Pet Shop Boys
ER Productions creates striking laser design for the Pet Shop Boys Inner Sanctum dates at London’s Royal Opera House.
With four sell-out shows, Neil Tennant and Chris Lowe, masters of understatement, delighted fans with a host of well-known hits and newer releases this July.
As one would expect from a Pet Shop Boys’ tour, the first-class set and spectacular production design didn’t disappoint, providing the audience with a visual feast worthy of the highbrow location. Body poppers and dancers in inflatable fat suits took to the stage, while a show stopping laser display designed by ER’s Andrew Turner, created a backdrop for Chris and Neil’s big entrance on stage.
“We devised a way of splitting one of our new Cyclones in half, situating each part behind the white, spherical pods, which contained the Boys. The resulting effect has since been immortalised in the national press, which is a huge compliment and credit to our team. We also managed to terminate 60 scanned laser beams in a flat line across one of the Opera House balconies, which is not as straight forward as it sounds!”, commented Turner.
Another visual feature of the impressive show was legendary designer Es Devlin’s concentric light installation, featuring an array of scintillating, coloured LED rings. To give the rings a glossy, shimmering finish, ER mapped five laser systems to the automated LED rings, skilfully controlling the reflections in order to create the impressive sun-halo effect seen on stage.
“With a variety of projection screens and gauzes to project video content onto, we got the chance to rig our mapping lasers (Tripan and Excellent 21s) onto the Opera House balconies, complementing the video projection with laser sharp graphics during the first half of the show”, Turner continued.
ER’s full suite of lasers, comprised of eight newly released scanning BB3 lasers, six 18WRGBBs, the (halved) Cyclone and all the ring mapping lasers, burst into life during and following the track Enigma.
Marc Webber, co-founder of ER Productions, added “We’ve worked with the Pet Shop Boys and their talented production and management teams for many years now and it’s always a pleasure. Creating a look that’s a perfect balance between art-installation and pop is challenging, but our technician/laser programmer Tom Vallis and laser designer/programmer Andrew did an outstanding job (as always).”
Show Designer - Es Devlin
Lighting Designer - Rob Sinclair
Co-Lighting Designer/ Programmer: Ben Cash
Laser Designer/ Programmer/ Tech: Andrew Turner
Laser Programmer/ Tech: Tom Vallis