Singapore 4th October 2010
First there was the Winter Olympics in Vancouver, Canada, then the World Expo in Shanghai, China followed by the World Cup Soccer in South Africa and the Youth Olympic Games in Singapore, and last night the opening ceremony of the Commonwealth Games in Delhi, India. A lot of world events this past year and I am probably missing a few. What the above ones have in common are the huge expenses spent in the opening (and closing) ceremonies. Lighting is key to these ceremonies so out of professional interest I watch these things; I have blogged about it before.
It was certainly not at the high level of the Beijing or Vancouver Olympic Games, which both saw amazing visual scenes achieved with the latest digital media technologies (remember the wales in Vancouver?) . Last night was more physical (lot of song and dance) with the only multi-media projection being the one on the center helium balloon which had the look of a Zeppelin for lack of comparison. Nothing really spectacular, with the basic lighting work horse being the intelligent moving heads, which made the most of their mostly peripheral locations around the stadium (*).
There were a few “lighting moments” though. The first being the LED illuminated Indian sitars. Decorating the music instruments with LEDs was a nice touch adding to the magic. Then there was the LED Yoga class. India is the birthplace of Yoga and many other holistic therapies so having Yoga and the 7 color chakra’s as key element in the ceremony was appropriate. Having a few hundred yogi’s wearing an LED headband while executing yoga positions was a novelty. LED lighting arrived in the holistic world of Yoga last night! Last but not least there was a parading float of typical Indian products and low and behold, one of the floats was a big chandelier! The first time I saw a lighting product promoted during an opening ceremony!
(*) Note: I remember the Jawaharlal Nerhu Stadium in Delhi from my early days in Philips, the masts have a very distinctive tilted angle from its base outside to its head frame inside the stadium. But what I remember most from my climbs high into the floodlight head frame was the thick bed of dead insects we had to step through, all fallen dead from flying into the bright lights….)