Boxing is once again the reigning champ thanks to the Premier Boxing Champions series. Created by Haymon Boxing, the series returns boxing to its glory days by featuring the sports’ brightest stars in their toughest bouts. PBC premiered at the MGM Grand Garden Arena in Las Vegas to live and TV audiences on NBC—the first time in 30 years the network had aired a boxing match.
Lighting designer Lightswitch joined an all-star team led by longtime collaborator and Executive Producer Michael Marto of Executive Visions Inc. The creative team also included award-winning production designer Bruce Rodgers of Tribe, Inc., and technical producer Mario Educate of OSA International Inc. The goal was to create an immersive, high-energy experience for both the live audience and televised broadcast. To elevate the traditional boxing match to the new level, the creative team conceived a “cathedral to boxing” with a variety of automated lighting fixtures and massive LED displays. Above the ring, a tiered structure dubbed “The Ring of Honor” features a square media screen topped by a circular array of LED screens and scenic elements, while fighters enter the arena at the “Wall of Thunder” stage. The lighting system is anchored by a circular truss array with arc source moving lights that cast bright, even illumination over the ring, as well as a hub-and-spoke arrangement of trusses that extends out over the arena to immerse the audience in the action.
The design transformed the traditional fight production into an arena-scale, touring spectacle that combines the dynamics of a concert tour with the thrill of a major sporting event. By thinking outside of the box, we helped create a one-of-a-kind design that packs a powerful punch and elevates boxing back to its rightful place as “the sport of kings.” Photos: Suzanne Teresa