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Learning from Glas Vegas: AOC, ERZ, Stallan Brand

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Tom Coward, Jonny Pugh, Mark Donaldson, Felicity Steers & Paul Stallan

Wanding the Barras: the concept centres on the idea of using light to create a dynamic contrast between the Barras (street markets, the Ballroom - neon-lit and famous as a music venue, anarchy, vitality, urban decay) and the City Halls (establishment, orchestras, elegance, control).

‘Wanding’ is our term for waving a lighter or a phone at a gig. It is an act where one person/one small flame spontaneously joins in with others to create a much bigger impact with light.

Our lighting proposal leaves the elegance of the Merchant City venue intact. At the Barras we start by switching off all the lights - creating total darkness as a blank canvas for a series of individual elements, combining to create a large lighting project that reflects the anarchy of the Barras, its beautiful decay and its vigorous character. These elements include: lighting up the crumbling market buildings with the exquisite attention to detail usually reserved for stately homes and civic monuments; working with shop owners to create window displays that help to light the street while touting the diverse wares; and having street lights you can switch on and off as you pass by (or perhaps as you chase up and down the street after a football match) - street lights that can spotlight a bench or a dancing couple (or a fight!) when switched on and focused.

In addition we suggest an occasional cultural exchange: BBC Orchestra at the Barras and The Cult at City Halls to exaggerate the contrast between these neighbouring venues and perhaps to foster more integration.

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