In november I finished my work with the musical “Sonja Henia – Queen of the Ice” produced by the theatre group Bærmuda.
The show ran for 8 shows over a 14 days period in Bærum Kulturhus, Norway in november.
It was a real challenge technically with a lot of head busts. The set-up was 3 projectors covering a huge curved stage design and two vertical banners.
The first challenge was to get the projectors close enough to the wall so that the actors didn´t cast shadows on the back wall, and high enough to get the projected images big enough to cover most of the stage.I used my own projectors for this part- 2 x BenqSp840. They are really small but full of juice. 4000ANSI and native 1080p. They are not professional projectors but they do the trick. I just had to avoid color pictures and focus on a strong, bold black&white feel in the design to get most lumniance as possible.
The two vertical banners (made of Sharktooths) was projected with a 8000 ANSI NEC-projector from the back in the hall.
The video that was projected on the stage and banners was animated in After Effects and rendered out in three parts, one part for each projector, and they ran from two MacBook Pros and a MacPro.
I played the video clips live from Modul8 on all three computers with a Akai MIDI Controller and routed the video to Madmapper and mapped every projector to the stage design. To get the video triggered simultaneously done with near zero latency, I hooked up the computers to each other via a ethernet switch and adjusted the latency in the MIDI-settings. With this set up I could trigger a button on the MIDI-controller and get instant playback in Modul8 on all three computers.
I know…It´s a bit overkill and sounds like to much work for such a task, but it was really the only way I could transfer video to all the three projectors over that distance! The NEC-projector was positioned 3 meters from my machines but the other two, suspended over the stage, was 28 meters away!
Las Vegas from Baz on Vimeo.
Animations from the show. Collapsing wall of people and Las Vegas.
( It´s better quality on the video on the vimeo-page…)
Originally I wanted to use just one MacPro with a TripleHead2Go. But to get the signal 28 meters from the computer to the projectors I had to use HDMI-Extenders, and TripleHead do not like extenders. It just didn´t work. So I ended up with two machines sending signal via HDMI-Extenders and Cat5-cables to the suspended projectors.
The rest was a breeze. This was my first run on live playback of videos on que and I was super exited about it. It turned out just fine. I just made some small blunders here and there at the first shows. At the end of the show the instructor wanted some text to appear on one of the banner. A quote from a norwegian artist. Hehe… i missed an “E” in it but managed to type it in live in Modul8 just before I faded it out. I wonder if anyone noted the type error- or even better if they noted the live correction!