I arrived at Camp Bisco a few days before I was scheduled to shadow dance with Psylab, so I could get my party on. Impatient, after hours of sitting in the RV, I meandered a bit and found myself backstage as Infected Mushroom began their set. I felt a tap tap tap on my shoulder, turned around and was greeted by the Disco Biscuits’ keyboard player, Aron Magner. “Wanna see something neat?” he asked, eyes wide. “Of course. Yes!” I said resolutely, skipping with excitement. I followed him, curious, through the sea of ravers and revelers. We arrived at a tent filled with consoles, knobs and switches. I quickly realized we were standing in the center of where light is born.
Infected Mushroom’s psychedelic synths roared. Magner grabbed me by the hand and pointed to some buttons. After a quick lesson, he smiled and said, “Now, it’s your turn.” Nervous, I attempted to sync the enormous strobe lights surrounding the stage to the music. Always a half beat off, I giggled as Magner shook his head laughing until I realized the power my keystrokes possessed. Bolts of light blinded us, frenzied brilliant bursts showered the crowd; and for a moment, I fell under my own spell.
That was my first and last time commanding a lighting console for thousands of tripped out party people, an experience I’ll always cherish, deepening my appreciation for the art of lighting design. These artists, often overlooked and underappreciated, shine brightly behind the scenes.