Around Spice World in 185 daysDeveloped, engineered and delivered in six short months, Spice Girls’ first tour proper since 2008 is a big production spectacular. Three bespoke stage systems leapfrogging across 13 UK and Ireland dates.
Designed by Lee Lodge and Jason Sherwood, Spice World 2019 is thick with players, pyro, costumes and creativity. It’s 36 production trucks on each show. A globe and video ring centre stage, the latter alone a weighty 12 tons, and the biggest iMAG screens on the road stage left and right.
The first challenge was to identify suppliers with the capability and creativity to provide for the tour at short notice, in the thick of the summer season.
High up the wish list having provided staging and support structures to the Spice Girls previously, Star Events’ VerTech is the hook for the returning four-piece.
Despite the fact that the season was shaping to be up there with the busiest in the company’s considerable history, Star committed to provide a 25m VerTech to each system and a trove of support structures/ingenuity. Coupled with custom and upstage angled iMAG wings, the stage makes for a total frontage of 65m.
Tour Production Manager Tony Gittins and team build the globe at each location, lifting it and landing it on the stage before they can fly the ring. Getting the weights structured to the reach of the VerTech roof is a product of extensive planning between Gittins, Head Rigger James Heath and Star Events.
The iMAGs and the video ring require heavy-duty hoists to suspend them safely and Star stepped forward with two packages of 5t LoadGuard hoists and control from its extensive rigging inventory to meet the exacting requirements.
The platform incorporates extensive underworlds to allow the principals to access show reveals from their on-stage quick-change area. At the top of the structure a bespoke, cantilevered curved header truss links to custom straight sections across the wings providing a seamless video train.
Star also designed, built and installed identical aluminium header systems for each stage with over 300 custom suspension brackets to allow the screen modules to be quickly installed across the full width the stage header.
“We worked closely with Tony, James Heath and Brilliant Stages to ensure the roofs could support the loads of the globe during assembly and show while retaining sufficient rigging capacity to suspend the video ring and other core elements.
“All the components come from our extensive stocks in Thurleigh.
“The tour has been a big challenge and it’s a real pleasure to be part of the great team that Tony put together to make it happen.”
Star Events’ Head of Structures
“The size of our iMag screens matches Brilliant Stages curved extension to the stage, and the video ring, so it’s all very off the front. Again that took a lot of of working out how we hang it on the main roof but have it cantilevered that far.”
“We’re pushing the limits and Pete Holdich has been completely integral on the build and putting this whole thing together from the start.”
Tour Production Manager
Results / ROI
Extra Spice Girls dates were added after the initial six show sold out in minutes. The Spice World 2019 tour was Ticketmaster UK’s busiest ever sale, millions of people on the site searching for tickets. According to reports, the queue at one point was well over 700,000.