BB King Casino – Beale St Experience

Submitted by Creative Lighting Design & Engineering, LLC

0

Client: PCI Gaming

Location: Montgomery, AL, United States

Completion date: 2015

Artwork budget: $1,500,000

Project Team

Artist

Marty Peck

Creative Lighting Design & Engineering

Architect

Jeff Barnes

DALE Partners Architects

Industry Resource

Tripp Oliver

Mainstage Theatrical

Overview

This casino client relied on the lighting to recreate the vintage, musical streetscape of Beale Street in an indoor setting, energizing the classic street and sky on a comparatively modest budget. All lighting elements on the gaming floor also needed to choreograph the casino’s signature jackpot celebrations to encourage additional play, contributing greatly to the client’s revenue. Van Gogh’s Starry Night inspired the primary light layer, consisting of 208 suspended strings of 60 programmable 1-watt nodes that artfully swirl into three foci.

Goals

Visual energy varies through hourly routines, including peaceful suggestions of colorful sunrise and sunsets. Occasionally, nodes on the grid and swirl layers twinkle for a three-dimensional night sky with streaking comets. Sometimes Beale Street neon is exaggerated with colorful retro effects, or color palettes morph across the sky. Rumbling thunder and vivid lightning maximize the visual energy, with ensuing fire effects heating up the street. Jackpots over $1200 automatically trigger visual celebrations that are choreographed to theme songs, stimulating continued gaming as patrons hope they are next.

Process

The client and architect gave the lighting designer a huge role to play in this casino design to create the vintage, musical streetscape of Beale Street, recreating the classic street and sky on a comparatively modest budget. Numerous renderings were developed before settling on this "Starry Night" concept. Custom “Raindrop” pendants with 5w RGB lamps are clustered to add depth and center the array. Smaller 1/2w nodes in 41 strings on a grid pattern on the ceiling add stars and another effects layer. Streetlight and sign fixtures are modified with RGB sources, plus programmable tree strings and texture projectors animate the street. Automated show control unifies 25,000 fixtures and nodes.