The shining star of Dancing On Ice


Rod Aaron Gammons TV-Bay Magazine
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Lighting is an incredibly important part of any TV production, and it can make a huge difference to what is seen on-screen. If the right lights are used in the right way, it can create a mood, set a tone and convey a certain atmosphere.

Nowhere is this more evident than on the set of dramatic TV shows such as Dancing on Ice, a hugely popular UK show which airs on prime-time channel ITV. Following a four-year break, the show returned for its tenth season this year, and it came back bigger, better and more glamorous than ever before.

Television industry veteran Chris Yacoubian, who has worked on other popular UK TV shows including The Voice and Strictly Come Dancing, was recruited as the director of photography for glamour and profile shots for this latest series of Dancing on Ice. With the show making such a dramatic return, Yacoubian wanted to bring his own unique vision to these shots; a new look that was crisp, stylish, glamorous and sultry.

In order to turn his vision into reality, Yacoubian opted for the new Rotolight Anova PRO 2 as his light of choice. Not only did the light appeal to him visually due to its unique circular design, but its extensive functionality allowed him to easily achieve the dramatic new look.

Discussing the Anova PRO 2 in more detail, Yacoubian said: “I saw the Anova PRO 2 LEDs clustered together and that just sparked my creativity. Apart from their aesthetics, they have the ability to do so much more than the ordinary light, which was the final tick in the box for me.”

Following detailed discussions with Rotolight, Yacoubian and the Rotolight team worked closely together to design and construct five hex ring rigs, with each rig consisting of six Anova PRO 2 lights. The rigs were used in the background of the main set — so as to be visible in the shots themselves as well as lighting the subjects — and in the dancers’ interview room. The final result was exactly what Yacoubian had in mind.

However, Yacoubian and his team still had obstacles to overcome along the way, the most significant of these being the fact that the shoot took place in a unique custom-built studio. “It was a demanding environment,” Yacoubian recalled. “Essentially it was a studio made out of ice. We were housed in a temporary building which was affected by the elements outside. If it rained we needed to adjust for the extra humidity outside as it impacted the optics, the metal and the LEDs.

“That said, the Anova PRO 2s performed amazingly well. We constantly pushed them to their limits and they didn’t let us down. They are a seriously versatile tool to add to your kit.”

The rigs on set were controlled via a dedicated lighting desk and five-pin DMX connection. Helpfully, this enabled the operators to take advantage of the Rotolight CineSFX™ effects suite which is built into the Anova PRO 2 units, and can deliver added drama through the use of flash and pulse lighting. Yacoubian used various effects on set, including the ‘paparazzi’ flash effect, and switched between this and the continuous light with a simple flick of a button. Following the shoot, Yacoubian was so impressed that he bought two Anova PRO 2 units, complete with accessory kits, for his own personal use. Summarising his experience, Yacoubian said: “These LEDs don’t just light up the areas you need them to, but give you that added benefit of the creative tools that save you time and money, and eliminate the need for extra kit and people.”


Tags: iss130 | rotolight | led lighting | anova pro 2 | chris yacoubian | Rod Aaron Gammons
Contributing Author Rod Aaron Gammons

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