One of the most breathtaking live productions of 2019, Rammstein’s Europe Stadium Tour is the latest and arguably greatest in a long line of the band’s projects to feature the involvement of Stageco. Delivering their traditionally unforgiving sound, Rammstein’s epic spectacles have long been known for their pyrotechnic ex¬travagance . On this tour, however, the sheer firepower has hit unprecedented levels of apocalyptic intensity. Stageco was first contacted august 2018, but it wasn’t until just before Christmas when the band finally signed off on the design. Leaving not too much of a window of time to have everything ready by April. It was always going to be a super impressive production on a scale that Rammstein had never presented before, and that’s saying something. Stageco has enjoyed a long-standing relationship with the band that harks back to their earliest arena tours, but this was the first time they were going to tour exclusively with a dedicated stage at every venue on the itinerary. Technical rehearsals took place from April 15th in a parking lot within the grounds of a Berlin ‘music business village’ that accommodates Rammstein’s offices, ffp, Black Box Music, a steel fabrication shop and an indoor studio that hosted the band’s own music rehearsals. After staying in Berlin for nearly four weeks, we moved to Gelsenkirchen to build for the dress rehearsals and the opening date. The production was designed by Florian Wieder of Wieder Design Studio, a creative force behind the Eurovision Song Contest and many other major TV events. Working in collaboration with lighting innovators Patrick Woodroffe and Roland Griel, Wieder’s aim to create a dominant architectural statement with a looming steampunk flavour was allegedly inspired by Fritz Lang’s 1927 movie ‘Metropolis’. Blending in echoes of ‘Blade Runner’ and ‘Tron’, Wieder devised a 36m high, 60m wide central tower structure – majoring in Stageco’s black steel – that accommodates around 45m2 of automated video screens and moving band platforms as well as flame effects. Although the steel isn’t meant to be a feature of the design, it is incorporated in a way that is complementary. While the casual observer may immediately assume that the 55m wide back wall is a large expanse of video tiles, it is surprisingly the home for a massive lighting display. Stageco provided and constructed the rear support structure for this as well as a printed rear scrim. On top of the back wall, a complete level at 12m high hosts large format ‘sky tracer’ lights and pyro. Two 23m high, 1.4m x 1.4m downstage PA towers were developed especially for the tour and are the latest additions to Stageco’s wide range of innovations. The iconic 5m diameter lighting pods travel on a track but, in the original design, two of them were going to interfere with the PA bracket so we had to engineer a tower solution capable of dealing with above average wind loads. After the pod is built on the ground, it is hoisted up the tower on a tracking system until it reaches its final position, allowing the track to become the PA bracket. The bracket then hinges 90° upwards and is then ready for the PA hang to be hoisted and locked. Stageco’s work on the tour has also encompassed the supply and building of two custom designed transparent band roof, each supported on four columns that house cabling for pyro effects. In addition, Stageco has provided the four delay towers, front of house control risers and all of the stage decking.