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Let's Dance With Robe

Robe moving lights continue to be a popular choice for television and broadcast applications worldwide, with a selection of the latest Robe technology centre stage for the most recent series of Let's Dance in Slovakia, where celebrities paired with professional dancers battle it out with great flare on the dancefloor every Friday night on Markiza TV.

The venue for the 2011 series was the Incheba Expo in Bratislava, with lighting equipment supplied by Slovakia's number one rental company, Q-99, which has over 400 Robe fixtures in its hire stock.

Apart from the stunning lighting design, Director of Photography Vlado Valko and Q-99's new Robe ROBIN 300 Beams, this series was also notable for fielding Let's Dance gay couple, Marek and Viktor, a big hit as personalities as well as talented dancers!

Q-99 was an early adopter of the Robe brand and has been a loyal user and exponent ever since. A major new investment in the latest Robe ROBIN fixtures is helping to service their very busy autumn / winter show schedule, which also includes "Slovakia's "Pop Legend" and "What Is My Hit" in the Czech Republic. "With the new ROBIN series, Robe has really taken the concept of moving lights to a new level," enthuses Q-99's Martin Kubanka.

The Let's Dance set resembled a 'classic romantic' ballroom scene with glitz, glamour and dreams, and comes complete with a set of Swarovski crystal chandeliers which flew in and out throughout the broadcast. The lighting was a mix of intimate low key highlighting and big, bold, brassy looks, so the rig needed to deliver a wide range of different moods to match the many genres of dance embraced over the 12 weeks.

Q-99 actually supplied full technical production for the show - including an extensive trussing infrastructure, lots of scenic LED elements and a state-of-the-art L-ACOUSTICS KIVA sound system with Yamaha digital consoles.

At one end of the room was the band stage, flanked either side by a set of dramatically sweeping entrance stairways.

On trussing above the orchestra were 16 x Robe ColorSpot 1200E ATs and 20 Robe ROBIN 300 Beams. On the side trusses running down the long edges of the room were 18 x Robe ColorSpot 575E ATs, used for strong cross washes and for texturing the dancefloor with gobo patterns.

They also illuminated the arch set piece between the two staircases which featured a prominent 'Let's Dance' logo, and did all the tight key lighting required in the centre of the floor.

Ten ColorSpot 250E ATs were under-hung from the stairs either side of the orchestra, utilised for shooting bright little side beams into the audience and down along the dance floor.

It is the first time that moving/effects light operator Michal Schmidt had used the ROBIN 300 Beams, and he says, "They are definitely the best beam light  fixtures I have used to date, with a great output and fast movement which is always a massive  advantage". He operated the lights using one of Q-99's new grandMA2 full size consoles, with Tomas Lecky operating all the video elements using another grandMA2.

The versatility of the ROBIN 300 Beams proved itself many times over. They were also used for on-going dancefloor effects, offering plenty of choices to make each couple look distinctive for all of their different dances.

Q-99 project manager Marek Adamik comments, "The challenge was making it look different from the last series, whilst retaining certain key threads that identify it as 'Let's Dance'. Using the new ROBIN 300 Beams certaily helped in this process".

He adds that it was good to see so much collaboration in creating an overall visual theme, which has involved some great teamwork between Valko, Lecky and Schmidt, as well as director, Peter Nunez.