Elation lighting adorns Hawai‘i’s Lāna‘i Ocean Theatre

The Lāna‘i Ocean Theatre employed IP-rated Proteus Lucius and Arena Zoom Q7IP luminaires from Elation, as part of their project that understood the cultural reverence of the venue, whilst updating its systems with sustainable, modern choices. 

Land and resource management company Pulama Lāna‘i partnered with visual design practice Lightswitch and event production company Upstaging, creating a space that met the highest standards and respected the island’s natural environment.

Lighting design was spearheaded by John Featherstone, Principal at Lightswitch, with Ryan Breneisen of Upstaging serving as a Project Manager and Technical Director. Upstaging supplied the lighting for the project and executed the installation.

Working with Featherstone to develop a production design, Breneisen was intimately involved in every aspect of the entertainment portion of the space and specified all the gear on the lighting, power and staging side.

He emphasised the meticulous selection process for the lighting fixtures, stating: “We wanted to use one main lighting fixture for the venue and design everything around it. That fixture needed to be outdoor rated with good colour mixing, gobo options and include framing shutters. It also needed to be flexible and powerful enough to work on stage and at the FoH position at a 127 ft throw.”

Breneisen worked with Rob Ludwig from Elation rep firm Five Lakes Marketing to source the Proteus Lucius LED profile luminaire, and following a shoot-out with similar moving head fixtures said the Lucius checked a lot of the right boxes.

Breneisen said: “With its brightness, durability and outdoor readiness, it proved to be the ideal choice as part of a tour-ready setup that can easily go in and out of the space.”

“Ludwig has been key in getting us comfortable with Elation and provides a level of service that really makes a difference,” Breneisen continued.

The venue utilises IP-rated Proteus Lucius and Arena Zoom Q7IP luminaires as central lighting fixtures in a unique and adaptable festival-style system for the multi-use venue space.

The Lucius are positioned on 30-ft tall custom torm towers that carry the Lucius inside, six fixtures per tower. Two additional towers with Lucius are positioned at FoH with more Lucius fixtures working from floor positions.

“The truss is really designed around that specific light with square box tubes so the lights can’t roll when the towers move in and out,” Breneisen explained, noting that the entire space can be transformed into a deck as a viewing and garden area with seats. “I’ve used Proteus outside for months at a time in an Illinois winter so I know it’s a good line and is going to survive outside.”

Lightswitch and Upstaging embraced the project’s adherence to ecological principles, even working with ornithologists who influenced the stage design by deeming a vertical tower design to be less intrusive to migratory birds than a horizontal design.

According to Featherstone, the commitment to environmental responsibility extended to fixture choice as well. “Another way we can minimise the footprint is by using a fixture like the Lucius that has a gentler footprint in terms of the power it uses, and because they are IP-rated, they help to minimise the amount of disruption we have on site. There is a whole package there which translates to less service, less waste, less power, and it’s still a great fixture,” he commented.

The Lāna‘i Ocean Theatre symbolises a harmonious blend of tradition, sustainability, and world-class entertainment—an enduring legacy for both the people of Lāna‘i and those fortunate enough to visit the Four Seasons Resort. Amidst the lush tropical surroundings and against the backdrop of majestic sunsets, Elation fixtures sit as shining examples of the positive impact that great lighting can have on a venue.