Five-time GRAMMY nominee and multi-instrumentalist Hunter Hayes is kicking off Spring 2017 by bringing his impeccable musicianship and hit sound to audiences across the nation with a lighting package provided by Bandit Lites. Hayes is best known for his three No. 1 hits, including the multi-Platinum single “Wanted,” double-Platinum “I Want Crazy” and “Somebody’s Heartbreak,” and recently release three new songs from his highly anticipated forthcoming studio album including “Amen,” “Young Blood” and “Yesterday’s Song,” which has already crossed more than 10 million streams on Spotify.
Lighting designer Mike Marcario noted he and Hayes both share a love of lighting, which resulted in a close collaboration to craft a bold lighting production that would be unique and thematic to Hayes’s vision, while still allowing for trailer space, various design integrations and power draws.
“The lighting package needs to be used consistently whether we are playing an arena or a club,” explained Production Manager Todd Wines. “With all these considerations, Hunter and Mike have done most of the design work, and I do the facilitating: making sure their vision is realized every day.”
“We are limited by a fixed amount of space and weight for lighting in our trailers, and the prep team and Todd approached every situation trying to be as mindful of that as possible, even down to building custom cable to cut down on the amount of adapters I would be carrying,” said Marcario.
The result was a dynamic design consisting of eight pipes arranged in an arc around the stage, with half the pipes in bases fixed at 30 degree angles and turned 45 degrees on stage, and the other half hanging from house truss upstage. Four of the pipes are outfitted with GLP X4S and Phillips Nitro 510C fixtures, allowing Marcario the ability to both wash the stage and throw big beam looks from the same location. The other four pipes contain Chauvet Rogue R1 FX-B and Phillips Nitro 510C fixtures, while Chauvet Rogue RH1 Hybrids fill upstage gaps on the ground.
“Hunter and I saw the Rogue RH1 Hybrids at a show last year, and I loved the looks I was able to get with them,” said Marcario. “These have truly become my workhorse: feature packed, bright, low power draw and versatile. Amazingly, all of this fits into a small space when packed, but gets a truly huge look on stage.”
In addition to providing the gear for the tour, Bandit also prides itself on supplying the industry’s best people in support and service, an element that Marcario refers to as ‘the most important aspect of a touring production.’
“Bandit’s staff, from top to bottom, has been top notch,” he said. “They found an email in their inboxes at the start of business on a Monday morning saying our rental was confirmed, and by the end of that day, I had power to, and was communicating from the console to my entire rig. Turnaround time like that is remarkable.”
Bandit’s team was also instrumental in providing a solution to how to efficiently and safely hang the four pipes from each venue’s truss, as the angle varied based on the proximity of the venue’s back wall/curtain and fixtures on the truss.
“Thanks to the knowledge of the shop staff and some experimentation, this process went much better and faster than I thought it would,” Marcario adding, “as always, Bandit’s shop and prep team continue to be the best I have ever worked with.”
Marcario was also able to utilize Bandit’s spacious onsite rehearsal facility, Venue One, for programming, saving time and resources before the tour hit the road.
Bandit’s Business Development Officer, Brent Barrett, grew to know Marcario through Bandit’s partnership with Belmont University’s Showcase Series, and in addition to enjoying the fact Marcario joined the lighting side of production, Barrett found himself impressed with Marcario’s creativity, positive attitude and approach.
“When we began looking for vendor options, Mike suggested Bandit, and once I spoke with Brent Barrett, we instantly had a connection beyond the gig,” said Wines. “I’ve really enjoyed working with him, even beyond the lighting parts of it, and I am very impressed with his understanding of the way the tour needs to operate. I know I can depend on Bandit which takes a lot of strain off of me in my daily duties as PM; it’s one less thing for me to think about.”
“Todd and I seemed to be on the same page concerning client/vendor relationships from the start, which has proved very positive in our business dealings,” said Barrett. “I am appreciative of the opportunity to further develop our relationships with both Mike and Todd.”
“Bandit was willing to work with us to achieve both financial and production goals, it’s been exciting to work with these guys because I feel like it is more of a partnership where we both benefit,” concluded Wines.
“Brent Barrett is a longtime friend and mentor, and it’s always a treat to work with him,” echoed Marcario. “Bandit’s Project Manager Jimmy Hatten, Technical Service Director Jake Tickle and his team, General Manager Mark Steinwachs, along with Aaron Swetland and Andy French in the shop made this rig happen and I’m thankful for their experience, advisement, and continued support for us on the road.”