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Tom Kenny Uses Elation Indoors And Out At The 2024 CMT Music Awards

By Elation Press
May 8, 2024, updated Jul 9, 2024
 Tom Kenny Uses Elation Indoors And Out At The 2024 CMT Music Awards

This article was originally posted on elationlighting.com and can be found here.

4Wall-supplied rig of PROTEUS, ARTISTE, and DARTZ fixtures illuminates star-studded performances at the yearly celebration of country music.

Earlier this spring, renowned lighting Designer Tom Kenny utilized Elation lighting for indoor and outdoor stages at the 2024 CMT Music Awards. The lighting package, supplied by 4Wall, included PROTEUS EXCALIBUR, ARTISTE MONDRIAN, and DARTZ 360 luminaires, among other fixtures, showcasing his exceptional design skills.

Broadcast live from the Moody Center on the University of Texas campus in Austin, performances took place inside and on an outdoor stage in front of the iconic University of Texas Tower. Felix Peralta, David "Fuji" Convertino, and Michelle Griesmer directed the lighting for the indoor show, with Han Henze and Matt Piercy handling the lighting direction on the outdoor stage. Anne Brahic, in her 15th year working at the awards show, produced the production design.

Kenny was in his 12th year of designing for the CMTs, and his experience and proven approach are integral to a successful team effort. After familiarizing himself with the songs, he works closely with the production team regarding camera angles to ensure the lighting looks compelling for the millions of at-home viewers, and after rehearsal time, tweaks the lighting to ensure the artist is delighted. Kenny says he strives to make the lighting unique each time, adding drama while staying within the architectural look Brahic and her team created. Video, naturally, was a dominant aspect of the look, and the designer worked purposefully with color to blend lighting with video, harmonizing the LED screens with complementary lighting.

Elation Lighting was prominently featured outdoors at the UT Tower stage, where IP65-rated PROTEUS EXCALIBUR beam effects were utilized to withstand rain while lighting up the entire skyline. "I love these fixtures," Kenny said, emphasizing that the Texas weather was always a factor, making IP fixtures a priority on the outdoor set. He placed the EXCALIBURS upstage on the deck, behind the band. "Their power and luminance had to be dialed back to avoid overwhelming the scene," he said. "It's great when a light is already too bright, and it's all up to the designer to correct it."

In addition to the Elation package were DARTZ 360 LED beam/spot fixtures and small moving heads featuring a tight 3-degree beam. Their compact size and light weight allowed Kenny to position them throughout the house and on the University walls in the outdoor rig.

Kenny noted that the Dean of the University loved how they lit the buildings and foliage, remarking that they even asked for his contact details post-show so they could acknowledge him personally. "It's always an interesting life being a lighting designer for CMT as they're always breaking the rules on where a location should be," Kenny comments. "It's what makes these shows fan favorites."

After over twenty years in Nashville, The CMT Music Awards returned to Austin for a second consecutive year, fully embracing Texas's status as a hotbed of country music. Inside the main show, Production Designer Anne Brahic highlighted the city of Austin and its Congress Street Bridge with an asymmetrical set that extended to the heights of the venue and into the audience.

To cover the space, an extensive lighting package was used to light both the set and the talent. It included Elation's 51,000-lumen ARTISTE MONDRIAN LED profile fixture. The MONDRIAN, with its intense beam and 7-flag SpectraColor system, was used both in the main show and throughout the outdoor rig at the UT tower. "The Mondrians cut through the strong video sources with the strong palettes created by Trevor Burke and Kat Folts," Kenny remarked.

Onstage, the celebration of country music featured stellar performances that thrilled fans and spanned the breadth of what country music is today. Behind the scenes, a collaborative production team worked tirelessly to ensure another year of success.

Ready to elevate your next production with cutting-edge lighting solutions? Contact us today to learn how Elation Lighting can illuminate your events with unmatched brilliance and reliability.

Production Team

Lighting Designer: Tom Kenny

Production Designer: Anne Brahic

Screens Producer: Trevor Burk

Art Director: Gloria Lamb

Asst Art Director: Jonathan Stoller-Schof


Main Show

Lighting Directors: Félix Peralta, David "Fuji" Convertino

Floor Lighting Director: Michelle Griesmer

Gaffer: Cole Kiracofe

Best Boy: Michael Smallman

Lighting Crew Chief: Alex Flores

Lighting Techs: Matt Weede, Daniel Teeter, Taylor Moore

Media Server Programmer: Loren Barton

Content Director: Zach Peletz

Video Crew Chief: Michael Moxon

LED Leads: David Imlau, Tom Armbruster, Brandon Oosterhof

LED Techs: Russell Eia, Ryan Hollis, Austin Stengle, Kenny Stanle


Remote Stage UT Austin Tower

Lighting Director: Han Henze

Programmer: Matt Piercy

Gaffer: Daniel Fly

Production Electrician: Brian Monahan

L1: Adam McIntosh

L2s: Jake Riddell, Amy Sunshine Ross

RoboSpot Tech: Ivy Weede


Photo 1:  Catherine Powell/Getty Images for CMT

Photos 2-5:  Rick Kern/Getty Images for CMT

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