’s latest Pointe moving lights for the 2013 MTV Upfront presentation, staged at the Beacon Theatre in New York City.  This was the first “live” use of the newly launched Pointe in the U.S. Kenny has a penchant for using new technologies, and jumped at the chance to be the first LD in America to get hands-on with the new product.

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The annual network Upfront event  - announcing upcoming programming releases and strategies for the next year - featured musical performances by a host of international superstars like Selena Gomez and Emeli Sande, with a special guest performance by Snoop Lion (formerly known as Snoop Dogg).  It was hosted by MTV personalities Sway Calloway, Nikki Glaser and Sara Schaefer.

The Robe moving lights – which also included a plethora of Robe Robin 600 LEDWashes – which are among Kenny’s current favorite wash fixtures, were supplied by rental company VER, which has a wide range of Robe moving heads at its disposal.

The Pointes, launched in April at Prolight+Sound in Frankfurt, were used primarily to light the show’s live performances. They were particularly featured during Selena Gomez’s set, which included her new single, ‘Come and Get It’ and her older song, ‘Love You Like A Love Song.’

Pointes were placed on each side of the stage and behind the performers pointing toward the audience. Kenny used them for aerial effects and other ‘beam technology’ treatment of specific elements of the show.

“We were very impressed with their size and extreme brightness, and comparing it to other products, The Pointe can work as a wash and spot fixture in a very small space!” he says.

The LEDWash 600 units were positioned on some of the scenic elements along the back of the stage for set and stage washes.

Kenny has lit hundreds of shows in The Beacon and always starts his design concepts with its fabulous Gothic architecture.  This was juxtaposed with Production Designer Julio Himende’s futuristic set for the Upfront.

“Just like the shows that the MTV Upfront was promoting, I wanted something new and refreshing to add to the sleek modernity of the set – and the Pointes were a perfect solution,” he explains.

The lights – which included other movers, generics and LED fixtures - were programmed by Michael Appel using a grandMA2 full size console.

Appel also loved the Pointe and all the effects it brought to the table, particularly the prism and beam looks. “It will replace a lot of other similar fixtures,” he and Kenny both agreed.

“There’s simply no comparison,” states Appel, who has taken the time to run through all aspects of the Pointe in parallel to its competitor products.

Kenny has been using Robe fixtures on his shows for many years. He appreciates their reliability and the fact that Robe listens to what LDs want and then actively implements these requests and suggestions in their ongoing product development.

Kenny recently used 24 Pointes on The 2013 CMT Music Awards at Bridgestone Arena in Nashville.  In the larger and different arena setting, he said they still “blew us away with how much brighter and more fun they are to use than other products."

For more information, see PLSN's June 2013 "Event Design" feature at: