Hans Zimmer European Tour launches new approach to costume-fueled concert tours
Worldwide – When internationally acclaimed composer Hans Zimmer was looking to create the visuals for his world tour, it was clear that the production required a whole new approach. Zimmer enlisted award-winning theatrical projection designer Peter Nigrini to create something unique for the tour, and asked event specialists Pixway to help bring it to life with disguise technology.
Alongside his career as perhaps the most prolific and recognized film composer today, Hans Zimmer is also known for his immensely popular world tours, which provide music fans with an accessible way to enjoy his compositions. performed by a full orchestra. For his 2022 24-city European tour, Zimmer was interested in creating an experience for his audience that had a distinct theatrical sensibility.
“I think the reason Hans was brought to work with set designer Derek McLane, lighting designer John Featherstone and myself was that he recognized the need to create a visual world for his audience. “, says Peter Nigrini. “Giving each piece of music a visual identity was first and foremost, but we also had to meet this challenge while integrating live cameras to serve audiences in arena-sized venues.”
Nigrini was completely won over by the possibilities disguise technology opened up for his production.
“Every time someone gives me a chance to do something new; when someone says they’ve never tried something before, that sounds like a reason to move on. I will try anything if I know I have partners like Pixway and disguises to bring my vision to life.
In creating the look for the production, Nigrini was adamant that the live video footage should look nothing like that seen at other gigs on tour. He worked with Berlin-based creative studio Pixway, specialists in disguise workflow, to find a solution that would set their show apart from others. One of the ideas the team settled on involved processing and processing all of the live camera output so that the footage from the various sequels would be aesthetically tied to the films the music was taken from.
Part of this involved color grading live footage as it was shot, as well as other Notch processing built by Emery Martin. This helped to harmonize the live camera images for each track with the color scheme of their respective films, so that audiences could subconsciously link each piece to films they knew and recognized.
It was this process that led Pixway, which has a long history of partnering with disguise on a wide range of projects from live and corporate events to xR production, to suggest using the RenderStream workflow. powered by two disguise rx real-time render nodes and two disguise vx 4 media servers to bring the vision to life.
Since Disguise’s RenderStream workflow was previously only used for studio filming and broadcast, Pixway knew it was a bold move to use it in a live concert setting, let alone a world tour. . The risk paid off for the team, delivering an incredible experience.
“We could have found the solution we needed for these cameras in a number of ways,” says Nigrini, “but RenderStream is a huge asset at this level of production. And because we had expert help from Pixway and disguise, we could look at the half-dozen different ways to get there and pick the most appropriate for the problem we were facing.
The power and reliability of the disguise technology was as important to keeping the workflow simple as RenderStream itself, says Pixway’s Nevil Jeremias. The team needed minimal equipment to run the entire show. They were able to use disguise vx and rx machines to power all the live processing and carry the show.
“Fewer machines are much more efficient,” says Jeremias. “They allow for more space behind the stage, a less complex setup, and other touring conveniences. Being able to use fewer machines just makes the setup more reliable, essentially.
“Being able to offload Notch rendering to the rx machines kept enough processing power on the vx machines for other parts of the show, such as automation and video playback. working, processed Notch IMAGs can be used just as easily as other video inputs, which greatly speeds up programming.With this technology, we could send all 14 cameras to the render node for processing in batches of four. texture is extremely fast and only adds a few frames on the round trip, so it fits perfectly into existing environments,” adds Jeremias.
The team also used the project to beta test the latest version of the r21 disguise software, launched earlier this year. The release brought significant improvements to the RenderStream user interface and new color management tools, following Disguise’s feedback and close collaboration with its live and color beta testers and insider groups. .