Barco and High End Systems, a Barco company, is providing AV solutions to help create a visual spectacular for rap artist and songwriter Drake’s current Summer Sixteen tour.

The company is part of a team led by world-renowned lighting designer Guy Pavelo and tour director, Steve Kidd of GP-SK Design & Production.

The tour represents a massive undertaking in audiovisual theatrics; Drake came to the table with some highly imaginative show elements in mind, requiring a mammoth production effort: an expansive stage and set design, an 86′ curved video wall and a Kinetic system comprising hundreds of custom LED spheres.

Guy specified a significant amount of Barco and High End Systems gear to augment the extensive automated lighting package supplied by PRG, comprising six MMS-100 moving mirror systems mounted on Barco HDF-W30 projectors, 66 SolaSpot Pro 2000’s, 77 SolaWash 37’s and 62 SolaWash 19’s. Meanwhile, Integrated Media Server technology provides valuable creative horsepower, manipulating various aspects independently on different layers of the same content.

A single output media server, it can deliver up to four layers of simultaneous HD playback and up to 10 layers of content and masks.

“The SolaRange fixtures are proving to be incredibly bright and efficient effects lighting workhorses on the show,” says Guy. “I really like the LED engine in the SolaSpots and am truly amazed by how white the light is. They have enough horsepower to compete with lights that I’ve used previously, but are a much better option when comparing the cost, weight and power consumption of alternatives – ditto for the SolaWash 19s and 37s!”

Guy is also highly impressed with the Barco MMS moving mirror system and Barco HDF-W30 projectors: “When Steve and I first saw the MMS on top of the 30K projector, we thought it looked fantastic. It’s providing a plethora of stunning, previously unachievable laser effects on Drake. Initially, we planned to use the system to highlight a couple of numbers, but decided to make it a core element of the show due to its versatility and incredible effects-generating capabilities.

“We were able to push it even further with the integrated media server function, manipulating aspects independently on different layers of the same content, for an even bigger bonus. The colour is so vivid, and I think our lens choice helped out a lot. We were able to achieve looks that Drake has been after for a long time.”

The design team agrees that the Barco and High End Systems equipment has empowered the realisation of new visions by one of today’s top artists, with the bonus of offering never-before-seen reliability. “In fact, this is the only equipment on the tour that hasn’t required any repairs!” says Guy. “We’re very interested to see how they stand the test of time as they’re really getting a beating throughout this timetable. I believe they could become a new standard based on how they’ve come out of the box and held up so well.”

“We are ecstatic to offer our latest technologies in support of this dynamic, high-profile tour and appreciate the opportunity to partner with such top-notch team AV designers and producers,” enthuses Scott Stremple, vice president entertainment sales for Barco.

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