396 Claypaky Tambora Linear 100 and Skylos Light Up Eurovision Song Contest’s Bold 360º Stage

The 2024 Eurovision Song Contest (ESC) showcased its most innovative set design ever at the Malmö Arena in Sweden where Claypaky Tambora Linear 100 high-power LEDs and Skylos white-laser source searchlights supported the dynamic look of the event’s first 360º stage.

Fredrik Stormby from Stockholm-based Green Wall Designs, the Lighting and Screen Content Designer for this year’s event, selected the Claypaky fixtures.  Stormby is best known as part of the creative team behind Beyonce’s 2023 Renaissance tour, Loreen’s winning 2023 ESC performance and ABBA Voyage in London.  He joined Production Designer Florian Wieder and the senior production team to help create, design and deliver the large-scale, spectacular show to a global audience of more than 160 million people.

The set was a 360-degree experience placed in the middle of the audience and shaped like an equilateral cross with movable LED cubes, LED floors, lighting, video and stage technology creating an array of visual variations for the artists.  The monumental centerpiece of the design was a video and light installation suspended above the stage embracing the artists and their performances and bringing the live and TV audiences close to the action.

The lighting and stage design had to support the very quick changes between acts, which allowed about 45 seconds for the crews to reset.  The show was executed using only LED and laser light sources whose lower constant power consumption fit the event’s sustainability goals.

“Eurovision has a long, long relationship with Claypaky,” says Ola Melzig, from M & M Production Management AB in Stockholm, who served as Senior Technical Director for ESC 2024.  “We world-premiered the Sharpy Wash in 2013.”

“I love Claypaky fixtures,” he declares.  “Their lights are extremely reliable and the ratio is very important for me: size, weight, output and power consumption.  That’s critical when you’re trying to be sustainable; every watt counts, every gram counts on a 210-ton rig.”

Melzig calls the design of the show “groundbreaking.  It was the first time in the round and was in same venue where we introduced a standing audience (for ESC) in 2013.  This year’s design from Florian Wieder featured a lot of straight lines in all directions.   So linear fixtures became very important for us to outline and highlight the shape of the set.   We put automation on everything using 199 hoists.  Everything in the ceiling could move; the stage could constantly create new shapes and looks – it was a never-ending toolbox.” 

Melzig explains that Niclas Arvidsson of Interlite, Claypaky’s distributor in Sweden, introduced the lighting team to the Tambora Linears.  “He was great at helping us to source them since we needed 396 active Tamboras mounted on the [overhead] LED cubes, a real truckload. They were perfect for this show!”  

Stormby adds, “The Tambora Linear was chosen for its look, features and size. I needed a compact, low-weight, bright linear fixture in large numbers that could act as a graphic element outlining the flown pods, but also work as a strobe. In addition to this they were also fully mapped in the disguise server, allowing for video content to be played out over the lighting rig. The Tambora Linear, with the black ND lens, was a perfect combination for us, allowing them to blend in with the black cladding of our pods and set.”

Twenty-five active Skylos searchlights were also employed for the show.   “Fredrik wanted a big fixture with great punch,” Melzig says.  “He just loved what he could do with the Skylos, and I loved them, too.  They delivered quite a punch and were very attractive.”

“The Skylos fixture was something I knew I wanted on the show somehow,” adds Stormby.  “I love big bold xenon beam and flower fixtures and this is a new take on those. We ended up having them flown in an automated truss in front of the LED screen, that we could use in various heights, and flown along the sides of the stage over the bleachers. There were also five units positioned on the floor used for various specials. It worked great doing what it does.  One of the things I’m mostly impressed with is the pan and tilt speed. It’s superfast, almost like a sharpy on steroids!”

The Associate Lighting Designers were Mike Smith and Michael Straun. Creative Technology acted as official event supplier of ESC 2024 with the support of Motion Rental for Claypaky units.

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