MONTREAL – Like a fine wine, the music of Julien Clerc can be savored on an endless array of levels. And like a great vintage, the legendary French artist’s music becomes deeper and more enchanting with the passage of time.
The transformative power of the Académie Charles Cros winner’s sound has been on full display on the Canadian leg of his 50th anniversary Piano et Voix tour. Supporting him note for supple note is a powerful Eric Lapointe lighting design that features CHAUVET Professional Maverick fixtures supplied by LSM.
The Quebec-based Lapointe is no stranger to lighting legends, having designed for some of the most prestigious artists on tour, as well as countless TV programs, large scale special events, and theatrical productions. His strong theatrical background has played a prominent role in his design for Clerc’s Canadian shows.
Given the lyrical and poetic quality of Clerc’s music, Lapointe felt that a theatrical design would best reflect the essence of the star’s performance. “This tour is held in leading theatres, most of which have massive stages, so we wanted to trim high, as high as 30-feet,” said Lapointe “Thus, I needed an instrument with the output to cut through the haze and still deliver gorgeous texture even in saturated colors. The saturates are essential to this show. Each song has its own flavor and visual mood with the lights only moving in two of the more than 20 songs performed. Instead of movement, we treat the audience to incredible color fades and quiet textured zooms.”
Lighting specialist Gil Perron working with the LSM team consulted with Lapointe, and suggested that the Maverick MK3 Profile and MK2 Wash had the ideal feature sets to help him achieve his vision. “LSM works thoughtfully and diligently with clients to match them with the fixtures that best fit their needs,” said Perron. “The more we studied this, the more we felt that the Mavericks were the ideal choice.”
“Based on his experience with the Piano et Voix tour, Lapointe wholeheartedly agrees. “The color fades and intensity fades are so accurate in both the MK2 Wash and MK3 Profile that they have become my main effects in this show,” said the renowned lighting designer, who is using 12 Maverick MK2 Wash fixtures and eight Maverick MK3 Profile units on the tour.
Lapointe is lighting each musician brilliantly with a single dedicated MK2 Wash. The MK3 Profile fixtures are being used to add texture to the scenic elements, as well as for specials on the artist and texture on the floor.
In the end, every song is receiving a theatrical treatment,” said Lapointe. “With a show of this caliber that features string instruments a very quiet piano, and a melodic but gentle voice, the challenge was to set an intimate mood, even on stages that are as wide as 80 feet. It was very useful to have lights that could create so many different scenes within that space, all while being almost dead quiet.”
By creating profound moods that support the songs while never being overpowering, Lapointe’s elegantly balanced design is perfectly aligned with the vision of his client. As for the LSM rig, he had this to say while sitting at his desk at the prestigious Grand Theatre de Quebec: “These are beautiful lights!”