Held March 11-12 at Mardi Gras World on the New Orleans Mississippi riverfront, the Buku Music + Art Project is one of the city’s most thriving music festivals, underscored with public art demonstrations from prevalent local and national artists. This year’s event featured EDM and hip-hop acts playing across four stages, two of which featured lighting gear from Elation Professional.

Now in its fifth year, the Buku Music + Art Project is a two-day event where pop culture mixes with the New Orleans underground arts community. Raven Production Management Group (ravenpmg.com) of New Orleans has provided production and art installations every year since the event’s inception and this year provided production services across the entire event including lighting supply for the Float Den Stage and Ballroom Stage, where Elation Rayzor Q12 Zoom™ moving head LED wash lights and Platinum Beam 5R Extreme™ fixtures featured.

Sans titre

Raven used over 100 Rayzor Q12 Zoom™ and over 100 Platinum Beam 5R Extremes™ on the two stages, along with Elation DMX splitters and Antari HZ500 Hazers. The Float Den Stage, basically a dance party with DJs, was located in a Mardi Gras float manufacturing warehouse while the Ballroom Stage had more of a concert hall feel with wrap-around balcony and art décor.

“We chose the Elation products for their superior dependability and brightness compared to competing fixtures,” said Raven’s Chris Berends, who served as production designer on the event. “The Platinum Beams were well received by all visiting artist LDs and are generally easy and fun to work with, making our teams advance much easier.”

The Rayzor Q12 Zoom and Platinum Beam 5R Extreme are an effective wash light / beam light combination, the high-speed Q12 creating colorful wash/beam projections to eye-candy effects while the powerful Platinum Beam 5R Extreme splays the eye-catching thick ACL-type beams.

Lighting programmer and board op for the Float Den Stage was Tony Milliet, his fourth year designing lighting at Buku. He commented: “The Rayzor Q12’s and Platinum 5R’s were mostly used as special effects to give the dance floor some energy. The Q12 was also used as front wash when necessary. We placed the fixtures starting behind the DJ and continued out over the crowd. This let the light show work through the DJ and included the audience.

“Another important feature was the speed of the Q12 and 5R. With a majority of the acts in the Float Den being skull crushers, fast fixtures were necessary. Both the Q12 and 5R delivered.”

Chris acknowledges the hard work of Raven owner/operator James Dufrene and production designer Melinda Cohen on the event, as well as LD Tony Milliet. Chris concludes with a shout out to PSLP (Professional Sound and Lighting Products), the Elation rep firm Raven Production Management Group worked with on the project. “We obviously couldn’t have done this without the quick response time and turn around by PSLP.”

Raven Production Management Group

  • Production Design : Float Den Stage, Ballroom Stage, Back Alley Stage, Art Installations
  • Custom Fabrication : Art Installations, Ballroom Stage, Back Alley Stage
  • Lighting Vendor : Float Den Stage, Ballroom Stage, Back Alley Stage
  • Staging Vendor : Float Den Stage, Back Alley Stage
  • Audio Vendor : Back Alley Stage