KNOXVILLE, TN – It has become a tradition that when the Tennessee Volunteers men’s basketball team and The Tennessee Lady Volunteers basketball team take to the court at Thompson-Boling Arena, they make their grand entrance with a system donated by Bandit Lites. The world class lighting keeps fans engaged from the moment they enter the arena until the final buzzer sounds.
For the Lady Vols, Bandit provides an arch with a “Power-T” made from Prolyte truss as well as a cart (affectionately called the “Wonder Wagon”) loaded with sixty fixtures including Ayrton Magic Dots, GLP X4S, Atomic Strobes, iPix BB4, Elation Sixpar 100, Chauvet ColorDash Accent as well as two Jem ZR-33 Foggers.
Bandit lighting director Alex Becker utilized the Ayrton Magic Dots for creating big beamy looks as each player is called out to the floor. The GLP X4S provide a wash light to light each Lady Vol as they ran through the tunnel while the IPix BB4s are used as a back light. Finally, the Chauvet ColorDash Accents are used to illuminate the “Power-T” structure on the Wonder Wagon.
“The men run through a gauntlet comprised of two 10’ A-Type Thomas truss which we have painted Tennessee Orange and mounted to caster plates,” explained Giff Swart, Bandit Lites Production Manager. “Mounted to these are iPix BB4 and Chauvet Geyser units.”
Additional lighting for the basketball games and introductions comes from the center cluster scoreboard, where Bandit mounted a High End DL-2 projector head, Vari-Lite 3000 Spots and Martin Atomic Strobes. The arena’s catwalk is mounted with Clay Paky Sharpys and Coemar iSpot Flex with custom glass gobos that project the Power T and Lady Vols logo around the arena.
“VL 3000 are used as a gobo wash on the court during player intros and used to light up the fans during the game,” said Becker, “and the Clay Paky Sharpys are used to create the big beamy looks during player intros and team/television timeouts.”
When the men’s team enters the court for warmups, the arena goes dark as a hype video plays. Bandit uses the BB4s on the truss structures to light the players as they take to court.
“This is all about fan experience,” said Becker. “The moment the lights go out for the intros you can feel the excitement in the arena. I think UT is the front runner with fan experience; they check all the boxes: pyro, DJ, Gatling Gun T-Shirt cannon, Smokey’s intro cart, fan giveaways, etc. They have an amazing “fan experience” team that puts it all together and we’re proud to be involved.”