Andre Beekmans 

Robe Gets Thirty, Rough & Dirty with Scooter

Lighting designer Andre Beekmans from design studio The Art of Light buckled up for some hardcore techno rave action with legendary band Scooter on their “Thirty Rough & Dirty” tour celebrating 30 years of success, innovation, energy and larging it at the cutting edge of dance music! 

Andre’s technical rider specifies several Robe moving lights – 78 x Pointes, 45 x Spiiders, 82 x Tetra2s and three FORTES used as follow spots on a remote follow system – all picked for their speed, functionality, and robustness for a genre of music that seriously challenges the build quality of any piece of lighting kit! 

Andre – whose clients include Armin van Buuren, Afrojack and a string of other high profile dance artists – started working with Scooter in 2022 on a stadium tour of German-speaking countries.

One of Andre’s starting points for Thirty, Rough & Dirty’s production lighting design was Maarten Hoogland’s set which includes six large LED screens complete with LED headers which largely dictated where the lighting positions were, so Andre filled up all the gaps with fixtures, mostly rigged on custom ladders between the video surfaces! 

In addition to using lights he knew could keep up with the furious pace of the music, it was important to have bright fixtures to punch past the large amounts of LED screen onstage. 

Ahead of imagining the design, Andre had also chatted to Scooter lead singer HP Baxxter who is very ‘light-minded’ and well aware of how fundamental lighting is to any show and especially a techno extravaganza! “He really likes lighting to have a great impact onstage and is very tuned in to how this emotionally affects the fans,” explained Andre. 

The 82 x Terta2s outline the set and all the LED screens. He wanted Tetras specifically for the dramatic lensing effects and the power of the movement enabling big sweeps of light to flash across, up and down the performance space. 

This many fixtures “worked brilliantly in adding proper layers of lighting,” he explained, which provided hi-impact accenting for those sumptuous big beats and climactic synth breaks. 

As they had the relative luxury of time ahead of the tour at lighting vendor TDA Clair GmbH’s facilities in Bottrop, Germany, he was able to craft numerous cool and relevant Tetra2 looks and to really maximise the fixture’s features.

These included playing with varying zoom effects to create laser thin beams of light that could instantly be fattened out to big solid sheets of luminance engulfing the whole stage. Andre also utilised the Tetra2’s flower effect with great impact, bringing yet another dimension to the show.

“Scooter shows are very colourful and lively,” stated Andre, “So having the Tetra2s to hand I was able to create some real optical and brain teasing effects.” He also explained that HP loves beams and actively wants them in the show to help get the energy off the stage and out into the audience.

With nearly 80 Pointes, Andre again had capacity to produce some stunning looks, aerial effects, and moments, combining beam technology and super-quick movement.

“Pointes have everything we needed,” said Andre, “prisms, fast colour changing, and rapid movement and they are small, lightweight and unobtrusive.”

Spiiders have long been one of his favourites and go-tos, and they can be found in most of his designs. Here they are positioned in a matrix grid below the ceiling set piece above the two centre most screens.

They were added to the big looks as beams and at other times were zoomed out to bath the whole stage, band, and dancers in smooth, rich colours. 

The dynamic zoom and extra features like the Flower Effect make Spiiders far more versatile than an average LED wash light, and great value as a fixture enthused Andre.

Two of the three FORTES are positioned on the front truss with one upstage centre, all linked together and used as follow spots via a remote operating system. 

Andre loves the intensity, quality, and CRI of the FORTE. 

Talking about the challenges of lighting the tour, Andre says, “While it is essentially dance music, there’s also a lot of rock in there so it covers a vast range, all of which is vibrant and present, so there is a lot of nuances needing to be detailed with lighting.”

The show is mostly run from timecode which makes operating a bit more flexible, Andre programmed the show and was out on the first 6 gigs, then handed over to Rik Verschuren as on-the-road lighting director and operator for the rest of the tour, with Maxim Rath touring with the band for all the summer festival shows – both employed by The Art of Light.

Scooter will be playing festivals over the summer which will involve a special set up and adaptation of the design, with UK touring dates scheduled for Autumn.

Andre, who often designs epic one offs, has enjoyed working on a touring show with the continuity of the same setup each night. “You can plan design ideas that will work and can evolve over a longer period, and there is also room for refinement and developments as needed.”