Mexico. Few bands have created more excitement in recent years than the regional Mexican band Grupo Firme. On a summer stadium tour of the U.S., the Tijuana band and the northern group perform under a team of Elation Professional Smarty Hybrid and Rayzor 760 moving heads supplied by 3G Productions.
Grupo Firme rose to fame in 2020 with a string of hit singles and has won several accolades in recent years, including a Latin Grammy for Best Band Album. As a testament to their growing popularity, in 2021, the band sold out seven consecutive shows at Crypcto.com Arena (formerly Staples Center) in Los Angeles. In 2022, they became the first band ensemble to play at Coachella.
The band's star is clearly on the rise and full-service production company 3G Productions has been there providing support along the way. This year, with their growing popularity, the band expanded their "Enfiestados y Amanecidos Tour" to stadiums in the U.S., a tour that began at Los Angeles' SoFi Stadium on May 28.
3G serves as the complete production company for the tour, providing audio, lighting, video and assembly equipment. Ideally located to service the show from its facilities in Las Vegas and Los Angeles, the company also provides production support for all shows with a full staff of project managers, designers and engineers.
The lighting designer/operator of the tour is Arturo Sánchez with the production design of 3G's vice president of production, Andy Ruiz. Ruiz comments: "Grupo Firme's shows are great in video and for the video to really stand out, we needed a complementary lighting system. With the Elation team we acquired in the spring, we were in an ideal position to equip the tour." In May of this year, 3G added 130 Smarty Hybrid and 60 Rayzor 760s to inventory, along with 40 Cuepix WW2 Blinders, and the lights went to work immediately to service Grupo Firme's stadium tour.
The centerpiece of the design is a diamond grid filled with 96 Smarty Hybrids and outlined with LED video. Multifunctional CMY moving heads produce up to 11,000 lumens and accentuate and complement the heavy video scenario with beam appearance, washes and gobo effects. "Smartys look great on the platform and go through the video," Ruiz says. "They're competing with bigger accessories on the platform and we were surprised at how impactful they are." Arturo Sanchez has been programming and operating lighting for the band for nearly three years. He adds: "I like the powerful output of the Rayzor 760 and the speed of the Smartys is excellent. Both teams have done a great job on the tour."
Mounted around the diamond platform are 40 Proteus Rayzor 760, wash effect lights with 7 x 60W RGBW LEDs and ultra-wide angle zoom from 5° to 77°. Used for stage washes and visually appealing special effects, the designer directs them towards the audience to achieve a colorblind look and even incorporates the unit's continuous 360-degree rotation for high-energy moments. Ruiz also incorporates the accessory's patented SparkLED pixel brightness effect to reinforce a special moment in the show. While an elevator lifts an artist 20 feet into the air, the flashing LEDs on the Rayzor 760's large face provide an elegant background impression.
"Smarty Hybrid and Rayzor 760 are an ideal combination and together they can be used to create a multitude of unique looks in shows like this," said Keith Conrad, CEO of 3G Productions. "Their compact shape allows them to be used in quantity, where they really excel, and their versatility means they can fulfill several roles in a single show. We anticipate specifying them in a wide variety of projects."
Grupo Firme is poised to become Mexico's most popular pop band in 2022 and the stadium tour has quickly become one of the most talked about in North America. The final show will take place at Allegiant Stadium in Las Vegas on September 15, the eve of Mexico's Independence Day.
Production Design: Andy Ruíz
Production Design Assistant: Eric Cruz
Production Design Assistant: Rodrigo Rodríguez
Lighting/Operation Designer: Arturo Sánchez
Master Electrician Tour: Derek Lewis
LX Crew: Rudy Carbajal, Jorge Lobo, Edward Gomez, Josh Forney