The Quantum team flew to Rotterdam last weekend to put on a spectacular show of special effects for the MTV EMAs 2016. It was our third year supplying the epic awards event and we were very excited to be a part of the world-class production once again. This year we had the honour of providing effects for nine artists, including Global Icon Award winners Green Day.
Here’s a run down of all the special effects action that took place on the night:
1. Kicking of this years show inside the Ahoy Rotterdam was host Bebe Rexha. Making her entrance in daring style, she descended on to the main stage in a ball chair whilst her name, written in lights, dripped with golden sparks from our Pyro Waterfall and SPDs exploded in the scaffolding behind.
2. Commencing the performances was first act Bruno Mars with his song ‘24k Magic.’ Matching those smooth moves and effortless cool, the Quantum team supplied Airbursts and Flashpots that fired on the lyric ‘Put yo’ pinky ring up to the moon,’ finishing the song with a synchronised round of Gerbs that punctuated Bruno’s dance steps.
3. Next up was DNCE who got dangerously close to the edge as they jumped up and down on the suspended stage that floated over the crowd before coming to land on stilts in the middle of the audience. Once safely stationed the trio sang their second track ‘Cake By The Ocean’ which we closed with a punchy round of CO2 Jets on each corner of the platform.
4. Bebe Rexha and Martin Garix then put on a romantic rendition of their collaboration ‘In The Name of Love.’ We filled the stage with atmospheric Low Smoke until the song reached its ultimate drop. At this moment we released 30ft Red Mines in to the air, which combined with the low smoke created a moody set mirroring the stormy visuals from the track’s official music video.
5. Continuing with the Low Smoke, Zara Larsson took to the stage with a fierce two-track medley. Beginning with ‘Lush Life’ low smoke spilled out over the top of the scaffolding whilst G-Flames fired along the front of the stage synched to the beat. Moving into ‘Ain’t My Fault’ the Low Smoke spread to the lower stage before being dispersed by Zara’s troop of dancers and a wind machine. As Zara finished her dance move on the last beat we fired a hit of Gerbs that emphasized the dramatic end to a performance that brimmed with attitude from start to finish. Watch it in full here.
6. We then helped Global Icon winners, Green Day, put on a pyro pièce de résistance for the their track ‘Bang Bang.’ With multiple positions on the front stage edge and up in the scaffolding, we had three types of Comets (30ft, 40ft, and 60ft), Gerbs and SPDs criss-crossing over the stage for an entire 50 seconds at the end of their performance. Taking advantage of the unique stage design, we were able to fire both vertically from the stage edge as well as horizontally from the scaffolding, creating a fully dimensional and explosive display that literally went ‘Bang Bang.’
7. Slowing the tempo Lukas Graham put on a mesmerizing performance of his hit song ‘7 Years.’ With the lights turned down low we fired two Pyro Waterfalls across the tiers of the scaffolding, turning the musicians into silhouettes against a golden backdrop.
8. Next up Rotterdam native Afrojack performed both ‘Gone’ and ‘Hey’ accompanied by some healthy blasts from our CO2 Jets in the final chorus.
9. Then it was time for our last performance of the weekend with One Republic and their new track ‘Lets Hurt Tonight.’ With low lighting and blue hues setting the scene, we immersed the stage with low smoke. Just as the boys reached the crescendo of their song we surprised the whole audience with the stealthy activation of our digital rain system, the Q: Rain Graphix. Studio quiet and completely self contained the system allows for the ultimate surprise factor, sending down four walls of seamless, elegant waterfall without a sound. As the rain reached the stage the low smoke rose up from the floor to reveal the band standing in an artfully concealed pool of water. Making full use of the set the boys kicked and stamped in the water creating a dramatic visual effect, whilst lead singer Ryan Tedder put himself directly under the rainfall, singing a heartfelt performance to remember. Watch all the magic unfold here.
And thats a wrap! Thanks for having us back MTV, a huge congrats to everyone involved – another incredible show all round!