Kylie’s Aphrodite-Les Folies Tour 2011 features 202 Vari*Lites

Posted on Friday, June 17th, 2011


With a production valued at over US$25 million, Kylie’s Aphrodite-Les Folies Tour 2011 features over a million moving parts, including thirty high impact water jets, rain curtains, fountains and nearly 600 light sources! The bespoke stage, alone costing over $10 million, is the most technically advanced, complex and precision stage ever created for an arena tour.

Lighting for the show, designed by Nick Whitehouse with Steven Douglas touring as lighting director, relies heavily on Vari*Lite fixtures: 84 x VL3500 Wash, 84 x VL3000 Spot, 4 x VL3500 FX and 30 x VL500.

The VL3500 Washes were chosen for their exceptional versatility and their extreme brightness.

“With the variety of lenses that we are using – both internal and clear external – we can get everything from two VL3500 Wash fixtures covering the whole stage to really narrow pin spots,” remarked Steven Douglas. “The colours are also so rich. It’s pretty much the same with the VL 3000 which both Nick and I regard as the best profile fixture on the market. I know that Nick did a comparison with all the latest fixtures on the market, such as the Martin MACIII and the Clay Paky 1500, but at the end of the day we felt that the VL3000 was still the way to go. It has a great selection of gobos which is ideal for a show like this which is all about the big picture.”

The VL500 fixtures are mainly built into the set piece that resembles a Roman amphitheatre. In between the columns are black projection screens and three VL500 inset into the header piece. A further twelve VL500 are situated on the floor.

“The VL500 fixtures were chosen for their beam angle, said Steven. “They have a low profile and are small, taking up the least amount of space in front of the projection screens.”

The four VL3500 FX fixtures are housed in a custom-made rack which can be wheeled in for special backlighting such as when Kylie appears on an upstage centre lift effectively giving her a ‘God silhouette’.

Steven reports that all of the Vari*Lite models have been really reliable on the road with no major failings at all.

“If there has been a problem it’s usually something simple like they got bumped in the truck,” he said.  

Photos: Troy Constable