Elation lights support epic storytelling at Game of Thrones Studio Tour

The fantasy world of HBO’s hit series Game of Thrones is brought to life at Game of Thrones Studio Tour in Northern Ireland with over 1,000 Elation lights supporting its epic storytelling.

The new global attraction, located at one of the acclaimed series’ original filming locations at Linen Mill Studios in Banbridge, invites fans to step behind the scenes and discover the making of the celebrated series.

Game of Thrones achieved record-setting ratings over 73 episodes and eight seasons and established itself as one of the most iconic shows in television history.

Opened in 2022 in partnership with Warner Bros, Game of Thrones Studio Tour is a 110,000-square-foot interactive indoor experience that allows fans to explore the original sets, costumes, props and weapons used in the series. 

Brian Reilly, MD of PSI Production, one of Ireland’s largest technical production and installation companies, coordinated the project, supplying and installing rigging, lighting, and special effects.

He said: “It was a great privilege to be involved in such a project right from the outset. PSI delivered in the most challenging circumstances imposed by the pandemic.” 

Marcel Wijnberger, who served as PSI’s Onsite Project Manager, helped manage various aspects of the project, working closely with LD John Gallagher, the set design team at MinaLima, AV and systems integrators, and the client. 

The important task of lighting design was managed by John Gallagher of Lumiere Productions, one of Ireland’s foremost designers who liaised with exhibition designers, suppliers and other stakeholders to support the storytelling and ensure a cohesive and visually captivating atmosphere for the attraction.

The designer also managed planning and supervision of lighting focus and programming.

According to Gallagher, proper exhibition lighting that highlighted the rich detail in the sets, costumes, and props, along with theatrical lighting that often emulated a film look, was required.

It was also important to the studio tour designers, owners and partners that all displays worked well on camera.

A plethora of different lighting fixtures was used on the project including nearly 1100 lights from Elation Professional: 341 Colour 5 Profile, 658 SixPar 200, 48 Paladin Panel, 29 Paladin Brick, 14 Fuze Par Z120 IP, and 6 Fuze Par Z175.

The sale of the units to PSI took place through Elation’s exclusive distribution partner in the UK, Entedi, who offered product support and arranged for demo equipment. 

Gallagher said that reliability, consistency, and subtle colour rendition was important in all fixtures.

“The look of the show required extensive use of subtle variations in white and variations of colour temperatures, as well as occasional more saturated tones,” he said. “The Elation colour engines allowed us to achieve this very successfully.”

The two workhorse fixtures on the project, the Colour 5 Profile and SixPar 200, are both used throughout.

The Colour 5 Profiles fulfil a variety of roles, including tight focus on display objects such as costumes/mannequins, and signage, while also providing gobo projection and beams.

The designer said that the SixPar 200s provide a cost-effective option for area lighting, backlighting, and lighting through set windows in tight spaces, and are also utilised as house lights. 

“The barn doors were an advantage,” he said of the SixPar fixtures, “often just to mask the source/reduce spill, and we used the diffusion filters extensively to provide options for beam angles and ‘stretch’ the light directionally.” 

The Paladin floodlights provide “a neat and effective option for lighting backdrops, scenic backings and painted cloths,” while the Fuze Pars are used for set lighting. 

“With several hundred Elation lighting fixtures on the project, I was very impressed with both the consistent quality and reliability of the units across the range,” Gallagher concluded.