CHANDLER, AZ – The crowds that normally fill the Rawhide Center on weekends for headliners like Kayzo, Adventure Club and Nightmare weren’t there this October. COVID-19 restrictions saw to that. But the intensity that shook up the 13,000 sq. ft. outdoor venue for Relentless Beats’ aptly named “The Pod Experience“ was impossible to miss, thanks to the driving textured tracks laid down by the EDM stars, the delirious reactions of the fans who were able to score the limited number of tickets, and some ferocious, fast-moving lighting by Luis Torres.
Wanting fans to be engaged with the artists on stage, despite being separated by pods, Torres dialed up the intensity level with some extra bright audience lighting and bold aerial sweeps. “Relentless Beats came up with a really good plan for providing fans with a way to enjoy this kind of experience safely,“ he said. “Fans were in these pods, but between the music and lighting, we made them forget about that, so they were all immersed in the same experience.“
Torres worked this magic with the help of 60 CHAUVET Professional fixtures supplied by Hardwired Productions. He flew 12 Rogue R2X Beams in the air to create glowing effects over the entire stage and positioned four more units on the ground for aerial effects. To provide vivid color washing, he relied on 20 Rogue R2 Wash units. A collection of 24 Nexus 4×4 panels was hung on four vertical truss fixtures as well as on the arched overhead structure.
Every weekend Relentless Beats stages a Friday and Saturday Pod Experience. Running about four hours, each show features a headliner and three opening DJ. Designing for most of the shows, Torres keeps them interesting visually by varying looks in ways that reflect the music and personality of the performers.
Creating dramatic changes, Torres will shower the stage with colorful washes at one point, then cover it with crisscrossing patterns of beams the next, before turning on the Nexus 4×4 blinders to engage them crowd with audience lighting. At other times he‘ll activate different pods in the Nexus units to create geometric chase sequences. For good measure, he’ll also use his beams on the floor to create colorful cloud-like effects.
“We’ve had fun creating a lot of different looks,“ said Torres. “We created this rig with this idea of making load in and load out as efficient as possible. Chad Stirling, the Relentless Beat PM has done an excellent job putting things together, and Hardwired Productions has helped make each show run smoothly.“
Thanks to the efforts of this team, fans who turn out at the Rawhide Center each weekend are getting the “full EDM experience,“ said Torres. In this time of a pandemic, who could ask for more?