Canadian superstar Celine Dion’s lighting designer Yves Aucoin has added Robe’s brand new MegaPointe multi-purpose moving light fixtures to the rig for her popular “Celine” show at the Colosseum, Caesar’s Palace, Las Vegas. This is the first live concert show for MegaPointe in North America … and Robe is delighted with the high-profile reference! The hard-working Grammy Award winning artist and top selling recording star who offers an accessible mix of pop, soul, rock and RnB is currently playing around 70 shows a year in Las Vegas in a series of 3 week stints, and tours other territories in between.
Yves has worked with her since 1989, and Montreal based lighting supplier Solotech, represented by Richard Lachance and François Desjardins, has also been involved since Celine’s shows first started carrying a production. Yves jumped at the chance to add MegaPointes to the Vegas spectacle! He likes to keep the long running residency looking fresh by introducing new elements.
The 4,296 capacity Colosseum was inspired by the architecture of ancient and contemporary Rome and has been in operation since 2003, when it first opened with a showcase of Celine Dion’s residency show “Celine in Las Vegas – Opening Night Live” … Yves recalls the event extremely well, and at that point he says they had around 180 fixtures in the theatre!
Some of these luminaires are still there, but over the years other visiting artists have added to the rig, so there are now around 300 fixtures in the house rig … the very latest of which are the 22 x MegaPointes. The stage is around 125 ft. wide so it’s a big space to fill, and when Yves decided to add the MegaPointes – following a demo by John Bilyk and the Robe North America team – he knew that he would be able to make an immediate impact and shift the dynamics of the show.
Twelve MegaPointes are positioned on a bridge upstage of the band and these have become real workhorses for this new-look show. They are used for beams, back key-lighting and projecting and texturing onto the stage as well as for aerial looks. Six MegaPointes along the front of the stage are used extensively when the front curtain is in and the space is smaller and more intimate. Concentrated on the apron, the four remaining fixtures are on four ‘mobilator’ – a TAIT special – moving band risers. These illuminate the musicians and provide a second layer of mid-stage beams which Yves can integrate into his bigger pictures.
Yves – who throughout his long and illustrious industry career has always had a penchant for road-testing new products – is “well impressed” so far with the MegaPointes! He had his work cut out to program 22 new fixtures into 28 songs in a short window, and is pleased with the results. He appreciates the large, efficient zoom, and the fact you can have a sharp beam one minute, then zoom out without losing power and still have a nice hard-edged fat beam which also looks cool with a gobo inserted.
He thinks the gobos are excellent, and loves the quality of the colors. He says this is one of the features that successfully “seduced” him into adding MegaPointes to the show. The blue and amber ranges – their richness and definition – he finds particularly interesting and attractive. He also mentions that he can easily pull the zoom a little bit and run smoothly into an elegant sweep across the audience at the Colosseum without blinding people, a maneuver that’s not easy to achieve with many other moving lights.
Yves has used Robe products in his work for some time, particularly the BMFL range. He thinks Robe as a brand is “Rock solid” right now. “Their fixtures are powerful, reliable, practical – easy to clean and service – this is what I am hearing constantly from my crews,” he stated. Yves also designs the video and set for all of Celine’s shows as well as programming and operating the lighting for most. For the occasional Vegas gig he cannot attend, the venue’s Greg Whittle will step in and run the lighting … having learned the show cue-by-cue.
Celine Dion has had the longest residency at the Colosseum – she will hit the 1110 mark on June 2nd 2018 … and celebrated her 1000th there on October 8th 2016.
More information on Robe website