This is an oldie – but never ceases to be a goodie. Here’s a review of the gorgeous and flexible stage design that was put together by Mike Baldassari of MIKE-O-MATIC Industries, LLC. All images by Iron Mike Savoia.
More often than not, the elegance of a stage design is as much in what is NOT there as in what IS there. This stage design for Alice In Chains was one that embodied flexible simplicity – and offered the benefits of “big” looks as well as “in the moment personal” scenes with the band’s musicians. In the image below, we see how the intelligent lighting supplies the scene – and the Metal Mesh artist backings draw the concertgoers’ attention down to stage level. The bold lighting in a gripping range of colors brings us excitement without being overpowered. Keeping the lighting away from the upstage drapery brings our attention forward and closes down the space for an intimate and mood filled look at the artists.
In contrast – we see now that the silver drizzle kabuki drapes have dropped from their hidden truss-line diapers – and now are a reflective surface perfect for gobo and image projection. By shifting to flood lighting style and bold color washes, we now have a grand stage scene that is both wide and tall. Bringing lighting to the dramatic red swagged border at the downstage edge of the stage salutes theatre design of the golden era. Suddenly we are looking into a performance area with the look and feel of a traditional theater proscenium.
Using live projection onto a non typical surface such as the silver drizzle gives the opportunity for endless unique and textural looks and scenes. Here we see the band projected in bold exaggeration behind the players on the stage. Stepping away from the overused looks of IMAG screens and LED image walls – this is an old school look with almost a vintage “home video show” feeling to it. Changing between live video feed and preset graphics offers a visual kaleidoscope that compliments – rather than distracts – from the artists on stage.
Never underestimate the power of a silhouette – it will always thrill the audience to see just a “hint” of what’s to come. In a spellbinding display of larger than life silhouettes and live convert sounds, the silk kabuki scene added a WOW moment. Especially when the kabuki drape dropped – revealing the artists themselves in the flesh.