Originally Posted by Young C
The PQ last night was outstanding! (not an avid watcher.)
Agreed on the PQ.
The cameras were in focus, and the camera director usually had us seeing the act instead of people's reactions during the act.
However, for the majority of the acts, the lighting director seems to be competing against the acts by having too much activity happening behind or around the acts and having the lighting highlight the backdrop or floor rather than framing the acts themselves.
These are the acts where I thought the lighting worked:
Hart Dance Team: the harsh light worked well with the "broken mirror" costumes and was probably choreographed with the dancers, taking creative control out of the lighting director's hands.
Loop Rawlins (wild west performer): Once the ring of fire was going, the reds on the backdrop kept the fire motif going but wasn't overpowering, probably because the fire around Rawlins kept him better illuminated than the backdrop.
Livy, Matt & Sammy (singers): With the lit up rustic wall behind them (I suspect they had brought that wall), and with them out of range of most of the stage lights, they were well-illuminated without distraction.
Aerial Animation: The fake lens flair during the intro looked really stupid (if you are going to have a lens flair, have something to flair off of!), but the actual act looked good, probably because the lighting director knew that any extra lights he would turn on would wash out the act.
Mat Franco (up-close magician): maybe it was the camera being tight on the magician and his big board rather than taking in the stage, but to me it seemed the attention was on the magician and the person the magician was interacting with, rather than the lighting director's light show.
That's 5 out of 12 acts where I thought the lighting worked, and in 3 of those 5 successes the lighting director didn't have free reign.
Hopeful but failed:
Jaycob Curlee (singer): the first closeup had him well framed with an illuminated face on a dark background, and he looked good. But once the switch to a wider view took place, you saw the competing lights on the backdrop, and later closeups had those attention-grabbing lights in frame.
Acte II (Singers): It started out with subdued background lighting, but when the song picked up, the lighting director upped the distracting background.
Hopefully at the next stage of elimination they will be somewhere where the lighting director knows to frame or highlight the acts instead of compete against them. (And maybe we can get a floor that isn't so reflective!)
As far as acts I liked:
I would like to see more of Livy, Matt & Sammy (singers). Last night's performance didn't seem to show the potential I think the three of them have.
I would also like to see more of Jaycob Curlee (singer).
I enjoyed Loop Rawlins but I would like to see if there are other things besides rope tricks.
I am a sucker for magic but Mat Franco somehow didn't quite deliver for me last night, but again I think he has good potential.