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Jesse Lee Stout and Sooner Routhier reflect mood of Muse tour with CHAUVET Professional

The artistic and compelling force that powered Muse’s “Will of the People” throughout arenas on their current tour in support of the LP, is not just in the British rocker’s shredding riffs and mind‐bending electronics, but also in a powerful production design that is generating so much attention in the press.

A collaboration between Creative Director and Co‐Production Designer Jesse Lee Stout and Lighting Designer and Co‐Production Designer Sooner Routhier, the thought provoking visual panorama does more than merely

support the music on stage. Routhier described how the concept was translated into a production design. “After pouring through the creative direction for the new album cycle, we worked together to create a rig that feels like the skeletal nature of a post apocalyptic, near‐future world,” she said. “The rig consists of grids of lights that put the band inside a deconstructed building; simplistic, industrial, and homogeneous. This became the visual identity of the underplay tour we did in the fall of 2022, and it has been carried through into the arena tour in 2023.”

Key to helping the team achieve this vision were 122 CHAUVET Professional Color STRIKE M fixtures, which, like the rest of the rig was supplied by Upstaging. The vast majority of these motorized strobes are positioned in a horseshoe configuration around the stage, while 32 units are located under the plexiglass stage, with a few others placed on a truss in the house for audience lighting.

Run by Associate Lighting Designer and Programmer Aaron Luke, and Programmer Joe Lott, the lightshow flows smoothly with the band throughout their 24‐song set (including two encore numbers), accenting key moments with some intense strobing.

Movement, shape and color also flowed through a continuous spectrum of change throughout the show adding essential variety to the design, while also ensuring that it kept pace with ever nuanced change in the music. “I wanted beams of light to extend beyond the stage to help further the idea of the skeletal building structure,” said Routhier. “Also, we need diversity in cuing with the vast set list. The different directional movements help us paint each song differently.”


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