Brit Floyd Pays Tribute With Elation
Nothing can match the over-the-top sensory experience of a Pink Floyd show ... except for a Brit Floyd show! This UK-based tribute group has quickly earned rave reviews among Floyd devotees worldwide, not only for their uncannily on-target replication of the original band’s sound, but also for their re-creation of the total aural and visual mind-blowing psychedelic trip that was the quintessence of a Pink Floyd concert in the ’70s.
Brit Floyd’s current North American tour is no exception. The show’s production was the work of technology consultants FIX8Group (Stockport, Cheshire) and includes a spectacular light show designed by FIX8’s Neil Trenell. At the centrepiece of this visual display are 38 Platinum Beam 5R moving head beam fixtures from Elation Professional. The Platinum Beam 5R is an exceptionally bright, extreme ACL effect with a tight beam angle of 2.5°. Not only does it produce a dazzlingly brilliant concentrated searchlight-type beam, it also offers the versatility to create a variety of different effects, featuring 12 dichroic colours, 8 rotating replaceable gobos, 3-facet rotating prism (with 8-facet option), and a Frost Filter that allows it to do double duty as a wash effect.
The Platinum Beams occupy a central position in the defining structures on the Brit Floyd set: a 16.5-foot vertical circle of truss, flanked by a gigantic 84-foot truss arch. Sixteen Platinum Beam 5R units are mounted on the truss circle, while an additional 22 units hang from the arch. With this positioning, the Platinum Beams can shoot white or coloured beams in all directions, project gobo images, multiply their effects with the prism, or even wash the stage with the application of Frost. A dozen units of another Elation fixture, the Design Spot 1200C compact moving head, are mounted on the stage itself.
Original specifications called for a different lighting fixture to be used on the truss circle and arch, but the Platinum Beam 5Rs were substituted at the suggestion of Performance Lighting, Inc. which supplied the lighting for the Brit Floyd North American tour. Along with its punchy output and features, the Platinum Beam 5R, which utilises a new Philips MSD Platinum 5R lamp, is ultra-compact and energy efficient, running on only 189 watts yet emitting an output rivalling that of a much larger, higher-wattage fixture.
“We had just purchased 24 (Platinum Beams) and I was completely impressed with the fixture,” said Performance Lighting president Russell Armentrout. “The Platinum Beam was an instant success – pinpoint accuracy, extremely bright, extremely quick – and it has also proven very roadworthy. This light has been put through rigorously paced programming on a very intense tour schedule, and not one catastrophic problem occurred.”
What’s more, from a design perspective the Platinum Beam’s features were a good fit for the Brit Floyd show, said Trenell, who designed and programmed the tour’s lighting. “First impression from me is that they are a great little unit,” Trenell said. “We use the Frost a lot during the show to make the 5R into a tight wash. This works really well to make the difference between the big impact moments and the quiet moments."
“We also found the prism,” Trenell added, “and it blows me away. When you have 38 beams in the audience with rotating prism, the crowd always gives a little ‘wow’ too. My overall opinion of these lights is very good – they are quick and accurate and punch well above their value. The show has never looked so good! I even think we will stick to these when we are back in the UK and Europe.”
Plans are already being drawn for the Brit Floyd tour to purchase more Platinum Beam 5Rs from Elation’s UK office. In addition to the merits of the light itself, the manufacturer’s strong support has been a big plus in the demanding touring environment, said Douglas Peterson, CEO/founder of Performance Lighting. “My 27 years in this wonderful industry have taught me how important a high level of service and support from a manufacturer is” commented Peterson. “We all know that there are last minute changes, things need to be adjusted, issues arise and time is always of the essence. For this tour I needed to get a bunch more brand new lights in less than seven days. Elation’s Rob Ludwig, Eric Loader and Gines Gines all came through, as they always do”!
Following the sucess of their North American performances, Brit Floyd will be touring this epic show across the UK and Ireland throughout May, June and into July.