Iconic rock bands Mötley Crüe and KISS teamed for a North American tour and took a grandMA2 full-size along for the ride that is being used to program and control lighting and video on 44 shows, which are drawing huge crowds coast to coast. Sooner Routhier, Robert Long (SRae Productions) and Patrick Whitley are the lighting and production designers for the tour.
Michael Cooper of Newfangled Lighting, Inc., the programmer and operator for Mötley Crüe, has been using the grandMA2 since it debuted. “I pulled grandMA2 serial number 2 off the pallet at Upstaging in 2009 and they have come such a long way with the new software. I love it,” says Cooper. “I’ve used it pretty exclusively for the last few years – it goes around the world with me. Christie provided me with a grandMA2 light last year for the worldwide Motley tour, and now Epic has provided us with these two grandMA2 full-size and one MA onPC command wing for the KISS/Mötley Crüe tour. It builds on the advanced capabilities of the grandMA ‘series 1’ – very solid, reliable and fast. And the new abilities of the clone feature are amazing; it allows me to take existing programming and adapt it to other lighting systems. I can pull up to a festival, take my show program and pull it across.”
“The speed of the grandMA2 full-size is amazing,” Cooper continues. “Even while running lots of universes and MA NPU (Network Processing Unit) I’m able to program as fast and the desk keeps up. Reliability is also something to note; we sat in preproduction for about a week, Sean Hacket programming late afternoon until about 2am and I would come in and program till midmorning. I’m not sure if we ever restarted the desk that week. It was on and working the entire time.”
Sean Hackett, the programmer/operator for KISS, migrated to grandMA2 for the tour after using the grandMA full-size ‘series 1’ console for the last eight years. He praises “the speed of the processor and the saving/loading feature” of the grandMA2, which he finds useful working side-by-side with Cooper. “Michael and I can jump from showfile to showfile and both get what we need done in a limited time frame,” he notes. “The new effects engine is also cool. And I’ve always been a fan of cloning and changing fixtures, which can be very useful in festival situations.”
He also likes how “you can get grandMA3D for your laptop and link it to the console so you can get a lot of work done with just the console and PC or even at home with a second screen.”
“Both Sean and I have also been very happy with A.C.T Lighting’s support and training staff,” concludes Cooper. “They’re always on call, willing and able to help with any issue. Their training style was very conducive for us to learn quickly and efficiently.”
Epic Production Technologies is the lighting supplier. A.C.T Lighting is the exclusive distributor of MA Lighting in North America.