The Hangar at London’s O2 - 19/10/2008
Reading based creative lighting specialists Blinding Light supplied production lighting design, lighting equipment, power distribution and control for the recent laser tag installation in The Hangar at London’s O2.
Blinding Light was working for live experience company Sledge on this 3 month project – the only indoor digital laser tag facility in the UK. This was one of many projects on which the two companies have worked on together that have been located in and around the O2 over the last 18 months.
Sledge’s brief to Blinding Light was to build a dramatic, atmospheric and stimulating environment for the high octane experience in which 2 teams battle to succeed in their mission. The Hangar was one of a series of ongoing long term temporary installations designed to offer additional entertainment value to anyone visiting the O2.
Blinding Light asked Mark Mumford to create the lighting design for the all-action game, which featured its own soundtrack and was housed inside the O2’s inflatable “Bubble” structure. His task included ensuring that there was sufficient ambient light levels for participants to clearly see where they were and what they were doing whilst embroiled in the inflatable maze and its connecting corridors.
Equipment wise, Blinding Light supplied Source Four Profiles, a variety of PARs and Pulsar ChromaStrips, all of which had to be evenly distributed around the Bubble’s roof structure. There were also 16 Studio Due MiniCity units set on slow colour changing chases. The competing team colours of red and blue were represented in appropriate set washes and chases, and The Hangar logo outside the venue was highlighted with MBI fixtures.
All lighting was programmed onto an Avolites Pearl console, which also controlled two of the new GEM ZR247 smoke machines that were supplied along with a palette of smoke fluid to last for the duration of the installation.
The Blinding Light crew trained up one of The Hangar managers to be able to operate the console, as each 5 minute game required a manual stop and start for the pre-programmed lighting sequences. These could also be manually overridden if necessary.
The specialist power distribution layout was designed by Blinding Light’s Paddy Stacey. Sledge had asked if they could also take care of feeding all the air conditioning, chillers and ancillary plant in addition to the sound, lighting and AV equipment. Three 125 Amp 3-phase supplies were run in from the Dome, and the distribution also covered supplying power to The Hangar’s office portacabins and laser gun charging stations. Sixteen separate circuits were incorporated into the design for the heavy duty fans utilised to inflate the whole structure and its internal set.
All the distro equipment was IP rated and pulled from Blinding Light’s hire stock. They also devised an emergency flood system that immediately activated lighting in the event of the unexpected, and supplied safety and fire exit lighting throughout the venue, plus exterior floodlighting for after dark.
Every 2 weeks, the equipment was checked and serviced by the Blinding Light team.
This follows on from a busy season of lighting a wide variety of Sledge projects at the O2, including The Ice Rink and the Rugby World Cup Finals, a permanent architectural LED installation in The Chill Zone and numerous conferences and events.