Last month, the 2015 Dance Afrique Festival took over Meydan Racecourse in Dubai for one night only, with a headline performance by international superstar Akon. The musical fiesta also featured performances by Congolese musician Awilo Logombia and singer/songwriter Flavour from Nigeria.
The show was lit by Dubai and UK-based LD Steve Shipman, whose design used over 120 Robe moving lights including 12 x BMFL Spots, all supplied by technical production company Solution Media.
The brief was to design a big, colourful show with lots of 'wow factor', so Shipman set to work using the kit available at Solution Media, including 12 x MMX Spots, 18 x LEDWash 1200s, 6 x LEDWash 600s, 34 x LEDBeam 100s and 40 Pointes, plus the BMFL Spots which were positioned on the floor.
The fully skinned TTL roof system – also supplied by Solution Media and Infotec LLC – had an internal span of 30 metres, 13.5 metres of depth and 10 metres trim roof-to-stage. With no set, this left quite a substantial area to fill with lighting.
Eight moving trusses (on a Kinesys system) were key to the show. All of these were loaded with Pointes and video panels, and there was also a big mesh video screen upstage. Four of the trusses had four Pointes and the other four had six units each. Then there was a standard front-mid-back truss arrangement across which the rest of the kit was divided, apart from the 12 x BMFLs.
A thrust at the front of stage was highlighted by 18 LEDBeam 100s running along its path, with a diffusion filter added to increase the beam spread. The BMFLs were arranged in a straight line along the back of the stage.
Lighting was programmed on a grandMA2 full size console which was also driving content for the 5 x 1 metre video panels mounted on the eight moving trusses.
While Akon brought his own LD, Brett Lorins, Shipman ran lighting for the others. He also hand-picked four lighting crew from Dubai-based World Stage Management - Jossy Thomas, Sree Srinivasan, Shane Rivera and Kishore Kumar - to work alongside him on the event.