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Avignon’s Palais des Papes lights up with Robe ESPRITES

The famous Palais des Papes in Avignon, France came alive bathed in a vibrant collage of colours, shapes, and textures – thanks to 12 x Robe ESPRITE moving lights – which were part of a design by LD Fabien Chamakoff for the 2020 Helios Festival. For Fabien it was a great honour to illuminate the intricate and imposing architecture. The 10-minute Palais des Papes lightshow ran for 5 weeks from 25th July to 30th August. With no soundtrack, Fabien’s idea was to focus on a 60 metre wide x 40 metre high section of the building, so passers-by could appreciate the work of renowned French architects, Pierre Peysson and Jean de Louvres, plus the lavish ornamentation of Simone Martini and Matteo Giovanetti.

Initially, Fabien had wanted to use Robe’s BMFL fixtures – apart from being a product with which he’s very familiar, he wanted the intensity and multifunctionality. However, he realized that there was not enough power available at the site to run these, and they didn’t want to shatter the silence and reverence of the environment by having a generator! He spoke to Chateaurenard based lighting rental company Fox, who worked closely with the Festival’s technical producers ARTCOM Diffusion to supply equipment, and asked if they could suggest an LED alternative … and so the ESPRITE profile entered the frame! Having not used Robe ESPRITES before, Fabien needed to know that they had the required brightness, so a demo was set up at Fox’s warehouse instigated by Robe France’s Terry Di Isernia. Fabien was amazed by the ESPRITE’s power, its 5.5 – 50-degree zoom, framing shutters, sharpness and all the available effects. Together with Fox’s MD Eric Lambertin, they asked if Terry would join the team as lighting programmer and operator for the project, and Terry was delighted to oblige.

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