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Ayrton supports In The Light, a celebration of the life and work of lighting designer Mikki Kunttu

A cluster of events celebrated the 30‐year career and 50th birthday of Finnish lighting designer, Mikki Kunttu.

Finland’s Tampere Hall hosted Lucid Dreams, a photographic exhibition of Kunttu’s work, Light & Shadow, an international lighting seminar that included contributions from LeRoy Bennett, Christopher Bauder, Benjamin Dupont, Ralph Jörg Wezorke and Ola Melzig, a performance by the Tampere Philharmonic Orchestra of Gustav Holst’s The Planets suite lit by Kunttu, and A Night of Light international gala concert lit by one of Finland’s talented young lighting designers, Alex Hautamäki. The germ of the idea came from Tampere Hall’s managing director, Paulina Ahokas, who has worked with Kunttu extensively. The result was a collaboration with many artists with whom Kunttu has worked throughout his career, with Kunttu himself lighting the seven‐part masterpiece, The Planets, in cooperation with the Tampere Philharmonic Orchestra.

Kunttu chose to design, program and operate the lighting and video for The Planets to give it an artisanal, back‐to‐ roots feel. Centred around a circular video screen above the orchestra, the design featured over 100 Ayrton fixtures, including 26 Ayrton Cobra laser‐sourced fixtures. “I really wanted to use the new laser fixtures because they go together so nicely with the space theme!” Kunttu says. “I was able to create some fabulous beamy looks on stage and into the audience knowing they would read perfectly because the laser sources are so piercing.” Kunttu used Ayrton Cobras mostly as back lights, along with 20 Ayrton Huracán LT (long throw) fixtures. 41 Ayrton Eurus S profile units were rigged on three overhead trusses as top and front lights, with additional Eurus S profiles on the side ladders for cross light. More Huracán LT fixtures were added as floor specials behind the orchestra. “This gave me an excellent palette to work from and the chance to get to know some of the latest Ayrton fixtures.”

“I’d not used Huracán and Eurus in this way before. I really liked the quality, especially Huracán. And Cobra – wow! It’s a super‐nice fixture and I’d love to try it in a bigger venue using that brightness! Cobra also functioned really well as normal back lights, almost keeping up with Huracán, which shows you don’t have to use Cobra only as a laser, especially with all those colours and gobos. You just know that any light with ‘Ayrton’ written on the side is going to be high quality – a good quality light which also looks good!”

Photos © Ralph Larmann


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