HARMAN's Martin Professional MAC Quantum, VC-strips and Tripix Entertain The Audience Alongside Robbie Williams

NEW YORK, New York - It's all about glitz and glam in Robbie Williams',
Swings Both Ways
Tour, which started in May and ends this September. The stage design is
theatrical in every possible way. The lighting design, by Mark Cunniffe, is
the perfect accompaniment to an inspired stage design and features a
substantial rig by HARMAN's Martin Professional, which is also the first
major outing for lighting supplier NEG EARTH's
new stock of MAC Quantum Wash.

Martin Professional spoke to Lighting Designer, Mark Cunniffe, NEG EARTH MD,
Dave Ridgway and Project Manager Caroline Beverley to hear about the
lighting design process and their experiences working with MAC Quantum for
this major production.

Cunniffe worked closely with Set Designer, Ric Lipson from Stufish. Based on
Lipson's initial stage design concept, Cunniffe designed the lighting. He
also provided suggestions for additional stage elements, such as the
chandeliers "floating" above the stage, which became a major feature of the
show and have received a lot of attention.

Cunniffe started plying his trade over 20 years ago and has witnessed many
advances in lighting fixture design. The rise in LED products requiring less
power has allowed him to continue to develop his art in an increasingly
eco-friendly way. "I find that Martin's new MAC Quantum Wash provides me
with a very good theatrical unit," said Cunniffe. "I was lucky enough to get
a glimpse of it last year and was totally blown away by its brightness and
its color quality."

Initially Cunniffe thought that he would need Quantums both on the top and
bottom of the 90 x 55 ft Austrian drape, but soon realised that the Quantum
was sufficiently bright and its beam sufficiently even to light up the whole
drape from top to bottom. Another pleasant surprise was how straightforward
it was to match the color of the MAC Auras to the new Quantums for the stage
elements. Cunniffe recalled:

"We thought there would definitely be a discrepancy because of the age
difference in the fixtures," said Cunniffe. "We use a pallet of around 30
colors - very few pastels and a lot saturated and secondary colors. It
didn't take much programming and the color match between all of the units
was excellent."

"The original idea was to use MAC Auras to light the Austrian drape," said
Ridgway. "They would have done a good job, but we would have needed more of
them. The Quantum is a different sort of light; its wider and more powerful,
and it looks great."

MAC Quantums were also used as audience lighting, mounted as a separate rig.
According to Cunniffe, five years ago, no one would have used an LED product
as an audience wash light on a show, but the Quantum is perfect for it. "The
tungsten values you can get now from an LED fixture are very good," Cunniffe
said. "The Quantums allowed me to do achieve all I wanted to achieve, which
is a real testament to it."

The Tripix range was also deployed in great numbers on the tour. Although
essentially an outdoor architectural fixture, it did extremely well on the
semi-circular walkway. Initially, Cunniffe wanted to use them solely to get
some soft light shining up on Robbie when he took to this part of the stage.
"It worked so well that it turned into a stand-alone scenic element of the
show, which is also why we saved it for the second act," he said. "It wasn't
just functional; it was absolutely faultless in an entertainment

The design process concluded with a three week rehearsal period to test and
adjust the stage and lighting design. "Rehearsals can be the most tricky
period and the units aren't necessarily designed to be on for 100 hours
straight, but the Quantums performed as well as we could have hoped and
overall we are very happy with the quality," Beverly said.

"The lights came out of the box, they were rigged and they worked," Cunniffe
said. "Everyone involved have done a fantastic job. We also appreciate the
help from the guys at Martin UK."

"We don't often get a chance to come in at an early stage in the production
process and help things develop," said Michael Walker, Sales Director for
Martin Professional in the UK. "Although we've only played a small part in
this incredible production, it's great to work with such talented people, to
experience the challenges and technical demands and to see what happens on
the basis of a creative brief. The knowledge we gain from being part of such
an epic-scale production, helps us develop new products based on real

The Swings Both Ways Tour ended September 28th with a final show in Sydney.

Martin Equipment:

MAC Quantum Wash, 62 pcs.

MAC Viper AirFX, 64 pcs.

MAC Viper Profile, 30 pcs.

MAC Viper Performance, 12 pcs.

MAC Aura, 52 pcs.

Tripix range, 300 pcs.

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