ILUMINARC Creates Harmonious Look At Seattle’s Parlor Live

SEATTLE, WA–The Emerald City is known for a lot of cool things, from Starbucks to guitarists like Jimi Hendrix and Kurt Cobain. Judging from the sellout crowds jamming into Parlor Live every weekend, another entry will soon be added to this list, and it will read “one of America’s most successful and unique comedy club venues.” Carved out of a space in an older high-rise that was formerly occupied by a sports bar, the new club is bringing national headliners like Kevin Hart, Rob Schneider and Loni Love to the Pacific Northwest.

However, Seattle’s newest attraction is more than just a comedy club. In keeping with the iconoclastic tradition of its hometown (this is the city that gave us grunge, Windows and Amazon), Parlor Live defies easy categorization by including a sports bar, lounge/restaurant and meeting room along with the 200-seat club in its two-story facility. This diverse mix of venues is pulled together in a visually harmonious design created in part through the inspired use of Ilumipod LΩGIC Tri-1 and Ilumipod LΩGIC Tri-4 LED fixtures from ILUMINARC.

“From a lighting standpoint, this was really three or four different projects in one,” said designer Stephen Weeks of Morgan Sound and Audiovisual (Lynnwood, WA), who was responsible for creating a design that met the diverse demands of this venue, while giving it a unified, consistent look.

Complicating Weeks’ challenge was the age of the building that houses Parlor Live. “Retrofitting a room in an older high-rise presented some challenges, and among them was the issue of power,” he said. “We installed a pretty big system here, but it was all LED so that helped us meet the power challenge. We were able to use the existing electrical service in the space, which was a huge cost savings.”

Weeks illuminated the main area of the sports bar with 36 Ilumipod LΩGIC Tri-1 RGB fixtures each powered by one 3-watt 1,050 mA tri-color (RGB) LED, and 27 Ilumipod LΩGIC Tri-4 circular fixtures each with four 3-watt 1,050 mA tri-color (RGB) LEDs. Run off a Hog 4 controller, these fixtures give the main area of the bar a distinctive look that stands out while also harmonizing with the clean look of the comedy club.

Working with architectural designer Sue Genty, Weeks added an extra level of depth and color to the club by hanging a large assortment of Donovan Lighting Ltd. Metal Drums from the ceiling throughout the room to serve as lanterns. The Ilumipod fixtures were positioned in the discs to create a vibrant color space.

By changing the colors of theses hanging fixtures, Parlor Live is able to transform the mood of the entire room. “The color rendering quality of these fixtures is superb,” said Weeks. “Positioned inside the lanterns, they allow us to saturate the room with color, while avoiding hitting people with direct light. The club will use the discs to create color themes for special events – for example to celebrate a sports team or show the company colors at a corporate party. At other times we can have the lanterns chase each other with disco type patterns. It’s a nice touch.”

In the comedy club itself, Weeks used four Ovation F-165WW LED Fresnels and eight COLORado 2-Quad Zoom Tour par-style fixtures from CHAUVET Professional. “Being LEDs, these fixtures are much cooler than incandescent lighting is on stage, which the comedians appreciate,” he said. “We also get a flat even field from the Ovations and a color temperature that works well for video production.”

Weeks positioned the four Ovation F-165WW fixtures on a ceiling bar 14 feet in front of the stage. An equal number of COLORado 2-Quad Zoom Tour fixtures are on the bar with the Fresnels. The four other Zoom Tours are positioned overhead upstage. Forty-two COLORband PiX pixel mappable linear RGB fixtures from CHAUVET DJ are utilized for audience effect lighting and wall washes.

For their part, the owners of Parlor Live couldn’t be happier with the growing popularity of their club and the performance of its lighting system. “We’ve gotten a lot of positive feedback on the lighting,” said Weeks. “Our team and the folks from the electrical contractor Schneider Electric did an excellent job taking an older room and turning it into something memorable.”