08.07.2024 | Royal Conservatory of Antwerp transitions to state-of-the-art LED lighting with Elation

The Royal Conservatory of Antwerp recently undertook the transition from conventional to LED lighting with a cutting-edge lighting system upgrade that features Elation KL and FUZE series luminaires. The new lighting system, supplied by Ampco Flashlight, supports a large variety of projects that play out on stages in several of the school's performance spaces.

The Royal Conservatory of Antwerp is renowned for its excellence in music, dance, and drama, attracting students of the performing arts from across Europe and beyond. Like any institution of advanced learning, the school provides high-quality facilities for its various programs and seeks to keep them updated with the latest technologies and resources to ensure a top-tier educational experience.

Latest technologies
Seeking an up-to-date lighting package for the Conservatory's many performance spaces, Rik Suijs, technician at the Conservatory, attended the Prolight + Sound tradeshow in Frankfurt to explore the latest technologies supporting the transition from conventional halogen lighting to LED. There he met Elation Key Account Manager Benelux, Bert Schmeits, who introduced him to Elation's KL "Key Light" and FUZE series of intelligent lighting fixtures. The meeting precipitated an eventual trip to the Elation showroom in Kerkrade, the Netherlands, for an in-depth look at the products.

"To be honest, we weren't very familiar with the market, but after some research and guidance, we reviewed several brands," Rik explained. "Elation stood out for its good quality and competitive pricing, and ultimately, it was an excellent choice." Rik specified a comprehensive Elation package of KL PROFILE FC, KL FRESNEL FC, FUZE PENDANT, FUZE PAR Z175 and SIXPAR 100 luminaires, all housing advanced, full-color LED light engines. Following a public tender, Elation dealer Ampco Flashlight was awarded the contract to supply the fixtures.

Yellow Hall
The first space to benefit from the new lighting was the Yellow Hall, a small black box theatre."I wanted a versatile setup suitable for different types of projects," Rik said. "This space is more for theatre and dance than rock 'n' roll shows so I wanted more Fresnels and profile spots rather than flashy moving heads." Used in the space are full-color KL FRESNEL FC soft lights with zoom that serve as ideal sources for key, fill, and wash lighting. They deliver uniform, high-CRI light while operating silently and come equipped with removable barn doors and a filter frame.

Also used in the Yellow Hall are KL PROFILE FC ellipsoidal fixtures. Housing an integrated zoom, no additional lens tubes are required for faster beam angle changes. The KL FRESNEL and KL PROFILE fixtures complement each other as they both house RGBMA color mixing engines for a perfect color match and contributing to a more cohesive lighting system. Additionally, FUZE PENDANT downlights serve as both house and stage lights, providing uniform lighting across the entire space.

The KL fixtures in the Yellow Hall, rigged as front and back light, are relatively stationary and do not move around often, according to Rik. The FUZE PAR Z175 fixtures, on the other hand, move around wherever needed, in a rig or to the other performance spaces, and are used for specials, sidelight, backlight, or frontlight. Likewise, the SIXPAR 100 lights travel around to wherever high-quality white or colored light is required.

Other performance spaces
The White Hall, a larger space used for classical music that features excellent acoustics, features KL FRESNEL 8 and KL PROFILE FC luminaires as frontlight to illuminate the orchestra. The Elation lighting is also used in several studios where students work and practice, as well as a student dining area with a small stage, where SIXPARs and FUZE PARs work with existing lighting. Plans are underway to procure new lighting for another space, the Black Hall, which for now still uses conventional fixtures although some of the new equipment, specifically the FUZE PAR Z175s, have already been utilized in this space.

Color convenience
The benefits of a dynamic lighting system, with its color changing ability and beam manipulation options, although inherent to intelligent lighting, was still remarkable to experience, says Rik. "It is surprisingly convenient to have lots of color in every fixture. Once your colors are managed in the console, it makes the whole process easier and faster. You don't have to rig lights for every color which is a big savings."

Delivered late last summer, the new Elation lighting debuted on several smaller projects in the fall and had its first major test during a dance project in January this year. "The project required a lot of lights and illumination coming from all angles so it was a good test," Rik said. "The new lighting system required us to adjust our work flow and find a new kind of lighting procedure, but we handled it well and the lighting performed very nicely. Everyone was very happy."

Elation gear:
35 x FUZE PAR Z175
24 x SIXPAR 100

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