THE SPIRITUAL symbolism of an octagon loomed large in the set design of the Grande Reserve tour by Rag‘n’Bone Man (real name Rory Graham), who used a series of illustrated backdrops painted by Stewart Chromik, a member of the singer’s band, Rum Committee.
Lighting designer Will Potts worked around a series of timed kabuki drops, for Graham’s performance at London’s Alexandra Palace (cap. 10,400) which revealed each of the illustrations.
“There’s lots of religious references in Rory’s songs,” says Potts. “I had to find a way of reinforcing this, but subliminally. During the second song we reveal the drapes, one at a time. To get this right I needed a lighting fixture whose framing system was spot-on.”
He chose a Scenius Unico by manufacturer Claypaky (and supplied by Neg Earth) for its projection versatility. “I used the indexing gobos, framing system, colour wheels and animation wheel to add texture to the backdrops,” says Potts.
Chromik’s design featured caricatures whose eyes focused on the singer as he performed.
“It was imperative that the lighting fixture I used for these backdrops kept an even power, brightness and crispness across each of the drapes so that important details, such as the eyes, were not lost,” says Potts. “The Unico’s frosts gave a lovely, soft glow and the framing system is incredibly sharp and flexible, which helped when focusing the lights.”