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James Morrison on tour with Chauvet fixtures
Martin Dudley has been running Cate Carter’s lighting designs for James Morrison on his ChamSys console since 2012. “Working with Cate is a lesson in the creative power of design”, he says. “Her approach is never formularized; instead she’s always finding different ways to add new elegant dimensions to James’ shows. It’s a pleasure to take her vision off the computer screen and into reality.”
For the recent tour, which saw James Morrison play a number of venues around the UK, Carter’s originality took the form of eschewing big lighting effects in favor of a timelessly classic visual concept. Helping Dudley translate this design into reality was a lighting rig supplied by Martin’s Lights and Colour Sound Experiment that featured 24 Chauvet Professional Rogue R2 Wash fixtures.
“As James’ songs are rooted in soul, blues and even gospel music, we wanted the lighting to take on this intimate look that set an appropriately engaging mood”, states Dudley. “A James Morrison show is about James and his songs. As a result, the intent of the lighting was to create an inviting environment on stage.”
Dudley and his team, light techs Chris Davey and Amy Barnett, positioned eight Rogue fixtures on front row truss to light Morrison and the band, eight on the back truss to light a supple velvet backdrop, and four on the floor at either side of the stage. Many of the RGBW moving washes were also used to light one of the show’s most distinctive set pieces: wicker lamp shades that were flown in an irregular pattern over the stage.
“My team and I realized as we were setting up on the first day of the tour that there were enough wash lights on the back truss and the floor to point one at each lampshade”, continues Dudley. “That spontaneous addition turned out to be one of my favorite looks of the entire show, with the deep magenta and dark blue tones of the Rogues in particular providing a focal point for the stage.” The lamp shades were rigged on the front and back cords of the upstage and midstage truss at various heights. Cate Carter had come across the shades in Belgium where she lives.
(Photos: Two Finger Media)
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