If you ever watched La Sportiva Legends Only live you know we like to put on a show. Lights, sounds and other things are there to create a nice atmosphere for the athletes and the crowd. We like to think that we deliver this every year. It doesn’t happen by coincidence though. We have a guy, so to say. Let’s meet him.
Alright, David…let’s start with what it is you actually do?
Well, I guess you could say I’m in charge of electricity, which means lights and music…
Electricity does sound a bit lame David, isn’t it more like you run the actual show?
Ok, yeah…I guess a little bit, absolutely.
Or quite a lot?
Everything that’s lights and sound, that’s me. Not only for the competition itself, but also to create a nice atmosphere in the whole gym.
And for how long have you been doing this?
Is this the seventh year we do Legends now?
Ok…I didn’t do the first edition, and then I didn’t do the first Tierra (Boulder Battle), but since then I’ve been involved.
Is there any difference…or rather: what’s main difference between then and now?
The difference is that…(long pause)…the chaos has become way more controlled… I mean in the beginning, I mostly did the rigging and played music, more like classic DJ:ing
At this point it’s probably a good idea to mention you’re the DJ as well.
Before it was more like, Björn…you, ordered all the stuff and we tried to piece it together, but nowadays I’ve taken over that part and made plans about how we can optimise what we can do with the amount of current we have in the building.
So, how do you think…what’s your vision here?
My vision is that everything, I mean lights, music, atmosphere, will work together to create a turbo effect which sort of amplifies the experience of watching the athletes on the problems.
The music should never take over, but like I said…it should make the experience of watching the climbing stronger.
Are you usually satisfied after the show?
That’s very rare, but I guess that has more to do with me…
Do you think you’ll be satisfied this year?
I hope so!
The most difficult part of this is timing. It’s always timing… We can’t direct what people are going to do when they’re climbing.
It would be so easy if we could be like… “ok, so you hear this is common time, right? So, on “one”, you start climbing, because that’s when I’ll start the beat”…it doesn’t work like that and they’ll just start whenever they feel like it, and that’s how it should be…while at the same time, this is what makes timing so difficult.
Also the communication with the MC:s…even if we’ve made this schedule…like when you say this or do this interview, you must stand over there and so on…all of a sudden they start freestyling doing some unplanned interview because it’s the right thing to do in that moment for whatever reason…
People are bad at following your plan?
Exactly! We set the lights according to this plan, and as we only have stationary light, because it looks so much better, we cant move around that much. So,if the interview all of a sudden is somewhere else,we have to improvise and that’s…difficult. It really is!
Do you have any idea how much time you invest in planning the music?
Well that varies from year to year, but I’ve been thinking since this summer. I haven’t done that much though because I’ve been experimenting a bit with new equipment… I think I’ve decided to take a step back maybe…I don’t know… My idea was to play even more “live” than before, but now I think it will be a bit of a combination of what I’ve been doing the last three Legends, I mean the piecing together of a lot of music and use of lots of various loops…and now I want to be able to sort of play more…we’ll see if I get there.
The last three, four weeks before the show it’s a lot of work with this.
It always tends to become darker music for the female edition…I don’t know, but it always tends the become lighter, more happy music for the guys. It’s like I don’t dare make it too happy for the women… it has to be heavier..darker. I guess I worry about people thinking “he’s playing happy music just because they’re girls…”, or something…
Does it change anything for you that the last problem is secret?
Uhm…no… I already have…and this may sound boring, but I’ve already decided. I you see it as a show..the intensity of the music goes up and down and this flow must be decided beforehand. I can’t play too hard or intense music too early…
You create a dramaturgy with the music?
Yes, exactly! You can’t drop the heaviest beat whenever…you want to save something to the end,the grand finale, right… and you can’t just play super hard music all the time as there’s no effect without contrast.