LAS VEGAS – July 13, 2020 – LMG Touring recently helped bring to life the first-ever remote BET Awards by supporting the Summer Walker and Usher performance, recorded at LMG Touring’s Las Vegas facility.
This year’s annual celebration honoring black entertainment artists marked the BET network’s 40th anniversary and the award show’s 20th. For this first-ever remote awards show, BET required performing artists to deliver live vocal performances over pre-recorded visuals.
Initially, LMG Touring was prepared to provide an audio rehearsal package for Summer Walker’s band rehearsals leading up to the shoot of the performance. However, it quickly blossomed into LMG Touring hosting the entire shoot and providing a projection mapping package for both sets less than 48 hours before the event. LMG Touring called on decades of live event experience to quickly build the packages from the expansive LMG Las Vegas inventory.
The LMG team took advantage of the disguise vx 4 media server’s projection-mapping abilities to correctly light the blank set, furniture and talent from different angles without seeing odd cuts and shadows from different projectors.
“We were very thankful for disguise’s ability to adjust color on specific pieces of content as well as on an entire projection surface in order to boost and grade colors for camera. We used timecode embedded in the playback tracks to ensure the content was the same for each take and from each camera angle,” says Josh Spodick, disguise Media Server Programmer. “The producers of the shoot were amazed to see the 3D model of the set in disguise before anything was constructed. They were able to look at content selection choices and timings while the carpenters kept working.”
The audio package for the shoot included DigiCo SD10 consoles, L’Acoustics speakers, Shure Axient Wireless & a Pro Tools Package.
Dialing in both the music and the multitrack recording required several days of rehearsals. “Recording the rehearsals made it possible to create the perfect arrangement for the shoot,” says Audio Engineer and Pro Tools Operator Art Janota. “Once we were done with rehearsals in the LMG demo room, we seamlessly moved over to the sound stage in LMG facility. With pipe and drape, we were able to create a very nice acoustical environment in order to capture the live performance.”
“Both Summer and Usher used Shure KSM8s with Axient Digital transmitters,” says Janota. “L’Acoustics Arc II with SB28s were used as side fills reference for the production crew as well as band…I ended up with very clean multi-tracks with minimal bleed for the post mix and master.”
“Our team used creative problem solving to identify the right space for the shoot when all of our studio spaces were already booked and in use,” says Juliana Stern, Account Executive. “Watching the performance, you would never guess that it was shot in our warehouse facility, but it ended up being the best setting for the shoot in order to get the sweeping and zoom shots from high above.”
This solution also allowed LMG Touring to exercise proper COVID-19 social distancing measures to keep the artists and crew safe. In addition to social distancing, the LMG team ensured the safety of all through required temperature checks and masks.
“From receiving to confirmation from the client, all the way to striking the set, turning this project around in just two days was an incredible experience,” says Kevin Maas, Technical Manager. “It took roughly an hour to clear the floor space needed with the team in the shop. We used the cases we were moving off the floor to define the space where the video shoot took place. There were no problems, just problem solving.”
• Account Executive: Juliana Stern
• Disguise Media Server Programmer: Josh Spodick
• Audio Engineer / Pro Tools Operator: Art Janota
• Technical Manager: Kevin Maas
• Rehearsal/Warehouse Space Coordinator: Justin Brassard
• Producer (Happy Place TV): Tara Razavi
• Creative Director (Happy Place TV): Lacey Duke
About LMG: Founded in 1984, LMG is divided into multiple business segments – Show Technology, Systems Innovation, and Touring – each with a common mission of providing innovative video, audio, LED, lighting solutions, and technical expertise through personalized service, high quality technology, and a commitment to continuous improvement. LMG has offices in Orlando, Las Vegas, Dallas, Nashville, Seattle and San Jose. For more information, visit www.lmg.net.