Head-torches controlled by lighting desk for dance/theatre work.

Artistic Director: Rachel Jonhson
Lighting: Michael Manion
London, 2016


Atmospheric production based and inspired by the collapse of the San Jose Mine, Chile in 2010. The performance is shown in confined underground spaces like mine, tunnels or a colliery.


Limited audience members wears helmets with head torches. To enhance lighting production and audiences darkness experience the head torches needed to be remotely controlled by a lighting desk.



I modified off-the-shelf head-torches. I added a wifi module ESP8266 ESP-12 to each of 40 head-torches. The module connects to WiFi and listens for Art-Net. Received value switch torch’s LED on or off, so that a lighting desk or software can controll all of them. The wifi chip was assembled on torch LED bottom layer PCB. Power supply, 3V3 DC-DC converter is mounted on side so it can fit inside the torch. Each of the torches also sends a OSC diagnostic message like: wifi channel, signal strength, led status, battery level, etc for monitoring purpose i.e: with TouchOSC app.

To cover long tunnels and underground extend spaces I used multiple PoE WiFi access points, mainly UniFi AP AC Long Range. They share the same SSID on non overlapping radio channels 1,6,11. The ESP8266 chip does not support switching between multiple SSIDs, like mobile phones or laptops. Monitoring and switching procedure was implemented in the code.

Other works:

Motorized Microphone StandRemote controled platform for mic stand

True Light Model Box3D printed miniature light fixture.

The Hairs Of Your Head Are NumberedSensors for monitoring audience's pulse and GSR. Theatre performance.

Stranges & OthersMidi Interface for controlling Qlab. Immersive & participatory piece.

Shiver Me TimbersMultimedia Server for a stormy sea installation.

TwelveRemotely controlled LED stripe in costumes. Contemporary dance performance.

SiegfiredController for special effect. Opera performance.

 © Grzegorz Zając