The iconic annual Mardi Gras Party was staged at the Hordern Pavilion and surrounding venues on February 29, with Chameleon supplying lighting for Fourth Wall and Mandylights’ sprawling lighting and production design across the site. The design team pulled off easily one of the largest and most expansive designs to ever hit the Hordern Pavilion, which became the new centrepiece of the event.

A massive 60 metre long catwalk and stage encircled over 180 degrees of the venue, creating an immersive, wrap-around stage that was flanked by hundreds of metres of video, lighting and scenic effects. The Mardi Gras Parties have a rare tradition of focusing the visual design of the room above the heads of the crowd as opposed to to the stage, and the 2020 party was no different. Eight enormous “wishbone” trusses radiated out from the centre of the room to the furthest corners of the Hordern - where even the seating banks were removed to accommodate an unprecedented number of party-goers who danced away from 10pm to nearly 8am inside the cavernous space. Multiple elements of Kinesys saw trusses, video screens and mirror ball clusters constantly move throughout the night to create a sense of journey between the major shows.

On stage, the traditional community show was backed up by impressive performances from Sam Smith, Kesha, Dua Lipa and Pabllo Vittar in what was easily one of the most star-studded parties of recent years.

Chameleon delivered full systems design, labour and automation for the event. Mandylights’ lead designer Richard Neville commented that “as always the service from Chameleon was impeccable - we got the lights we wanted in the quantities we needed which was unmatched. It was great to know that Sean, Danyon and the on-site team had our backs through the whole process - with everything matching previs files perfectly. This was essential to accommodate the number of visiting LDs and touring artist parties that worked with us to deliver one of the biggest shows in Mardi Gras’ history.”

Sean and Danyon were backed by Luke Cuthbertson and Tony Davies who helped Fourth Wall and Mandylights deliver the enormous rig.

60 x Robe Spiider
46 x Martin Viper AirFX
36 x Martin Mac101 RGB
23 x Claypaky Scenius Profile
10 x Claypaky Sharpy
13 x ShowPRO RGBW Flood
35 x TMB Solaris Flare Strobes
48 x Cyc Cells
2 x Robe BMFL Follow spots
448 x Mandylights 1m mTubes
2 x MA Lighting grandMA2 full size consoles
24 x points of Kinesys automation

Chameleon Crew:
Shaun Cook
Danyon McCue
Chris Bolt
Chris Masters
Jacob Toomey

Photos: Jimmy James Denouden

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