HSL Lights Westlife Farewell Tour at Croke Park, Dublin
Westlife -- a favorite boyband -- played two emotional farewell concerts over two nights at Croke Park stadium in Dublin in their very last live performances, capping an amazing 14 year chart-topping, multi-million record selling career.
Lighting for this -- and the six week tour preceding the two 85,000 capacity sold out shows at Croke Park -- was supplied by UK lighting and visuals rental company, HSL. It included nearly 200 moving lights.
The lighting design was created by Dave 'Biccie' Lee and operated at Croke Park by Simon Horn. Mike Oates project managed for HSL, who was working for the tour's technical production coordinator, Production North, and production manager Karen Ringland.
Oates states, "We were immensely proud to work on this tour and the two landmark Croke Park shows. The show was absolutely stunning and a real tribute to all involved in producing another complete Westlife experience with the highest production values that will be remembered for many years to come."
In addition to the fans at Croke Park for the final farewell concert, this show was beamed live to nearly 300 cinema screens around the UK and Ireland, adding another layer of Westlife enthusiasts to the experience -- and consideration for additional video lighting. It was also recorded for a future DVD.
Lee worked closely with the tour's show producer Emma Bull who commissioned Blink TV for the video footage. The aim was to make this an indelible memory of Westlife.
HSL also supplied all the trussing and motors, which included 'W' and 'Z' shaped trusses for an angular design, all of which amounted to over 100 points in the roof. A back wall of seven ladder vertical trusses also provided additional lighting positions and added depth to the performance area, which was kept simple with a large central staircase and band risers, complete with several hydraulic lifts and traps for entrances and exits and four tracking video screens.
For Croke Park, a StageCo roof provided much needed protection over an intermittently rainy weekend.
The touring moving lights were a mix of Martin Mac 3K Profiles MAC 2000 XB Washes, Clay Paky Sharpies, GLP Impression RZs, and Robe ROBIN 100 LEDBeams. The conventional lights included Atomic Strobes, Showtec Active Sunstrips, four-lite Moles, i-Pix Satellites, Pulsar ChromaSpheres, and for atmosphere, Le Maître Stadium hazers.
Audience lighting extras were supplied by Dublin-based Just Lite for the Croke Park shows, adding about another 100 fixtures to the kit list -- including Vari*Lite 3500 Washes and Robe ColorWash 1200E ATs, which were coupled with four-lite linear Moles, and 7K Falcon Beam searchlights from HSL.
The Falcon Beams were positioned on the side stage 'portals' framing the left and right IMAG video screens and on the stage floor.
For control, Horn operated using a Road Hog full Boar console that was chosen by Lee.
Horn comments, "HSL looked after us very well. We didn't actually need much attention once the tour was out as the kit was all in such excellent condition!" He worked alongside a crew of five from HSL, chiefed by Johnny Harper, with Stuart 'Wales' Picton on dimmers, Chris Roper, Jon Trincas, and Steve Bliss.